What Are Progressive Jackpot Slots?

progressive jackpots reel

Last week we asked you what you'd do if you won big. Did you decide you'd fly one way to Mauritius? Or maybe you'd prefer a house in the countryside or a new car? Either way, you need to be in it to win it!

Progressive jackpots are available at most casinos, and if you're hoping for a sizable windfall then you should be playing games that are linked to them.

You’ll find plenty of games that are linked to a huge jackpot – including table & card games like video poker.

But progressive slots are by far the most popular. People flock to them for a chance at winning massive real money prizes. And, they're also enormous fun.

In this guide we'll look at how these types of slots differ from normal slots, how they work and which ones you should be playing right here at GoWin.

What Is A Progressive Jackpot Slot?

A regular slot offers us big wins based around what symbols are collected, and their jackpots remain fixed. For example, a winning combination of 5 wilds may reward you with a 500x coin prize. This would be considered the jackpot prize of the game and stays at the same amount always.

However progressive games are different because, as the name suggests, their jackpot value grows or falls. They accumulate a jackpot the more than people play and will keep rising until the prize is claimed. After this, the jackpot will start all over again.

Where Does the Jackpot Come From?

Pile of jackpot slots winnings

Progressive jackpots get their money prize funds from the money wagered on the game. In blackjack or video poker, for instance, the bets you lose on poor hands count towards the jackpot. In slots, for every the bet placed yet lost on a progressive jackpot, a percentage of the money is added to the jackpot. So, the more players, the bigger the jackpot is likely to become.

This is why these jackpots can reach such high values, as until someone claims the prize the money just keeps piling up. Once a jackpot is claimed, you'll notice the progressive prize amount falls to a more modest number, which is usually around the same value as the big prize on a normal video slot. The process restarts again immediately.

You may have noticed that some progressive jackpots are much bigger than others. As we've mentioned, the size of the prize is directly impacted by the number of people who play that game. So why then, are some jackpots more popular than others and how is it that the jackpot remains the same regardless of which casino you visit?

online casino provider IGT Logo

There are different types of jackpot games including network jackpots. Network jackpots are the most common type of progressive slot you'll come across and arguably the most popular too. Network jackpots are linked by a centrally located server. This can be hosted by the software developer, for example IGT or by the casino brand itself. Every time you play the slot, regardless of which casino you're playing at, the slot will communicate with a jackpot sever, meaning that all players access the same prize pool.

Network jackpots can be hosted by multiple casinos at a time and can be played all over the world. This allows the jackpot to accumulate masses of money as there's so many people playing! Moreover, once players notice that a jackpot has soared, they'll play more often to try and win, meaning the jackpot grows even larger!

Slot machines that are connected to a jackpot will contribute to that jackpot with every bet a player makes. Progressive slots that are part of a network jackpot are the most popular.

Why Do Slot Machines Give Away So Much Money?

Group Of Friends Sharing Progressive Slot Money

It seems like a con right? Why would any slot-developer or casino want to pay out figures in the millions to any Tom, Dick or Harry? It makes you wonder whether popular progressive jackpots are harder to win that a normal slot. Well, there is some mathematics behind the scenes, but it's definitely more simple than you'd think.

In a normal slot game, the software developer needs to work out how much money they're likely to earn from players spinning and loosing and so how much they can afford to pay out when someone wins big. For example, if a slot game set their jackpot at £1 million, but players were able to access this in one simple spin, the slot would obviously be haemorrhaging money and therefore go out of business. It's all a game of risk, and so regular slot prizes are set low to make sure they can pay out.

However, progressive jackpots are made from money that players have already lost. As the jackpot prize is pooled, each time you spin and don't win the jackpot, that money is fed into the prize fund. This means that the prize is paid for by the players and so software providers won't be out of pocket when it's claimed. This is why they allow these jackpots to just keep building up; they can quite easily surpass a £1 million value, whereas a prize of this size is hardly ever offered by regular slots.

Do Progressive Slots Cost More To Play?

It makes sense that to get your hands on a bigger jackpot you'd have to fork out more money but, fortunately, that's completely wrong! In fact, popular progressive jackpots rarely cost more to play than a regular slot machine. There are some games where you need to qualify for the jackpot, which is usually dependent on your bet size, however most slots accept every wagers size as eligible for the jackpot. You can enjoy progressive jackpot slot like you would regular games, collecting smaller real money prizes for winning combinations. The only difference is that you have the additional chance to claim that huge jackpot.

Progressive Jackpots At GoWin

Popular Progressive Mega Jackpots Series IGT

If you're already a fan of IGT's Cleopatra or Siberian Storm then you'll be happy to know that here at GoWin they're also available as part of the MegaJackpots slots series. The two games are casino classics and they've already got quite a following of fans. The jackpot editions however, give you that added bonus of being in with a chance of claiming a huge real money prize.

Cleopatra, is packed full of features including  free spins and multipliers, yet you'll need to line up five wilds in the centre row to claim the jackpot.  Siberian Storm, on the other hand, offers payers 720 ways to win, a bonus game, up to 96 free spins and, of course, the jackpot prize. To get your hands on the money in this game, you need to collect five scatter symbols anywhere on the reels.

IGT's MegaJackpots games are all linked together, so the jackpot can soar fast! All games in the series start at £500,000, and at the time of writing, the MegaJackpots fund stood at £553,074.10 – more than enough for that trip to Skegness then!