Should you play pokies with volatility
Why Play Pokies with Volatility?
Many players who love online pokies in Australia often choose their game based on the theme, bonuses, jackpot size, and payout percentage. These are all perfect ways to determine which game to play.
The only problem is that volatility is often not considered. Many players don’t believe this or know what it means.
Volatility plays a big part in how much you can expect to win from a video pokie in a session. You can especially look forward to more winnings when the video pokie is less volatile. Read everything you need to know on this page and why video pokies with low volatility lead to more winnings.
We also discuss the advantages and disadvantages of these regular-paying casino games.
What Does Volatility Mean for pokies?
Volatility is a statistical calculation of the spread of results. Simply put, this term refers to how close the outcomes are compared to the actual odds. High volatility means that results vary greatly. On the other hand, low volatility means that the outcomes are closer to what the average indicates.
Video pokies are the most volatile games you will find in the casino. They have a huge range of bonus features and prizes, ranging from a few credits to millions of credits.
Below is an example of a simple pokie machine with 3 reels:
- 3 crowns = 10,000 credits
- 3 Sevens – 1,000 credits
- 3 watermelons – 500 credits
- 3 cherries – 100 credits
- 3 strawberries – 50 credits
- 3 lemons – 25 credits
- 3 grapes – 10 credits
Casinos would lose money in the long run if they let you win too often. Finally, some prizes are worth up to 10,000 credits, as in the example above. The majority of the prizes will be more small amounts. But even winning 10 or 25 credits when you only risk one credit is a nice amount to win.
Therefore, pokies should take this into account by offering prizes less frequently than on other casino games. In the case of blackjack or baccarat, you won’t win as much as on online pokies. These casino games offer ‘even money payouts, and therefore pay out more regularly.
Of course, there is a difference in volatility between pokies. Some pokies offer prizes much more often than others. But we’ll talk about that in the following sections.
Why is Volatility so Significant?
Payout ratios are the first thing many players look for when playing video pokies. The payout percentage is substantial because it determines how much a pokie pays out in the long run.
Here is an example:
- You play with a payout percentage of 95%.
- You wager 1,000 dollar
- 1,000 x 0.95 = 950 dollar
You Theoretically Win $950 Back
Video pokies with a high payout rate offer a greater chance of winning money in the long run. But what happens in the short run? As mentioned before, online pokies are volatile compared to other casino games. The RTP (Return to Player) reflects the payout percentage. But the RTP is based on the long term and does not consider the volatility along the way.
A pokie with an RTP of 90% can potentially offer more prizes than a pokie with an RTP of 95%. This is because reduced volatility causes the combinations you form to increase but the size of the prizes to decrease. And all that in a short space of time.
This article focuses on video pokies with low volatility because it is more fun to win more often for many players, even when their payout percentages are lower, and prizes are more petite.
How do You Determine What the Volatility of a Pokie Is?
Determining how volatile a video pokie is can be easy or difficult. It is easy when a software developer has assessed and indicated the volatility. For example, Pragmatic Play provides volatility information so that players immediately know what kind of game they are dealing with.
There is no complete proof of determining volatility if you do not get information from the software developer itself. Still, by researching some aspects of the paytable, you can find out what kind of pokie it is.
Below you can see what you want to focus on to find a game with low volatility:
- Jackpot size: You want the jackpot prizes to be lower.
- The number of big payouts: Look for pokies with smaller payouts.
- The number of low payouts: You want to see more small payouts.
- Bonus features: The fewer bonus features like free spins, Scatters, and Wilds, the better.
- The number of winning lines: More paylines give more chance of forming a combination and getting a prize.
Playing online pokies with lower jackpots and fewer bonuses will be less exciting. However, these games will ensure that you win enough prizes regularly to compensate. They don’t have to consider all the bonuses you activate or big prizes you can win.
Compare this to a pokie where you can win a jackpot of over 1 million dollars. Furthermore, the video pokie comes with free spins rounds, and with a Wild symbol, you can form a combination faster because it counts as any other symbol.
Because so many payouts are put into the jackpot and bonus features, it is impossible for the software developer to offer regular prizes in the base game. This means that the volatility of a pokie is higher, and there are fewer prizes to be won. But do you win one? Then you can expect it to be a higher price than on a video pokie with low volatility.
