When the subject of the “best online slots” comes up, you’ll see a wide variety of opinions offered. Some players like the biggest progressive jackpots, while others prefer fun and familiar themes. Still, others consider the best real money online slots to be those with lots of features, free spins, and bonus games. Or others prefer games with multipliers because these unlock big winnings without a jackpot.
In our opinion, the best slots online are those with a high return-to-player (RTP). Of every dollar bet on the game, these are the real money online slots that return the most money to your pocket. They might not have the biggest jackpots or the coolest themes, but they pay out often. Usually, they have bonus games, free spins, and multipliers that help an ordinary game become extraordinary.
With that in mind, we present the best online slots for US players. We mainly focus on real-money online slots available in all 50 states, because anyone can play there. Later, we provide information on the best online slots at licensed casinos. For now, let’s focus on the best online slots at great casinos like Las Atlantis Casino, Slots Empire, or Super Slots.
The Best Real Money Online Slots for US Players
For most US players, it’s impossible to play online slots from IGT, WMS, Bally, Aristocrat, and Konami. Instead, you’ll play real-money online slots designed by companies like RealTime Gaming (RTG), Rival Gaming, Betsoft, Nucleus Gaming, and Spinomenal. In fact, some of the brands listed are design houses working closely with other software providers.
In short, you’ll see a lot of the same online slots. Most of what you’ll see is connected to RTG, Rival, or Betsoft. That makes things simple, though. Finding the best online slots by those companies is a matter of tracking down which of their games has the best RTP. We list the top ten games below.
Top 10 Best Online Slots by Return-To-Player (RTP)
US Online Slot
|Cosmic Quest: Mystery Planets
|Quest to the West
The Best Online Slots for US Players
Now that we have the list narrowed down, let’s take a closer look at the end of the games. Our readers might be familiar with a few of these excellent slots, but they’re in the spotlight today. Online slot players also might be familiar with games like Safari Sam 2 and Jackpot Cleopatra’s Gold, but we review the online slots that inspired those games today.
Cosmic Quest: Mystery Planets – 98.95%
Sometimes referred to as Cosmic Quest 2, “Mystery Planets” is the sequel to Cosmic Quest: Mission Control from Rival Gaming. This game has an incredible 98.95% return to player, making it the single best online slot in the US online gaming market. Cosmic Quest: Mystery Planet has a space exploration theme and 20 paylines, but it’s the features that make this game stand out.
Those features include expanding wilds (Rockets), scatter symbols (Astronauts), and a jackpot symbol (Jetpack). If the 5 wild rocket symbols appear, it pays off with a 5000x jackpot. The expanding wilds unlock free spins — between 10 free spins and 50 free spins — so they’re a symbol you’ll want to track.
When three of the Scatterstronauts appear on the reels, it unlocks the Mystery Bonus Round. The Jetpack Jackpot is also a top feature of the game. With its space theme and high RTP, Cosmic Quest: Mystery Planets is a game everyone visiting Rival Gaming casinos like Super Slots should try.
Rock On! – 98.00%
Rival Gaming’s Rock On! Slots is inspired by the hit song “Rock On”, written by David Essex in 1973. Perhaps the song’s covers might are more popular, including US soap opera actor Michael Damien’s 1989 cover, which became a No. 1 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. British rock band Def Leppard released a cover in 2006, a cover that remains on their setlist to this day. David Essex’s song is now a part of rock lore, as many rockers give affirmation by simply saying, “Rock on.”
The online slot game, released in 2009 by Rival, has been a big hit with players for nearly 15 years. The game has an RTP ranging from 97% to 98% depending on the casino. Its 5 reels and 20 paylines are fairly standard, while the reel symbols are caricatures of rock stars and rock fans. Certain reel icons are inspired by Elvis Presley, Jimi Hendrix, Gene Simmons of Kiss, and Axl Rose of Guns ‘N Roses. Ronny James Dio’s iconic “sign of the horns” is a reel symbol, as is a hand flashing a peace symbol. Drum sets, guitars, punk rockers, and starstruck fans fill out the reel symbols.
Elvis Scatter Symbols: Rock On! Slots
The cartoon Elvis scatter symbol unlocks the interactive bonus round. In the bonus game, you’re given a guitar pick and a fretboard and told to play the song well for a big prize. Each bonus round has a different sign. If the drum kit appears enough, it unlocks the Encore Free Spins Bonus. The wild green guitar acts as an expanding wild.
