How Are You Able to Win 243 Ways on a Slot Machine?

Slot Machines at a Casino, Woman Excited

If you have been to a casino or played online, you’ve probably come across a slot machine that tells you that there are “243 ways” for you to be able to win. You look across the screen at the display, and your brain begins to go into overload. How is that even possible?

If you’ve been asking yourself this question, you aren’t alone. It can be confusing to understand how it’s possible to win 243 different ways on a single slot machine. Here, we’ll take a quick look at how these slots work and how they can offer so many ways to win.

Learning About Slot Machines

Depending upon the slot machine you’re playing, there are a predetermined number of paylines available. This determines the number of winning combinations that are available as well.

Note:On some slot machines, there is a fixed set of paylines. However, many machines offer players the chance to pick the number of paylines that are available to them.

This is usually set by a button on the display, which allows the user to select the specific number of paylines they want to have in play.

243 Ways to Win?

In slot machines where the player can choose the number of paylines, how a person wins is dependent upon the number of consecutive symbols that appear. This can be accomplished either left to right, diagonal, up and down, or, in some cases, through a continuous connection of symbols.

And this is how slots can offer 243 ways to win. While it may look confusing, as long as there are consecutive symbols that are identical or sequenced correctly, then the person wins. How the line appears is irrelevant. As long as the symbols are adjacent to one another, the person is a winner.

Walking Through How to Win

To help clarify this, take a look at this example.

Looking from left to right, it is easy to see how a person would win in the traditional manner. If they had five consecutive matching symbols, then the person would earn a return. Some machines require that no more than two consecutive reels provide a winner. This often holds true for slot machines where certain symbols are considered more important than others.

However, you do not have to have five in a row on the same line to win. If there are between two and five connected symbols, either diagonally or across, then you can be a winner.

The example above displays a winning spin. The wildcard symbol is in the middle position in the first column. Following diagonally down there is a “J,” then an “A,” then a “10” across, before diagonally going up to the “Q.” In this instance, the wildcard symbol acts as a “K,” giving the person a Poker straight. This makes them a winner.

The Expansion of the Format

While 243 ways to win sounds like a lot, some games offer even bigger returns. For every row that is added, there are additional ways to win. For example, a machine that has four rows and five columns has 1024 ways to win.

Every time an additional row is added, you multiply that number by four. That means adding a fifth row gives you 4096 ways to win.

Further Info:Some machines offer more than five columns. Some offer as many as seven. If there are six rows and seven reels spinning around, that gives you 117,649 ways to win. That may sound totally crazy, but it just means that there are more ways to successfully earn yourself money.

Just as a comparison, slot machines that offer you 243 ways to win contain three rows. There are five reels that spin during the game. If you multiply 3×3×3×3×3, it equals 243. That’s how the number of ways to win is calculated.

Playing the Number of Lines

When playing slot machines that offer 243 ways to win, there are usually a limited number of paylines available to you. You can choose just one payline but, looking at our option above, if the lines were connected diagonally, you wouldn’t have won.

The manufacturer’s goal is to get you to buy more paylines so you have a greater chance of winning.

This is usually not a problem when you are playing a slot machine with a limited number of paylines. However, if you are playing machines with seven rows, playing a larger number of paylines can be quite expensive. Most of these machines are either nickel or penny-type because it is cheaper to play these machines and still choose the maximum number of paylines.

Is There a Winning Formula?

This is a great question. Many slot players believe that they have developed a formula that will win again and again on these types of slot machines. Don’t believe it.

There is a reason why this is called gambling. You have just as much opportunity to win using one person’s system as you would any other. In other words - no system provides that winning edge.

Popular 243 Ways Slots

243 ways slot machines are some of the most popular at in-person and online casinos. This is why many well-known slot machines fall into this class of games. This includes such fan favorites as Reel Gems, Thunderstruck II, Twin Spin, the Dark Knight, Medusa II, Avalon II, and Immortal Romance.

Look for these names and more at your favorite casino for hundreds of ways to win!

Petko Stoyanov
Get in touch with Petko
About Petko Stoyanov
My name is Petko Stoyanov, and I've been a gambling writer for more than ten years. I guess that was the natural path for me since I've loved soccer and card games for as long as I can remember! I have a long and fairly successful history with English Premier League betting and online poker, but I follow many other sports. I watch all big European soccer leagues, basketball, football, and tennis regularly, and I keep an eye on snooker, volleyball, and major UFC events.