The pokies, also known as the slots (U.S.A), slot machines (U.S.A) and fruit machines (U.K), are big business across the world. There were approximately 200,000 land based pokies machines accounted for in Australia, as per 2012, with that figure representing approximately 20 per cent of all gaming machines in the world.
Online pokies sites alternatives
Pokies regulations in Victoria
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, pokies garner the highest amounts of revenue of all betting activities (that includes horse racing, greyhound racing, casino tables games and other sporting events). In the state of Victoria, it is the pubs, clubs and Crown Casino that hold the licenses to offer pokies gaming machines to their patrons.
By law, all gaming machines must provide a minimum return rate (payout percentage) of 87 per cent. The pokies return rate can be defined as the average percentage of money expected to be returned to players over the lifetime of the gaming machine. A machine with a payout percentage of 87 per cent can also be said to hold a house edge of 13 per cent.
In 2007, pokies gaming machines in Victoria which supported $100 notes were banned, as were machines which continued to spin if the ‘play’ button was held down. However, Crown Casino does have an area dedicated to high stakes players and VIPs, where $100 notes are accepted and the machines boast an autoplay feature. It is also mandatory for all pokies to display gaming rules, paytable, odds and the official machine’s return rate.
Pokies in pubs have a cap on payouts – limiting wins to a maximum of $10,000. Only patrons aged 18 years and older are permitted to gamble on the pokies at any venue, and the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation (VCGLR) is the governing authority which regulates the gambling industry within the state.
What type of pokies machine are utilised in Victoria?
Typically, you will find machines using interactive video displays to simulate physical reels. Traditional pokies display five reels (columns) across three rows, and can boast anywhere between 10 to 200 active winning paylines (fixed lines or patterns).
Many of the more modern games utilise the ‘winning ways’ structure instead of paylines, where up to 3,125 winning combinations can be spun.
Ways pokies game do away with the traditional fixed paylines structure, and allow the player to receive a winning payout for any left to right adjacent symbol combinations across some or all of the active reels.
Note: some slots games and their symbols, as well as certain icons within specific pokies (such as scatter symbols), don’t abide by this rule, and pay out in any direction, and do not have to be adjacent to one another.
How do you work out how many winning sequences are on offer, within ways pokies?
Depending on the number of active symbols on each reel, you can easily calculate the amount of potential ways there are to spin a winning combination. If a machine has five reels and four visible symbols on each reel, then you work out the total winning sequences as follows: 4 x 4 x 4 x 4 x 4 = 1,024 potential winning combinations on any spin. A machine with five reels and five symbols per reel: 5 x 5 x 5 x 5 x 5 = 3,125 paying combinations.
Land based pokies vs Internet slots
While land based pokies games in Victoria and around Australia are entertaining and interactive, they have fallen far behind the pokies titles available to play on the Internet, on mobiles and on tablets for real cash.
iGaming software providers such as Microgaming, BetSoft, Net Entertainment, iSoftBet, Rival Gaming, Playtech, Leander, NYX Gaming and NextGen Gaming have been able to produce some stunningly immersive, graphically advanced, engaging, visually and audio rich and feature packed titles, such as Aliens, Terminator II, Jurassic Park, Psycho, Heist, Dracula, Flux, Elements: The Awakening, Forsaken Kingdom, Gonzo’s Quest, The Invisible Man, Game of Thrones, Immortal Romance and many hundreds more.
Victorians can play these games for AUD currency at the following regulated casino sites, licensed by gaming authorities such as the U.K. Gambling Commission, the Malta Gaming Authority and Curaçao eGaming.
- House of Jack
- Mucho Vegas
- Mongoose Casino
- Emu Casino
- Raging Bull Casino
Gambling online at an online casino and pokies website is a legal practice for all Victorians (and other Australians) aged 18 years and older. If you stick with reputable and established gaming platforms such as those listed above, you can rest assured that all your financial transactions are protected with the latest in Secure Socket Layer digital encryption technology, and you will have access to several AUD-friendly deposit and withdrawal options, such as credit and debit cards, e-wallets, pre-paid cards and vouchers, and direct wire transfers, too. We recommend you read more about Australia’s online gambling laws.