Slot History

When it comes to the history of gambling pastimes as we know them today, the history of slots is perhaps the shortest in the grand scheme of things, with the first slot machine only appearing in 1899. Compare this with card games which go back to the middle ages or other types of games which can even trace their history back to ancient Greece or Rome. Yet, when we look at how far this industry has come in the past one hundred years of so, we can certainly see how intensive slots history really is, as well as appreciate the rich and colorful journey it has taken.


Slots History – the Early Days

The first 'real' slot game was produced by a new immigrant to the United States, Charles Fey at the turn of the 20th century and strongly resembled the classic online slot games we find at top online casinos today. Fey's machine, named the Liberty Bell, boasted three basic reels, as well as traditional slot symbols. The main symbol was, of course, the Liberty Bell. The public went mad for Fey's innovative new machine which was first rolled out in a San Francisco saloon and demand for the game was an instant high. Fey quit his job as a salesman and focused the rest of his days on the development and production of slot machines.


Over the years, the original Liberty Bell slot game was enhanced and modified. Stephen Mill added ten new symbols to each of the reels in 1909, making slots even more exciting to play and increasing demand. Slot machines were originally big and bulky, easy to manipulate and worked solely on a mechanical system. While they very soon took center place on floors of the majority of casinos, developers were always on the lookout to improve on the original design. The sixties saw a revolution in the way slots were produced and played.


Slots History – The Electronic Age

In 1964, the first slot machines were developed using electronic micro processors which determined payouts in the game. This change also brought about the ability of operators to offer larger jackpots to players, making them even more popular. In the mid 1970s, the first video based slot machine was developed by Walter Freely where players took their slots entertainment to a TV screen. The name of Freely's first video slot game was Fortune Coin, offering greater odds, bigger jackpots and greater control over the games from the casino's perspective.


Slots History – Online Casino Gaming

In the mid 1990s, slots underwent another major change, essentially the biggest in their relatively short history. For the first time, slots entertainment could be literally brought to the fingertips of millions of players thanks to the advent of online gambling. As online casinos started mushrooming over the internet, the first types of games brought online were slots. The initial online casino games were very basic games of the classic format, but as online casino software providers realized the huge potential there was to have in this market, they started producing games that became better and better with each passing year. From classic one line, three reel slots, games collections grew to incorporate multi reel, multi line video slot games with the last word in technology, animations, graphics and sound features.


Today, it is quite possible to play video slot games based on practically every theme under the sun, from ancient civilizations to space travel, from branded slots based on popular comic series (such as the Marvel slots) to famous film characters such as the Pink Panther. The slots industry is one of the fastest growing and highest revenue generating of them all, thanks to the fantastic slots titles available to players today.