Today, the slot machine is approaching its 130th Birthday party and so it is interesting to take a look back at how it all started. In early 1891 the first slot machine was invented and placed in a bar where clients could use a nickel to try their luck. As a prize, they could win a free drink or a cigarette which was given to the customer by the barman.
A few years later, Charles Augustus Fey, the inventor of the first slot machine, figured out how to add payouts to the machine. He also replaced the playing cards with 5 symbols – hearts, diamonds, spades, horseshoes and a liberty bell, hence the name “Liberty Bell”. Unfortunately, Mr. Fey did not patent his invention, so it was copied by many slot machine manufacturers.
In 1902 slot machines were officially banned and cash prizes were prohibited. In exchange similar slot machines were created with fruit symbols instead of playing cards and, as you can guess, the payouts where in chewing gum and sweets of the corresponding flavor. The Operator Bell slot machines had the most memorable bar symbol, which can still be found nowadays.
In 1964 electromechanical slot machines called Money Honey appeared. The first ones had automatic payouts up to 500 coins. This was followed in 1976 by video slots machines, which were invented in Las Vegas and used a 19-inch Sony TV for the display. They proved an instant success. In 1996, slot machines reached a new level with a second screen offering a bonus round. This machine quickly gained popularity in the casinos and soon took up most of the free space in the room.
At the beginning of the ’90s, the new era of online slot games took place. A wide variety of online games, such as roulette, could be found online and gained enormous popularity. The number of online game developers started to grow as well as the variety of different online slot games that were presented to the customer. Over the next 25 years, online games improved their graphics and become an integral part of each online casino.
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