Each and every slot game is different from the next. Not only does each slot game tell a story but each one has a different number of reels, winning symbols and of course paylines. Depending on the game you are playing, you will be open to different winning amounts.
The amount that can be won is not directly related to the number of reels that are in play although some experienced players argue that there is a correlation. With 3 reel one line slot machines you can only bet one coin at a time, the size of the coin does vary which then varies the amount to be won but that is about all. With 5 or 7 reel slot machines which are more commonly known as video slots there are many more paylines that can be bet on leading to more options. But if you have small bankroll and have spread your money across too many paylines then the amount per payline that you can potentially win is very small which leads to minimal winnings.
Basically the best way to play the slots machines in order to maximize your winnings is to find a happy medium between the 3 reel one payline machines and the multi payline video slots. Use your bankroll wisely and not use it all up in one go. If you can choose the middle of the road coin size but always bet the maximum number of coins in order to gain the maximum winnings possible. A lot of playing the reels and betting in certain ways to maximize your winnings is down to trial and error so if you can try and play for fun before you place real money bets in order that you don't waste all your money. Whichever way you choose to bet, just remember that slots are about fun and don't take it all too seriously, the more fun you have the less stressed you are and the more chances you have to win!