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Slot Games History

When people think of casinos, two main things usually pop into their minds: table games and slot games/machines. Believe it or not, but the roots of slot games (also well known as “fruit machines” in the UK) go back all the way to 1887, and specifically an American inventor by the name of Charles Fey. His machine, called the Liberty Bell machine, consisted of three reels and five symbols (a liberty bell, heart, spade, diamond and horseshoe). Like with most inventions, as time went on, the machines evolved and became increasingly complicated (and exciting!), and as a result the slot games of today are basically synonymous with the word “casino”.

Featuring amazing graphics, hypnotizing sounds (especially when hitting a jackpot), various spinning elements and even custom-made videos and clips from popular movies, many of the slot games found in brick-and-mortar casinos nowadays are an absolute blast. However, the incredible popularity of these types of games (also known as “one-arm bandits”) means their reach has extended far beyond conventional casinos, as millions of people now play online slot games and mobile-app versions regularly.

Online Slot Games

Playing online slot games (also known as “video slot machines”) on a personal computer or mobile device such as a phone or tablet is just as fun, if not more so, than playing a slot game in a casino. There are literally thousands of slots out there covering just about every theme you can think of: videogames, movies, bands, celebrities, music genres—you name it. These online slot games may have different rules, features and graphics, but they are all based in one way or another on Fey’s original invention. Some of the hottest slots in the UK right now include Jacks or Better Double Up, Zeus 3, Gonzo’s Quest, Starburst, Piggy Riches, Hot Ink and HR Blackjack. The jackpots on some of these games (especially those that offer progressive jackpots) can be astronomical, and with so many variations out there, it’s a safe bet that there’s an online slot game for just about anybody.

Online Slot Game Providers

Online slot games are created by many different providers, such as NetEnt, Microgaming, IGT, Novomatic. NetEnt, for example, has earned itself quite a reputation after winning the highly coveted “Slot Provider of the Year” award for both 2015 and 2016 at the industry’s International Gaming Awards. A pioneer in the 3D video slot arena, NetEnt’s offerings (including its wide range of classic slots) are generally thought of by players and critics alike as incredible. The company has produced over 200 online slots (playable in 23 languages and 27 currencies) that are featured in over 100 of the best online casinos in the world, and its 2016 Guns N’ Roses-theme slot game was one of the most successful launches ever in the history of slot games. For a taste of NetEnt’s offerings, head over to our free online slots library.

How To Play Online Slot Games

While different online slot games will have different rules, they all more or less share the same central concept: you spin the reels and try to match as many symbols as you can. Different symbols are worth different amounts, so, as an example, matching three hearts might result in a much bigger jackpot than matching three turtle shells. However, most online slot games will have five reels, and your winning streak doesn’t necessarily have to be in the middle row. The winning line might be on the top or bottom row or, if you bet on multiple lines simultaneously, then your winnings for that spin might come from several different streaks (known as “pay lines”). Some games can have as many as 25 straight, diagonal and zigzag pay lines! As you can probably imagine, all of these various elements add to the excitement, so a slot game can be a ridiculous amount of fun.

Progressive Jackpots

A progressive jackpot refers to a jackpot that does not have a fixed amount. Therefore, in a progressive game, the jackpot keeps increasing little by little every time a punter wages more money and spins again. Progressive jackpots come in three forms: standalone progressives, local progressives and wide area network progressives. A standalone progressive jackpot is fed by the bets put into a single game, so this type of jackpot is usually limited to about $10,000 or so. A local progressive jackpot, meanwhile, is one that is linked between anywhere from a couple to hundreds of machines. As a result, these jackpots can go much higher (around $1,000,000) than standalone jackpots. Finally, wide area network progressive jackpots offer, as you’ve probably guessed by now, the biggest payouts of all. This is because multiple casinos keep feeding the jackpot until the sums are off the charts—even in the tens of millions.

Free Video Slots

Many online casinos, such as Mr. Green, let punters try out online slot games/video slot machines for free. In other words, you don’t have to spend a penny to get a solid understanding of how these games operate. As a result, some people never wager any money playing these games, preferring instead to just enjoy the experience of playing the game. While this can also be a great hobby, the possibility of winning a real-currency jackpot takes things to a whole new level. Therefore, if you think you’re ready to play for real and wager a couple of pounds, you’d be hard pressed to find a starting point as ideal as the top-ranked casinos in our online casino review.

Slots on Mobile Devices

These days you can play online slot games on pretty much any modern smartphone, tablet or laptop. Since many of these online slot games work in web browsers, all you really require to get in on the fun is a stable Internet connection. However, the nice thing about downloadable online slot games in the form of apps is that they can offer amazing graphics and ultra-smooth user interfaces. (Compare browser-based video games with app-based ones, and you’ll see what we mean.) The interfaces of online slot games are usually optimized for the small screen, so they are easy to play no matter what device you’re using. For example, they might have a giant SPIN button that keeps you in the midst of the action.