In terms of house edge, the theory behind casino games is quite simple: Over time, the probability ensures that there is an almost guaranteed return for the casino. This counts for all the traditional games like blackjack, roulette, baccarat and so on. Sure, you can be good at these games and raise your chances of winning, but averaging it out over time ensures a slight (in terms of percentage) for the casino.
Online slots are a little different in that they have random number generators (RNGs) built into them to ensure fairness, but also to act as a built-in house edge. Most slots will have a return rate of about 90-95%, meaning it will pay back 90-95% of what it takes in over time. However, some slots will take a percentage of those player bets and feed it into a progressive jackpot award, which can pay out at any time. In a way, you are trading off a higher house edge for the chance to strike it rich with the random jackpot award.
As a general rule, these progressive jackpots are massive, often reaching millions of pounds. Five of the games regarded as having made the biggest payouts are discussed below:
1. Mega Fortune (NetEnt): £17,861,800
There has been a bit of back and forth between Mega Fortune and Mega Moolah (see below) as to who holds the record for biggest online slot jackpot, but the former seems to have pipped the former to the record. Mega Fortune is an exciting slot, featuring all the symbols of the good life – champagne, yachts, and limousines. Three Bonus Symbols allow you to spin the Mega Fortune Wheel and a possible shot at that big jackpot.
2. Mega Moolah (Microgaming): £13,230,200
Once the holder of the biggest jackpot payout, as recorded by Guinness World Records, Mega Moolah is arguably the most famous slot on the planet. There are, in fact, four progressive jackpots available in the game, all of which can strike at any time. It’s worth noting that the winner, a UK man named Jon Heywood, of the above jackpot played just the minimum 25p bet in his winning spin.
3. Arabian Nights: (NetEnt): £8,636,041
Possibly a slot for high rollers (the jackpot game has a high minimum bet), Arabian Nights has been a fixture of online casinos for 13 years now. Like Mega Moolah, the graphics and gameplay of Arabian Nights look a bit dated by today’s standards. However, its popularity has been maintained due to offering players a shot at that life-changing jackpot.
4. Jackpot Giant (Playtech): £5840,360
The apt names Jackpot Giant is the most modern slot listed here so far. However, the cool 3D graphics still play second fiddle to the huge jackpot award. At the time of writing (October 2018), the jackpot stands at over £9 million, so we know this game from Playtech will take 3rd spot on the list at least once it pays out. You can check this top guide for sites that host Jackpot Giant if you fancy a shot at the big prize.
5. Hall of Gods: (NetEnt): £7,820,888
It’s not just the Thor movies that have got people interested in Norse mythology again, a host of fun slot games have jumped on the bandwagon too. Thunderstruck II (Microgaming) probably holds the title as the most popular among players, but it doesn’t have a big jackpot award like NetEnt’s Hall of Gods. The game has plenty of other lucrative features too, so it’s worth checking out the next time you play at an online casino.