History and Evolution of Slots
10:29 16 March 2021
No matter if you’re a new casino player or have been playing casino games for years, you probably figured out already that slots are the most beloved and most played type of game of all of them.
As soon as you walk into a casino or open an online casino site, you will see slot machines. It’s believed that 65% to over 80% of the revenue of casinos comes from slots.
But how did slots become so popular? Get ready to learn more about the history and evolution of slots and how nowadays playing at Indian online casino sites is the best possible option.
The Origins of Slots
It was 1891 when the first slot machine appeared. A company from New York, Sittman and Pitt, launched the game. It had five drums and 50 playing cards, it cost a nickel to play, and you could play it in bars.
You just had to put your money in it and pull the lever to start playing. You would get combinations by lining up simple poker hands. Since the house had to have an edge, the ten of spades and jack of hearts were removed so that it would be harder to get a royal flush.
There was no way to get a payout out of the machine, so if you would win you would get your prize at the bar, in the form of different types of drinks and cigars.
The Inventor of the Slot Machine
The first slot machine which had a way to give out automatic payouts was the Liberty Bell. It was created by Charles Augustus Fey, the man who is deemed to this day as the inventor of the first ever slot machine.
It’s unknown which is the exact date on which the game was created, but it happened somewhere between 1887 and 1895.
To make the first slot machine with automatic payouts, Fey worked on the way a win was read by the machine by exchanging the 5 drums for 3 reels. He also switched from the playing cards to 5 symbols we still know and love today: hearts, spades, diamonds, horseshoes and the liberty bell.
You could get the highest payout if you could land three bell symbols and that’s why the machine got the name Liberty Bell.
The machine was never patented by Fey, so it was a free for all design that was used by many other slot makers.
The Liberty Bell was so popular that even though slot machines were banned in 1902, the manufacturing process continued. Soon after the prizes were changed to chewing gum and different flavoured sweets thus leading to what we know today as fruit slots.
The First Electromechanical Slot
In the beginning, the slot machines were just mechanical. You pulled a lever and the reels would turn because of a spring inside which would also make them stop. Because of that lever, the slots were called “one-armed bandits”.
It took a while to get to the first electromechanical slot. It wasn’t until 1964, that the first one was invented. Money Honey by Bally was the one to break out of the mold. The reels were entirely electrically operated, but it still kept the lever design just to make sure that players still recognised it was a slot.
Since this new machine had a hopper which was bottomless, it could give out automatic payouts of up to 500 coins. It wasn’t long until the lever disappeared as well and it was replaced by the buttons that are still used today.
The first video slot that’s much more alike the slots we play today was launched in 1976 by a company called Fortune Coin which was later on bought out by IGT. it used a 19-inch TV as the display.
In 1996, WMS created “Reel ‘Em In”, the first video slot that also had a bonus round. From here on things developed a lot quicker, and second screen bonus rounds with bigger and better payments kept coming out.
Slot Games Now and Then
Since that very first slot machine, things have come a long way. The internet changed everything we knew about gambling in general and now it’s hard to even imagine a world without online slots.
While at the launch of slots online, the style of games was still similar to land-based slot machines with identical symbols and similar grids, now there are countless themes, 3D intricate symbols, unusual layouts and countless bonus features.
From maybe a handful of special symbols, now we have so many features that you really need to pay attention to the pay table to be able to figure out what to expect.
You can play online every single type of slot you can imagine and they get better and better every day. With innovations in the field all the time, we can look forward to a bright future for slots.
There’s no way to cheat the slots as was possible a long time ago with fake coins and magnets, as now they use a RNG (random number generator) to determine the outcome of each spin, give you special bonuses, progressive jackpots and more. But this way, you know for sure that everything is based on luck and the casino can’t scam you either.
Advantages of Online Slots
As long as you have an internet connection you can play any time, anywhere. Now that mobile casinos exist as well you can take your games with you even on the go. This is definitely the greatest advantage, that you don’t need to go to a brick and mortar casino to play.
Secondly, you get a lot more variety. If land-based casinos have limited space, online you can try hundreds and thousands of different slots.
If you don’t like a casino, you can pick a different one right away. You aren’t stuck there because the other choice is in another town.
Furthermore, while in a classic local casino you’d have to wait for your turn on the slots, online everyone can play at the same time.
Also, you should know that RTPs are better online because the casinos don’t have to pay for location, staff and other things. And there are countless other advantages.
Slots have evolved a lot since 1891. Each new technological advancement affects slots as well and helps them grow even better. There’s still a lot to look forward to and we can’t wait to see what the software providers have in-store for us next!