Slot Machine Watermark: What it Is and How to Find it

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Slot machine reels with watermarks

We love slot machine terms when we hear manufacturers talking about them. One we heard awhile ago that caught our ear was “watermark.” Watermarks are more common on mechanical reels, but can pop up on video reels as well.

The idea behind a watermark is simple – when an additional symbol is added atop a symbol on the reels of a slot machine space to signify something, that is what a watermark is. Regular players of slot machines are likely familiar with them, even if they haven’t heard the term used in the past.

A common example is the use of a multiplier to add multipliers to certain spaces on the reels. When a symbol with a multiplier watermark ends up in a winning combination, the win is multiplied.

Watermarks can be used in other ways, though. The reel Wizard of Oz games featured watermarks that would trigger a bonus when three watermarks appeared on symbols on a pay line, for instance. Everi’s Press Your luck mechanical reels version would use watermarks for the bonus symbols, with three on a payline triggering the Press Your Luck bonus.

Watermarks can be found on video reels too – Lucky Larry’s Lobstermania 2 has symbols on the center reel that incorporate multipliers, just like games on mechanical reel slots.

Watermarks are more common on mechanical reels because of their physical limitations – you can only fit so many symbols on a physical reel strip. Watermarks allow additional components to layered in to do things like amp up volatility or avoid needing to use precious spaces for bonus symbols.

As such, they are ultimately less common on video reels given the unrestricted nature of that format, although they can still pop up for game design reasons when it makes sense.

But they are still a tool in the toolkit of slot designers regardless of slot format, and can be deployed for a variety of purposes.


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