Las Vegas Slot Machines

Slot MachineSlot machines are possibly the most popular of all forms of gambling as they cater for the full range of punters – those who are only prepared to wager a couple of bob on the outcome, to those who are looking for slightly higher stakes. Over time they have also boasted names like ‘Fruit Machine’ or ‘One-Armed Bandit’, names that have become synonymous with the idea of gambling.

All casinos in Las Vegas offer a huge range of electronic slot machines covering all forms of gaming from dice, to roulette, to horse racing, to poker, and the scenes of both young and old pumping coins into the slots, and the constant jangle of bells from the machines are the sights and sounds that define gambling in Las Vegas.

The History of the Slots

The first mechanical slot machine was invented way back in the late 1800’s by a San Franciscan car mechanic, Charles Fey. It consisted of three spinning reels and a lever. Each of the three reels was decorated with hearts, spades or diamonds, and in between an image of a cracked Liberty Bell was randomly inserted.

Once the lever was pulled, all three reels would spin, and if all three reels happened to stop on the same image, then the punter would win a jackpot, the largest, of course was paid out when the symbol of the liberty bell appeared simultaneously on all three reels.

It became known as ‘Liberty Bell’. These early slot machines were a big hit, and Fey had difficulty in keeping up with the demand. He rented the machines out on the understanding that he would get 50% of the profit. Competition soon came in the form of a Herbert Mills of Chicago. He developed his own version of the slot machine and was the first designer to use fruit symbols on the reels.

In 1964 the first electric slot was built by Nevada Electronics, the famed ’21’. Again the success story was overwhelming, leading to a second slots boom. Now all games could be covered by a machine. A decade later, the Fortune Coin Company brought out the first fully electronic slots machine, and since then the industry has spread throughout the world.

Random number Generator

Today’s slots are fully computerised, and consequently the odds are programmed into the computer. The positions the reels will come to rest on are decided by a Random Number Generator which is built into the machine’s software.

The Random Number Generator generates thousands of numbers per second, and at the very moment that the lever is pulled, a number will be generated which will determine when the reels will stop. It is nigh impossible to pre-determine the number, although number sequences are often used over and over again.

Las Vegas slot machines constitute at least 70% of most casino’s revenue.