A look at the fascinating, high-octane history of slots

A look at the fascinating, high-octane history of slots

If we look at the history of the gambling industry, we know that slots get the title of the most popular casino game of all time. These amazing reel-spinning devices have been around since the 19th century and have been a strong pillar of the revenue-generating gambling industry. 

Do you know how simple slot machines transition to complex mobile casinos that accept phone bill deposits? It’s time to revisit the fascinating history of slot machines and discover the incredible journey from one hand bandit slot machines to single click online slots. 

1891: The Origin of the Slot Machine

The slot machine dates back to the late 1800s when in 1891, Sittman & Pitt of New York created the first slot machine. The game featured 5 drums with 50 cards each. The device was available at numerous bars for a nickel. To play, the player inserts money and pulls the lever and lines up poker hands on the reels to win. Creator removed the ten of spades and jack of hearts from the standard 52 card deck to enhance the house advantage and reduce the chances of getting a royal flush in half. The machine didn’t pay out directly, so winners get their rewards from the bar as free drinks and smokes. 

1887-1895: The Beginning Slot Machine Mass Production

Charles Augustus Fey invented the first mass-produced slot machine. His first machine was built between 1887 and 1895, although the precise date is unknown. Fey created a mechanism with automatic payments, and to accomplish this; he needed to make reading wins simply for the machine. 3 reels replaced the existing 5 drums. Also, he changed the playing card system with a simplified five symbol system — hearts (diamonds), spades (spades), horseshoe.

1902-1908: The Beginning of Fruit Symbol Slots

Despite the state banning slot machines in 1902, the Liberty Bell manufacturing never stopped. Since slots could no longer give out financial rewards, the age of the fruit machine began. The slot machines used fruit symbols and granted rewards such as gum and sweets of the same flavour. Herbert Mills of Chicago created the Operator Bell in early 1907. A year later, they were in every tobacconist, store, bowling alley, and salon. The modern BAR symbol was developed around this period, based on the Bell-Fruit design.

1964 – 78: The First Electromechanical Slot and Video

Bally introduced the Money Honey slot machine in late 1964. A motor powered the reels, and players initiated the game by pulling the usual lever. It would have been strange for gamers back then to play without pushing the lever. It was the first slot machine with a bottomless hopper, automatically paying up to 500 coins.

1976 saw the development of the first real video slot machine. Fortune Coin, based in Las Vegas, made it in Kearny Mesa, California. The display was a customised 19 inch Sony TV. The game was initially available at the Las Vegas Hilton. It quickly became a big hit on the Las Vegas Strip. 

Slot Games in 2021

Slot games have come far with the lever pushing heavy machines; the slots now are played with a single click. There is no need to travel to casinos or earn rewards in free drinks or smokes. Its time slot games reward in real cash prizes and sometimes win players millions in cash.

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