How slot machines work: reels, mechanics, and a random number generator

How slot machines work: reels, mechanics, and a random number generator

Let’s say right off the bat: you don’t need to be a professional to learn how to spin the drums and understand how it all works. Yes, you will have to figure out some of the basics and what each button is responsible for. But to understand it, it will take a very long time.

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The main parts of the slot machine mechanism are the reels and the random number generator (RNG). There are different types of slots, but they all have the same structure. And everyone uses RNG, but we’ll come to that later. Other parts of land-based slot machines:

  • coin acceptor – the place where you put money or credit cards;
  • handle (lever) – if you pull it, the drums are activated;
  • payout trigger – determines the payout amount;
  • a set of reels – they give out combinations of symbols;
  • payline – it is the payline, or the prize line, it will be discussed further in the text.

What are the reels of slot machines

Reels are groups of characters that, in most cases, spin vertically. There are many types of slot machines depending on the number of reels available. The most common are 3-5-reel machines. 3-reel drums are considered old-school, they are also called classic. These are low risk games and easier to play 5 reels are more popular among modern gamblers. They have high quality graphics, stylish features, vibrant animations. All this calls for immediately pressing the Spin button.

While each slot machine is quite unique, most of them play 12Joker casino Malaysia the same way. Once you learn the basics, symbols and functions, you will be ready to play thousands of casino games without any problems. The first thing to do is start the game. Go to your favorite casino and select the slot you want to play. In most cases, you can start them in demo mode, that is, for free. Thus, players are familiar with the rules of the game before starting to spin the reels for real money.

Random number generator (RNG) for slot machines

The random number generator (RNG) built into the slot machine is a complex algorithm that generates the results of the issue. They cannot be predicted, and this ensures that each next result is independent of the previous one. That is, it doesn’t matter if you got a winning combination or failed to win in previous sessions: this will have no effect on the results of the next spins.

For the reels to start spinning, you need to press the Spin button. After that, the RNG generates a sequence of characters at random. The result cannot be influenced. At least this applies to RNGs that come with the software of reliable providers. Each output of the generator is unique.

There is also a number showing how often a winning combination appears on a slot machine. It is called frequency. The higher it is, the more often winning combinations appear. Slots that have a high frequency are not always the best option to play, since they do not provide a high percentage of returns. Low frequency slot machines have better payout rates than others.

The return percentage is another thing to consider while playing. It usually grows in parallel with the amount of money that has been invested in a particular slot machine.

A paytable is a list of winning combinations in a particular game. From it, you can understand the main points about how the game works. In modern slot machines, the paytable does not open automatically. Therefore, before starting a game, a gambler needs to know how to get access to it. Usually, the information is hidden behind a button with a question or a prize icon. Each machine implies a certain number of symbols. The paytable tells you which ones are high paying and which are low paying.

Also, each slot has its own number of paylines. Sometimes it is fixed, sometimes it is not. Prize paylines are contours showing the order in which symbols must be placed in order to trigger a win. The number of lines can vary from 1 to 1024 and more. Modern devices sometimes boast an amazing number. Some machines come with a variable number of paylines, others with a fixed number.