Hitting the Jackpot: How Progressive Jackpots Work

Progressive jackpots offer some of the tastiest prizes of any games in the online casino world. People can, and regularly do, win multimillion lifechanging jackpots on these games.

But - you know there's more to it than that! Otherwise, you wouldn't be here.

So, how do progressive jackpots work? What are the odds of winning, and can you influence them at all? What are the biggest prize games, and what are the different types of progressive prizes?

Our experts answer all of that and more below, so let's get into it.

How Progressive Jackpots Work

Progressive jackpots are so-called because they progress higher with each bet made. Every time you, or anyone else playing, puts a wager on a progressive game, a portion of that goes into the jackpot prize.

Eventually, one super lucky player will win it all!

They are usually reserved for slots games, but you sometimes find jackpot virtual blackjack too.

Progressive prizes are often networked jackpots. This means, there are multiple different slot games that all share and contribute to one big top prize.

Some games, however, have their own unique progressive jackpots.

Tip: Progressive jackpot slots prizes are nearly always so huge that game developers themselves commit to paying the prize, not the casino. So - this means they can be exempt from deposit match bonus maximum win clauses.

If you've bagged yourself a deposit bonus from our list, be sure to check the casino's terms and see if it is valid on progressive jackpot slot wins.

How You Might Trigger One

Progressive jackpots have a very small and completely random chance of triggering. Exactly how that works depends on the game. You might find it can be triggered:

  • On a specific combination of symbols in slots, or a specific card combo in blackjack
  • A specific set of symbols, but only available in the free spins round of the slot
  • A special jackpot bonus game separate from the free spins round

Sometimes, the jackpot will only be triggered for players betting above a certain amount. Other times, it can trigger for everyone. Or the chance might increase as you bet higher.

Make sure to check the paytable of your chosen jackpot slot for details.

Some Famous Jackpot Slots (and Winners)

The two most famous developers of progressive jackpot online casino games are Microgaming and NetEnt. Some of their top-tier, world-famous titles include:

  • Mega Fortune
  • The Mega Moolah Series
  • Wow! Jackpot series
  • Divine Fortune
  • Hall of Gods

In 2021, one lucky player from Belgium in Europe won just under $24 million on the Alice on Wonderland style slot Absolootly Mad: Mega Moolah.

However, that recent win was not enough to eclipse the all-time winner. Also in Europe, NetEnt paid out $24 million to a Finnish player in 2013. And they had bet just $0.25 at the time.

There are of course hundreds of other progressive jackpot slot games out there for you try. They just don't all get as high as the multimillion mark very often!

Winning the Jackpot

So - what are your chances of winning? And how can you increase them?

Well, the mathematical answer is - in the case of the biggest jackpot prizes like those mentioned - not a lot.

Those games give you the same chance of winning the top prize for a $0.25 bet as they do a $100 bet.

On the flip side, some of the smaller progressive jackpot prizes out there are influenced by how much you bet.

Also, be on the lookout for prizes that haven't been won for a long time. These, of course, build up the biggest potential prizes. And eventually, someone has to win!

However much you bet, your odds are 1 in several million at least. But you've got to be in it to win it, and you never know.

So, that's our guide to how progressive jackpot casino games and how they work. Best of luck in your hunt for that big prize!