Progressive Jackpot Slots – How They Work, Top Games to Play, and More

Online Progressive Jackpots

Whenever I play slots online, I almost always choose progressive jackpot slots. I’m not one to waste time. I’m not interested in winning $5,000. I want to win $5 million and never have to work again.

Progressive jackpot slots give you the opportunity to multiply your wealth rapidly. Some of the best jackpot slots are seeded at $1 million, meaning that’s the minimum amount you can win. I’ve read stories of lucky players winning tens of millions while playing popular progressive jackpot slots. Yes, these are the slot machines dreams are made of.

In this piece, I’ll explain how progressive jackpot slots work, why you have a slightly lower chance of winning them, and what the best jackpot slots are if you want a shot at winning a life-changing jackpot.

How Progressive Jackpot Slots Work

Standard slot machines have fixed jackpots. For example, you might win 5,000x your wager if you land five of the highest-value symbols across a payline.

However, progressive jackpot slots work differently. They also have fixed jackpots, but they have additional jackpots that grow with every spin.

Please Note:
When you play progressive jackpot slots online, a percentage of every spin you make will increase the collective jackpot that all players have a chance to win. This is the case at every casino that offers the game, so if you have 1,000 players spinning the reels at the same time, then every spin from all 1,000 players will add to the jackpot, and any one of you might win it.

Think of a progressive jackpot slot as a pool full of money. A small drop of water is drained from every player and funneled into the pool. At any moment, the pool could drain, sending all of that water gushing into one lucky players’ account. It’s not a perfect analogy, but you get the point.

There are various ways to win progressive jackpots. How each one is triggered depends on what game you’re playing. Here are some common ways they’re triggered.

  • Matching Symbols – It could be a case of matching five special symbols on a payline. This is how standard jackpots are triggered, and some progressive jackpots work the same way.
  • Bonus Rounds – I’ve seen picking games that require you to select coins and reveal colors behind them. When you match three colors, you win the associated progressive jackpot. I’ve also seen bonus wheels that can trigger progressive jackpots. The bonus rounds do tend to make the process of winning much more exciting.
  • Random Wins – There are some progressive jackpot slot machines that assign wins randomly. Imagine spinning, spinning, and spinning some more, only to win several million dollars out of the blue. That’s possible when you play the top jackpot slots.

The Best Progressive Jackpot Slots Online

There are lots of great progressive jackpot slots, but there are a few that stand head and shoulders above the rest. Usually, this is because they combine massive progressive jackpots with smart bonus features and cool game themes. This is my list of the best progressive jackpot slot games. You can play these at my recommended real money slot sites.

Mega Moolah – Absolootly Mad

Mega Moolah is the top-rated progressive jackpot slot of all time. It has earned itself the nickname “the millionaire maker” because it is seeded at £1 million, and it has paid out multiple jackpots worth more than £10 million. The reason I’m reporting these amounts in Pounds Sterling is that Mega Moolah is a Microgaming jackpot slot, and that’s a British company.

However, over the years, the original Mega Moolah slot got a little dated and boring. It wasn’t the most exciting video slot, but people played it in droves anyway because of the progressive jackpot. Recently, Microgaming released multiple new versions of the game. The best of these, in my opinion, is Mega Moolah – Absolootly Mad.

Absolootly Mad Mega Moolah Mad Hatter Online Slot

This progressive jackpot game has an eye-catching Alice in Wonderland theme. It has five reels and 243 ways to win. It’s packed with features, including rolling reels, a free spins bonus round, and the jackpot bonus wheel. The latter is where you’ll have a shot at the Mega Moolah jackpot.

This game is serious business. Yes, it’s a lot of fun, but it can also deliver jackpots big enough to make you stare in disbelief at your screen for a few minutes before you realize you’ve won. This is the hottest progressive jackpot slot online right now. Miss it at your peril!

Mega Fortune

There are some slot machines that never go out of style, and Mega Fortune is one of them. It’s a popular NetEnt progressive jackpot slot that was released several years ago. Despite this, it’s still one of the most-played jackpot slots online.

Mega Fortune tantalizes and teases you by depicting the lifestyle of the rich and the famous. The theme is fantastic, with fancy watches, speedboats, glasses of champagne, and other luxury items on the reels. The game has a free spins bonus feature with multipliers and a jackpot bonus wheel.

Mega Fortune Jackpot Wheel Online Slot

The bonus wheel is there all the action happens; you have to make your way through multiple layers to try and win the Mega Jackpot in the center of the wheel. Honestly, it’s next-level excitement. I’ve been so close so many times, but I’ve never quite made it. The Mega Jackpot will be at least €1,000,000 and can grow much bigger as time passes.

There’s also a more modern version of Mega Fortune. It’s called Mega Fortune Dreams. It’s the same game with a different skin. I like the original better, but you should try both and see what one you prefer.

Jackpot Giant

Estonian software giant Playtech has produced some of the best slot machines ever released. It’s always at the forefront of the casino gaming industry, and so it’s no surprise that it also has some of the top progressive slots in its catalog.

