The ultimate slot machine terminology guide

Best50casino has prepared a mini slot glossary for all new players, as online slot terminology is a key factor in further understanding the game.
The terms in slots are dozens, however, the most important are included in this guide. If you know the following, you definitely know the most important terms of slots and you are ready to get started.

3D Video Slots

3D Video slots are graphically intense slot games with depth in their imagery to give a three-dimensional effect.

3 Reel

It is the slot that has three spinning columns/reels. Older slots usually have 3 reels.

5 Reel

It is the slot that has three spinning columns/reels. Most of the new slots have 5 or 6 reels.

Active Payline

Is the number of paylines you have active for a winning combination. Many slots let you increase or decrease the number of paylines to adjust your bet.

All Ways

Are the slot machines you have winning combinations from left to right and from right to left.

Autoplay / Autospin

It is the future where you can adjust the bet and the number of spins in order not to click every time for the spin.

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It is one of the most classic slot symbols and usually its combination has a high payout.


The bet is the amount that a player wagers on every spin.

Bonus Feature / Round

A bonus feature, or bonus round, it is a free spins round with extra wilds, or multipliers. You can check how to activate the bonus feature in the game’s paytable.

Cascading Wilds

Cascading wilds convert other symbols in a slot game into more wilds, increasing the chances of a huge win.

Classic Slots

A classic slot machine has three reels and 10 paylines. These slots usually have classic symbols like bars, bells, fruits, and 7’s.


Coins represent the virtual money of the player while playing a slot, which has a specific value assigned to it.

Cold slot

Players use this term  for slots that don’t pay out very often or do not pay out soon.


Columns are the vertical lines of symbols that spin.

Demo Mode

Demo mode, is when you play a slot game with play money and not real money. 

Expanding Wild

Expanding wild is a  type of wild symbol that grows beyond a single space. These wilds sometimes fill the entire reel, creating more chances of winning.

Fixed Jackpot

A fixed jackpot is a set amount a player wins if he hit the jackpot combination. 

Free Play

It is the demo version that you can try the slot without risking any money.

Free Spins

Free spins the chance a player gets to spin the reels of a slot for free. You can get them during bonus rounds or casino offers.


The gamble feature gives you a chance to double your previous winning spin prize.


To “hit” is to complete a winning combination on an active payline.


The jackpot on a slot machine is the highest possible award. Most of the time, players can only hit the jackpot at max bet.

Line Bet

A line bet refers to how much a player is wagering on a single slot machine line. This amount determines the payout if the player hits a winning combo.

Loose Slot

It is the slot machine that has a higher than average return to player (RTP).

Max Bet

The max bet is the highest amount that a player can bet on a spin. 

Min Bet

The min bet is the smallest amount a player can bet on one spin.

Mobile Slots

Mobile slots are the slots which are compatible with smartphones and tablets. 


Multi-line slots are the ones that have many paylines. Each line increases your bet and dramatically increases your chances of winning.


A multiplier is a feature or symbol that multiplies your winning payouts.


The payline is a line, or pattern, that a winning combination needs to land on to win a prize. It can be straight, diagonal, or zig-zag in many directions. 


The payout is the amount you win when you hit a winning combination. This number is affected by your bet, the symbols, and the multipliers if they exist.

Pay Table

The paytable is a page or section that outlines how much you can win on a slot machine. In addition to payouts, it shows the symbols, rules, and how to activate and use bonus features.

Penny Slots

Penny slots have betting options as little as 1¢ per pay line. These machines are popular since they provide extended entertainment with little risk.

Progressive Jackpot

A progressive jackpot slot has a grand prize that grows with each spin until it is won. Their payouts often reach hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Random Number Generator (RNG)

The random number generator is based on a mathematical algorithm that determines where a slot machine’s symbols land.


The reels on a slot machine are the columns that contain various symbols.

Return to Player (RTP)

A percentage of the total wagered money that the machine pays back to the players. This number is calculated over thousands of spins.

Rollover Requirements

Rollover or wagering requirements is the total amount a player must wager to clear a bonus offer.


Rows are the horizontal lines that symbols fall on.


A scatter symbol awards the player with a payout and often unlocks a bonus round or special feature.

Second Screen Bonus

The second screen bonus is a special feature that takes you away from the basic reels and to a mini-game with a different format.

Select Lines

The “select lines” button allows you to activate or deactivate paylines. It affects your wager and likelihood of hitting a payout.

Shifting Wilds

Shifting wilds, or sliding wilds, are like expanding wilds, but they grow horizontally across multiple reels.

Skill Based Bonus Rounds

Skill-based slots bonuses test your skill in a mini-game and award you a higher prize for better performance.

Slot Club / Player’s Club

The slots club, or player’s club, is a VIP program for loyal players to earn comps and other rewards. 

Slot Tournament

A slots tournament pits players against each other with a set time limit or number of credits. The player with the best score at the end of the tournament wins additional prizes or free play credits. 

Slot Type

Slots types include progressive slots, 3D games, Video machines, and titles with bonus features.


A spin refers to a single round on a slot machine.


The symbols are the images, numbers, and bars on the slot machines reels. Each symbol has an associate payout, and some unlock special features.

Tight Slots

Tight slots are machines with low RTP and are not in the player’s favor.

Total Bet

The total bet is the amount wagered based on your current betting adjustments. The coin size and number of active paylines get multiplied to calculate the credits per spin.

Unique Reels

A game with unique reels may not use a traditional column layout. The reels may be in a hexagon, tower, or side-scrolling display.


The variance at slots refers to the game’s paying consistency. A low variance has frequent smaller prizes, and a high variance has larger, but less frequent, wins.

Video Slot

Video slots, unlike mechanical slots, have no moving parts. The spinning reels are simulated on a screen with amazing graphics and sound effects. All online slot games are video slots.


A wild slot symbol substitutes for any other symbol in the game (except for scatter or bonus symbols) to help you create a better winning combination.

Wild Multiplier

A wild multiplier is a feature that multiplies the payouts of combinations that include wild symbols.


A win occurs when a combination of symbols appears on a payline of the slot.

Win Both Ways

Winning both ways is when a slot offers winning combinations from left to right and from right to left.

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