Though the 4000x top jackpot might seem small to some players, the high RTP and fun rock music theme of Rock On Online Slot makes this a must-play. Again, players should visit Super Slots if they want to play Rock On! for real money.
Quest To The West – 97.53%
Quest To The West Slots has a much different theme. It is based on the mythical journey of Sun Wukong, the Chinese Monkey King. This Chinese mythology-themed game has 25 paylines, lots of wild symbols, free spins, respins, and a chance to win a 1000x jackpot. The reel symbols include various characters from “Journey To The West”, including Zhu Bajie (pig), Tang Sanzang (Longevity Monk), Sha Wujing (Sand Monk) with the skull cap, and the White Dragon Horse.
Of course, the Monkey King is the wild symbol, but a second Monkey King symbol acts as a scatter symbol. When 3 or more Monkey King symbols appear on the screen, it begins the Free Respin Quest where players can win up to 1260x their bet. The betting range is between $0.02 and $80, so a wide range of bettors can play Quest to the West Slots. Quite simply, Quest To The West is the best online slot from Betsoft. You can play it in casinos like Super Slots and Wild Casino.
Sweet Treats – 97.60%
Since Candy Crush Saga became a phenomenon on mobile phones in 2012, every slot designer has developed their own candy-themed game. Sweet Treats Slots is Nucleus Gaming’s contribution. Sweet Treats has a lot of bonuses and dynamic 3D animated candy icons. In the end, the game’s 7 different candy icons unlock payouts up to 600x the bet, but they are just part of the 12 different bonus symbols.
Sweet Treats is a drop-based game, which offers low volatility. It also gives players the ability to string together many winning combinations at once, which contributes to the game’s 97.60% return to player. Though you won’t find the many multipliers and free spins on Sweet Treats, the gameplay is steady, reassuring, and somewhat mesmerizing. Along the way, Sweet Treat Slots is one of the best online slots you’ll find in the US casino market. You can play it in casinos like Super Slots and Wild Casino.
Safari Sam – 97.50%
Safari Sam is a 3D online slot game whose theme is an African safari. That means lots of African wildlife, including reel symbols for monkeys, gorillas, lions, and zebras. In that way, Safari Sam is reminiscent of 50 Lions from Aristocrat games. The reels also include the Bilbao trees from the African savannah, along with the modern jeeps used to get around on safari. Finally, Safari Sam has a girl jumping from the reel symbols and swinging in trees. This icon, presumably Safari Sam, unlocks 10x the win when she appears randomly.
Safari Sam has 30 paylines, bets between $0.02 and $5.00, and a max bet of 5 coins per payline. The biggest jackpot is 25,000 coins, though Safari Sam has enough wild symbols, scatters, free spins, and multipliers to pay off the player in a number of ways. As mentioned, Safari Sam is the random wild symbol, while the Bilbao tree is the scatter symbol.
Sometimes it seems like Betsoft’s Safari Sam online slot is ubiquitous. Any online casino that offers Betsoft slots has Safari Sam and its successor, Safari Sam 2. It’s a player favorite because it’s one of a series of US online slots that offers a 97.50% RTP. No wonder it’s one of the most popular games among US players.
Cleopatra’s Gold – 97.50%
In a way, Cleopatra’s Gold is RTG’s version of Safari Sam. RTG powers a lot of US online casinos, and all of those seem to have a version of Cleopatra’s Gold. And like Safari Sam, RTG created an enhanced version of their popular game. In this case, it’s named Jackpot Cleopatra’s Gold and it has a progressive jackpot.
The original Cleopatra’s Gold is one of the best slots online because of its high RTP. It’s a modern 3D slot game with 20 paylines, and its reel symbols borrow from Egyptian iconography. That includes the Eye of Horus, hieroglyphs, Egyptian jewels, and the Pyramids. Of course, Cleopatra is the wild symbol and she doubles other winning combinations. She also is the highest jackpot symbol.
Throughout it all, keep an eye out for the Pyramid symbols, because they award up to 15 free spins with a 3x multiplier. These free spins can be retriggered (respins) if you get 3 more scatter symbols during the free spin mode. Cleopatra’s Gold has a random progressive jackpot. These can trigger at any time to deliver big wins. Play Jackpot Cleopatra’s Gold if you want the wide-area progressive jackpot. Both games are available at Las Atlantis Casino.
