Pokies are the heart and soul of any casino, whether it is an online casino or a land-based one. If you have been to a casino then there is there is no doubt that you will have seen pokies machines, and you may well have seen them elsewhere. The old-fashioned machines used to feature a lever at the side that you would pull to set the game in motion, but today they are advanced video games that are packed with special features to help you win more.

While some modern pokies are truly advanced, all of them, whether old or new, work on the same basic principle. There are a number of reels that are populated with different symbols. The reels spin and the aim is to land matching symbols.

In all but the most basic of pokies, you will be able to see a number of symbols on each reel. Because of this, you can trace a number of paths through the reels, and these are known as paylines. Games can have anything from one up to thousands of paylines, and the idea is to land the matching symbols along these paylines. If you land enough matching symbols, then you will win a payout.

Types of Online Pokies

Broadly speaking there are two kinds of pokies, Classic and Video. These days, thanks to the vast number of developers, most online casinos will offer you hundreds of pokies to enjoy and the collection will be a mixture of both types. In general, classic pokies will have three reels and very few paylines while video pokies will have five reels and numerous paylines.

You will notice that there are far more video pokies than classic pokies. That’s because they tend to offer far more options for developing a theme and bonus rounds. As a result, video pokies can be hugely exciting and rewarding to play. You will find that the games have an amazing range of themes including sports, history, fantasy, nature, and more. As mentioned, they will normally have 5 reels, but you do find games with 6 or even more. More importantly, video pokies are usually packed with bonus features and these offer the chance of huge wins. The most common bonus feature is free spins, but they can go far beyond this and really bring the game’s theme to life.

As the name suggests, classic pokies tend to be more basic. They are reminiscent of the old style of machine that used to be found in gaming arcades. The most basic of classic pokies have just a single payline that runs through the middle of the reels and no bonus features whatsoever. However, you do find more advanced classic pokies and they will offer more paylines and sometimes bonus features, such as wild symbols and even free spins.  Classic pokies used to nearly always be based upon fruit machines, but today you will also find games with more imaginative themes.

If you are looking to hit some really big wins then what you should do is keep an eye out for progressive pokies. These can be classic or video and they give you the chance to win huge progressive jackpots. Every time you bet on a progressive pokie a portion of the bet is placed in a jackpot fund and if it is a popular game, this can result in the jackpot growing to be worth millions.

Pokies Rules

One of the best things about pokies is that they are so simple. All you need to do is decide how much you want to bet per spin, this will be set as either a total bet per spin or a bet per payline, and then set the reels going. For detailed information about a particular game’s payouts and features then you need to look in the Paytable. It will vary slightly from game to game, but in general, you will need to land at least three matching symbols to win.

Pokies Tips

Playing pokies is mainly about luck, but there are a few things you can do to possibly improve your winnings and certainly make sure that you have more fun.

The first thing to do is check the details of the game. All pokies have a published theoretical return to play (RTP). This tells you what percentage of money put into the game will be paid out over time. If you look for games with higher RTPs then hopefully you will win more money.

The only other thing you can do is make sure that you understand exactly how a pokies’ feature are triggered. If all of the bonuses, including progressive jackpot games, are triggered by scatter symbols then you do not need to play with all paylines active. You will have the same chance of triggering them as with all paylines active, and this way you can save yourself some money on each spin, but still enjoy all the features.