The Best Online Slots
In this guide you will find:
- How SlotCatalog ranks the best online slots
- What is a Slot Machine?
- How do Slot Machines work?
- Which are the different types of slots online?
- How can I play online slots?
- Let's bust 4 myths about online slots
- When the fun stops
- Online Slots FAQ
In this section you'll find our always up-to-date list of the top ranked online slot machines. We provide unique and distinct lists for all different regions, and the ranking system is based on data collected from more than thousand online casinos.
If you want to see the top 100 slot ranking for another region, all you have to do is change the language in the drop down menu in the top right corner of the page. Our ranking system is based on exposure, and by that we mean the average lobby position each slot has across all the casinos we sample.
We hope you find this information useful, and you can always click on any game to get the full details and ranking calculations. We also provide all available technical data for each slot, and you can read our full slot review and play each game for free right here at SlotCatalog.
How SlotCatalog ranks the best online slots
As previously mentioned SlotCatalogs ranking describes slot game exposure in online casinos, by region. Simply explained, we crawl over a thousand online casinos daily to see what games they expose the most. During each casino crawl, we go through all the online slots that you can play in the casino. Each online slot will get an average lobby position score. This means that:
- Higher placement in the lobby will give a stronger score.
- If a game is absent in a casino lobby we will give it the maximum lobby position.
- Larger online casinos have more weight than smaller ones. The weight is calculated by the geographical strength of the online casino compared to other online casinos in the same region).
This means that our ranking method is based on an average score / lobby position for each slot game. A lower average means a better, more exposed game.
Our SlotRank metric is based on all online slots average lobby position scores, but in relative terms. This means that the game with the lowest average lobby position will get SlotRank #1. The game with the second-lowest avg score will get SlotRank #2 etc.
As new games are released daily we update our ranking each day. This way we make sure that you as a player will have the latest ranking available, including the 0-day releases.
We also release yearly rankings from time to time, where we've made a toplist of the games released during the last year and how they've had a high SlotRank for a long period after their release date. Take a look at our infographic of the Best Slots of 2019 to discover which were the most popular games in the United Kingdom, Germany, Japan and Sweden.
What is a slot machine?
The Slot Machine is a mechanic gambling machine where players can bet money with the chance to win money. The first Slot Machine dates back to somewhere between 1887 and 1895. As you would expect the machine was very basic and consisted of three wheels and five different symbols, one which was a Liberty Bell which also became the name of the machine. The newly invented machine became a huge success and could be found in a lot of barber shops, cigar shops, bowling alleys and saloons.
Since then, the history of the slot machine has continued to evolve. The slot machines quickly got nicknames like fruit machines, bar machines, puggy, pokies and one-armed bandit (due to the lever you pulled to start a spin).
About 100 years later, when the internet technology spread over the world and regular people started getting access to browse the world wide web the idea of the online slot machine started to develop. The huge success of the land-based slot machines were simply too easy to port to an online version. However, it wasn't all easy. For online casinos to become successful a lot of smart people had to invent important payment systems for painless and secure money transactions online. In addition to this the online casinos had to make sure that potential customers trusted them enough to play online.
Today, Online slots is a term that covers a vast and diverse array of features, themes and setups, and it's also a field that is in constant development. One thing all casino slots have in common is that they require no real skill to play. As long as you're able to press the spin button, you're basically good to go.
How do Slot Machines work?
There's almost no end to the creativity of game providers when it comes to slot features. Still, some basic features tend to be included in almost every online slot out there. Here we shall briefly explain these generic slot features for you.
The RNG makes sure the chance of winning is unbiased - Slot machines (both physical and online) are operated by a Random Number Generator (RNG) that's been certified by third party agencies for fairness and functionality. The RNG technology makes sure that each spin is independent from previous as well as future spins, which means that each time you make a spin on a machine the chance to win is always the same.
The Slot Reels - The virtual Reels are the vertical spinning wheels that show the different game symbols and eventually end up with one specific symbol on each reel when the spin ends. The behaviour of the reels in slots online are programmed in the game software. This includes the graphics, symbols and probabilities of landing the different game symbols.
Paylines - The number of paylines will vary between 1 and all the way up to several hundred thousand (in rare cases). Usually, there will be between 1 and 100 paylines (or ways to win as it is sometimes called), but there are many exceptions out there too.
Paytable - The Paytable tells you everything you need to know about winning symbols, and the payout for each combination.
Bet size - All slots have a minimum and a maximum limit for how much you can bet, but this limit can vary somewhat between each game. Usually, the limits are both low and high enough to suit most players, though.
