Paylines, simply put, are the patterns in which winning combinations must fall on to achieve a win in a slot machine game. It would seem then, that they are indispensable, but in fact more and more slots are shunning traditional paylines in favour of a ‘ways to win' mechanism.
A ‘ways to win' slot may promise hundreds more opportunities at creating a win than an a regular slot, but is it all just talk? Do these types of games actually pay out more and how do they even work? Today, we're discussing everything you need to know about ‘ways to win' slots, including if they're worth playing and which ones you should try out.
Since going online, slots have progressed far from the humble one-armed bandit type games that used to be played. Now, they arrive with so many bells and whistles it's hard to know where to start. Players can choose between a vast array of different themes, a number of reels, bonus rounds, extra spins and more. Whilst all these things are worth considering, perhaps the most important factor of any slot is how it pays out.
More traditional slots use paylines, sometimes referred to as winlines, to determine when they will pay out. These are the straight, diagonal or zigzag lines you'll find in the slot's paytable, and they show you which pattern makes up a winning combination. On the other hand, ‘ways to win' slots are won simply by landing symbols on consecutive reels, no matter what kind of line it creates.
Ways to win slots may also boast that they ‘pay both ways.' This simply means that combinations can be made from either the left to the right or the right to the left, whereas in traditional slots, paylines always start on the left. In addition, these types of slots will tell you how many ways there are to win before you play. Usually this is either a figure of 243, 720 or 1,024. This number refers to the amount of possible combinations that would count as a win.
One of the biggest reasons why people play ways to win slots is that they do actually offer more opportunities to win than regular titles and they usually cost the same as a normal slot. You would think that, given there is a higher chance of you creating a winning combination in a single spin, these types of slots would cost more per spin, right?
Well, in fact, they generally work out at costing the same as if you were to play a regular slot with the maximum paylines in play. This means that you're effectively improving your chances at winning, without spending more money!
Ways to win slots are also great if you find that keeping track of paylines is hard work. Regular slots often have very different paylines, which can sometimes be a bit confusing. How often have you spun, thought you'd landed a win and then realised your chosen slot that day doesn't pay the same as yesterday's? In a ways to win slot, however, you'll be immediately able to tell if a winning combination has been created, as the symbols only need to fall on adjacent reels.
Lastly, a lot of players love ways to win slots because they make the wild symbol much more exciting. As wins are awarded for creating combinations of consecutive symbols, the wild is far more useful — and lucrative — than in a traditional slot. In ways to win slots, a wild can help with any symbol, instead of only being able to help if it falls on a active payline.
Like everything in life, ways to win slots also have their disadvantages. The biggest of these is that they don't offer high payout amounts. Whilst you're increasing your chances of a pay out by playing them, the wins will be much smaller. For instance, whilst a traditional slot may offer you 250x your wager for a five of a kind combination, a ways to win slot may only offer 50x.
This is because it's much more likely that you will actually achieve the combination! This means that many ways to win slots can be described as low variance, the wins may occur frequently, but they'll be relatively small.
Furthermore, ways to win slots often have a higher minimum wager size than traditional games. In regular slots, you may be playing on ‘adjustable paylines' where you can choose how many paylines you wish to have active. This means that the less paylines you choose to play, the cheaper the slot is. Of course, as you remove paylines you also lower your chance of winning, but it does allow budget players to play for as little as 1p. In contrast, as ways to win slots don't use paylines, the minimum wager is set at a standard unadjustable amount.
So, you've read our guide and you think that ways to win slots could be exactly what you've been searching for. Well, luckily, you won't have to search much more as GoWin has some of the best ways to win slots around. In fact, some of our most popular slots are those with this kind of innovative payout mechanism.
Take Taco Brothers by Elk Studios, for example. Taco Brothers launched a couple of years ago, yet it's one of our most played titles. This is, in part, due to it's amazing graphics and amusing bonus features, but also because it boasts 243 ways to win!
We'd also recommend trying Miss White and Miss Red from IGT on for size. The two slots are based around popular children's fairy tales and they both feature expanding symbols, as well as extra spins. Furthermore, the slots offer 1,204 ways to win, and are playable for as little as 45p!
At GoWin, we always try to make sure our roster is as comprehensive and extensive as it can be. That's why we offer our players a wide range of variety when it comes to theme, software developers and wager sizes. So, go forth with your new found knowledge and explore ways to win titles from the likes of Microgaming, NetEnt, IGT and more!