Also, consider if the progressive jackpot is already topped up to a specific value by the software developer. If they top it up with a guaranteed cash prize after a win, then you can be sure that the pokie will not pay out prizes as often.
Advantages of Low Volatility Games
Lower volatility video pokies offer many advantages over games where you have to wait for prizes. It all starts with the fact that they pay out prizes more regularly. But there are even more advantages to these pokies that are less obvious. Below are all the benefits that come with low volatility.
Win More Regularly
No player likes to spin the reels of a video pokie ten times and win nothing. Unfortunately, this does happen now and then when you play a pokie where you have a chance at a high jackpot or multiple bonus features available.
You can avoid this problem by choosing online pokies with a more gradual payout structure. Games with many paylines and low payouts offer a higher chance of winning at every turn.
Of course, you won’t get paid out as often as you would in games like blackjack or baccarat. But you can indeed expect at least a little more frequent payouts compared to the average pokie.
Easier to Manage Your Money
Managing your money is tricky with video pokies because the outcomes are always random. However, with lower volatility, it is easier to manage your balance. Most sessions consist of about 200 to 300 units per hour.
You want to bring that number down if you practice good money management. Placing only 200 units per hour allows you to develop a better plan.
Here is an example:
- You have a balance of 250 dollars
- You want to play at least two sessions that last about 4 hours
- 250 dollars divided by 2 = 125 dollars per session
- 125 dollars divided by 4 is 31.25 dollars per hour
- You are playing a pokie with low volatility (200 units per hour)
- 25 divided by 200 dollar = 0.156
It would help if you played a game that lets you wager $0.15 or less per turn.
Nothing can guarantee everything will go as the maths tells you (RTP). But you still have a better chance of playing longer with a good plan. Of course, you can have a good session where you win more often.
But it’s better always to be well prepared for the worst-case scenario possible.
Less Big Swings
Losing a lot of money in one session can be very frustrating. Almost nothing is as disappointing as losing 500 dollars in a few hours. The opposite is also true; you can win a lot of money. Unfortunately, this does not happen as often as you have losing sessions.
Games with a more stable payout structure are an excellent way to counter these big swings. You may not have the chance to win big, but at least you’ll lose less money in a short period.
Results are Closer to Payout Percentages
Earlier, we explained how volatility usually leads to short-term results closer to the game’s RTP. This is good in some cases because it means you have a chance of winning no matter what the payout percentage is.
But the downside is that games with a high RTP are based on the long run. Therefore, it is better to look for video pokies with low volatility. The more frequent the payouts, the more impact the high RTP has on the short-term result.
You can Play Longer for Less Money
One of the biggest problems with high volatility games is that you have more losses per hour than average games. You have to hope for a large portion of luck to win such a high payout. Only then is it possible to make up for the loss?
And sometimes, it takes so long to get a payout that your balance is already gone. Low volatility games are the best way to make your balance last longer on pokies. You gradually earn payouts.
Drawbacks of Low Volatility Games
As you can read above, online pokies that pay out regularly have many good qualities. They offer more frequent prizes, make it easier to manage your money, and let you play longer. But not everything is perfect with these types of pokies.
It would help if you also considered the drawbacks before playing these games.
Playing for a life-changing amount of money creates a lot of excitement on video pokies. This is the reason why games offer such high jackpots. This is because they are trendy among casino players.
Low-volatility games lack this element. They pay out more often, so they can’t come up with a high jackpot as well. You might end up winning a prize between 1,000 and 10,000 credits instead of getting rich from it.
Lesser Bonus Features
The bonus features are one of the better developments in recent years.
These extra bonuses offer unique ways to win prizes, and free spins are the most common. These give you the chance to win free money without depositing money yourself. Other bonus features are Wild symbols or Scatters.
There are also bonus games that allow you to play mini-games. For example, you can choose from 10 treasure chests and reveal the prizes. Bonuses add more entertainment to pokies.
Unfortunately, low volatility online pokies have fewer, if any, bonuses. This is because most bonus features offer the chance to win big prizes.
In Short: Should I Play Low-Volatility Pokies?
Whether or not you choose to play low-volatility video pokies depends on what you value most.
If you are focused on winning a jackpot or prefer to have more bonus features, you already know that high volatility games are better.
But maybe you don’t care about big prizes and would rather win more money.
Then it would be best if you chose low volatility pokies.