Slot machines try to entice you with lights, bells, bonus rounds and special effects. Manufacturers often use flashy names for their games that make for a more fun experience. Game themes may involve movie characters, TV shows, food and pop culture. Animations, videos and sound effects help the games come to life. Tastes of players vary wildly, and there has to be something for everyone. These players have shared just what attracts them to the games.
BETH: My favorites have changed. I think it just takes me a while to get used to something new. When video slots came out, I clung to the three-reel games. Then I got used to picking bonuses. Remember Cash Crop, where you’d choose vegetables in a garden and had to avoid moles? That’s the one that made me change. It got to where I was so into the picking games that I wouldn’t give the time of day to a game with free spins instead. Then I got used to free spins, and really, I’ll play any of them now. My all-time favorite, though, is still a three-reel game, the original Wheel of Fortune. I’ll still make time for that whenever I see it. I just love the wheel spins and the noises. I’ve been lucky a few times and won big on the wheel.
MARIA: Jackpots are what the games are all about to me. I want a chance to win a good-sized jackpot. It doesn’t have to be something that will make me rich. Something in the thousands that will give me some mad money. I want a realistic shot at a jackpot that will make a difference in my life, if only for a few days. Lots of the video slots with jackpots on several levels are like that at the top. The bottom jackpots might only be $10. By the time you get to the third level for a few hundred dollars or the fourth level for a few thousand, those are the ones I’m hunting.
AMITY: I’ll be honest. Themes and bonuses and all that are important, but the first think I look at is the number of paylines and the minimum bet. If I can’t afford to play a game, it doesn’t matter how cool the theme is. I’m a penny slot player on a budget. A hundred dollars is a big day out for me, and sometimes I’ll play with only $40 or $60. I don’t expect to win all the time. That would be nice, wouldn’t it? But I do expect to get some play for a $20 bill. Give me some free spins or a couple of bonuses that keep me going for a while and give me a shot to win, and I’m happy. I don’t get that with 40 or more paylines. A 40-cent minimum bet means I’m guaranteed only 50 spins for $20. The whole $20 can be gone before there’s even a fighting chance for a bonus. I like the 20 line games, where I’m guaranteed 100 spins at 20 cents a spin for my $20. I’ll settle for 30-line games. But at 40 lines or more, I look for a different game.
BARRY: I want more than one bonus round. Free spins are cool, especially if there are some extras and the spins aren’t exactly the same as the paid spins. But pick’em bonuses are cool, too. So are wheels. I also really like those spins where money symbols hold in place and you can get extra spins. It’s all good, but I like some variety. If I can get free spins and pick’em in the same slot machine, that makes me happy.