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Video Slot Machine Glossary

Find the latest terms from A to Z that are used in a video slot machine.

Term Explanation
3D Video Slots 3D Video Slots, are the new generation of slots that replaced mechanical slot machines. These slots display the reels on a screen and are in most cases highly graphical.
3-reel slot These slots only have 3 reels, they were very popular and used to be the norm when it came to slots. Contemporary slots also make use of 3 reels, however, 5 reels are now the norm.

A

Action This is how much time a player has spent gambling in total, either on a machine or at a casino
Active Payline Some slots allow players to choose the number of paylines that they can play across. Players can pick how many of these paylines are active.
All-ways Slots The norm is for slots to match and pay symbols from left to right. All-ways slots play from left to right and right to left.
Annuity winner This is a jackpot or prize that is paid out in instalments over multiple years rather than in one lump sum
Any Ways Pay This is the same as All-ways pays. This slot pays out from left to right and right to left, increasing the odds for players.
Autoplay Players can pre-select the number of spins the slot will play on their behalf.
AWP These are a type of slot machine often found in UK pubs, that do not require any skill on the part of the player, often called “Fruit Machines”

B

Bar This is one of the most common types of symbols found in slots, especially the fruit slots. These bar symbols can come stacked in either 2 or 3
Base Game This is the basic version of the slot that excludes the bonus features
Bet This is the amount of money a player plays or stakes per round or spin of the reels
Bet Max This is the maximum amount that the player can play per spin.
Bet Min The minimum amount that a player can play per spin.
Big Bertha A slot machine that is a point of focus in a casino, often larger than other slot machines.
Bonus Feature This is extra games or features available on a slot, often triggered by scatter or wild symbols. The bonus feature usually pays out significantly more.
Branded Slots These are slots that use branding taken from TV shows, movies, rock stars, celebrities and any other publicly recognizable brands.
Buy a Pay Prizes that is usually only to players that wager above a certain amount, these are normally certain Jackpots.
Buy a Feature Players can buy a feature, such as free spins, rather than wait for it to be triggered by certain symbols landing on the reels.

C

Carousel A cluster of slots that are usually found on a casino floor. More often than not with the same theme.
Cascading Reels This feature removes all the winning tiles from the reels, which leaves empty space, allowing for new symbols to cascade or fall from the top to replace them. These cascades normally continue until there is no more winning combinations to be made.
Cash-Out This is the act of exchanging the credits that you are playing with and exchanging it for real money.
Casino Bonus Bonuses are offered to players, either new or existing.
Certified Slots These are slots certified to have an RTP of 98% to 100% .
Classic Slot The old type of slot used to have a single payline and three reels. These were usually mechanical.
Cluster Pays Symbols do not pay out in lines but rather when they group together in a cluster of symbols.
Coin Slot machines used to work with coins, however, modern-day slots do not use coins anymore. Coins still refer to money in many online slots.
Coin Size Many online slots will let you change the size of the coin, this means that players can adjust the face value of a coin.
Coin Slot A coin slot is a slot machine that which players had to throw money in to play and also paid out in coins.
Coins Per Line The number of coins a player stakes per line, the number of coins is normally multiplied by the number of paylines.
Cold Slot A cold slot is a slot machine that has not paid out in a while.
Collect The collect button, allows players to collect their winnings and convert it back into cash. Otherwise, collect is also used in the gamble feature if the player does not wish to gamble their winnings or is finished playing the gamble feature.
Comps Rewards for players at land-based casinos, normally in the form of tickets, meals, drinks or other forms of free gifts.
Credits Some slots display your balance in credits rather than a monetary value.

D

Demo game A free version of the slot which players can try.
Denomination This is the face value of coins, often adjustable by players.
Drops A feature where the reels are replaced by symbols that drop into the grid.

E

Expanding Symbol Symbols that when they fall on the reels, expand and take over the whole reel. These symbols are often wild symbols.

F

Feature Features is what the slot game offers in addition to the base game. These could be free spins, bonus rounds, re-spin or gamble features.
Feature Buy or Bonus Buy The ability for the player to buy the bonus games and features rather than wait for it to be triggered by symbols.
Fixed Jackpot A fixed Jackpot never changes as opposed to a progressive jackpot which increases as the slot is played.
Fixed Value Slots Slots where players can not change the total bet.
Free-to-Play Most slots offer a free to play version for players to try out.
Free Spins Spins that are normally awarded as part of a feature, triggered by landing a certain amount of special symbols.
Fruit Machine A popular type of slot that features mostly fruit. Also, a term used in the UK for a slot.

G

Gamble Feature The gamble feature lets players wager their last win in a game that could double, triple or quadruple their winnings, however, you could lose it all just as easily.
Grid This is the tiles made up of the reels and rows.

H

Hammering a Machine Playing the same slot in an attempt to land a jackpot or a feature.
Hit and Run A strategy of playing a few spins and then moving on to the next machine.
Hit Rate The hit rate, refers to how often you could activate a feature in a given amount of spins.
Hold percentage The percentage of the money played at a slot that the casino keeps.
Hot Slots A hot slot is a slot that is paying out often.
High Paying Symbols The symbols that pay the most when they land in winning combinations.

I

Icons Another name for the symbols in a slot
Instant Winner Prizes and jackpots that pay out instantly
i-Slot A slot that allows players to save their position.

J

Jackpot The highest prize of the slot. This could come as a Grand, Major Minor or Mini in some slots.

