5-reel vs 3-reel slots comparison

Slots players that have been around even before online casinos started to flourish, will be very familiar with 3-reel slots, but recently a new addition to the world of slots have caught players’ attention – that of the 5-reel video slot.

The difference between a 3-reel and a 5-reel slot

Well, the main difference is exactly as the names imply: one version only has 3 reels while the other has 5. This means that the 5-reel slots have a higher hit frequency as there are more ways than winning. That of course doesn’t mean that you will win less playing on a 3-reel slot. It simply means that you will win smaller amounts more frequently on a 5-reel slot, while you will win bigger amounts, less frequently, on a 3-reel slot. Of course, big winnings are totally possible on 5-reel slots, and that’s why this version is so much more popular these days than the classic version.

Many players make the mistake of thinking that, because a 5-reel slot has more ways that you can win, the payout percentage will be less. That may have been back in the days, but online casinos use a Random Number Generator, which means that if a 3-reel slot is set to pay out at 96% and a 5-reel slot is set to pay out at 96%, it will pay out exactly the same in the long run – the amount of reels make no difference at all.

Classic slots

Classic slots, or 3-reel slots, don’t always have a theme and contains symbols that older slots player are very familiar with. These symbols include Cherries, Bars and Sevens, and there’s usually a small bonus round within the slot, but not always. 3-reel slots also include Pub Fruity games, which is very popular in countries like the United Kingdom.

These games also have great mini-games within them with a Nudge feature, where you can nudge a specific reel to see if you can create a winning combination. Because there are more reels on a 5-reel slot, this gives designers of this version a lot more freedom and 5-reel slots therefore usually have a great theme to it such as a spy theme, sports theme or mythical theme. There are also great bonus rounds as well as free spins features. This means that if you hit the right symbol combinations, you can win quite big while having loads of fun.

So what’s better to play at an online casino – 3-reel or 5-reel slots?

The answer to that question is up to you, but what we can tell you is that there a lot more 5-reel slots available to play at online casinos, so there are more choices with loads of different themes. If you haven’t tried one yet, now might be the best time to give it a spin. And you may as well give one of the 3-reel slots a spin as well – it’s all about luck, and you never know when the reels (whether there are 3 or 5) may be spinning your way.