How to Play 5 Reel Pokies

Isabella Miller | 🕒 6 minutes read
How to play 5 reel pokies

Kia ora punters! Casino enthusiasts all over New Zealand love the 5-reel pokies, and there are many reasons why this style of slot game is popular—also known as 5-reel slots, 5-reel pokie games offer exhilarating fun, exciting soundtracks, top-tier graphics, and plenty of opportunities to win big.

In this guide, we’ll be covering everything you need to know about 5-reel slots, including how to play, how to win, and the best 5-reel pokies in New Zealand you need to try today.

What are 5-reel Pokies?

5-reel pokies are video slots that are extremely popular in modern online casinos. Many punters prefer them over traditional 3-reel slots as they tend to have more advanced graphics, better theming and offer a more immersive gaming experience.

5-reel pokie games differ from traditional 3-reel slots because there are five spinning reels with various symbols and complex themes. You’ll find that 5-reel pokie games tend to have more bonuses and higher volatility, which means less frequent, larger punter payouts.

Understanding 5-reel slots:

To maximise your winnings when playing 5-reel pokies, you must understand the game mechanics and how the pay lines work. Unlike 3-reel slots, there are multiple paylines available in 5-reel pokies games, and these usually range from 9 to 20 lines.

Some games have over 100 pay lines, and the more paylines you activate during a single spin, the higher your chances of winning big.

You win when you match symbols on the pay lines, with payouts varying based on the characters and their positions. Every 5-reel slot game is different, but understanding these basics allows you to play any game with confidence.

Free spins, wilds, and bonuses are a feature of 5-reel slots. Wild symbols can substitute for other characters in the game, which means they are treasured as they allow you to score more combinations and increase your winnings.

Free spins are also fantastic because you can place bets and increase your chances of winning without spending any of your bankrolls, and free spins can sometimes trigger lucrative bonuses.

How to select the suitable 5-reel pokie game:

Choosing a 5-reel pokie game that matches your style of play is the key to having an enjoyable online gaming experience. Choose games that have themes, graphics and features that appeal to you.

It’s also a good idea to pay attention to the Return to Player (RTP) percentage of a game, highlighting the likelihood of you receiving a payout.

Aim for games with an RTP of over 95%, with games above 96% classed higher than average. If a 5-reel slot has an RTP of 96%, players can expect to receive $96 for every $100 wagered.

As the RTP increases, your chances of winning also increase. RTP bases itself on probability and long-term average, so it doesn’t guarantee specific outcomes for individual gaming sessions. However, it provides a good overview of your winning potential.

How to play 5-reel pokies New Zealand – the basics:

Now that we’ve covered the basics of 5-reel pokies, it’s time to dive into the nitty-gritty of playing and winning big.

Once you’ve picked your game of choice, it’s time to place your bet. Most 5-reel pokies in NZ allow you to adjust your bet size, with the usual minimum bet being one coin or $0.10, depending on where you play. It’s a good idea to start with smaller bets and gradually increase your stakes as you gain confidence – you don’t want to lose your bankroll from the get-go!

Once you’ve placed your bet, spin the reel and see how many symbols you can match across the pay lines. You might trigger a free spin or bonus round, which will pop up on the screen with a distinctive soundtrack. You can play these bonus rounds and earn multipliers to increase your jackpot earnings vastly.

How to win on 5-reel pokies:

5-reel pokies are exciting because they provide plenty of opportunities to win big. From bonus rounds and wild symbols to progressive jackpots, punters can try to earn up hundreds of times their wager. Here are some of the ways to win big:

Wilds, scatter symbols, and bonuses:

●        Wild symbols – A substitute for other symbols on the reels, Wilds help you complete winning combinations. You can get many types of Wilds depending on the game, including trailing wilds, expanding wilds, sticky wilds, and more. Every kind of wild has a different effect on gameplay, and a quick Google before you place your bet will help you determine which Wilds are available in your game.

●        Scatter symbols – These usually trigger bonus rounds and multipliers. They’ll differ depending on the theme of the 5-reel pokie.

●        Multipliers – These multiply the winnings of a combination, making your payout bigger.

●        Bonuses – These are triggered by landing on certain symbols and can award free spins, re-spins, or bonus cash prizes.

●        Free spins – Usually triggered by a Scatter, free spins allow you to spin the reels without placing a wager. Hitting a jackpot on a free spin vastly increases your bankroll.

Leveraging these unique features can help you increase your bankroll and make the most of your 5-reel pokie game. Check out the features available on your 5-reel slot game of choice before betting, as some games will have better features and bonus rounds than others.

Progressive jackpots – the key to winning big on 5-reel pokies:

If you want to be a high-roller, watch for progressive jackpot 5-reel pokies. These jackpots accumulate over time as multiple punters play and can grow to life-changing amounts.

Mega Moolah, for example, has given out payouts of over £3 million GBP before, which is approximately $6.2 million NZD!

You can win a progressive jackpot by trying your luck on progressive 5-reel slots and triggering an exclusive bonus symbol. This jackpot differs from game to game. In Mega Moolah, the jackpot’s trigger is a ‘Jackpot Bonus’ bonus round.

Progressive jackpots are the ultimate thrill for pokie enthusiasts and one of the best ways to win big on a 5-reel slot.

The best 5-reel pokies New Zealand:

We’ve checked out many pokie games, and here are the best 5-reel pokies for New Zealand punters:

Mega Moolah (Microgaming):

With 25 pay lines across five reels, this slot game boasts a remarkable RTP of over 88%.

Although this percentage may initially appear modest, Mega Moolah earns its reputation as a progressive jackpot slot, typically associated with lower payout percentages. However, it counterbalances this with astounding jackpots that often soar into the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

There are Mini, Minor, Major, and Mega jackpots available, with varying levels of difficulty to win them, as well as a bonus round with 15 free spins.

Hawaii Cocktails (BGaming):

With an RTP of approximately 97%, this 5-reel pokie transports punters to the tropical paradise of Hawaii. Enjoy a fun theme with plenty of cocktail symbols and a unique soundtrack for a thrilling, dynamic gaming experience.

Punters can enjoy the respin feature, which triggers a wild symbol and can substantially increase their winnings.

Blood Suckers (NetENT):

Step into the realm of darkness with NetEnt’s Blood Suckers, a bone-chilling adventure that promises an RTP of approximately 98%. This vampire-themed 5-reel pokie game takes you on an exhilarating journey, offering jaw-dropping returns on investment.

Watch in awe as the game’s wild symbols come alive, substituting other symbols and multiplying your wins, all while sending shivers down your spine.

Macau High Roller (iSoftBet):

Get ready for the ultimate casino glamour on your screen with iSoftBet’s Macau High Roller! This 5-reel pokie game brings the excitement of Macau straight to you. With an impressive RTP of around 97%, it’s an advantageous choice.

This 5-reel pokie is a must-try for any punters who enjoy high-quality graphics, a themed soundtrack, and plenty of bonus features.


In the realm of online gaming, 5-reel pokies stand as a beacon of excitement and opportunity for players in New Zealand. Offering immersive gameplay, vibrant themes, and numerous chances to win big, these slots have become a cherished favorite among casino enthusiasts.

Isabella Miller
Hello, I’m Isabella Miller the main author of the site I have a vast experience of playing pokie games at casinos around the world, and I would like to share my insights and experience with every enthusiastic kiwi out there! Over 15 years of experience with casinos around the world (especially in New Zealand), you are getting my personal best insights into the exiting world of pokies and casino games. I will be your tour guide into playing the best games, getting the best tips and even what bonuses should you look at while playing online casinos. Enjoy your time with our site, Isabella.