Wilds, Scatters and Multipliers - Almost all online slots come with a wild symbol and a scatter symbol. The wild symbol will act as any symbol (except the scatter) to maximize your winnings. The wild can come in many forms and combinations, including stacked wilds and sticky wilds (which are the most common). A certain number of scatters (normally at least 3) randomly spread across the reels will trigger the free spins feature on most slots. A multiplier will boost your winnings by a factor of at least 2x, and can sometimes be combined with wilds.
Free spins and bonus games - The number of free spins you get will usually be tied to how many scatters you land, and sometimes you can get additional free spins by landing more scatters. Many slots also come with bonus games that can take many forms. However, some sort of click-and-pick game is common.
RTP, Variance, Hit Frequency and Max Exposure
The theoretical payout potential - usually called Return to Player (RTP) - can vary significantly from game to game online, but the industry average hovers around 96%. This means that the average House edge for online slots is around 4%, and thus significantly lower than most physical slot machines.
Another thing that varies a lot for online slots is something called volatility (or variance). Even though the RTP can be very similar (or even the same) for 2 slot machines, you'll find that some games payout seldom but big, while others payout smaller wins almost all the time. There is also a middle way here, and it's up to each player to decide what they prefer.
Make sure to read our guide: All you need to know about the slot game metrics RTP, Variance and Hit Frequency to learn more about the slot game metrics RTP displayed on SlotCatalog.
The different types of online slots
The first online slots were very similar to the physical fruit machines. Those 3-reels machines we often call classic slots. With the boom of online slots, so came the more advanced video slots, with more reels, more ways to win and more innovative bonus games, features and graphics. Some of which are jackpot games, and some which are regular non-progressive games.
Online Video Slots
Video slots are by far the most common type of slot machines you'll find in online casinos. They have at least 5 reels (sometimes more), and are characterized by sophisticated graphics, sound effects and sometimes 3D intros of almost cinematic quality. There are simpler video slots also, but usually they come packed with innovative bonus features and exciting special effects.
According to SlotCatalog data, since the first video slot was released more than 13.700 video slots have been released by over 350 different game studios. The numbers clearly describe the popularity of video slots. Certain features and technologies connected to video slots have also become very popular lately, one example of this is the Megaways Technology invented by the game producer Big Time Gaming. The technology raised the amount of ways to win substantially, which has been proven very successful among punters.
Classic Online Slots
Classic casino slots have 3 reels, and they are usually a lot simpler in all possible ways than the video slots. Many times classic slots will resemble - or be exact replicas - of physical fruit machines or one-armed bandits. They have a nostalgic appeal for many, but some also just prefer the simplicity the Classic slots offer.
While you may have encountered a large number of different classic slots during the years in brick and mortar casinos and other physical locations, they have not been as popular online as the video slots category. According to SlotCatalog data there are only about 240 classic slots available as online machines.
Progressive Slots Online
Progressive Slots, or jackpot games, is definitely worth mentioning as an own category due to the underlying fundamentals that one lucky player might hit a life-changing jackpot of astronomical sums. But the truth is that this category can be mixed with the concept of a Classic Slot or Video Slot.
The concept of jackpot slots is not new because of the invention and popularity of online casinos. They have existed in physical form since 1986 when IGT invented the concept of a jackpot with their physical slot machine called Megabucks. A fun fact is that these local machines were connected over phone lines in the United States. The chance of winning a huge jackpot attracted a lot of gamblers and in less than a year one lucky player landed the first jackpot close to $5m in Reno, USA.
Nothing has changed since 1986, the opportunity to win big still attracts a lot of players. The progressive slot machines have just become more accessible thanks to the online casinos. Jackpots are hit often and a lot of players participate in these jackpot pools.
How can I play online slots?
Slot machines can be played online in different ways. If you appreciate the chance of winning real money you can sign up at a quality online casino, make a deposit and start playing. With that said, risking money is not for everyone and it's important to know that gambling can be addictive and cause severe life problems. If you're of legal age you can enjoy online slots for free here at SlotCatalog.
Playing online slots for real money
To get the most enjoyable experience of playing slots online it's important to you select a proper and trustworthy online casino. SlotCatalog has made this easy for you as we list these casinos based on the region you browse from. This way, if you're browsing from the United Kingdom we will only show you proper casinos licenced by the United Kingdom Gambling Commission.
With that said there are still a lot of casinos to choose from. How do you know which one you should go with? We would say that depends on your preferences and recommend you to read our guide on how to select the best online casino according to your needs.
