Choosing Slot Line Number

Choosing Slot Line Number

For how many lines is it more profitable to play slots?

For how many paylines is it more profitable to play slots? Today, online casinos feature hundreds of video slot and slot machines. Only among products of the Net Entertainment company there are more than 200 games. There is a lot of settings, active slot lines, free spins and bonus games, not to mention the settings for the length of pay cycles and the dispersion (spread) of winnings in slot machines.

What is the dispersion?

When choosing slot machine, it is important for a player not only it’s outer characteristics (design and graphics, plot, color scheme), but also profitability. As a rule, everyone pays attention to interest payments (RTP). But this parameter shows only absolute mathematical expectation of the game and does not reflect frequency of winnings and their magnitude. The dispersion is responsible for these indicators. Concept of “dispersion” is most often used in poker, but at the same time it also applies to online gaming slot machines. The dispersion is a statistical term. It describes the size of the range of deviations from the mathematical expectation. If we talk about games in online casinos, the dispersion shows deviation from specific value of RTP (percentage of refunds to a player).

Here is an example: in a slot machine RTP size is 98%. This means that 98% of the money invested will be returned to the players. This percentage of return is calculated based on a large number of players and in conditions of continuous game. Thus, with a small number of spins, RTP will not be respected, and the dispersion will begin to increase. At the same time, with a large number of bets, the dispersion will be decreasing and RTP percentage will tend to a given value.

It is often difficult for a beginner to navigate in a variety of video slots and choose the right one. Today I would like to talk on the topic, for how many slot paylines is it more profitable to play slots? What changes when you select slot machines with different active lines and what does this characteristic affect?

What is affected by the active lines in a slot:

  • The more active paylines, the higher value of the total bet and the lower the bet for each of the lines separately. On the one hand, it is required for a player to make more bets, on the other hand, a large number of slot paylines reduces the dispersion. So, even a big win in one of the 100 active paylines in a slot machine will give a much smaller amount of cash, than the same payout when playing on 9 paylines. In turn, playing by 10 euros at 243 lines and at 9 lines you are making bets on each active payline in the latter case almost 15 times more.
  • Dispersion of slots on 243 lines, as a rule, is much lower than on 9-15 lines. The return cycle in 9-15 linear slot machines is usually much longer than in multi-line slots.
  • In slot machines on 243 paylines during free games, the multiplier is usually higher than in slots on 9-15 lines.
  • In slot machines with 1-5 lines, the dispersion is slightly higher, but the overall payout percentage is usually lower, than in modern slot machines. This can be explained by the fact, that classic slot machines have been produced long time ago. In conditions of low competition in the past, slot machines were set on the return of bets made in amount of 80-90%. Exceptions are the modern flagship slot machines from the Netent Jackpot 6000 (98.89%) and Mega Joker (99%).

Which slot machines are more profitable to play:

Since in the first part of the study, we found out that dispersion of multi-line slots is somewhat smoothed, and the total bet is blurred over a large number of paylines, it will be more profitable for a player to play slots with 9-15 lines if he likes rare big winnings and 243 lines if he is satisfied with constant small wins. Exceptions are the games with additional features  of the Wild symbols, moving apart vertically on entire drum. Presence of 2-4 such symbols can present a huge payout, since most of the 243 paylines will be Wild symbols.

Pros and cons of the online slot machines:

  • As a rule, gameplay is more exciting. On playing field, something constantly happens. Payouts are making, combinations meeting. Situations when we don’t receive a penny in 10-15 rotations are extremely rare.
  • During bonus free games, we get additional benefits and increased multiplier, in contrast to the classic x3 in slots with 9-15 paylines.
  • Dispersion of multi-line slots is reduced. The return cycle of the made bets is shorter.
  • We will get big winnings of several hundred total bets only in slots with 9-15 lines. This statement is especially true for the main gameplay. Playing on 243 paylines, we are waiting for a bonus or an additional function. It is extremely difficult to make a big win during the main game.


As you can see, each player can choose exactly what gives him the greatest pleasure. There is no single right answer for the question, “For how many paylines is it more profitable to play slots?”.  Game with lower dispersion in slots on 243 lines in anticipation of the bonus game or the game on 9-15 active paylines with possibility to win a large amount of cash during the main game? What to choose – of course, it is up to you to decide. Try to play without spending real money without registration right on our site, following the links below:

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