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How to Play Online Free Slots? A Guide for Beginners

If the world of online slots seems a little bit intimidating and full of jargon that seems impossible to understand, don’t worry. It’s easy to pick up with a few helpful tips and before you know it, you’ll be an expert, able to take on the mightiest of games and play for the largest prizes in the business.

Author: Manyspins Published: March 29, 2021 Last update: July 14, 2022

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Best of all, there’s no need to develop your skills by risking any of your own bankroll, as many casinos let you play online free slots for as long as you want, so you can always make sure you’re fully familiar with a game before you try it out with real money.

The Basics of Online Slots

First, though, the basics: Online slots are very similar – and in many cases identical – to the slots you’ll find in land venues like casinos, pubs and bars. You’ll bet a specified amount of money per spin that you can easily change whenever you like using on-screen controls, and then click or tap on a clearly marked spin button. The reels will spin, and the symbols on them will hopefully land so that a winning combination appears. What constitutes a winning combination differs from slot to slot, however it usually means getting three or more identical symbols next to each other on a payline, starting from the first reel.

On the most basic slots this payline runs across the middle of the reels, but to give you more of a chance to win almost every slot game nowadays has more than one payline, so you can line up symbols on the top line, bottom line, diagonally and in various other configurations that will be shown on the screen. Some online slots let you choose how many paylines you’d like to play, and others don’t. Either way, getting your head around the idea of multi-payline games is probably the most complex challenge you’ll have as a complete beginner.

Getting Started with Slots

To get started you’d be advised to try slots with up to 5 lines with 3 reels, but don’t worry: There’s no need to risk a penny if you’re feeling nervous, as there are plenty of free slots for beginners that will teach you the basics in demo mode. Once you’ve got the hang of basic multi-payline games, you might like to try some 5-reel games. These are far more plentiful, and if you search any list of best slots for beginners most of the slots mentioned will offer 5 reels with a free spins feature.

Free spins are, in fact, the next concept you’ll need to take on board. These are typically awarded when you land three or more scatter symbols, and these get their name because they can lead to free spins when they appear anywhere on the reels, and not lined up on a payline. Free spins often come with a multiplier, which simply means that any wins you make with them are enhanced – usually doubled or tripled. 

Get the hang of these online slots and you’ll be an accomplished intermediate player, but most aspiring online slots experts find that it’s best to start out with some free slots for beginners, gradually getting used to the format of each type of game before moving on. It’s unlikely, though, that you’ll need to put in too much effort despite the potential rewards on offer, as playing online free slots is terrific fun. 

The only downside is that you won’t win anything when the reels align in your favor. However, you also won’t risk losing anything either, so the lack of real prizes really can’t be complained about. If you’re still a beginner but want the chance to win real money, you should probably start playing for micro-stakes – there are some slots out there that allow you to spin for just $0.01 per turn.

Which Slot to Play First?

You’ll never need to look far if you want to find a list of the best slots for beginners, though a good starting point might be IGT’s Triple Diamond game, or Novomatic’s Sizzling Hot. From there, you can move onto more online free slots like IGT’s Cleopatra and Playtech’s Desert Treasure, though there are plenty of other free slots for beginners. If you can’t decide, we have a page of all the free slots to play here at ManySpins!