History of Slot Machines

Online slot machines in online casinos are becoming more and more popular due to the big winnings you can get in a short time. Slots machine go way back before even any thought about online casinos. Slots machines got long and remarkable history then you can imagine.

In 1887, Charles Fey from San Francisco invented the first one-armed bandit slot machine with a very simple automatic mechanism. The machine had three spinning reels with five symbols – diamonds, spades, horseshoes, hearts and a Liberty Bell, which also gave the machine its name. You could get the biggest payout for having a series of three bells in a row.

The biggest payout was ten nickels at those days which seem quite ridicules comparing to the hundreds of thousands you can get nowadays in online casinos. The Liberty-Bell slot machine was an enormous achievement and spawned a flourishing mechanical gaming device industry.

Those slot machine got so popular in a couple of years in San Francisco that the outlaw them. Nonetheless, Charles Fey still couldn’t keep up with the high demand for the game in other places. With no doubt, the Liberty-Bell slot machine was a huge success.

In 1891, Sittman and Pitt of Brooklyn industrialized a gambling machine that is fairly considered a forerunner to the slot-machines we have today. It contained 5 drums instead of reels with 50 card faces and it was based on another popular gambling game- poker. This machine proved tremendously popular and soon you could not find a bar in the city that didn’t have more then one slot machine.

Gamers would insert a nickel and press a switch, which would spin the drums and the cards they held, if you got good poker hand then you won. There was not an automatically payout mechanism like we have today at regular casinos or online casinos, so if you won you got your payout from the bar in the form of beer or cigars. A pair of Kings could get you beer, and a Royal Flush could payout cigars or drinks. There were no standard prizes, the payouts were only according to what was offered by the local bar or casino.

Sometime in order to improve the odds for the house, two cards were detached from the drums- the Ten of Spades and the Jack of Hearts- which cuts the odds of winning a Royal Flush by 50%. The drums could also be re-arranged in order of reducing a player’s chance of winning. Those kinds of tricks are not popular nowadays at regular casinos or online casinos.

In 1964, Bally- Bell-Fruit Gum Company- developed the first fully electromechanical slot machine called Money Honey. The “BAR” symbol now common in slot machines was derived from an early logo of this company.

Fruit flavored of chewing gums with symbols of the flavors on the reels were very well-liked too. The popular cherry and melon symbols derive from this machine. In this day and age, you can find in online casinos all kinds of themes and symbols on slot machine, however the basic idea of the game remains the same, only more colorful and more profitable.