Pay Dirt – 97.50%
Pay Dirt Slots is a frontier miner and gold rush-themed RTG slot. While many players might consider its graphics to be archaic, Pay Dirt has been a big success for RTG due to its 97.50% RTP. The 25-pay line online slot also has 3x scatter wins, free spins, multipliers, and a random progressive jackpot.
Certainly, that’s the winning combination for many of the best online slots from RTG. The bonus game is fun because Pay Dirt gives players the option to pick their winning symbol on the Free Spins Feature. The Gold Rush Feature offers 12 free spins where the Gold Nugget symbol appears on the 2nd and 4th reels. Get 3 or more Gold Nuggets and it triggers 12 more free spins.
The Gold Fever mode has 5 free spins and turns the 3rd reel golden. The entire golden reel has Golden Nuggets during the free spins mode, which also can be retriggered. Finally, the Strike It Lucky bonus game allows players to select between 5 gold mines. Pick one to reveal a bonus symbol, while additional picks are an option. If a Gold Nugget replaces any winning symbol, it triggers 10 free spins with a shifting wild feature.
Crystal Waters – 97.50%
Crystal Waters is a 20-payline dolphin-themed online slot from RealTime Gaming. Like Gold Rush, it has wild symbols that appear on the 2nd and 4th reels (dolphins, in this case). When the dolphin substitutes for a win, it doubles the payout. If enough bonus fish symbols appear, it can multiply the payout by 2x, 4x, 8x, or even 16x the original payout. This game has a retrigger feature. The Yacht Symbol acts as the scatter pay, and it multiplies wins by 3x when it appears.
At this point, readers might be noticing a string of RTG slots with a 97.50% return to player. These games use similar math to arrive at their expected return, though the game features and themes are the same. All in all, games like Crystal Waters, Pay Dirt, and Cleopatra’s Gold represent the best online slots in the RTG catalog. RTG’s prevalence in US online gaming makes them some of the best online slots for US players. Crystal Waters is available at many casinos, including Planet 7 Casino.
Penguin Power – 97.50%
Penguin Power Slots is another slot in a series of RTG slot games with random progressive jackpots with free spins and multipliers. It’s a winning combination, except in this case, the game has an Arctic theme. We’ve highlighted Penguin Power before as a good option for those who don’t live where they can play IGT’s Lucky Larry’s Lobstermania. That’s high praise, but Penguin Power deserves it.
Once you start playing, you’ll see that Penguin Power has 20 paylines, wild symbols on the three middle reels, and scatter symbols. The penguin wild symbols multiply any win by 2x the amount. Meanwhile, the igloo scatter symbol unlocks between 5 and 25 free spins. They also unlock a prize up to 200x the original bet.
Mermaid Queen – 97.50%
Mermaid Queen is a 3D slot from RTG that offers free spins and random progressive jackpots. If you’ve noticed a theme here, this is one of the Reel Series slots from RTG that have been such a success. The Mermaid Queen is the wild symbol, which appears on the 1st, 3rd, and 5th reels. In contrast, the game adds the Clam scatter symbol to line wins and multiplies the payout.
Meanwhile, other reel symbols are the Spanish galleon, the hiding fish, the sea shell necklace, and an aquatic man carrying a trident. The game also uses card symbols, which are a bit lazy on the part of the designer. Certainly, it’s a minor quibble. Mermaid Queen has thirteen different coin denominations ranging from $0.01 to $1.00, so you can bet between 1 cent and $20 per spin.
Meanwhile, don’t confuse RTG’s Mermaid Queen Slot with a game of the same name from Barcrest. Avoid a false trail by visiting Slots Empire, which has a nice interface with a free online slot version of Mermaid Queen Slots.
Best Online Slots in US Licensed Casinos
Of course, the story is much different if you play in states with licensed online casinos. That’s few and far between, but 5 states have the best online slots from land-based slot machine designers like IGT, WMS, Aristocrat, and Konami.
If you want to play the best online slots in licensed casinos, then try the games below. Each has an RTP of 96% or higher.
|US Licensed Online Slot
|Lucky Larry’s Lobstermania
|Wheel of Fortune
|Da Vinci Diamonds
|Wild Sapphire Slots
|Super Cherry Slots
|Aztec Temple Multiway
|I Love Lucy
|Luau Loot Slots
|Reel Em In
|Queen of the Nile
|Money in the Bank
Best Licensed Slots in US Online Casinos
Certainly, some players want to play licensed online slots. These are games with graphics, soundbites, and songs from famous pop culture franchises. Name a pop culture franchise and it’s likely to have a licensed slot about it.
