It’s been a long time since Charles Fey invented the first slot machine back in the late 1890s, but they’ve gone a long way. To stop the reels on a mechanical machine, you had to pull a lever. The slot machine immediately became popular in saloons across the United States because it used familiar symbols like fruits, bells, bars, and horseshoes.
The basic principle of slot machines hasn’t changed much since their inception: you put money in and hope for the best by crossing your fingers and hoping for the best. Of course, slot machines have evolved and improved throughout time. For decades, one-armed bandits dominated land-based casinos (and still do).
The first video slot was created by Fortune Coin Co. in 1976. Fortune Coin was the first mechanical slot machine to be replaced by a computerized model. The results were determined using a logic board on a 19-inch screen. Many physical and online video slots nowadays may trace their origins back to this one slot machine. Fortune Coin Co was bought out by IGT two years following the release of that game.
Video slots didn’t become popular until the mid-1990s. Instead of us having to travel to the best casinos, the internet has brought the best casinos to us. With dozens to pick from, video slots have been the most popular casino game at online casinos since the beginning. The graphics and animations are state-of-the-art, and the reels and extra features are designed to keep players entertained.
In this article, I’ll go through the various features of a video slot machine. As well as a comprehensive breakdown of the betting options and extra features available, I’ll also go over how the game’s reel mechanics work and how you’re compensated.
The Evolution of Reel mechanics
Slot machines have developed over time as a result of technological and software advances. Classic slots used simple reel mechanisms, but as technology advances, new mechanics are being introduced that enhance the experience. Instead of matching symbols on a payline, new slots frequently resemble mobile puzzle games and provide a wide range of winning possibilities. Many additional variations exist, such as Infinity Reels and Hold&Win, but these are the most frequent.
This is a tried-and-true reel mechanism, utilized since the earliest days of the slot machine industry. These are the lines on which you must make matching pairs. When it comes to slot machines, you typically need to land at least two thirds of matching symbols beginning with reel one and continuing right along a payline. It is possible to land winning combinations in some slots that pay both ways, which means that you can win from the right to the left as well as the left to the right. The number of paylines on older slots was typically limited to one or three, but as time passed, the number of paylines on slots increased all the way up to fifty.
How to Win
Microgaming’s Ways-to-Win is one of the best new reel mechanisms. A regular payline slot machine’s gameplay mimics this one, although it actually has a lot more paylines. You can win as long as you have matching symbols on consecutive reels. Again, a minimum of two or three matching symbols is required, but they do not have to appear on active paylines but rather in any position on the reels. A few years ago, 243 ways to win slots were the norm; today there are slots with as many as 10,000 chances to win! Depending on the number of reels and rows, the number of ways to win can increase.
Cluster pay slots are the majority of the games I described as resembling mobile puzzle games. A few years ago, NetEnt came up with a reel system that is still in use today. Instead of matching symbols on paylines, you match them in clusters, much like in puzzle games. Symbols with a cascading or tumbling effect are frequently used with this one. This implies that you don’t have to worry about starting your winnings on the first reel. No matter where the clusters are located, they will make a profit. Symbols in a row or column are referred to as “clusters.” Cascading/tumbling symbols are frequently used in conjunction with this mechanic. When this happens, the winning symbols are wiped out and replaced by other symbols. Whenever this occurs, players have a better chance of winning consecutively on a single spin. Slots like Aloha! make good use of this feature. NetEnt’s Cluster Pays is an example of this.
This is one of the most popular reel mechanisms at the time of writing this article, developed by Big Time Gaming. Each time you spin, it generates a different set of paylines at random. Each spin’s number of symbols is generated at random. On the first reel, you may have two symbols, five on the second, seven on the third, and so on. On each reel, the more chances there are to win. Slots can now offer more than 100,000 possibilities to win from a single play because of this. There are a number of Megaways games in our casino because Big Time Gaming owns the trademark on this mechanic but leases it to other slot makers.
Featured Bonuses in Slot Machines
When it comes to additional features, video slots have changed throughout time as well. Wild symbols and gamble features, both of which allow you to potentially double a winning combination, have both appeared in slots since their inception (act like the joker card in a pack of cards and can become any symbol needed). We can’t possibly include them all, due to their sheer number. Here are some of the most typical bonus features that you may expect to see in slots games.