Online slot players are in for a treat when they realise just how much choice they have when it comes to high-quality online casinos. With Internet gambling becoming more accessible and sophisticated it makes for more entertainment – this includes state-of-the-art real money online pokies experiences.
This article highlights the best online casinos to play real money pokies, and how to play the highest paying digital pokies games available. Click of any of the links below to view the full review all of the best Internet casinos to find the best pokies game variety and payout value for Australian players.
Best online pokies casinos accepting players from your country
Best real money pokies sites
The following sites all accept real payments with no need for annoying currency conversions, and support a range of trusted deposit options. They also cater to Australians with special bonuses and promotions available for additional rewards. Most importantly, all of our recommended casinos are accredited and regulated by industry watchdogs like eCOGRA (eCommerce Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance), who only grant their Seal of Approval to sites they have tested and verified as safe places to gamble online (displayed on the homepage as proof).
Without a doubt, the breadth and range of the pokies games selection makes or breaks an online casino. Pokies are the main attraction of any gambling site, and what makes a great online casino is the quality of their pokies game catalogue. This is the key aspect we cover in the reviews listed above – just click any of the links in the tables to view the full article and our verdict.
How we rate our picks
Our casino review criteria covers four key areas of a pokies site:
1. Bonuses and promotions: Daily, weekly, monthly and holiday-timed bonuses and promotions add extra value to your casino account, and many of the best pokies sites want to give their players extras to enjoy. The sites we are members with all are known for generous giveaways and cash prizes catering to Australian players – not just the international community. They also grant sign-up welcome bonuses to give you more reasons to register at their site over others – shop around for the ones you like best.
2. Deposit and withdrawals: A top-rated pokies site supports only the safest and most trusted payment options for players to use when depositing or withdrawing money to and from personal and casino accounts. We look for all the staple banking methods proven to be secure and reliable, such as MasterCard, Visa, Neteller, Skrill, Paysafecard, EcoPayz, Entropay, bank transfers (also known as wire tranfers), and POLi.
3. Software: The Internet harbours a large amount of talented gaming software studios who develop some of the most interactive games on the Web you would never be able to find at a live casino venue – from slots with 3D animated computer graphics to actual stereoscopic 3D effects, to progressive jackpot pokies with millions of dollars accumulated from players all around the world playing the same title. If a site has more than one software developer, expect a greater range of games and types, and a hearty recommendation from the team here at PokiesSite. Our favourite game studios include Microgaming, Net Entertainment, BetSoft, Quickspin, Play ‘n Go, NYX/Next Gen Gaming, Yggdrasil, Thunderkick, Elk Studios, Playtech and iSoftBet.
4. Safety and security: Naturally player safety and site trustworthiness is a big factor in our reviews. All the pokies sites we chose to review and recommend to Australians have been tested thoroughly by the team at PokiesSite to verify them as responsible digital venues with fair payouts, regulation and licensing. All employ the latest in 128-bit SSL (Secure Socket Layer) digital encryption security technology which keeps your information and usage of the site private and secure, and are regulated and licensed by recognised gambling industry authorities, such as Malta Gaming Authority (MGA) or eCOGRA (eCommerce Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance).
Advantages of online pokies sites versus live pokies venues
Local gaming venues like pubs and clubs and even live brick-and-mortar casinos are great for socialising and a quick round of spins, but online casinos and digital pokies games offer substantially better bonuses, odds and payout percentages than their poker machine counterparts.
For example, pokies machines based in clubs, pubs, RSLs and live casino venues across Australia such as Crown Casino or The Star offer an average return to player (RTP) of 90.89%. The payout for online pokies offers as much as 97% RTP. This is because pokies sites have less overheads than land-based venues, and thus they pass on the savings to players in the form of regular pokies promotions, free spin giveaways, and larger cash jackpot prize pools.
As covered extensively already, online casinos also have literally thousands more games and types of pokies available to play, and more ways to play them (we delve into the different types of online pokies below), catering to a large number of moods, preferences and bankrolls (low-stakes, high-stakes, VIP).
If you have a desktop computer, laptop, smartphone or tablet, all you need is a stable Internet connection (or mobile 3G/4G data if on your Android or iPhone mobile) to sign up and play for free, practice or for real money – your choice. The accessibility and convenience from playing your favourite games from home or on-the-go on your mobile means you don’t need to bother travelling to your local pub, RSL or casino venue just to have a spin.
