The term slots is short for slot machine. They are also known as poker machines, pokies, fruit machines, one-arm bandits and there is no real difference between them.
They were invented in the late 1800s by Charles Fey in San Francisco, California. They were designed to replicate the game of poker, which is why in the US they are still often called poker games. Hence the Australian nickname for them, which is pokies.
They became popular all over the world. At first they did not change that much. The original machine had three reels, but as early as 1891, a five-reel machine became available.
By 1908, there were machines all over the place they were available in bars, bowling alleys, shops, milk bars and barbers. From there on, they spread throughout the world. In countries where gambling was banned food such as chewing gum was used in place of a financial payout to get around the law. Some bars had machines that paid out tokens for cigarettes, cigars or drinks.
In 1963, the first electromagnetic machine became available. At this point, the lever on the side, which gave the machine the nickname one-armed bandit, was no longer necessary. They were removed, but in some countries were quickly reintroduced as a gimmick because people missed pulling the handle to play. In 1976, the first video slot machine was introduced. By 1994, in Australia, a second screen was added.
However, by far the biggest leap forward came when slot machines you could play over the web were introduced in the early 90s. Because these machines are completely computerised, they offer a far more varied gaming experience.
Playing Online Slots
Online you can choose between, 3, 5 or even 7 reel games. It is possible to play games that pay out immediately for each winning line or to play games, which have progressive jackpots that build over time. The payouts on these games sometimes run into hundreds of thousands of dollars or pounds. Whichever kind of slots you choose to play take a little time to learn how to play each one, doing so will help you to enjoy the game more.
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