What Are Progressive Jackpots?

Article by Andy Potts
a iphone turned in a slot machine
Last Updated: Jun 14th, 2024 Share On Your Network:

Progressive jackpot slots are similar to regular pokies except that the designers of the pokies have added progressive jackpots to them as a drawcard feature. For many pokies fans, progressive jackpot slots represent the ultimate thrill in online casino gaming, with thousands of always-hot slots with progressive jackpots available online 24 hours a day.

If you’ve been playing regular pokies online and want to spice things up a bit or take your pokie playing up a notch or two, this guide to progressive jackpot slots is just the ticket. Read on to find out how progressive jackpot slots work, where to find them, and how you can make the most out of them right after reading this guide.

What Are Progressive Jackpots in Pokies?

Essentially, progressive jackpot pokies are similar to regular pokies in terms of basic structure, such as the number of reels, special game symbols and bonus rounds. However, the big difference between a standard pokie and even a pokie with a fixed jackpot is that with a progressive jackpot, the amount of money you could win does not stop growing until someone manages to trigger the progressive jackpot. After that, the progressive jackpot counter starts again, usually from a minimum amount (not usually zero). 

Microgaming was the first software developer to create online pokies containing a progressive jackpot component. Their now iconic Mega Moolah broke new ground and helped to put online casinos in the collective consciousness of the general public.

To this day, Mega Moolah is considered one of the best slots with progressive jackpots of all time and has made countless instant millionaires worldwide. Playtech is also highly esteemed, and their Age of the Gods progressive jackpot series is well worth playing.

How Do Progressive Jackpots Work?

Progressive jackpots work by taking a small percentage of each player’s bet and adding it to the overall jackpot. This process of continually adding a percentage of each wager to the total jackpot makes it a progressive jackpot that continues to progress in total value. 

One of the most attractive features of slots with progressive jackpots is that the progressive jackpot can be triggered at any time. Unlike regular online pokies or pokies with a fixed jackpot that can only be accessed once the special bonus round has been triggered, progressive jackpots are triggered randomly. 

Slots with progressive jackpots like Mega Moolah and NetEnt’s Divine Fortune don’t just feature a single progressive jackpot. On the contrary, playing these types of progressive online slots allows you to win one of three or four progressive jackpots.

Mega Moolah:

  • Mini progressive jackpot
  • Minor progressive jackpot
  • Major progressive jackpot
  • Mega progressive jackpot

Divine Fortune:

  • Minor progressive jackpot
  • Major progressive jackpot
  • Mega progressive jackpot

Progressive jackpot slots themselves are organised into different sub-categories that relate to how their progressive jackpots are funded, which in turn determines their progressive jackpot payout potential:

Standalone Progressives

As the name suggests, this progressive jackpot is only available at a single pokie within the entire online casino. The standalone progressive is not linked in any way to other progressive slots.

Local Progressive Jackpots

Local progressive jackpots, also known as in-house progressive jackpots, are essentially a group of slots connected together in a single casino. These might all be from the same software provider, and playing any of them will give you access to the local progressive jackpot.

Global Progressive Jackpots

Global progressive jackpots, also known as network progressive jackpots, are the largest type of progressive jackpot category and offer the highest potential progressive jackpot. These progressive jackpots are linked across many online casinos across the globe, progressive jackpots like Mega Moolah are a great example of global progressive jackpots. It’s usually much more challenging to trigger the main progressive jackpot, but the payout potential is generally massive.

Best Pokies with Progressive Jackpots

Now that you have a good foundation in what progressive jackpots are and how they work, it might be time to try out a few for yourself. 

Mega Fortune 

NetEnt’s Mega Fortune Is the ideal progressive jackpot slot for anyone who loves glitz and glam and the finer things in life. The look and feel of this pokie pushes the limits of high-class jet setting and luxury with symbols to match, including yachts, limousines, jewels, champagne, and more.

Mega Fortune features 25 paylines over five reels enhanced with four bet levels, allowing you to customise every spin. Bonus features include three different progressive jackpots: Major, Mega and the Rapid Free Spins with multipliers. Mega Fortune is compatible with all operating systems, including Windows, Linux, Mac, iOS and Android. Choose one of our top mobile casinos to play Mega Fortune on the go anywhere. 


Arguably one of the greatest vampire action-thrillers of all time, Blade is loved for its intense visuals and high-energy action sequences. Naturally, Playtech realised this is the perfect recipe for a network progressive jackpot slot linked to the entire Marvel Comics franchise, meaning massive potential progressive jackpot wins.

Blade is packed with great jackpot features, and you can trigger up to 15 free spins by landing three scatter symbols in the base game. The 15 free spins come with a multiplier of up to 5x your win. Scatters are transformed into wilds during bonus games to increase your chances of hitting big payouts. Blade also features four different progressive jackpots: Power, Extra Power, Super Power and Ultimate Power, any of which can be triggered randomly at any stage of the game. 

Mega Moolah

Microgaming’s Mega Moolah is often credited as the progressive jackpot game that kickstarted the entire slots industry with its progressive jackpot genre. Released in 2006, Mega Moolah averages jackpot payouts of over AU$6,145,288, often even higher.

The original Mega Moolah has spawned a series of spin-offs, including Mega Moolah Isis, Immortal Romance Mega Moolah, Book of Mega Moolah, Gold Factory Jackpots Mega Moolah and several others.

Mega Moolah is quite simple in design and layout compared to many more modern progressive jackpot slot machines. The game features 25 paylines over five reels and has a free spins bonus round.

The African Savannah theme underscores the somewhat ‘old school’ vibe, but the real beauty of Mega Moolah lies in its four progressive jackpots that can be triggered randomly at any time during the game. Due to its enormous popularity, Mega Moolah still often carries one of the highest progressive jackpot payouts in the business.

Wrapping Up - Why Play Progressive Jackpots?

Progressive jackpot casino games are in class all on their own, offering something unique you won’t find in regular pokies. Of course, getting into progressive jackpots is not to be taken lightly, as chasing that elusive progressive payout can significantly strain your playing budget. 

That said, there are plenty of great slots with progressive jackpots, offering plenty of bonus features and multiple progressive jackpot opportunities. The fact that these can be triggered randomly adds tremendous appeal to progressive jackpot pokies, and you can find plenty of them at our recommended progressive jackpot casinos for Australians.

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