There’s two ways to play your favourite Internet pokies games on the platform of your choice – instant play or downloadable software. The differences in quality are negligible and it will mostly come down to personal preference or circumstance (instant-play is better for users of shared computers), but we thought it was important to point out the differences for newbies.
1. Instant-play: Also known as “browser-based” or “no-download” play, this is the preferred method to access and play online pokies games and other casino gaming software. Just use your Web browser on your device (Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Apple Safari, Microsoft Edge) and load up your preferred casino site and pokies game. All modern Web browsers have in-built plugins like Adobe Flash or Java, which powers online pokies games and their premium animations and graphics. So long as your Web browser’s software is up-to-date, you can play games like you load YouTube videos or generally browse the Web – without the need to download any additional software.
2. Downloadable software client: Select pokies sites offer players special downloadable software to access their casino and their digital games offerings. This can be in the form of a program on your desktop computer, or an app on your mobile smartphone/tablet. The gameplay experience is virtually identical to instant-play – it’s just the interface which is different, as it is more specialised casino hub meant to be specially tailored to your gambling experience.
Our pokies site reviews listed above will indicate whether or not the online casino offers both instant-play and downloadable software (apps or desktop clients) options, or instant-play only.
Types of online pokies available
Classic slots/fruit machines (3-reel): Representing the classic pub-fruity slot machines of days gone by, these pokies are faithful throwbacks to a simpler time when slot machines were low-stakes three-reel, single payline games with lucky sevens, cherries, and other classic fruit symbols. The graphics and sound effects are very traditional compared to five-reel video slots and aim to replicate the old-school fruit machines in every way. While they don’t have bonus games or gamble features or have massive jackpots, they suit gamblers who want a simpler experience or are still learning the in’s and out’s of online pokies in general.
Video slots (5-reel): The most popular type of online pokies offered at Internet casinos, five-reel games feature premium animations and graphics often with cinematic-level quality. They also are much more elaborate and in-depth in the gameplay department than anything you’ll find at a live casino venue or pub, with varying sub-types of bonus games, gamble features, free spin rounds, scatter symbols, expanding wilds and other mini-games built-in to offer players more ways to win and a much more entertaining gaming experience overall. Five-reel games are often high-stakes and give players the option to choose how many paylines to be played per spin, with up to 100 paylines most commonly offered. With so many winning combinations, five-reel video pokies have very low odds and the chance for massive jackpot winnings, which is why they remain the most popular pokies type today.
MegaSpin: If you love to multi-task, MegaSpin pokies is for you. You can play and spin up to nine online pokies games simultaneously in one screen rather than having to switch between Web browser tabs. While not common, many of our recommended online casinos host MegaSpin games for Australian real money players. This is best suited for high-stakes gamblers or those with flexible bankrolls, as you can burn through your pocket quickly as individual bets are required for each game.
Progressive jackpot pokies: Players seeking the biggest cash winnings should play progressive jackpot pokies. These are five-reel video pokies games with massive prize pools, funded by players around the world who play the same game across a linked network. Every bet and spin they make increases the overall jackpot until one lucky player wins it all. Typically, progressive networks involve millions of dollars worth of winnings.
3D animated: Advanced animations and graphics make up the bulk of 3D pokies available online, using highly stylised artwork to create some truly cinematic games with the feel of a Hollywood movie. Many are five-reel or progressives, with plenty of bonus features to keep things interactive and fun, and are usually developed by software studios who are specialists in the area.
3D stereoscopic: 3D stereoscopic pokies differ from their animated counterparts because they incorporate actual stereoscopic three-dimensional effects into the gameplay, using 3D glasses. Only one pokies game currently exists which uses this, but we expect more from software studios as they continue to produce premium pokies experiences in the near future.
Ways to Win (243, 1024, 3125: Offering a large number of possible winning combinations where symbols can land to score players a win, these games go beyond rewarding wins from a single payline. Instead, you can win from different combinations of symbols displayed from left to right anywhere on the reels.
For more information about the special features that online pokies offer, check out some of our top-pick online pokies games with the best real money bonus features.