Understanding wild symbols in online slots

Wilds are a firm favourite with slot players – they have the power to transform into other symbols and turn the gaming experience on its head.

They are capable of completing winning paylines that wouldn’t normally be achieved by being substituted for any other symbol – and it’s for this reason their appearance is greatly appreciated.

High 5 Games uses wilds across many of its games, which can be played at popular online casino brands including PartyCasino, Mr Green and LeoVegas.

We asked Mike Rothenberg, Executive Producer B2B/Game Innovation at the slot studio, to tell us more about how wilds work and why developers include them in their games.

[et_pb_image src="https://www.findmycasino.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/MikeRothenberg_H5G-1.jpg" _builder_version="3.26.1" z_index_tablet="500" box_shadow_horizontal_tablet="0px" box_shadow_vertical_tablet="0px" box_shadow_blur_tablet="40px" box_shadow_spread_tablet="0px"]

Mike Rothenberg from High 5 Games


Wilds are hugely popular with players. Their primary role is to help players at random times by acting as another symbol in order to create a winning line.

The way in which they appear on the reels depends on the game mechanics.

Some will only appear on certain reels. For example, in our game Silver Enchantress wilds can help create wins when they crop up on the second, third, fourth and fifth reels. In other games, they can appear on any or all reels.

In most slots, the only exception to this is that wilds can’t replace scatter symbols, free spins or bonus features. This is because these symbols unlock other game features


As the online slot experience evolves and developers introduce innovative features to games, the way in which wilds act and appear continues to change.

Many games now feature a variety of special variations that add an extra layer of excitement to the gameplay.

In our new release Way Out Wilds, the game’s Lasting Loot feature includes locked wilds which are fixed in place between spins, and upgrade to double and triple on subsequent spins.

A few other examples include:

Stacked wildssymbols are stacked on top of one another to create a block of wilds in the same reel, increasing the chance of a winning combination.

Expanding wilds – are similar in concept but they grow to fill up an entire reel, making every spot from top to bottom wild.

Sticky wilds landing this particular type of wild ensures it will ‘stick’ for the duration of another spin.

Overlay wilds – these land on the reels to take over a different symbol. They tend to pop up by chance after your spin has finished and don’t usually drop on top of a regular wild.


Quite simply, the slot experience would be rather dull for players if wilds didn’t exist.

Given the power they hold within the gameplay, they can turn a losing streak into a winning payline out of nowhere. The fact that a wild can appear out of the blue is what keeps us all spinning.

[et_pb_image src="https://www.findmycasino.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/Scatter-symbol.jpg" _builder_version="3.25.3" z_index_tablet="500" box_shadow_horizontal_tablet="0px" box_shadow_vertical_tablet="0px" box_shadow_blur_tablet="40px" box_shadow_spread_tablet="0px"]

Wild symbols in action


Wilds are found in every type of slot game. Whether standard wilds, sticky, expanding or stacked they add an air of excitement to slots every time they appear.

Developers tend to include them to increase player enjoyment, as wilds make bigger wins possible and trigger excitement whenever they randomly appear.


The easiest way to find out which wild symbols feature in a slot game is to check the pay table. This tends to be easily accessible from the gaming screen via a pay table icon, which will open up a box.

The pay table is a one-stop shop for the backend information on face symbols, wilds, scatters, and any bonus rounds or additional features the game has to offer.

It’s always advisable to read through the basics of a game before starting as it will help you understand what the game has to offer, ultimately adding to the overall gaming experience.

Must Read Feature

Six of the best low minimum deposit online casinos

Six of the best low minimum deposit online casinos

You can play at popular UK-licensed online casinos for as little as £5 and still claim a generous bonus. Here are six of the best…

Try This Casino

Electric Spins Casino

Electric Spins Casino

While undertaking our Electric Spins casino review we discovered a new slot site that has a lot to offer UK players, including a portfolio packed with more than 650 of …

In-depth Guide

How to gamble responsibly online

How to gamble responsibly online

Find out what makes a responsible gambler, what makes a problem gambler and how to stay safe when playing online