Back in its early days, the slot machine was little more than an elaborate vending machine. And you should take this literally: before being accepted by the authorities of Nevada, and breaking into the world of gambling, the slot machine was used for selling candy. People would insert a nickel - a five-cent coin - into the one-armed bandit, pull the lever, and wait for the reels to stop to see which flavor of candy will emerge. As you can expect, this novel way to sell candy was quite popular but far from what
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The slot machine remained a purely mechanical, later electro-mechanical, gaming device until the first video slot machine was released almost a century after its conception.
The Age of Video
The first real video slot machine was developed by Fortune Coin Co., a company based in (where else) Las Vegas, in 1976. It was the first of its kind, with all its functions being performed by logic boards. Although its importance is far from being widely recognized, it was the game that opened up a whole bunch of new ways to explore for game designers. The rest, as they say, is history.
The video slot machine got more elaborate over time. While most slot machines of the pre-video era used only three reels, the video slots could now expand beyond this limit. And they did: soon the five-reel machine became the norm, and additional features were introduced into the game. Among them, side games to offer players extra bonuses, with animation having an ever-growing role in them.
The great leap online
One of the most important steps in the slot machines' evolution was their great leap into the online world. It was a bumpy ride, with many ups and downs, but it ultimately led to slot machine design becoming an art - a very practical one, to be honest. The first online casinos only had a handful of games, but in time their numbers started to grow exponentially. Today, the All Slots Casino alone has over 750 titles for its players to explore, running on all major platforms, desktop and mobile alike.
The games themselves became more elaborate, too. If at first they mostly involved static symbols on a bunch of virtual reels, today animation plays a very big part in these games. I think it's safe to say that All Slots classics like Battlestar Galactica or Avalon, and newer additions like Dragon's Myth or Tarzan, wouldn't be the same without their main characters moving around on the screen. While they are still simple and easy to play, the slot machines at the All Slots and beyond are today far more entertaining and engaging thanks to their animations.