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Identifying High Limit Slot Machines: A Quick Primer

Cash Machine by Everi 105 credit win
Written by Joshua

Sometimes players ask me about high limit machines, and those questions can come back to the question of “What is a high limit machine?” This is especially the case now that max bets have been increasing on even penny slot machines.

So in today’s article I thought I’d cover some traits of what makes for a high limit slot machine. You can get the general sense by looking in an actual high limit room, and these are some of the things they have in common.

Higher Denomination

A game can be a higher limit machine because it is a higher denomination game. Many high limit games are a $1 denomination or above, but that’s not a lock anymore given the types of games now finding their way into high limit, and some $1 denomination games are not considered high limit either.

Let’s dive a bit deeper. Have you ever noticed sections of quarter and dollar denomination games on the main floor? Many of these are mechanical reel slots with a $2 or $3 max bet. Those bets can be less than the max bet on many penny machine slots, so they’re not really considered a high limit machine. But because the games aren’t penny slots either, they tend to get clustered in their own section of the casino floor, many times within the vicinity of the high limit games.

$1 machines seen in high limit often have a higher line count (such as 9-line Everi machines or games like Jin Long 888, which would make for a $9/spin bet at the $1 denomination and all nine lines played) or just a higher overall bet (such as Cash Machine at a $10 bet at $1 denomination).

A two credit or three credit machine would more likely be found starting at a $5 denomination, although I’ve seen $1 versions in the occasional high limit room.

Higher Bet Range

There’s a new class of games showing up in the high limit rooms that are a lower denomination, like dimes, but because of their bet requirements are high limit variations on the games.

For instance, I’ve seen Dancing Drums at a dime denomination, which puts the bets between $8.80 and $88 a spin with all gold symbols activated. (With none activated you could play 80 cents.) One of my favorites, Quick Spin Super Charged 7s, has been seen at dime denomination for a $5-$50 bet range.

Higher limit Lightning Link and Dragon Link machines often start at dime denomination and a $5 bet, but can be played higher with bets well over $100 at the upper end.

So sometimes the denomination isn’t so high sounding, but the overall bets certainly get there.

Overall Volatility

High limit machines have a certain feel to them, given the types of bets going on, and so the volatility on them are such that you tend to have a lower hit ratio and the chance to swing for some middle sized hits a bit more often.

Because many high limit games are mechanical reels games, false wins are less likely to be integrated into the pay table, although some games have figured it out. That tends to take away some of the opportunities to have “wins” when a game has to pay at least the wager back or more.

They also are often designed to give players more mid-sized wins that keep things going, but not necessarily big enough to walk away, and so to offer those the wins tend to be less frequent overall as well.

Games like Top Dollar, King Cash and Pinball accomplish this with a bonus feature as its most common way to achieve this, but it can vary by game.

Do you ever play high limit games? What’s your favorite? Share in the comments!

About the author


My name is Joshua, and I’m a slot enthusiast who works in tech as a marketer by day, and dabbles in casinos periodically during off-times. Know Your Slots will reflect my interests in understanding the various ways you can play slots, travel, casino promotions and how you can get the most out of your casino visits.

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