How to Choose the Best Slot Machine in a Real-Money Online Casino: A Checklist for Novices

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Many players, myself included (at least, when I wasn’t very experienced) dream of winning a jackpot on their very first try. However, the reality of casinos doesn’t operate on mere luck or wishful thinking. After over three years of professionally testing casino games, I’ve crafted a checklist to help novices find the best slot machines—ones that are kind to their bankrolls and increase their chances of winning responsibly.


On many sites, you see the Return to Player (RTP) under the game’s title. This % is how much it pays back to players. Not immediately, of course, but over a certain number of spins (usually over billions of rounds). It’s curious to know but it’s not the sole factor to consider. The Statistical Return Percentage (SRP) offers insights into how much a game has paid out within a specific period. While RTP is a fixed rate, SRP can fluctuate, showing recent payout behaviors. In Roolicasino, for instance, you can find games with SRPs higher than their RTPs. They can (though not necessarily) be more generous. 

Even if you consider RTP and SRP, remember that they don’t hint at any correlation. The Random Number Generators (RNGs) ensure that each spin is independent. So it’s impossible to predict anything.

Volatility = Risks

Volatility literally measures the risk involved in playing a slot game. It indicates how often and how much the game pays:

  • Low Volatility: Pays small winnings more frequently.
  • High Volatility: Offers larger payouts but less frequently.
  • Medium Volatility: Balanced frequency and amount of payouts.
  • Low-Medium and Medium-High: These variations offer a finer tuning of risk preference. Novices are advised to start with low to low-medium volatility slots as these will likely allow more playtime and frequent, albeit smaller, wins.

Max Win

Every slot machine has a maximum payout limit hardcoded into its programming. This max win is a crucial figure as it represents the highest possible amount the game can pay out in a single spin. This limit is typically calculated as Maximum Bet x Maximum Multiplier = Max Win. Knowing this can help players understand the potential returns a slot can offer.

Maximum and Minimum Bets

These are vital for effective bankroll management. They limit how much you can wager on a single spin. And based on the minimum bet, for instance, you can plan your budget. The maximum bet is particularly important because it’s often tied to the possibility of hitting the maximum payout.

Bonus Features

Most slots today have bonus features. The latter can affect gameplay.

  • Free Spins: For a while (for that number of spins) you play for free.
  • Respins: Offer additional spins after certain conditions are met without returning to the base game.
  • Sticky Wilds: Wild symbols sometimes may remain in place for multiple spins, potentially increasing wins. These features not only make the game more exciting but also enhance the potential to win bigger payouts.
  • And other features. 

Paying Lines or Clusters

Understanding the structure of paylines or clusters is key:

  • Fixed Paylines: A set number of lines that you can bet on.
  • Megaways: Variable paylines that change with each spin, often offering thousands of ways to win.
  • Clusters: Wins are achieved by forming groups of symbols touching each other. The type of pay structure can greatly influence game strategy and potential winnings.

Jackpots and Jackpot Types

Not all slots offer a jackpot, but those that do are categorized separately. Jackpot slots can have:

  • Single Jackpots: One major jackpot win condition.
  • Multiple Jackpots: Games that offer several different jackpot levels, increasing the ways to win big. These games often come with higher volatility and potentially larger payouts but require careful consideration due to their less frequent payout nature.

Please Approach Real-Money Gambling Responsibly!

Gambling should always be approached with caution and responsibility. Set limits, stick to your predetermined gambling budget, and never chase losses. Gambling is a form of entertainment, not a way to make money.


Choosing the right slot machine as a novice can significantly enhance your online gambling experience. By understanding and utilizing this checklist, you can select games that not only fit your budget but also your risk tolerance and gameplay preferences. 

Remember, the best slot game for you is one that provides entertainment and fits your personal gaming style while ensuring you gamble responsibly! Best of luck!