When you've read the guide and found a proper casino that you'd like to register with, you should make sure that they have the slot games that you want to play. If you have some favourite game providers you should make sure that they have their games in their game catalogue as well. Last but not least, don't forget to claim a good casino welcome bonus that gives you some extra credits to play with.
Enjoy online slots for free, without risking any money
As previously mentioned, if you feel like playing online slots without risking any money you can do that as well. SlotCatalog has the most extensive catalogue of free online slots and you can play most of our 17.000 casino games without betting a dime. No registration, No Download and No Deposits required.
If you're still looking for a way to win real money, but don't want to risk any of yours, the No-Deposit bonus is the best option for you. The No-Deposit bonuses offered by some online casinos gives you a small amount of bonus spins or bonus cash to play with in exchange for your personal details. Simply explained, you register an account and get a small award for sharing your details. But don't be fooled, the online casinos that offer these promotions are not trying to be nice. Their expectation is that you will make a deposit sometime in the future.
Let's bust 4 myths about online slots
Since the early days of the slot machines there have been several widespread superstitious misconceptions about online slots and slot machines in general.
It's easy to win money on online slots - This is not true. The statistical return to player (your expected result after a huge amount of spins are usually around 96%) which means that in the long run you will lose money. However, you still have the chance to win, and to win big. But the most probable result is that you will lose money.
Playing more equals a better chance to win - Each spin is random and independent of the previous spins. This means that playing more will result in a bigger number of winning rounds, but not a greater chance of generating winning rounds. The more spins you play the more likely you are to end up with a negative total result.
Games get hot and/or cold depending on its payout history of the latest hours - This is not true when it comes to online slots. However, it's a common superstition which you can read more about in our Hot and Cold Games section. Each spin is random and independent of the other rounds, which means you will have exactly the same chance to win every time you spin.
It's not possible to win big on slot games - This is not true. It's possible to win big on both classic slots, video slots and especially in progressive slots where the jackpot payouts can be huge from time to time. Sometimes the payout is in millions. However, the chances of hitting a jackpot is very slim, but nonetheless very life changing for that one player.
When the fun stops
Gambling can be addictive and online slots are developed to keep you stimulated, entertained and continuously urging you to play more. That's why it's very important to have rules when it comes to playing these games. Make sure to keep track of time, don't chase losses, never play for money you can't afford to lose, never borrow money from someone to play etc.
The previously mentioned recommendations are good to remember because if you discover that you break them it's a good indicator that you might have or have started to develop a problem connected with gambling. If you feel that your gambling has become a problem we recommend you to seek help from one of the excellent support organizations available in most countries.
Online Slots FAQ
❔ How do online slots work?
Online slots work in the same way physical slots do. Spin the reels to land winning combinations of the different symbols on the paylines. One difference between online slots and physical ones is that the online slots are often more advanced.
❔ Are online slots rigged?
As long as the games are regulated, which means licenced and audited by a third party the games are completely fair. This means that the result of a spin is always random and independent of the previous one. SlotCatalog only shows properly licenced casinos.
❔ Can I win real money by playing slot machines on the internet?
Yes you can! You can also lose money. Make sure to never gamble with money you can’t afford to lose.
❔ Are online slots legal?
This depends on which country you are living in. We recommend you to research the legal situation in your country.
❔ Can I win real money at online casinos?
Yes you can, but there is also a risk of losing money. Never bet money you can’t afford to lose.
❔ Is it safe to play slot machines?
If you play at a properly licenced casino, like the ones listed at SlotCatalog your chances are in safe hands. However, remember that gambling can be addictive and might cause harm to your personal relationships and financial situation.
❔ Where can I play slots for real money?
As long as you are above 18 years old and live in a country where online gambling is legal you can play online slots for real money at any of the best online casinos listed here at SlotCatalog..
❔ What makes a good slots site?
There are a lot of factors that are important when determining if a slots site is good. We recommend that you read our guide what makes a good online casino.
❔ Do I have to download anything to play the games?
No, normally games work out of the box in your browser. However, some older games might require a flash plugin in your browser to load.
❔ Which are the most popular titles?
❔ What games have the best payouts?
To discover the best payout slots you can use our filters and sort by RTP. This will list the highest paying slots up top. If you’re looking for quick answers we recommend you to take a look in our best payout slots article.
❔ What progressive slot machines can payout the highest jackpot?
The biggest jackpot won online equaled $21.7 million on Mega Moolah, won by an anonymous player on the 28th September 2018.