L

Lever The spin button replaced the lever which used to be found on old slot machines.
Line Similar to a payline, this is the line on which symbols must land to form a winning combination.
Line Bet The amount you bet per line.
Linked Progressive Jackpot A jackpot that is linked across several machines, the progressive jackpot increases as the slots are played. These jackpots are normally higher.
Loose Slot A frequently paying slot, similar to a hot slot.
Low Paying Symbols The lowest paying symbols that can land in a slot.
Loss limiter A way of limiting losses while using the auto-play feature, this will stop gameplay if you lose a certain amount.
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M

Maximum Bet The maximum allowed bet by the slot.
Maximum Win The maximum win amount of the slot, any amount after this amount is not paid out.
Mechanical Slots Old style slot machines that used mechanical reels.
Megaways The Megaways reels, changes the number of rows of each reel after every spin.
Minimum Bet The lowest amount that can be placed as a bet on a spin.
Multiplier Multipliers are special symbols that multiplies the winnings of a payline or spin. Multipliers come in various different forms.
Multi-Line Slots with more than one payline.
Multi-Way Similar to “Any way win”, paylines pay out left to right and right to left.
Mystery Symbol Mystery symbols do not have fixed value or function and can often turn into one of several symbols.

N

Nudge Symbols that nudge is often the winning symbols that stay in place and then move either left, right or down one row or reel. New symbols cascade in and if there are any more winning combinations the process repeats.

O

One-Armed Bandit A term for a mechanical lever slot.
Online Slot Slot games that are played online via a browser or an app.

P

Payback Percentage This is the RTP of a slot, how much the player can theoretically expect to win back over time.
Payline The line on which winning combinations are made.
Payout The winnings that the player receives for certain combinations.
Paytable The paytable is a list of the different symbols and how much each combination will pay out.
Pokies An Australian term for slot machines.
Progressive Jackpot A jackpot which increases over time till a player wins it and it resets. A percentage of each player spin contributes to the jackpot.

Q

Quick spin Quick spin reduces the number of animations that are displayed on the reels, thereby letting players play at a faster rate.

R

Random Number Generator (RNG) Random number generator slots use an algorithm to determine your next spin and the combination in which the symbols will land.
Reels The vertically spinning columns which displays the symbols when they come to a stop. Mostly found as 3, 5 or 6 reels.
Return to Player (RTP The amount that a player can theoretically win back over time playing a slot.
Respins Spins that are awarded, which a player does not pay for when certain conditions are met, normally 1, 2 or 3 spins.
Rolling Reels Winning symbols are removed from the reels and new symbols cascade to replace them.
Rows Rows are the horizontal symbols that are displayed when the reels come to a stop. These can be fixed or variable such as you find in Megaways slots.

S

Scatter wins Winnings that are paid when scatter symbols land on the reels.
Scatter Symbol Scatter symbols can payout or trigger a feature by landing anywhere in view on the reels.
Signature Slots A slot game that is commissioned by a casino for their own use and unique to them.
Slam stop Stopping the reels faster by pressing the spin button again.
Special Symbols Symbols that have a special function in the game such as scatters, mystery or wild symbols.
Spin button The spin button initiates the reels turning mechanic.
Split Symbol These are symbols that share the same tile, they are normally two different symbols.
Spreading Wild Wild symbols that can spread to other symbols on the reels.
Stacked Symbol Stacked symbols make up more than on vertical tile on a reel, increasing the likelihood of triggering a win.
Stacked Wild A wild symbol that covers an entire reel, greatly increasing the odds of a win.
Stake The amount a player bets on a spin of the reels.
Sticky Wild A wild symbol that stays on a tile during consecutive spins.

T

Total Bet The sum of money the player stakes on a spin.
Trail Often found as a bonus feature, the player needs to progress on a trail.
Tumbling Reels Similair to a cascade, winning tiles are removed and new tiles cascade down to replace them.
Turbo Spin A feature that reduces the number of animations on the reels for faster play.

V

Variance The variance of the slot, how often does winning combinations land and the amount they pay out.
Video Slot Newer generation of slots that make use of screens and computers.
Virtual Reel The reels in modern slots are virtual as opposed to mechanical reels of old slots.
Volatility The volatility of the slot refers to how often winning combinations land and the amount they pay out.

W

Walking Wilds Wilds that when they land to move to other tiles, often left or right until they disappear from the reels.
Wager The amount the player bets on a spin of the reels.
Ways to Win “Ways to win”, usually refer to the number of possible combinations that can be made. There are no fixed paylines, symbols need to land on the adjacent reel to form combinations.
Wild Symbol A symbol that can substitute for any other symbol on the reel to complete a win. Other special symbols are excluded from these combinations.
Wild Multiplier A wild symbol that awards a multiplier when part of a winning combination.
Win The combinations of symbols that land on the reels to make a win, as specified in the paytable.
Win Multiplier Multipliers that increase a winning payline or spin by a certain number.
Win limiter Used during the auto-play feature. Stops the auto-play spins if a large prize is won.
Win-Both-Ways Winning combinations can be made from both the left side and the right side of the reels.
Winning Combination Symbols that land on a payline as per the paytable which results in a payout.

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Chris Grand - avatar
Chris Grand - avatar

Chris GrandPublisher

I've been a webmaster for the past 12 years. I am a huge fan of slots and everything gaming. I specialise in writing blog and casino reviews and I hope you will appreciate my honest and transparent approach. Hope you enjoy reading them as I am.