In principle, the game of slots seems like a simple pursuit. Yet its evolution has mirrored technological progress, jumping forward at every chance and opening the doors for new forms of entertainment. Below, we discuss the evolution of the electronic slot game.
Early Video Slots
In today’s connected age, slot games are a far cry from the mechanical machines of yesteryear. Yet many of their principles remain the same. You spin reels to bring up a combination of symbols. Get the right one, and you will find yourself winning a cash payout. The online slots at Betfair are a great example of the variety on offer in the modern age.
From simple, classic games to progressive jackpots, along with titles offering live bonus games, a whole host are on offer. Easy accessibility through online portals and quick sign-ups are also a barrier to entry that has been broken down by the online slots of today.
The first video slot machine was developed in 1976 and was the brainchild of the Fortune Coin Company in Las Vegas. The display screen was a Sony Trinitron mounted in a large, impressive display cabinet. Housed at the Las Vegas Hilton, it was then sent to more casinos across the state.
After this, slot games were to be found on home computers and consoles. The problem with these was that inevitably, no payout ever occurred, and the games lost some of their allure. Yet they would find a new home in the nineties with the arrival of the mobile device.
The first game on a mobile device was Snake, on the Nokia 3310. Its popularity would see the development of a whole plethora of games as the power of these devices increased. Yet it would be a long wait until 2005 when the first mobile slot game arrived. Known as Pub Fruity, it was a Java-based game that simulated a classic fruit machine. It had three rows and three reels and used the symbols that had long held a place in the heart of British pub slot machine culture: cherries, lemons, and bar symbols. The game even had extra bonuses and jackpot rounds.
The Smartphone Era
All that remained were for mobile slot games to get their chance to award a payout, fully completing them. This came with the dawn of the smartphone. These devices were more akin to small home computers, on which you could download simple programmes called apps. Pioneered by Apple, the technology in them held great promise.
No mention of online iGaming on smartphones would be complete without mentioning the improvements in payment technology. The smartphone was a way to transfer funds electronically, in a secure fashion. The door was now open for online casino gaming, not only including slots but spreading out across table games and sports betting.
Games have improved with technology, to the point that they are now going beyond what we conceive as slot games. Live streaming has allowed bonus rounds more akin to game shows, where live hosts dish out prizes in a more social environment. Slots are moving forward, and who knows where they could go next?