Slot machines have been around for a long time now; they were invented in 1887 and are still popular today. In fact, they are probably more popular today than ever before. But today’s slots are not the same as those original machines that first appeared back in the 19th century – visit this website.
The 20th century is when things really changed and advancements in technology made the original slot machine obsolete. Read on to find out more and to see what changes have happened to give you the slots you love to play today.
1920s and 1930s
At the start of the 20th century, slots were extremely basic, but popular. In the 1920s, many machines began to be installed in casinos across the United States, and they even remained in use – a lot of use – during the Great Depression of the 1930s. However, this was also the time when organised crime started to become involved in the gambling industry, and that meant that legislation had to be introduced in order to limit their use – by 1951, gambling was prohibited in most of the United States, except for Nevada.
By the 1950s, laws were a little more relaxed not only in America but all over the world. This is when electromechanical slots were made, and these allowed for different ways of winning including three and five coin multipliers. The more coins that were put into the machine before the handle was pulled also gave you a bigger potential payout – it was down to the player to determine how much they were willing to gamble and how much they might win in return.
In 1975 advances in technology changed things once more. Now, instead of pulling a handle after placing your chosen amount of money into the slot machine (or ‘one armed bandit’ as they were more commonly known at that time) and pulling a handle, you would pay your money and press a button. Buttons would also be in use to hold reels or boost them.
And of course, the video slots came about at this time. The problem was, these were just not as popular as the older machines – players missed the sound of the coins, the action of the handle, the sound of the reels tumbling and lining up… So slot machine makers took some time to work out how to make their new video slots exciting to the players who wanted to play.
It didn’t take long, relatively speaking, to work out a way to keep everyone happy. Developers added the sound effects back in, and some electronic slots even had handles once more (although far more kept their buttons as this was the electronic age and buttons were the future).
As well as this, because the games could be electronically linked, some of the money put into each machine could be used as part of a huge – and growing – jackpot which could be won at any time, randomly, by anyone who happened to be playing. Now the slots were exciting, and there was something real at stake.
The slot machines stayed rather static for a little while, but the advent of the internet changed everything dramatically. By the end of the 1990s, online casinos were starting to spring up, and although most of their focus (and income) was on online poker, there was definitely room for online slots.
As the years progressed, graphics got better, prizes got bigger, and the rules got easier to understand.