A progressive jackpot is a special payout that keeps increasing with every player’s wager until one lucky player finally wins it all. You typically find progressive jackpots in slot games, called “progressive jackpot slots” or “progressive slots,” but many online casino games have them. 

How do progressive jackpots work?

While other games set a fixed jackpot, those with progressive jackpots increase the top payout every time a player wagers a certain amount on the game. Progressive jackpot games require players to wager a specific amount in order to qualify for a round that could win them the progressive jackpot. Every time you bet the required amount, a percentage of that wager goes into a pool of bets from other players, aka the jackpot. 

How do you win a progressive jackpot?

There are a few different types of progressive jackpot games that have different winning mechanics.

  • High-Stakes Jackpots: These games require you to wager the max stake each turn, from which you receive a ticket. If your ticket matches the algorithm after your spin or round, you win it all. The more you play these games, the more tickets you get and the more chances you have of winning.

  • Random: These games don’t require any tickets, bonus games, or necessary symbol combinations. You can win simply by spinning and it being the right time. However, many of these games require maximum betting amounts to qualify a spin.

  • Symbol Combos: These games require you to hit a line of symbols on a specific payline to win the jackpot.

  • Bonus Games: Some progressive jackpot games trigger a bonus game during various spins or rounds that give you the chance to win a portion of the jackpot or even the big one.

  • Must-Drop Jackpots: These progressive jackpot games can come in many forms, and these involve the game randomly triggering the jackpot win by a deadline. As the deadline approaches, more players may bet, adding to the jackpot, and play to win.

How large can progressive jackpots get?

Progressive jackpots can get into the tens and hundreds of thousands or even tens of millions. The largest progressive jackpot won at online casino was $22.3 million in September of 2018. Previous to that, it was $21.1 million in October 2015.

While many online casino games’ progressive jackpots can hit less than once a year, you can use an online jackpot tracker to see a game’s average and whether it’s hot and ready to drop or cold and collecting money.