How to Win at Online Pokies – My Tips for Winning Pokies Machines

You won’t find a secret sauce to win at online pokies. Casino developers produce pokies with fixed long-term winning odds, ensured by a random number generator software.

However, since the average player won’t spin a pokie machine millions of times and the short-term outcomes are random, I’ve prepared some tips and tricks you can utilise to stay in the black. Reading my online pokies strategy guide won’t guarantee victory. Instead, it will ensure a fun and responsible gaming experience with maximised winning potential.

I begin with seven general tips building upon my original guide, followed by more targeted gameplay tricks, and the things you must avoid when playing online pokies. Let’s start from the top.

Select Casinos Carefully

The Australian Government doesn’t regulate online casinos. International operators accept Aussie players, and you join them at your own risk. Our site is run by experts who have been reviewing Aussie gambling sites for several years, so you are better off trusting our recommendations. The following are just a few of the top casino sites where you can play pokies online safely.

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Players who would rather evaluate casinos without outside help should at least consider these review guidelines. Also, winning at pokies is easier when you have a large variety of games to choose from. To that end, avoid operators powered by one or two gaming providers – RealTime Gaming, Rival, Saucify, and WMS are some of the studios partnering exclusively with operators. Instead, go for online casinos with thousands of pokies from licensed and regulated vendors. Names to look out for include NetEnt, Microgaming, Playtech, Yggdrasil, Pragmatic Play, Big Time Gaming, and Playson.

Pick the Right Bonus

Casinos almost universally provide bonuses to newly registered players. Deposit match bonuses and free spins are first and foremost pokies bonuses, meaning your wagers count 100% towards the wagering requirement.

Although finding a hefty welcome bonus for online pokies isn’t hard, weighing its true value is. Aspects we generally consider when reviewing pokies bonuses include the wagering requirement, bet limits, max win cap, expiry, restricted games, match rate, size of the bonus, and more.

Before opting for a bonus as a new or existing player, you should always consult our reviews and guides. Offers you find on this page and throughout our website have been assessed and deliver what they say on the tin.

One quick tip – if you are after a specific poker machine, read the bonus fine print beforehand to ensure it isn’t excluded from the playthrough. High RTP games (over 97%) and progressive jackpots are almost always excluded.

Find the Right Game

With the logistics out of the way, the next step is selecting the right pokies to play. This isn’t as simple as giving you a list of top online pokies to play and win, your selection depends on various parameters including:

  • Budget
  • Expectations
  • Preferences

Starting with your budget, you should search for games with betting limits relative to your balance. Some pokies accept A$0.01 per round, while others start at A$0.40. You should pick games and betting sizes that would guarantee at least 100 spins, indifferent to their outcome.

Volatility is the next aspect playing into your selection. Players who prefer frequent but rather small wins should go for low volatility games. If you are chasing multipliers thousands of times your bet you should pick games at the higher end of the spectrum. Medium volatility pokies provide a balanced experience with average payout frequency and size.

The RTP is also important, although less so since it mainly affects long-term winning odds. Ideally, you should go for games with over 95% RTPs.

Lastly, the theme, music, interface, and gameplay are crucial to your selection. Demoing games before you play for real money will ensure that you actually like them. More importantly, you should pick games that excite you. Some players like classic pokies with three reels and less than 10 paylines, while others prefer playing games with thousands of lines and five or more reels. Generally, advanced games have more bonus rounds and special features too, so that’s something to take into consideration. For more tips on this, check out our pokies reviews process.

Decide on a Betting Strategy

There is no one-size-fits-all approach to pokies. I generally bet A$2.5 per round and have A$500 in my account when I am in a gaming mood. Others deposit A$20 and hope for the best. If you fall in the latter category, you should bet small amounts. The sweet spot is 1 – 3% of your total balance, ideally fixed to ensure a minimum of 100 spins. You see, most pokies bonus rounds take about that many spins to hit, and these provide the best winning chances.

I would urge you to avoid level betting strategies (fluctuating your bets) and progressive betting systems relative to the outcome of your spins. Pokies machines are random, and you could win big indifferent to how much you are betting. As such, my advice is to bet small enough to have at least an hour or so of gaming, and big enough to feel some excitement while at it.

Setting a target for when to stop (could be time or money-based) is also essential for a fun and responsible gambling experience.

Test The Games for Free

Our site and online casinos we recommend host pokies you can play for free. They provide an identical gaming experience to the real thing, so trying out a game for free or strategies you are planning to employ is a no-brainer. You can even use the demo to test the official game data (RTP, volatility, hit rate, bonus hit rate) and experience the bonus features without touching your balance.

Monitor Your Progress Regularly

Casinos in some jurisdictions are required to set a 3-second interval between spins for responsible gambling purposes. That’s not the case with casinos Down Under.

This means that when using turbo spins, you could hit as many as 50 rolls per minute. When betting over A$0.50 per round, your bankroll could change significantly extremely quickly. No matter how much money you have available for pokies, it is important to take breaks and not spin back-to-back.

The same goes for when playing pokies with a casino bonus, you should stop and check how you are progressing towards the rollover. If you hit the target, it might be a good time to cash out and deposit for the next offer to wager with house money.

Stop While Winning

I’ve been playing pokies for over 10 years and it’s extremely rare to have more than one lucky break per session. I have made the mistake of increasing my bet after A$200 – A$500 wins and continued playing countless times, most of which I have ended up losing everything.

If you deposited A$50 and ended up with A$70 after an hour of playing, it might be a good time to stop and keep the funds for your next session. Players who win over 2x their original money are advised to cash out their initial deposit and continue playing with their winnings.

In any case, set your expectations straight and don’t expect to regularly hit 100x or higher multipliers, the odds of getting such a win are extremely low.

