Online Slot Machine Layout Explained

Online Slot Machine Layout Explained
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While there are always some exceptions to the rule, in general, all online slot machines will have rows, reels, paylines, and symbols in their layout. In this article, we’ll be taking a closer look at each factor in this equation so you can become familiar with how the slot machine layout works.

Rows vs. Reels

The most significant aspect of an online slot is the reels. After participants have set their stake and clicked play, the vertical portions of the game spin from top to bottom. Every spin of the game reels will reveal a fresh set of randomly generated symbols. Most modern online slot games have five reels and three or four rows of symbols, but conventional slot machines only have three reels and three rows, with a single payline running horizontally across the center row. Megaways slots are even more different with 6-reels.

Rows are simply the rows that run across the connected reels. Most commonly, in order to receive a winning combination, you’ll need to land three or more active symbols across connected rows starting from the left-most reel.

The reels and rows of online slots comprise a complicated grid that allows for different symbol combinations and hence paylines, which is what we’ll talk about next.


There are no winners if there are no paylines! The number of paylines determines whether the symbols on the reels create a winning combination. When slot machines initially came out, they only featured one pay line, and to win money, players had to match three symbols along the middle pay line.

Most modern online slots contain between 10 and 243 paylines, however, some slots have as many as 117,649 chances to win because they can fit up to 7 symbols on a single reel; these are known as Megaways slots.

Paylines can be arranged in a variety of ways, including from left to right, diagonally, and in zigzag patterns.

The more chances to win a game has, the more wild the paylines can be, which means symbols don't always have to line up close to each other for players to win. Cluster pays slot area relatively recent slot development that does away with paylines entirely and relies on players landing clusters of matching symbols.

Paying Symbols

In slots, there are a variety of paying symbols that can be used in a variety of ways. What they all have in common is their critical role in the distribution of wins. The symbols will appear on the reels of the slot once they have stopped spinning and are the most common ways that slot machines reward players with payouts. 

The paying symbols in slot machines can be divided into two categories, standard symbols, and special symbols; here’s some information about each:

Standard Symbols

Regular paying symbols are frequently represented by card values. For example, in card games, the symbols A (Ace), K (King), Q (Queen), J (Jack), and 10 are frequently employed as payment symbols. The lowest paying symbols in the game are always the regular paying symbols (in comparison to Special symbols). There are, however, ranks among them, with more common low-value symbols and less common high-value symbols. Regular paying symbols must always match some pattern (called a pay-line) in order to win, but Special symbols are not bound by such constraints.

Special Symbols

The most popular types of special symbols are scatter symbols, wild symbols, and bonus game symbols. Special symbols can trigger bonus features in an online slot as well as payout on their own (when they create an eligible pay-line) (such as Free spins, Bonus game, Multiplier, etc.).

This is their primary goal in the game.

Furthermore, unlike Regular symbols, Special symbols do not always necessitate the formation of a line.

Scatter symbols and Bonus game symbols, for example, only need to appear a certain number of times on the reels, regardless of their position.

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