Can I Determine The Odds Of A Machine By Counting The Number Of Symbols On The Reel?

Published 31 Oct 2018, 12:53 p.m.

Online casinos and slots sites are quite an interesting phenomenon. As slots players become more experienced as measured by their time and frequency on the slots, they inadvertently begin asking more complex questions. Such a question is:Can I determine the odds of a machine by counting the number of symbols on the reel? Even though it seems convoluted, it is a legitimate question that does provide at least some insight into the nature of the slot game that is the subject of mathematical and perhaps even theoretical scrutiny. 

We will venture into the murky corridors of trying to determine the odds of a slot machine, in no other way then passing the number of the symbols through mathematical equations with the purpose of satisfying the wonderlust of pumped up slots players who are bent on winning a progressive jackpot - or a mere five figure jackpot. Kudos to the obstinate slots players out there, because some do succeed in winning a big payout. 

What Are The Symbols On A Slots Machine

Every slot machine has a set of symbols and this is an entire subject itself that slots players are interested in. The symbols represent the slot’s character, so iGaming software developers dedicate lots of attention to how they present the symbols. Each slots title resonates with the player. In concert with the banner, these are the two things that will either attract or repel the slots players. It is true that in the world of online slots a lot has to do with popularity, but that is not the only currency when it comes to  choosing a slot game. The players look for that extra bit, the mojo of the slot, if we could call it that. This mojo irradiates through the game’s symbols and gameplay. 

Take the Blood Suckers slot for example. This title is one of the top slots in the world and is played by thousands of players each day. It certainly resonates with fans of the vampire genre of movies and literature because the blood suckers are fang-equipped humans whose symbols spin on the reels. Another slot game with characteristic symbols is Gonzo’s Quest which is overly popular. Another game that is just as good and even better, but is often overlook yet still has many followers, is Secrets of the Phoenix. Both of these titles have avalanche reels with symbols that are shaped like blocks made of stone, with carvings of mythical creatures and symbols found in the cultures and mythology of Mesoamerica.

Does The Type Of Slots Symbols Help To Determine The Odds?

But does this give an insight into the matter of Can I determine the odds of a machine by counting the number of symbols on the reel? Not necessarily. Regardless of the symbols on the reel setm it is their number that helps some players to obsessively count the odds, perhaps without making regard of the game’s Return to Player theoretical outcome which is a great way of knowing the volatility of the game and the house edge. 

What Kind Of Symbols Are There On A Slot Machine?

There are so many different types of symbols. If we take the classic Las Vegas slots which were inspired by the first slots machines ever to be built, then we will find lots of fruit symbols - watermelons, cherries, lemons, oranges and the like. In addition to these, the classic slots have bells, diamonds, the BAR symbol, the lucky seven symbol and so on. 

When slots machines started to get advanced the developers began implementing diverse symbols and themes. There are various genres in the world of online slots. You will find slots about farms, mining, banks, bank heist, casinos, diamonds and so on. More modern releases have taken a wilder turn in the direction where genres don’t stand a chance. So you will find slots such as Rocket Men that feature Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un who are duking it out from behind the rocket launching pad. Scary thought, but hey, they’ve been an inspiration and some players have won serious cash on that slot. 

Can I determine the odds of a slot machine by counting the number of symbols on the reel?

Indeed, the odds of a slot machine can be determined by counting the number of symbols. That is done by multiplying the number of symbols by the number of reels. Say a slot game has three symbols and three reels. Odds of winning a line would be one to nine, because 3x3x3. When there is a slot game with five reels and seven symbols in total, the math that yields the odds are as follows: 7x7x7x7x7 = 16,807. 

But wait, this is not a blanket answer to the complex question Can I determine the odds of a machine by counting the number of symbols on the reel. The reason being, there are slots that work with the so called Multiway or Megaway paylines, which can generate anywhere from few dozen to few hundred, to even few thousand paylines. We don’t have a formula for determining the odds of such type of a slot game simply by considering the number of symbols and the reels. Take the famous Bonanza slot for example. It has six reels, a dozen or so symbols and - wait for it - no less than 117,649 paylines. What are the odds? - hard to tell. 

Concluding Remarks

To conclude and arrive at the takeaway from this guide, we now know the simple way to determine the odds of any slot machine. On the other hand, we now know that whenever there is a multiline or multi payline slot at hand, finding out the odds becomes more complex and we can not serve the answer to the question Can I determine the odds of a machine by counting the number of symbols on the reel?

So we have a half-reaching guide, but we can always rely on the Return to Player theoretical outcome. Whenever you want to find out the volatility of the game, or in other words, the house edge, simply consider the RTP. Usually or most of the time, the slots developers include the RTP figure in the paytable. If it isn’t in the paytable, the theoretical return to player outcome will be find by conducting a simple search with the slot’s title in the search box. This does help players to decide if they will play on a slot game or not. 

Regardless of the number of symbols or reels, pick your slot game from our reviews and claim a welcome bonus to play at any one of the casinos that we have verified.