Go Back

How Are Online Slots Programmed & Can You Actually Win?

How Are Online Slots Programmed & Can You Actually Win?

Online slots are a popular form of entertainment, with players from all walks of life enjoying the fun of spinning the reels. However, have you ever wondered how these games are programmed, and whether you can genuinely win?

In this Slots UK blog post, we delve into the mechanics of online slots, breaking down the complex algorithms that power these games and discussing the odds of securing a win.

How Are Online Slots Programmed?

Online slots operate through intricate programming and use sophisticated technology to determine the random outcomes of spins. The primary technology behind these regulated games is the Random Number Generator (RNG), which ensures that every spin's outcome is unpredictable and completely fair.

The Role of the Random Number Generator (RNG)

The RNG is a crucial component in the operation of online slots. This complex mathematical algorithm generates thousands of numbers each second, even when the game is not being played. Each of these number sequences corresponds to a different outcome on the reels. 

Thus, the moment a player presses the spin button, the RNG selects the number sequence for that particular spin, and the corresponding symbols appear on the reels.

RNGs ensure every outcome is unique and independent, making it nearly impossible to predict or manipulate the results of a spin. This feature is key to maintaining the fairness and integrity of online slots.

Return to Player (RTP) and Volatility

Two other key elements that dictate how online slots are programmed are the Return to Player (RTP) percentage and volatility level. 

The RTP is a theoretical percentage that can indicate how much a slot game is likely to pay back to players over a long period. For instance, a slot with an RTP of 96% could theoretically return £96 for every £100 wagered on the game.

Volatility, on the other hand, relates to the frequency and size of potential wins in a slot game. High volatility slots may possibly deliver big wins but less frequently, while low volatility slots offer smaller, but potentially more frequent wins.

However, it's crucial to remember that these figures are theoretical and derived from extensive calculations over thousands, or even millions, of simulated spins. They do not guarantee any specific outcome.

Is There An Algorithm For Online Slots?

While online slots use mathematical algorithms to operate, there is no specific algorithm that players can use to ensure a win. The reason for this is the principle of randomness introduced by the RNG.

The Principle of Randomness

The RNG makes every spin of an online slot a unique event. This means that each spin is independent of the previous or next spin. As such, any past wins or losses do not influence future outcomes. This principle of randomness ensures that all players have equal chances of potentially winning or losing on each spin.

How Do Online Slot Algorithms Work?

The algorithms of online slots work in a relatively straightforward manner. The RNG continuously generates a vast set of random numbers. Each number sequence corresponds to a specific combination of symbols on the reels. Thus, when a player spins the reels, the RNG picks a random number from its set, which then decides the outcome of the spin.

Can You Actually Win On Slots?

Yes, it is indeed possible to win on online slots. However, it's essential to remember that slots are games of chance, and any winnings can never be guaranteed. The outcomes of spins are entirely random, and no strategy can assure a win. That said, understanding a slot's RTP and volatility may help players select games that fit their preferences.

Can You Increase Your Odds On Online Slots?

While you cannot manipulate the RNG or predict the outcomes of spins, there are things you can consider that may potentially enhance your overall gaming experience. 

These include understanding the game's volatility, setting a budget, and playing responsibly.

Understanding Volatility

Volatility is a factor you may consider when choosing a slot. If you prefer possibly smaller, more frequent potential wins, you might enjoy playing low volatility slots. Conversely, high-volatility games can offer higher possible payouts, but any wins may not land very often.

However, as mentioned before, slots are random games of chance, and nothing can ever be guaranteed.

Setting a Budget

Setting a budget and sticking to it is a responsible gambling practice. Never gamble with money you cannot afford to lose, and always remember to play for fun, not for profit.

Why Do Online Slots Stop Paying Out?

Online slots may appear to stop paying out, leading some players to believe that the games are rigged. However, this is not the case. The periods where slots seem to 'go cold' and stop paying are purely down to randomness and the inherent volatility of the games.

Do Online Slots Remember You?

A common misconception among some players is that online slots 'remember' them and their past wins or losses, which could influence future outcomes. This is not true. Online slots do not have any memory of previous gameplay, and every spin is entirely independent of the last.


In conclusion, online slots are complex games powered by intricate algorithms and RNGs. These elements ensure fairness and unpredictability in every spin. While it is possible to win on online slots, remember that these games are primarily for entertainment, and any winnings can never be guaranteed. Always play responsibly and within your budget.

*All values (Bet Levels, Maximum Wins, etc.) mentioned in relation to these games are subject to change at any time. Game features mentioned may not be available in some jurisdictions.