Slot Machines: The Gambling Sensation
When you sit down and play a round of Bitcoin slots on your computer, you’re experiencing the fruits of over a hundred years of development. This can seem surprising considering that slot machines seem to be such a modern phenomenon. The truth is one of the first slot machines was first developed in the year 1891. Sittman and Pitt of Brooklyn, New York came up with a machine that featured five reels and 50 card faces on them. The player aimed to get at least a pair of kings each time the reels spun.
This prototype slot machine was a popular hit and bars in the New York area soon had a copy of the machine in pride of place. Unlike today’s slots, there was no direct payment for a win. Players were expected to show the bar owner the results and be awarded with in-bar rewards like a free drink or maybe a cigar. Furthermore, these slot games were decidedly unfair – owners could fix the reels so that the chances of a win would be much lower.
Automatic payouts did not start appearing until Charles Fey of San Francisco managed to simplify the system into something that can give players an instant jackpot. His Liberty Bell machine had three reels and only five symbols. The big jack pot was just 10 nickels, but this was a good start for slots, with the Liberty Bell becoming a best seller. By 1908, mechanical slot machines were a common sight in bars, saloons, and barber shops. Around this time, gambling was not the common goal of playing slots – the rewards were often candy or sweets since mechanical slots couldn’t handle really big jackpots.
The next big step that slot machines made was in 1963. This was when the first electromechanical slot machine was introduced. Known as “Money Honey,” this slot game was a dedicated gambling machine. It had a bottomless hopper to accept money and could payout 500 coins to anyone who wins the jackpot, with no need for an attendant. 1976 saw another milestone as a fully electronic slot machine came on the market with a bigger capacity.
Slot machines have now become an integral part of the gambling experience. Online versions of slots games are there to slake the thirst of the public wanting more slot machine action.