What Are Pokies: Simple Guide to Slots Gambling

Simple Guide to Slots Gambling

If you have browsed Australian casino websites or visited the country, you may have heard the term ‘pokies’ being tossed around. You may have even wondered what it means and why you have never heard it mentioned elsewhere. The good news is, pokies are just what Australians and New Zealanders call slot machines. But while pokies – or slots – are the most popular casino games, many people do not understand how they work. Read this guide on how to win on pokies, to find out what the game is, the different types available, and more.

Origin of the Term ‘Pokie’

In Australia and New Zealand, players call slot machines pokies. The term is derived from the ‘pok’ in ‘poker machine’ and is in line with the Australians’ love of abbreviation; think ‘Surfie’ and ‘Mozzie.’ But why exactly would they call it a poker machine and not a slot machine in the first place?

There are many theories about this, but the prevailing narrative is that gambling in Australia originally started with video poker, which the Australians called a poker machine. As slot machines became more popular, casinos in the country would line up several video poker and slot machines together. It became easier to refer to this cluster of machines as ‘pokies.’ This name was then transferred to online gaming.

Basics of Pokie

The premise of pokies, or slot machines, is betting on the outcome of spinning reels. A machine spins multiple reels containing several symbols, and you win when you land a winning combination. For example, you can bet 1 AUD so that every time you spin, 1AUD is deducted from your deposited funds, and the reels spin to reveal an outcome. You keep spinning for as long as you are willing to bet 1AUD.

Pokies come in all shapes and sizes. A common variation is the 3×5 pokie, which usually contains symbols like the number seven, watermelons, golden bells, and cherries. Three sevens in a row is a winning combination with a given prize. Usually, there are several combos with different values, and you can collect your winnings depending on the payout. As a general rule, larger bets result in larger prizes. 

Types of Pokies Game

As mentioned, there are many types of pokies, all offering different themes, settings, configurations, and prizes. Generally, however, all pokies are categorized into the following main types:

  • Reel Machine: This is a physical machine typically found in a brick-and-mortar casino. It features real reels and levers, and the former rotates when you pull the latter.
  • Video Machine: In this type, the physical reel is replaced with computer graphics. Video machines are more technologically recent and offer many bonus options, multiple pay-lines, and more reels, which make the game more interesting.

Playing Pokies at Brick-and-Mortar Casinos

You can play on a reel machine at a traditional casino. These machines will usually be arranged on one side of the establishment, away from the card and dice tables. The steps are as follows:

  1. Find a pokie machine you like. You can base your decision on the titles, graphics, payout, cost, or preferred theme.
  2. Once you find a game you want to play, examine the paytable and read the rules. Most machines contain instructional details on the cabinet or feature a button that, when pressed, reveals pay table data.
  3. If you have understood and feel comfortable with the rules, enter money into the pokie machine. Most machines accept coins, and others have dollar feeders for larger bets. Alternatively, you can get a card from the kiosk containing credits.
  4. Spin the reels and play the game as instructed.
  5. If you win, collect your winnings. The machine might have a coin delivery system or may print out a ticket that you can redeem for cash in the casino. In some casinos, an employee will deliver your winnings in person.

Playing Pokies Online

More and more casino players have embraced online gambling. If you do not enjoy the hustle and bustle of a physical casino, you can play online on your mobile device. Start by picking a reputable casino site and completing the sign-up process. Next, deposit some money into your wallet using the payment options allowed on the site and redeem your bonus. Browse through the available games in the pokies section and select one that piques your interest. Set your bet and press the button to play. If you win, your winnings will be added to your wallet, and you can withdraw or use them to play more games.


Pokies are an easy and exciting world in the casino universe. In addition to drawing in a significant chunk of casino revenue, these games are so fun and easy to play you need very little training and preparation to get started. But while these games are mostly based on luck, you can increase your winnings by placing large bets. You can also learn more strategies for success at Gamble Online.