Technical requirements – Playing games in Instant Play or demo mode is very simple at our recommended online casinos. Provided you have Adobe Flash installed, or are using a Java-enabled smartphone or tablet, you should be able to access most games immediately and enjoy a full gaming experience.
How to access free games – Although the precise steps for accessing games will vary a little from site to site, the overall process will be largely the same, so the following example of how to play online slots for free should serve as a guide:
- Click on the games tab, and/or the slots menu
- When you hover over a game, you will usually get a choice of two buttons: ‘Play for Real’ (or something similar) and ‘Demo’ (or ‘Free Play’).
- Click on ‘Demo’ and the game should begin to load immediately.
Demo credits – Once the game has loaded, you’ll see that you’ve been awarded demo credits. Different sites and different games give you varying amounts to playing with, but you’ll generally find that it’s a pretty healthy amount (more than most of us have in our real accounts!). With some games, the number of credits you have to play with depends on the coin size you choose, the number of coins you play per line and the number of paylines in play – adjust any of these and you should see the number of demo credits available change accordingly. Winnings you make go straight into your demo credits account, just like when you’re playing for real money, but they disappear once your free play session ends.
While playing free games online is fun and easy to do, and the quality of the gameplay matches what you can expect when playing the game for real, there are nevertheless elements of the online gaming experience that you’re missing out on.
For instance, although there are literally hundreds of free slots games to choose from, not every game will be available in a Flash demo version; older games, in particular, are unlikely to be available to play in this way.
Likewise, you will be unable to sample progressive jackpot slots for free – to enjoy these games you need to be playing for real money, as a percentage of every losing spin goes into the prize pool, which is how the huge jackpots grow so quickly and become so vast. If you enjoy playing slots, not playing for real money not only means you’re missing out on playing some very popular games but more importantly it means you’re potentially missing out on winning a jackpot that could be worth millions of dollars.
One further drawback to limiting your playing time to free slots is that you’re missing out on accruing loyalty points at your online casino, which are of course one of the best ways to earn free spins, casino credits, and other rewards. Finally, if you don’t have a real money casino account then you can’t take advantage of the generous signup bonuses and other special offers that in our casino reviews have for both new and existing players.