Of those, the licensed games below are the best real-money online slots. Tastes may vary, but these are the licensed slots with the best return-to-player percentage.
US Licensed Online Slot
|Wheel of Fortune
Best Online Slots FAQ
What is the best free online slots game?
My Top 5 favorite online slots are Mystic Hive (Betsoft), Wheel of Cash (Rival), Aladdin’s Wishes (RTG), Silver Unicorn (Rival), and Cleopatra’s Gold (RTG). Read the mini-reviews of each of these games in the article above. The upshot is these games contain elements of the most popular Las Vegas land-based slot machines but are available online.
When is the best time to play online slots?
Anytime is the best time. The great thing about online slot casinos is they operate 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. It doesn’t matter when you play, the games, odds, and bonus offers are the same. Online slot software never sleeps, and neither do the casino sites which feature such games.
What are the best free online slots?
In our opinion, the best free online slots are the games that (1) simulate the best real money slots and (2) are available to American players in all 50 US states and the District of Columbia. That equates to playing real money online slots in the “Practice” mode at an online casino. Real money online casinos offer 100% of their games for free, and that includes online slots.
Simply visit a real money online casino like Super Slots, Planet 7 Casino, or Wild Casino. Visit the top menu links that say “Slots”, “Latest”, “Jackpots”, or “Most Popular”. Alternately, click on any game icon that looks like an online slot game. Once you do, the slot games will open on your screen and ask you whether you want to play for “Real Money” or “Practice”. Choose the practice option and play the best free slots online.
What are the best online slots for real money?
Once again, the best online slots for real money play are at offshore online casinos. That’s because the offshore casino sites accept US players from all 50 states and Washington DC. It just so happens that offshore casinos also give players the biggest welcome bonuses and crypto bonuses. The key is finding trustworthy real money online slot casinos because such sites don’t have the legal protections that casinos would in the regulated gaming environment.
Read online casino reviews, then pick the best of offshore online slot casinos according to your needs and wants. Once you do, you’ll have access to hundreds of the best online slots. These are available in real money or practice mode, so the whole slot world is at your fingertips.
What is the best online casino for slots?
Super Slots is our pick for the best online casino for slots play. That’s because Super Slots has online slots from Rival Gaming, Betsoft, Nucleus Gaming, and Dragon Gaming. That lets you sample from several of the best US online slot designers. If you prefer RTG online slots, you can play at sites like Wild Casino, Planet 7 Casino, or Las Atlantis Casino. Each of these sites has its strengths and drawbacks, so read our dedicated online casino reviews to learn which is best for you.
Why can’t I play IGT slots in my favorite online casino?
That probably means you don’t play in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Delaware, or Michigan. Those 5 states have licensed online casinos, meaning they’re free to add IGT slots. Americans everywhere else play in offshore online casinos that can’t license IGT software. An entire industry of great online slot developers exists outside of Las Vegas. Top companies like RTG, Rival, Betsoft, Nucleus Gaming, Woohoo Games, and Spinomenal supply these sites.
Where can I play the best Las Vegas slots online?
In many cases, you can’t play Las Vegas slots online. If you want to learn how to find Las Vegas slots in online casinos, or you want to find comparable games, read our article called Vegas Slots Online.
Best Real Money Slots Online
In conclusion, those are the 10 best real money slots online for US players currently. Each game has a return-to-player of 97.50% or higher. While other US online slots might have bigger jackpots or better graphics, these are the loosest slots you’ll play in US online casinos.
Cosmic Quest: Mystery Planets and Rock On Slots are the best overall, but not as many top online casinos carry Rival Gaming slots. The same goes for Sweet Treats from Nucleus Gaming and Quest To The West from Betsoft, though Wild Casino is an excellent example of a Betsoft casino. Both Rival and Betsoft slots are available at Super Slots.
Finally, you’ll find top online slots like Cleopatra’s Gold, Pay Dirt, Crystal Waters, Penguin Power, and Mermaid Queen at RTG slots. While these are the absolute best real-money online slots, you can find them at many online casinos: Planet 7 Casino, Las Atlantis, and Highway Casino (to name a few). Each of these sites offers a free online slots version of RTG games, so you play in practice mode or play for real money. Therefore, if you want to play any of these games, pick a top US online casino, create an account, and start playing today.