Tips and Strategies to Win on Pokies in Australia

The above sections are the long way of saying the following online pokies winning tips:

  • #1 Play at reputable Aussie casinos
  • #2 Claim bonuses you can turnover
  • #3 Pick games with the right volatility
  • #4 Optimise your stakes
  • #5 Stick to a game plan
  • #6 Withdraw your winnings often
  • #7 Time your future deposits
  • #8 Never chase losses or bonus rounds

I share a few additional gameplay tips you can use to increase your pokies winning chances below.

Pokies Cheat Sheet

  • Activate all paylines
  • Bet 1 – 3% of your total balance
  • If the bonus round hasn’t hit after 50 spins, change game
  • Test the games for free, using the same stakes and balance you will for real
  • Bet enough to qualify for progressive jackpots, when applicable
  • Select games with 95 – 97% RTP
  • When playing with a casino bonus, go for low volatility pokies
  • Avoid pokies with too high RTPs, when it is conditional
  • Unless you have a sizeable bankroll, avoid progressive and classic pokies
  • Skip new online pokies, let them sit around for a while for potential bugs
  • Play games from gaming vendors subjected to third-party testing, like NetEnt, Pragmatic Play, Playtech, and Microgaming
  • Buy into bonus rounds if you can afford it

How to Play and Win at Pokies in Practice

Putting the tips and tricks I’ve shared so far in the guide will ensure you win or lose with moderation. As a beginner, though, you might not be aware of how winning at a pokies machine looks or how to even get started.

I am addressing both of these areas right here:

Getting started with pokies

To begin, you need to register at an online pokies site. Pick one from this page and click on our banners.

  1. When the homepage appears, click on the registration page, and enter the information as prompted. This might include your full name, email address, home address, mobile number, and password. Additional info and documents to prove them will be required, so ensure you accurately provide this.
  2. Next you must visit the cashier page and select one of the banking methods. Enter the information of your selected payment method, the deposit amount, and confirm the transaction. The advertised bonus and deposit amount will instantly appear in your account.
  3. Now it’s time to hit the lobby. Search the online pokies catalogue for your preferred game. Remember to play in practice mode first to get the hang of it.
  4. When the game launches, you can adjust the bet level and usually the paylines. Look at the paytable for the requirements to win and the payouts.
  5. After you have reviewed all the specifics, hit the spin button use the autoplay and start playing.

How to win at Lightning Pokies

Dragon Link and Lightning Link pokies are the most popular slot machine groups in Australia. They are umbrella terms used to describe two distinct dozens of pokies spanning across various themes. Most of them work on a 5×3 game grid with 25 fixed paylines. The stakes begin at A$0.25 to A$12.5 or A$25 per spin in most cases.

What makes them stand out is their progressive network, with the largest pot of both of these games often paying over A$1 million. You can land a win at any of these games through the following ways:

  • Matching a minimum of three identical symbols on a payline from left to right.
  • Hitting three scatter symbols anywhere on the reels.
  • Getting wilds and two or one matching symbols on a payline from left to right.
  • Landing six or more bonus symbols anywhere on the reels.

Of course, the specific payout will depend on the symbols you matched and the values included in the jackpot bonus round. Filling the bonus screen with money symbols rewards the progressive jackpot.

As you can see, there are numerous ways to win at pokies, and the above is just one example. Reading the rules before you begin playing is paramount, at least until you know your way around this gaming niche.

Things to Avoid When Playing Online Pokies

Having covered the various actions you can take to increase your chances of winning on online pokies, I feel it is important to also highlight some common misconceptions. I’ve encountered the following after discussions with players, friends, and ‘experts.’

  • Hot and cold games don’t exist. The last spin or spins do not influence future outcomes; each bet is determined by the RNG.
  • Levels percentage betting (i.e., bet A$1 for 10 rounds, then A$5 for 3 rounds, etc.) has no basis and could quickly deplete your bankroll.
  • Progressive betting systems (i.e., Martingale, Fibonacci, etc.) shouldn’t be appropriated for online pokies, they don’t even work on roulette. But with pokies, they are even worse since your bets can reach astronomical amounts pretty fast.
  • Gambling sessions aren’t correlated. No matter how much you’ve lost or won in the past week or month, it won’t influence your next gaming session or betting round.
  • Increasing bets after a win is something we all do but it is extremely counter-productive. You are essentially wasting away your payday.
  • Betting more than 5% of your bankroll will increase your anxiety level and is likely to result in back-to-back deposits.
  • Playing high volatility pokies with limited bankroll is a recipe for disaster. Although we all fancy Money Train 4 and the potential 150,000x payout, going for it with A$30 in your account balance won’t play out too well.

I cannot stress the importance of RNG in pokies enough. All legit games work with it and guarantee a fair and random gaming experience. The above pokies myths can be easily debunked by understanding how online pokies really work.

Online Pokies Tips – Frequently Asked Questions

Can you make a pokie machine payout?

No, it is impossible to make a pokie machine payout. All pokies work with a random number generator software and on average hit every five spins. Some games allow you to pay a premium to instantly enter the bonus round, yet this doesn’t guarantee a win.

Is there a way to win big on online pokies?

There is no surefire way to win big on pokies. Betting higher amounts or playing progressive jackpot and high volatility pokies is more likely to result in big wins but these practices are risky.

Are there tricks to win on pokies?

There are no tricks to win on pokies. However, playing high RTP games, betting less than 3% of your bankroll, playing at a legit casino with good bonuses, and practising can increase your winning chances.

Do pokies work with an algorithm?

Online pokies work with a random number generator designed to hold a specific percentage of the money wagered for the casino. This percentage is called house edge, and it can be as high as 15%. Nonetheless, individual online pokies outcomes are random, they just average out in favour of the casino after millions of spins.

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