Overview of Different Ways Win For Slots
Slots are changing in many ways at the moment. The graphics and feature rounds are certainly improving, taking full advantage of improvements in computing power. At the same time the old concept of winning lines also becoming dated – as a new generation of games which allow you to win in all possible ways across the reels are introduced. These are the 243-ways and 720-ways games, where any combination starting at the left hand side can make a winning line.
This page explains the new 243 and 720 ways slots in some detail. First of all, the math behind each of the games is explained, showing you how this differs from the previous generation of 25+ win-line slot games. This includes the practical aspects of selecting the number of coins to play with in each game. At the bottom of this page, you’ll find a debate on the pros and cons of this new system compared to the old winning-line setup.
How The All-Ways Slots Work
This concept can seem a little confusing when you first come across it. Once you have understood the logic and seen the games in action, you might even find it is easier to work with than the previous win-line model.
For the 243 way slots, the basis is a 5 reel grid with 3 rows on each reel. If you count the possible combinations of symbols from the left to the right, you will end up with this:
3 * 3 * 3 * 3 * 3 (known as three to the power of 5)
This equals 243 possible combinations. When you are playing it is the combinations of identical symbols which start at the left hand side which are counted as wins. If you include wild symbols in this setup then you will find yourself with those smaller wins very frequently. To balance this, the game designers will have specified more symbols are required to get paid (for example 3 instead of 2 of a certain kind need to be in a row).
For the 720 All-Ways games the setup is slightly different. Here the reels are in a diamond shape, with the largest area in the center. From left to right the reels have the following number of symbols on them 3-4-5-4-3.
When you sum those totals as 3 * 4 * 5 * 4 * 3 you will find this equals 720. Again, you’ll normally be paid only on the combinations which start on the left hand side, so there are not really 720 win-lines – this describes the total number of possible combinations instead. Getting a wild or two on the left hand side can certainly increase the total number of wins by a wide margin.
Depending on the number of reels and the number of rows in use, there are bound to be other all-ways combinations coming through in the near future. This setup has already proven to be very popular among slots fans, with some of the biggest slot software providers around releasing their biggest titles using the 243 ways setup.
Without the ability to select win-lines, part of the total cost of spins equation has been removed. Instead of just having a fixed bet per spin covering all of the possible combinations, these games still allow you to choose the number of coins you play and the total coin amount. There is no particular benefit that I can see in doing it this way. One theory is that simply having a single coin amount might make players feel they were less in control than with the old style win-line slots. With minimum spins at around 30c, these games are accessible to players of all different bankroll levels.
Pros and Cons of All-Ways Slots
Once you have a session or two on one of these games, you will find it is easier to spot the wins coming in while you play. Since any of the same symbol on adjacent rows counts, you will not be left wondering whether a particular combination counts as a winning line or not. The wild symbols have the chance to have the maximum possible effect too, with more possible combinations than you would have found on the win-line slot games. I should note that the designers will know this, and would have balanced the payouts and frequency of these symbols accordingly.
The ability to control the number of lines will be felt as a drawback to some players. While most people played the maximum lines as a default, not everyone likes to do this. The adjustable number of coins makes up for this in some ways. The quirky 720 ways games with different size reels do take a little getting used to. Many have features which fill the middle reel with wilds, which can add some interest. I can already see the slots purists out there turning their noses up at this particular new innovation.