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Richard Cardenas
Author Guarantor: Richard Cardenas Last updated: 20 July 2022

Known as the valuable companion of slot players, Scatters are a group of symbols capable of triggering valuable bonus features in slot machines. However, getting to grips with these symbols and learning how they work can be challenging for those new to online gambling. Therefore, in today's article, we will provide everything you need to know about these symbols and how they can trigger quality potential payouts. So, let's get started now.

Scatter Symbols in Online Slots

Scatter Symbol in Slots

Scatters are special symbols in the basic paytable of online slot machines. Their main function is to unlock exciting bonus rounds in these games and to give players access to the most valuable prizes offered by the publisher. 

Why are they called Scatters?

The biggest difference between the Scatter and the rest of the symbols in the game is that they can award the player without having to land on the grid in any particular order. The word "scatter" itself means throw in various random directions. Therefore, these symbols increase your chances of winning as it does not limit the activation of bonus features, as long as you get the minimum amount of Scatter on your screen.

How Do They Work?

How to use Scatter to trigger special features can vary between slots from different providers. Usually, you will need to land a minimum number of Scatter symbols that must appear on the same spin to unlock the bonus features. However, some slots allow them to act as multipliers or substitute for other symbols to help form winning combinations, or in other words, perform the same function as the Wilds symbols. Therefore, it is essential to read the game's paytable before spending real money on it to know the function of the symbols in the system. 

In most popular slots today, you will need a minimum of three Scatters anywhere on the reels to trigger the bonus games. These prizes can be free spins, mini-games like jackpot spins, pick-me games, or other bonuses, depending on the creativity and generosity of the game provider.

With that said, some developers may allow this symbol to function in the same way as the Wilds symbol. That's in the minority, though, and it's not true in all cases. Typically, the Scatters symbol cannot substitute for the rest of the symbols in the game system to participate in winning combinations. So be aware of this and avoid getting confused while enjoying the spins. 

Examples of Scatter Slots

Let's take a look at the Divine Fortune game from the famous provider NetEnt to see how the Scatter symbol will work. Divine Fortune slot has an Ancient Greek theme, and it uses the Scatter symbol, depicted as a clenched fist holding a lightning bolt, to trigger the free spins. Your bonus after landing a certain number of specific Scatter symbols is as follows:

  • Three symbols for five free spins
  • Four symbols for eight free spins
  • Five symbols for twelve free spins

Besides, this game also has a second Scatter symbol. It is outlined with a Gold Coin symbol and has the ability to trigger a special jackpot bonus round if you have 3 of them on the screen during the same spin. Here, the screen is split into 15 reels, and the only symbols you can collect on the grid are the Gold Coins symbols. You'll start with 3 free spins, with the sole task of filling all slots on the grid with sticky Gold Coins symbols to unlock a valuable progressive jackpot.

Top Online Slots With Scatter Symbol Features

To get the most out of the way about the role Scatter symbols play in online slot machines, we've rounded up a few games that we think have the most interesting Scatter features. Please consult to have a suitable choice for yourself.

Book of Immortals

Book of Immortals

The first game is no stranger to gamblers as it is one of the most popular online slots on the market. With the theme of Egyptian gods, iSoftBet's product will give you the thrill of watching the ancient mysteries of immortals unfold. The game is designed on a basic 5x3 grid, which comes with 10 paylines and an RTP of 96.31%. In addition, its volatility is specified as medium-low.

The Scatter symbol in the base game will give you an instant cash payout and will trigger the free spins mode. Plus, when you hit the game bonus round, you'll be met with a new Scatter symbol, named Blue Scarab. Its function is the same as the Wilds symbols, with the ability to substitute other symbols to form winning combinations.

Danger High Voltage

Danger High Voltage

Danger High Voltage is a fun game from Big Time Gaming with a 6x4 grid structure and 4096 built-in win lines. This game impresses players through two available free spins modes that you can choose from. The first mode is Gates of Hell, where you will enjoy 7 free spins with a special feature accompanied by random symbols that can transform into sticky Wilds. The second mode is High Voltage, where you will win up to 66x your stake if you can fill an entire reel with Wilds after 15 free spins.

The game has an RTP of 95.67% and a high level of variance.

Western Gold Slot

Western Gold Slot

The Just For The W provider takes you to the Wild West era in the Western Gold slot. The special feature of this game is the stacked Scatters, where the Golden Horseshoe symbol can appear on the grid in groups of 4 and significantly increase your payout. If you can get more than 6 scatter symbols to land on the reels at once, you can get 15 times your original bet. Alternatively, if you're lucky enough to land three columns filled with the Golden Horseshoe Scatter symbol, the game's jackpot of 10,000x your bet will be yours.

Fishin' Frenzy Slot

Fishin' Frenzy Slot

Fishin Frenzy is a product from Reel Time Gaming that tells the story of the world of fishes. It is designed with a 5x3 grid and 10 paylines included. You will get 10 free spins if you own 3 or more Scatters in a spin. In the bonus mode, all fish symbols come with a cash prize. Your task is to find the Angler symbol, which will get you the full cash prizes of all the fish symbols present on the screen.

The RTP of this game is 96.12% and it comes with low average volatility.

Chilli Fiesta Slot

Chilli Fiesta Slot

Chilli Fiesta from Platipus is designed with a 5x4 grid and 40 paylines for you to find winning combinations. The Scatter symbol in this game is the key to triggering the free spins mode, where all Chili Pepper Scatter symbols will be transformed into sticky Scatter Wilds. As you might expect, during this bonus round, the Scatter symbols will inherit the function of real Wilds, as they can substitute other symbols to complete winning combinations.

In addition, the game also comes with many attractive jackpot prizes. Specifically, the Guitar Player symbol will give you a chance to win 2,000x the jackpot if you fill at least 3 reels with all of these symbols. That number increases to 20,000x if you fill all 4 of the game's reels, and its most valuable reward is 60,000x your stake if your entire grid is covered by Guitar Player symbols.

Do all Slots Feature Scatter Symbols?

In most 5-reel slots, Scatter is a standard feature, and you will see it quite often in your favorite titles. However, they become rarer when we talk about 3-reel slots or, more generally, classic slot machines. So if you want to make sure that the title you choose comes with the Scatters, try the more modern games, especially the ones with progressive jackpots, 7 reel games, slots with bonus games, and pretty much every other slot machine on the market today.

How Do I Know if the Game Has a Scatter?

The clue, as we mentioned, is in the game's paytable. You can access it from the game's main screen via the Settings icon or the letter "i." The paytable in online slot machines will provide detailed information about all the symbols, the prizes that come with them, and how special symbols, including Scatters, affect your prize. That way, you'll know which value symbols you need to aim for and how many you'll need at a minimum to access the bonus round.

How to Play Scatter Slots

The way to play Scatter slots is exactly the same as for regular slot machines, meaning you don't have any appropriate strategies to make more Scatter symbols appear. Because luck decides everything, so you have no choice but to be patient with the spins and wait for the boom to appear. 

However, as we said, you should still consult the paytable to better track your progress once you know which symbols are the most valuable to you. In addition, referring to the game's RTP and volatility can also help you understand the frequency of wins, from which you will get an estimate of the difficulties you will face on your way to activating your generous bonus features. 

Conclusion

Scatter symbols are a smart initiative of the game providers, and they really benefit the players as they have a higher win rate. However, there is no way you can increase the frequency of these symbols, as it depends on the RNG software. However, you can still check the game's paytable to understand the number of Scatter symbols required for the game to launch its bonus features.