July 9, 2021

Progressive Jackpots Explained for Beginners

While the format has been around for some time, over recent decades progressive jackpots have steadily become a major attraction at live and online casinos alike. They are known for raising the bar of excitement and fun of games that much higher, along with the risk vs reward factor.

What Are Progressive Jackpots?

Essentially, it is an overall jackpot that progressively increases in value every time the game is played. A percentage, usually decided on by the casino, is transferred to the jackpot with every bet in every game. Thus it continues to grow indefinitely, similar to a lottery, often reaching enormous and exciting sizes, until it is won. Furthermore, casinos are known to contribute from their own coffers to further increase the jackpot’s size and allure.

The Common Games That Use Progressive Jackpots

Most commonly found progressive jackpots are usually in games like slots and video poker, although other games have also begun to utilise it more frequently over recent years. This includes games like blackjack, poker, Caribbean stud poker, and many more. Technically though, if desired, it could be used for almost any casino game in order to spice things up.

Types of Progressive Jackpots

Progressive jackpots generally exist in three major types, namely “network”, “local”, and “standalone” jackpots.

Network jackpot:

This generally refers to a progressive jackpot that is displayed on some kind of meter in the casino. The meter is linked via a network to all the games involved, which players can watch in excitement as progressive jackpots rapidly increase while they play. This internet-based network can span over multiple casinos, over multiple countries worldwide, leading to phenomenally huge prizes, especially when playing real money online pokies at the top gaming sites.

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Local jackpot:

While also utilising a network, this type of progressive jackpot is generally confined to just a single casino establishment. Because there are less players involved, it will generally be smaller and have a slower rate of increase as a result.

Standalone jackpot:

The standalone jackpot is generally confined to a single game or machine. This makes it the smallest and slowest type to generate.

Other Variants & Rules

Some casinos have added further variation and special rules to their progressive jackpots:

Maximum stake:

Some casinos will only allow players to claim the jackpot if they had bet the highest stakes possible. Others provide “levels” to cater for those playing at lower stakes

Ticket system:

Some casinos utilise a ticket system where players earn tickets with every win. If a ticket’s code matches that of the system, randomly generated by a computer algorithm, the player wins the jackpot.

Random bonus wins:

Many casinos include the chance for small bonus wins to keep players going. These will generally come at random during play.

Must-drop jackpots:

Sometimes the casino will allot a certain time period for the progressive jackpot, after which the money will go the casino in the event that no one wins.

How Big Do They Get?

Some of the biggest progressive jackpots yet have been generated by Mega Moolah, a slots jackpot hosted by online casino game developer Microgaming.

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