Evolution of Slot Machines


The first slot machines were significantly different from today’s slot machines. Only the concept of the game itself remained unchanged – to win, gambler requires to gather a prize-winning sequence of images. Simple rules of the game combined with an exciting process have made slots one of the greatest and widespread gambling entertainment. Even by this day, slot machines are still present but now in an online environment. If you want to try your luck right now – you can play here.

Video Poker Slot Machines

The first coin-operated gaming devices were invented in 1880. These slot machines were based on a poker card game, had five gaming reels and fifty cards from the standard deck. The player dropped a penny into the machine, pulled the lever and observed the spins of the reels. The payment system was non-standard: in case of victory, the gambler contacted the bartender and took an alcoholic drink or cigar as a prize.

One-Armed bandits

The following phase in the growth of slot machines is one-armed bandits. These are inventions of Charles Fey, the “patriarch of slots”. The story goes that the first slot device Fey created in 1894. The successive slot, designed in 1895, was named 4-11-44. These betting machines came to be known as “one-armed bandits” since of the lever which started the game reels.

Bell of Freedom

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In 1898, Fey created the first gaming slot with an automated payment approach – the Liberty Bell. When 3 images of the Liberty Bell fell on the reels, the player received a jackpot of 10 five-cent coins (nickels). The novelty was so trendy that even after the prohibition on slot machine devices, Fey had many contracts for their manufacture.

Fruit slot machines

The following step in the record of slots was the innovation of “fruit” machines. The card emblems on the reels have been replaced by drawings with berries: oranges, cherries, apples, bar, and watermelon pictures. Originally, payouts on the machines of this type were fruit-flavored chewing gums. This was done not just for entertainment, but additionally to prevent the anti-gaming regulations that were established in numerous states.

Electromechanical Slots

The earliest electromechanical gaming machine was developed in 1964 and was labeled as Money Honey. Thanks to innovative electromechanical technology, the slot paid out wins automatically plus could accept up to five hundred coins with no technical assistance. And in 1996, the first video slot game emerged, which had a Reel’Em bonus game on the second display.

Brief History of Modern Slots

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Today, players have a large selection of slot machine games that they can play in both classic and online casinos. In machines, there can be various numbers of reels and payout lines, bonuses and pictures. Most slots have a special themes, but certain games still apply classic images. Among the slot machines, the extremely common: classic 3-reel, 5-reel video slots with progressive jackpots and bonuses.

Online Slots

First online slot appeared in 1994 when Antigua and Barbuda signed the Caribbean FTA (Free Trade Agreement). This text allowed businesses from all over the globe to legitimately start online casino business. In 1995, the first Online Gaming Club was opened.

In 1996, the famous Kanawake Gambling Commission (Canada) was founded to protect and support online players. Many players preferred playing on the Internet, but in 1996 the United States passed the Unlawful Internet Gambling Enforcement Act, which prohibits online gambling. Nevertheless, according to statistics, now about 70% of the income of any online casino is brought by slot machines.