High Variance Slots

Having experienced a relatively long gaming session with few modest wins and no entry into the bonus round, the player may assume that the game is rigged. But if they happen to be playing at a trustworthy online casino, it’s far more likely they’ve chosen to spin the reels of a high variance slot. In the online gaming world, variance indicates the level of risk. High variance slots are high risk games that don’t pay often but occasionally deliver monster wins. They are thus perfect for thrill seekers willing to risk it all for a chance to hit a jackpot.

Carry on reading to learn more about the high variance online slot games and its pros and cons. We will also be teaching you how to spot this type of slot game. Lastly, we are sharing with you our top picks for high volatility games that we know you will love to play.

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High Volatility Slots to Try

Slot List

Online casinos in Canada with HIGH Volatility Slots

Lemon Casino logo
Lemon Casino

Rating: 9.9/10

  • Over 4,800 slots and 400+ Live games
  • Fast Withdrawals
  • Lemon Lotto Wheel - Daily No Deposit FS
  • Treasure Boxes - Loyalty Program
  • Non-Sticky Welcome Bonuses
  • No wager 7% Weekly Cashback
Bluffbet Casino logo
Bluffbet Casino

Rating: 9.7/10

  • Ultra-fast 10 minute withdrawals
  • 3,000+ feature-rich games
  • C$750 + 150 FS upon sign-up
  • 42+ award-winning providers
  • Casino & sports sections
Cashwin Casino logo
CashWin Casino

Rating: 9.6/10

  • Hosts 5,000+ mobile-friendly games
  • Supports crypto for deposits and withdrawals
  • Up to 50% reload bonus
  • 300% up to C$2,265 + 50 Free Spins 
  • Weekly 20% live cashback

What Does High Variance Mean?

Neon sign: High volatility slots

Don’t confuse RTP (theoretical return to player) with variance. RTP reflects an average amount a game is expected to pay over a long period of time and it’s expressed as a percentage of the amount wagered. Variance, also known as volatility, is a risk indicator. A slot with low win frequency can easily deplete your budget in next to no time. The only way to win significant amounts is to trigger one of the features and that may not be easy.

So why do players choose them? High variance online slots have the potential to pay out significantly bigger wins than low/medium variance titles. For example, the latter may offer a top reward worth 250-500x the total stake while a high variance game may pay 10,000x the bet or even more. Highly volatile slots attract a particular type of gambler, one that’s happy to take bigger risks for a massive prize.

Even if you’re after highly volatile slots, it’s smart to choose titles with a high RTP. It’s also important to adapt the size of your bet accordingly. Failing to do so may exhaust your funds before you manage to hit a decent win.

Best High Volatility Slots

Other than by playing a game, one can judge its volatility by checking the following:

  • The difference between the payout for the maximum number of matching icons vs wins achieved with fewer symbols. The bigger it is, the more volatile the game is.
  • The size of the top reward: high variance slots multiply bets by thousands rather than hundreds.
  • The number and difficulty of triggering special features; highly volatile games make it a real challenge to launch lucrative features.

Here are a few titles that fit the description:

Wish Upon A Leprechaun Megaways iconWish Upon A Leprechaun Megaways from Blueprint Gaming has a max win potential of 50,000x the bet and 95.5% RTP. It features cascading reels, mystery symbols, several random reel modifiers and free spins with multipliers.

monopoly iconMonopoly Megaways from Big Time Gaming is able to pay up to 15,000x the stake. It has a theoretical return of 96.39%, uses cascading reels and incentivizes players to collect properties. The latter award additional free games and multipliers in the Free Spins bonus round.

Pyramid Quest For Immortality iconPyramid Quest For Immortality by NetEnt can win you as much as 36,000x the bet. It has an RTP of 96,48% and offers the Avalanche feature with extra Wilds and multipliers.

Slots with high volatility

Slot name






Release year

Wish Upon a Leprechaun Megaways

Blueprint Gaming

Video Slot





Aloha Party


Video Slot





Monopoly Megaways

Big Time Gaming

Video Slot





Pyramid: Quest For Immortality


Video Slot





Advantages and Disadvantages of High Variance Slots

  • Pros

  • High variance slots have the capacity to pay out as much as 10,000x the player’s bet and more; games with low volatility usually pay a max of 500x the stake or less.
  • The win potential and risk make high variance slots much more exciting to play than low variance games.
  • You don’t have to place max bets to win big; even players that wager small amounts can achieve massive wins.
  • Cons

  • Non-winning streaks happen far more often in high than in low variance slots.
  • Owing to low win frequency, players with small budgets might lose it all before hitting a decent win.
  • When playing highly volatile slots, one will likely experience a much shorter gaming session than with low variance titles which pay small amounts but have a high win frequency.


High variance slots have been created for players eager to win substantial amounts. They have the potential to pay 10,000x the original stake and more so you’re bound to be tempted. However, don’t forget that the risk is as high as the reward. Payouts are far less frequent than in low variance games and players can go bankrupt in next to no time. Make use of advices provided in this article to improve your chances and hopefully score the jackpot you’re after.

Daniel Bennet
With over 15 years in gambling marketing and an online betting background, Daniel now is passionately exploring and evaluating diverse slots and sites for readers.
Site Editor
University of Toronto
University of Toronto’s Bachelor of Commerce, Finance and Economics expertise, focus on financial strategies, Gambler's Fallacy, RNG, and Probability Theory research.
Expert in:
  • Payment Systems
  • Games Probability
Reviewed by Head of Content:
Dmitry Rogalchuk


🎰 Is there a correlation between variance and RTP?

Variance and RTP are completely unrelated. You can find high variance titles with an above-average return as well as those that have a house edge of 6% and more. The same goes for low volatility games.

🎰 How can I recognize a high variance slot?

Some developers publish the variance for their games. Otherwise, you can get an idea by checking the size of the max payout and judging the difficulty of triggering special features.

🎰 Which are better – low or high variance slots?

Both have pros and cons. High volatility fits players eager to score massive wins regardless of the risk. If you wish to enjoy the game for longer, pick low variance titles.

🎰 Do I have to have a large budget in order to play a high variance slot?

Owing to low minimum bet limits, it’s theoretically possible to win big even with a modest budget. The risk is higher, though; the fewer spins, the fewer opportunities to unlock the feature.

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