History of Slot Machines

Posted by on August 7, 2020


Slot Machines have been around since 1895 when Charles Fey had invented them. His initial innovation was perfected in 1907 when he teamed up with a company called Mills Novelty who manufactured the “Mills Liberty Bell”. The Liberty Bell slot machine featured cast iron casing and the originals also had cast iron feed and toes to match. Later models of the slot machine had the does scrapped and replaced with simpler decorative feet.

The initial machines had strips as it’s reels that used playing card symbols such as king, queen and jack. The original machines also had a bell on top that rang when a winning combination was struck, this too was later on scrapped. Today’s slot machines in land based casinos feature bells on top of the slot with a light that rotates and flashes when one hits the jackpot.

The “Liberty Bell” slot machine is the main predecessor to all the modern American slot machines as it’s basic design is still used ins some mechanical gaming machines. Old fashioned slot machines that used mechanical devices with three old-style reels holding 20 or so symbols has evolved into microprocessor controlled devices with up to 5 spinning reels which can hold upwards of hundreds of symbols.

It was in 1910 when the Mills Novelty Company had introduced a slight variation of the original Liberty Bell slot. This new slot machine was called the Operator Bell. The Operator Bell slot machine had a gooseneck coin entry system and it featured the now famous fruit symbols that are to this day still used in slot machines. The Operator Bell was made of cast iron and was very heavy weighing in at over 100 pounds. Over 30,000 of these slot machines were produced.

The cast iron slot machine error ended in 1915 when the Mills Novelty Company had introduced a less expensive wood cabinet. In the early 1930s the Mills Novelty Company had made several changes and adjustments to their original models which had revolutionized the industry.

The first thing they did was they designed slot machines that were much quieter. That’s why it’s 1930’s slot machines were referred to as the “silent bell”. Then it introduced double jackpot which assured the players that they could win twice in one quick succession.

In order to make the machines more memorable and engaging to players the Mills company introduced a series of cabinet designs with striking colors and designs each of which had it’s own theme. The first one was the Lion Head which was introduced in early 1931. In late 1931 it was the War Eagle and the Roman Head that were introduced and in 1933 they introduced the Castle Front slot machine.

From this point on the slot machine revolution was in full effect. Today’s slot machines use RNG’s (Random Number Generators) which are embedded in the microprocessor of the slot machines you play in order to guarantee the game play is completely random. The largest provider of slot machines for land based casinos in today’s market is IGT which provides the slot machines, such as 5 dragon slot machine, that cover over 90 percent of the casino floors in Vegas alone.

Online slots are the new fad which makes for easy access to playing your favorite 3 reel or 5 reel slots without ever having to leave your home or your office. These slot machines use very similar RNG (Random Number Generator) technology as their land based counterparts to ensure you get completely random game play. It was in 1993 that the idea of online slots were incepted but not until early 1994 that they went live and were able to play online.



Metal Insider occasionally accepts paid content. Check here to find out more about our advertising policy.


Categorised in: News Around the World