The invention of Sittman and Pitt in 1891, the old slot machines you would find back then had drums of five which rotated and which displayed to the gamer playing cards. Unlike today, where players can simply gamble online.
And then, the player was able to win the game based on what the best poker hand given was with the five card options. It was the first kind of game that would be played in this way and because of this, traction picked up fast.
Sounds straightforward enough doesn’t it? Well it isn’t all plain sailing.
Because of the difficult nature of the game – for example, fifty cards being displayed meant that thousands of combinations being made, it meant too many ways to win giving players of the game less opportunities to do so, which ended up resulting in less payouts to players, which caused frustration.
But, back in the day, then and in more recent times when they were prevalent in pubs and bars, slot machines have been the ultimate in gaming experience that you could get – especially in Britain, where most of us do love a pub or two.
Now? Due to the rise of online gaming, the fruit machine isn’t really played much, and the term is now much better known for this game as being a slot game.
The original term for slot games, “slot machine”, was originally coined for any of the automatic vending machine and gambling device, and this was used right up until the 20th century.
And after this time period, the term slot machine became exclusive just for the gambling devices these were pertaining to.
The term actually came from the British term in fact, and was coined in the local pub, as we would probably expect.
And, as the first fruit machines ever did indeed feature reels that showed fruit on to bypass laws that regulated and restricted gaming for money, this makes sense.
Nowadays, the reality is, whether this is good news or bad news, that fruit machines and slot games in the pubs and bars just isn’t in fashion.
In Britain, a lot of our pubs have become more up market, and the reason we go to the pub isn’t really to game anymore – we all mostly game online, if not solely online, so gaming is no longer the lure of the pub, it’s more a social experience where we can go to grab a bite to eat and a chat to friend over a nice drink or two.
This has been seen mostly in the infamous Wetherspoons, one of Britain’s biggest pub chains, which revealed that the income they got from their fruit machines actually halved since 2000 to just three per cent that of what it had been.
It’s doubted that fruit machines/slot games are likely to make a return to the UK’s pubs and bars too, as they are predominantly played online, and what with on the go gaming, there’s no commute, more reason to play at home or via mobile.