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Prize pool at slots, how is it formed?

Prize pool at slots, how it is formed?In this article, we will talk about one of the most frequent questions about playing on slots. How and from where is the big winning formed? It’s recommended for all players who want to increase the chance for a win to consider the following factors: RTP (return to player percentage), volatility (variance), cycle length and the prize pool. Check our list of Canadian online casinos with no verification withdrawal.

Further, we will concentrate on the prize pool of winnings, how it’s formed and what exactly this means, and the definition of the big win. Most people consider a big win as a payment combination of 200x or more (if you bet 10 CAD, the win of 200x is 2000 CAD).

Pay attention to the fact that if the Canadian online casino is new, then the prize pool will be empty, so you will not have a chance to get a big payout. This is because first, the prize pool of the new casino has to be filled before it spreads 90% - 95% of the collected money.

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Pyramid principle

Big WinThe online slots are using the pyramid principle when filling the prize pools. The reason for this is that most people don't spin the reels on high bets, so it's difficult for the pool to fill with small bets; that’s why the casino takes a percentage of the bets made on the lower levels. The more players in the casino, the faster the prize pool fills, and the faster the Big Win is won. The prize pool can be compared with the lottery; each group has its prize pool (jackpot).

The prize pool compared with the lottery

  • Cheapest tickets (bets from 0.1 CAD to 10 CAD). Most of the players are in this group, and the prize pool is filled very fast. The possibilities to trigger a Big Win are higher on such bets; of course, the final amount will not be so huge. As far as we know, this group is collecting around 10% of the money to fill the prize pools on the higher levels, and this money will be used for Big Wins on bigger bets. This group is playing bonus hunters; this is another reason why the pool is filled rapidly.
  • Average value tickets (10 CAD to 50 CAD). In our opinion, this is a much more profitable group for players than the previous one. Here, there are not so many gamblers in the “draw,” so there is a higher chance for a Big Win. We believe that a crucial factor for the payouts is the statistic (history) that the player has. The software will consider all details before giving out the payment combination, such as deposits, average withdrawals, bets, etc.
  • Expensive tickets (from 50 CAD up to maximum). This group can be the most profitable or unprofitable at the same time. The software will consider every detail of the gambler’s statistic (history) before giving out the Big Win as there are not so many players. In this group, such a "win" has the size of “life-changing money.” Therefore, gambling with such bets is more than risky.

What is the prize pool?

The prize pool is the sum collected from all players’ bets minus winnings in the current spin. So, for example, if 100 gamblers are betting by 1 CAD after 20 CAD is won, the prize pool for a further 80 CAD will be the prize pool for further winnings.

  • Depending on the selected casino game, from 1% to 10% (this is the RTP) will be returned to win the players. So, for example, if the slot has an RTP of 96%, in the long run, the slot will payout 96% of the collected money, and 4% will be the winning for the online casino and the slots provider.
  • The slot will spread from 5% to 90% for winnings from each spin, and the other will fill the prize pool. For example, again, the slot has 96% RTP; 10 players bet 10 CAD (100 CAD), the slot pays 50 CAD in the current spin, then the slot will move in the pool 46 CAD (100 CAD – 4% RTP – 50 CAD paid = 46) for further winnings. When the prize pool is filled, the slot becomes “Hot,” which is when the Big Win is coming. 
  • From 1% to 10% from the pool are moved for big winnings in higher bets.


The prize pool is the place where all the money is collected for winnings. The higher the volatility, the longer the pool needs to be filled, and the Big Win is a larger amount of money. Filling the prize pool can be compared with the lottery; there are a group of bets, and the prize pool of the lower group is giving a percentage for winnings in the higher group of bets. When the pool is filled at maximum, the slot becomes “Hot,” which is the best time the slot can give out a Mega-Big-Win. And last but not least, the prize pool is different for each Canadian online casino, so new gambling sites will not be able to trigger Big Wins before the pool is filled.

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Written by Kamen Valev
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