What Does Volatility Mean in Slot Machines and How to Determine it?

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It’s hard to talk about online casinos without mentioning slot machines.

This classic casino game has made its way to the online world in much more modern, unique and fun ways that players can imagine.

From mobile slots to multipliers, multi-pay line slots, mega slots and progressive slots, players have virtually endless choices.

But whatever type of slot machine online casino-goers choose to play, there’s one important factor that influences their decision: slot volatility.

What is a Slot Machine’s Volatility?

Volatility, in online gambling, is a term used to assess the risk of losing a bet.

In other words, it suggests how rare or often players can expect to win or how big or small they can expect the prizes to be.

Slot machines are categorized into three levels of volatility: low, medium and high. Online casino platforms offer slot games in various risk levels.

Low volatility slot machines

Low-variance slot games give players more chances of wins but with very small jackpots, ranging from 250-500 times the bet. They aren’t as exciting as the machines with higher volatility, but the fact that they deliver steadier payouts makes them appealing to many players.

There are other benefits tied to choosing low volatility machines, such as easier bankroll management, smaller loss and longer playtime.

However, these games lack the element of a big jackpot. It’s not going to make a person rich when he walks out of the casino.

Medium volatility slot machines

Online slot games with medium volatility make a fine compromise between low volatile and high volatile machines.

These games are slightly frustrating to play but offer highly anticipated wins in return. Additionally, medium-variance slots usually offer tons of bonus features. They make a fantastic choice for people who play for fun but still want decent wins here and there.

High volatility machines.

For players dreaming of becoming millionaires or billionaires one day, slot machines with high volatility are the way to go.

They are also called “high risk” machines that rarely pay. But once they do, lucky players can expect big jackpots. These slots are preferred by users who have big bankrolls and have enough time and patience to chase after the jackpot prize.

With high-variance machines, players can win 3,000-10,000 times their initial wager.

How to Determine the Volatility of Slot Machines

Not all players have the luxury to play a high-variance slot machine. Others don’t feel motivated with low-variance slot games either.

One way to ensure a rewarding online casino experience is to learn how to determine the volatility of slot machines.

Play the game

Most online casinos won’t disclose the volatility of slot machines. It’s up to the players to know. Unfortunately, this can take numerous rounds, which account for 500-1,000 spins.

Experts suggest trying out the free version of an online slot game. The reason is the variance of any slot machine remains the same whether the player is using the free or premium version. Plus, demo versions eliminate the risk of using real cash.

Determine the game’s RTP

The RTP (return to player rate) is a projection of how much gamblers can expect in winnings. This is determined by the game developer.

Slot machines with higher RTP rates provide higher chances of winnings, which make them less volatile. Whereas those that have lower RTPs are considered more volatile.

Determining the volatility of online slot machines helps players choose the game that matches their betting goals.

Check the intensity of bonuses

Games with bonus features tend to have a higher slot variance.

Slot machines that feature a bonus once in every 500,000 spins, for example, will likely pay a more substantial amount than a slot game that features a bonus after every 50 or 100 spins.

Progressive slot machines, or those that allow players to place portions of the bets go towards increasing the jackpot, tend to be more volatile.

Other factors affect the variance of an online slot game, such as the obstacles on the reels and pull away money on those features, making the game harder to hit.