Gambling enthusiasts have plenty of great options when it comes to playing slot machines. Those found in local casinos continue to be the primary ways for people to enjoy this hobby.
Playing slots online is growing in popularity too. Some sites offer free slots – and some of them deliver actual cash prizes to winners. Of course, you’ve got online slot options that cost money too, and they offer the advantage of larger jackpots.
NOTE: If you play slot machines for money – meaning you have to deposit your own money into an account – make sure the site is reputable. Read ALL the rules, especially about deposits and payouts, to know exactly what to expect.
Playing Slots Remains Hugely Popular
Slot machines account for more of the gambling market than all other casino games combined. Studies done by the gaming industry conclude that 75% of all revenues come from slot machines.
Depending on the results of various surveys, 70% to 90% of gamblers prefer slots to table games. These factors mean that millions of people are playing slot machines and enjoying it!
The Potential Downside to Playing Slots
It’s called gambling for a reason! If you’re playing for money, then you’re putting cash at risk – and the odds are against you! Look at it this way: If slots account for roughly 75% of all gambling revenues, then you could say that the lavish Las Vegas Strip – with its billions of dollars in value – was built largely on profits from slots players.
In addition, slots give the “house” a greater advantage than low-edge games like blackjack and poker. Chance is the sole reason people either win or lose at the slots. In table games, skills such as counting cards (which is NOT illegal) can give you an edge on the house.
Having said that, people still enjoy playing slots for many reasons. Let’s look at the primary reasons for playing slot machines in casinos and online.
1. Playing Slots is an Entertaining Experience
Let’s start with the “land based” slots, and we’ll take a look at online slots next.
There’s a “buzz” that people get from walking into big, beautiful casinos with the bright lights of the machines flickering, bells and whistles going off and people cheering winning combinations.
Going with friends often increases the excitement, especially when one of you hits a decent payout on a slot machine. It’s common for the winner to buy a round of drinks or cigars, for example.
So, there’s a ton of excitement in well-run, brightly lit casinos. There is, of course, a sense of anticipation that you could hit a nice jackpot and leave with some extra cash in your pocket.
Finally, the machines themselves are very cool! They’re made to give the player the “high” that comes from playing video games. Of course, with that comes the concern that players will get “hooked” on the games.
More than one researcher has found that live slot machines can have a hypnotizing effect on some players. To protect yourself against this, set time limits on how long you’ll play a specific game. Set your phone alarm if needed, or ask a buddy to remind you.
The bottom line about having fun at the casino is to view your experience as entertainment. Think about going to a college or pro football game. With tickets prices, food prices, parking and a few souvenirs, you’ll easily drop $200 or more and walk away with just the experience. You don’t expect to take home cash.
View your trip to the casino and its slots with the same approach. If you head in the door saying, “I’m here to have fun with money I can afford to lose, and if I win, it’s a bonus” then you’re good to go.
If your attitude is, “I gotta win in order to pay the rent/mortgage this month,” then you’re headed for trouble.
Online slots give you some of the same “buzz” though it’s limited to the anticipation of winning and the interaction with the virtual slot machine. As noted above, make sure you check out the online casino to make sure it’s reputable.
Secondly, while playing at home can be relaxing – sitting in your recliner with your laptop and your favorite beverage close at hand—some players will also be more prone to becoming addicted to slots when playing by themselves. That’s just a word to the wise.
2. Slots Offer Excellent Variety
Many bricks and mortar casinos have more than 100 different slot games to play. There’s big money in designing new and exciting machines, and casinos move out the old and rotate in the new on a continual basis.
If you get bored with one game – or want to keep it fresh – then there’s dozens more to try.
One note about this enjoying variety: Most machines have escalating jackpots. Winning a small jackpot secures your opportunity to win the next larger jackpot and so on. You’ll need to play a machine for 10-15 minutes to get a feel for it. Once you understand the game, you’ll have a better idea of when it’s time to cash out and move on or keep playing off the winnings you’ve been credited with.
3. Comps Add to the Enjoyment
When playing at a online casino, the comps you receive for spending significant amounts include free play/credits in your account.
In land-based casinos, the comps include free meals and drinks, and in casinos with hotels, free rooms. These definitely add to the overall enjoyment of your experience.
4. The Entire Experience Can Be Great
It’s not just the slots that draw millions to the casinos. It’s fun time spent with friends, cool bars and great meals – whether they’re comps or not – gorgeous facilities, guys and gals to meet and great shows to take in when you’re not gambling.
Budweiser Beer encourages its consumers to “Enjoy Responsibly.” The same principal applies to all types of gambling. Do it responsibly, and you’ll experience it’s upsides including the potential for big jackpots.