Pokies

No casino experience is complete without wagering and winning on a pokie game. Thanks to the wonders of the internet, online pokie games are one of the most played games online and are offered by all online casinos. Not only can players find classic slots with 7s, Lemons and Cherries but because virtual slots are easier to create and modify, game developers add a great visual experience that includes animations to a regular slot game.

We welcome you to a guided tutorial on pokies at australiancasinoguides.com.au and we start with a brief history of slot games and then explain the standard rules of an online pokie game with examples.

Pokie: History

The history of slots machines is more than a century old, though most of the developments have taken place in the last 50 years. Charles Fey of San Francisco developed the first slots machine with an automatic payout mechanism in 1895. Although slots still have a history before this period where ‘One arm bandits’ and ‘Fruits machines’ were popular, Liberty Bells Slots is considered to be the landmark which basically started a new generation for casino entertainment.

The start of the 1980s saw the birth of the computerized era of slot machines. All these slots are software based and the symbols occur on a RNG (Random Number Generator) basis. Since online slots are available in such a wide variety, they generally cover up majority of the online casino games available.

Pokies Rules: General Gameplay

The rules to an online slot game are simple and most of the times are clearly explained on the gameplay screen itself. In this guide, we will be explaining how modern and advanced video slots work. We will be using the popular Aristocrat video slot, Queen of the Nile 2 as an example while explaining all the physical and bonus attributes of a regular slot game.

Symbols, Reels and Paylines

Symbols are the icons you see on the gameplay screen. It is the combination of these symbols that will give you payouts. The symbols are seen on the reels which are the columns of the game. In order to win, these symbols need to align on a specific order which is called Paylines. Paylines are lines that pass through symbols from left to right. The combinations of symbols that go through these paylines evaluate your winnings. Classic pokies have 3 to 9 paylines where as video pokies can have up to 100 paylines. Queen of the Nile II has 25 paylines. Most paylines are adjustable meaning players can choose the paylines they want to activate. It is rare but quite possible that some pokie games have fixed paylines.

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Queen of the Nile II Pokie – 30 paylines

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Queen of the Nile II symbols and their payouts

Some video pokies do not have paylines but have a fixed pattern itself which as known as 243 ways or 1024 ways to win. 243 ways, as the name suggests, is 243 ways of winning. When a game has 5 reels and 3 rows, 3 X 3 X 3 X 3 X 3 = 243, which is where the name comes from. The same goes for 5 reels and 4 rows, 4 X 4 X 4 X 4 X 4 = 1024. In order to create a combination, the symbols have to occur adjacent to each other from left to right.

Navigations, wagering and gameplay

At the bottom of the gameplay screen, players will find a series of navigational buttons through which players can access the information on their symbols, paylines and bonuses, change the number of active paylines, change their bet denomination and spin the reels. Below the navigational bar, players can view their remaining balance, total bet and win amount. On either side of the reels, players can see the number of paylines that are currently active. Many modern pokies will also have an ‘Autoplay’ button through which they can select a bet amount and the number of spins they want automated in that particular bet amount.

In terms of betting, the total bet is calculated by multiplying the numbers of paylines with the coin denomination. Some pokies also offer a choice of the number of coins. In that case, the total bet will be, number of paylines times the coin denomination times the number of coins chosen to play with.

Total bet = No. of paylines active X Bet denomination X Number of coins

In the example, the number of paylines active is 25 and the bet denomination is {{csym}} 0.10 which results as a total bet of {{csym}} 2.50

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Queen of the Nile II Pokies – Gameplay screen with navigation buttons at the bottom

After finalizing the total bet with which players are comfortable with, players can just click spin after which the reels will spins and if the identical symbols align in the active paylines, players will win. Players either win through a combination of regular symbols or they may play further through bonuses.

Bonuses

Video pokies are normally stacked with bonuses. While some major bonuses are rare, once player hits it, they definitely win a big amount.

Wild symbols

Wild symbol is the most common and important symbol in a pokie machine. It can substitute for most other symbols in order to complete a winning combination. In the example below, a combination of 3 or more A symbols on an active payline will pay. We can see that the symbol A appears on reels 1 and 3 which would not be a combination but since there is a wild symbol on reel 2 (Cleopatra symbol), it substitutes itself for an A and will pay the amount a combination of three A’s would originally pay.

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Queen of the Nile II – Cleopatra symbol as the wild symbol

Wild symbols can pay double if they occur and can also be expanded or stacked depending on the features of the game. When a game has expandable wilds, when they appear they expand to cover the entire reel replacing the other symbols and the whole reel acts as a wild giving a multiple combinations. Stacked wilds do not expand but instead, stack on top of each other.

Scatter Symbols

Scatter symbols are also common in most video pokies and have special properties. While all symbols have to fall on an active payline in order to pay, scatter symbols can appear anywhere on the reels and pay. Generally, 3 or more scatter symbols need to occur to win the prize. Furthermore, scatter symbols are doorways to additional bonus features. In the example below, the Pyramid symbol is scatter for Queen of Nile II and 2 of these symbols are necessary to pay. It is also written that 3 or more of these symbols will trigger the free games feature.

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Queen of the Nile II – Pyramid symbol as the scatter symbol

Free Spins/Free Games and Multipliers

Free Spin bonuses reward a certain round of free games to the player. The procedure for the free spins is as normal except for the fact that they are free and the win amount will be credited into the player’s account. The free spins bonus round is usually triggered with a specified sequence of symbols appear on the reels such as a scatter symbol (see above example in image of the Scatter symbol).

Multipliers are bonuses which multiply the win amount by a certain number of times. These bonuses are normally attached to some other bonuses like wilds or free spins. For example, in the Queen of the Nile II slots, any win amount with the wild symbol included will be doubled. Another example is shown below in the image, where if the player triggers the free spin feature, they get to choose the number of free spins with their respective multipliers. So if players choose 10 free games with 5x multipliers, any win they receive during those free spins will be 5 times the original win amount.

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Queen of Nile II – Free spins bonus

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