Jackpot Giant may be several years old, but it’s still the top Playtech jackpot slots as far as I’m concerned. It has a stone-age theme with a giant searching for pots of gold.

Jackpot Giant Online Slot

It also has a cool bonus feature where the giant flips coins into volcanoes for cash payouts. If you line up five of the jackpot symbols on a payline, you could become an instant millionaire. Make sure you’re betting at least £1 per spin to qualify for the jackpot.

Jackpot Giant slot is a lot of fun, and that’s why I play it often. I’ve won huge multiples of my wager in the picking game, although I’ve never won the progressive jackpot. Will you be the one to take it home? You’ll have to give it a few spins to find out.

Cleopatra MegaJackpots

There are probably hundreds of video slots with Egyptian themes, but none of them have a progressive jackpot like Cleopatra MegaJackpots. This is a classic slot from IGT, and it’s part of the MegaJackpots network, meaning multiple slots in the network are contributing to the jackpot at the same time.

Cleopatra is quite a simple game. You’ll see all of the usual Egyptian symbols such as the Eye of Horus, Scarab Beetle, and the Ankh, and there’s a funky Egyptian soundtrack, too. It has a free spins feature with multipliers of up to 3x, and random in-game multipliers can also boost wins.

Cleopatra Mega Jackpot Online Slot

You’ll see the progressive jackpot amount at the top of the reels. It’s frequently greater than £1,000,000.

If you prefer simple, straightforward games without too many features but that still have the power to deliver huge progressive jackpots, I’d recommend this above any of the others. It’s simply fantastic.

Hall of Gods

Slots software companies have a thing for ancient gods. From Egypt to Greece to Nordic and Celtic cultures, there are a multitude of video slots themed on the deities our ancestors used to worship. Hall of Gods is among the best of them, and it’s one of the top NetEnt progressive jackpot slots.

This particular game has a Norse theme. You’ll see Thor, Odin, Loki, and other Norse gods on the reels alongside traditional axes, rings, Thor’s hammer, and other symbols linked to Norse culture. The game has three bonus features; expanding wilds, a free spins bonus round with up to 20 free spins and a 3x multiplier, and a picking game.

Hall Of Gods Online Slot

It’s in the picking game that you can win the Hall of Gods progressive jackpot. Your job is to smash shields with Thor’s hammer, revealing cash prizes behind them. If the gods of fortune have you in their sights, you’ll be wealthy beyond your wildest dreams in a few seconds flat. The progressive jackpot is seeded at £500k, but I’ve seen it reach more than £5 million before.

I play this progressive jackpot slot at least a few times per year. There’s something hypnotic about the theme, the gentle rain on the water sounds effects and the chance of winning such a colossal jackpot. You’ll want to give this one a few spins for sure.

Playing Progressive Jackpot Slots – What You Need to Know

So far, I’ve shown you the best progressive slot games online, and as you can see, these games have massive potential. However, there are a few things to be aware of before you play progressive jackpot slots.

  1. Progressive slot machines tend to have a lower RTP. Whereas a standard slot game might have an RTP of 96%, a progressive jackpot game might have an RTP of 90% or lower. That’s the price you’ll pay for contributing to the progressive jackpot on each spin.
  2. I’ve never seen a free spins bonus that permits you to play progressive jackpot slots in its terms and conditions. The risk this would pose to the casinos is too great. Don’t try to use free spins bonuses on progressive jackpot games.
  3. Progressive slots usually cost a bit more to play. I’ve seen video slots with minimum spins worth $0.05. However, most of the slots listed above will cost you at least $0.25 to play. As is the case in Jackpot Giant, you sometimes have to bet significantly more than the minimum bet to qualify for the progressive jackpot.
  4. Speaking of bets per spin, there’s ample evidence that the more you bet, the greater your chance of winning the progressive jackpot will be. Almost every jackpot slot pay table will tell you this. There’s no way that software companies would say this if it wasn’t true. They’d lose their gaming licenses in a heartbeat.
  5. Remember that your chances of actually winning a progressive jackpot are slim. Yes, the jackpots are colossal, but your odds of winning them are tiny. Your odds of winning depend on the game, but you’ll rarely have a greater than 1,000,000:1 chance.

Ready to Play?

Now that you know what the best progressive jackpot slots are, and you’re aware of the pitfalls of playing them, it’s time to try your luck.

While the odds are against you, someone has to win, and it could be you!

I’ll bet that if you asked any progressive jackpot winner if they thought it would happen to them, they’d tell you no.

Check out some of my top-rated slot sites for in-depth casino reviews. You can play progressive slot machines at most of them.

Gavin Lucas / Author

Gavin has been writing about online gambling since 2015. He developed a love for it when it enabled him to travel the world while working from his laptop. Since then, he’s settled down, and his traveling days are over, but his love for casino games never left. Gavin is based in the UK and is a regular slot and roulette player. He’s deeply interested in cryptocurrencies and their intersection with gambling. He also obsessively follows politics and often writes about betting on elections and other political outcomes.