Video Slots

An early Fortune Coin Co. video slot

An early Fortune Coin Co. video slot

If you’re new to the world of online slot machines and you’re just thinking of dipping your toe into this entertaining world then it’s worth mentioning a term which tends to get thrown around quite a lot and that’s ‘video slot’. This should not be something to get confused about – video slots are what we now think of as online slots. However older players among us, and particularly those who have been playing slots since before the days of the internet, may think differently.

To find out why, let’s take a trip back to 1976 and the development of the first video slot by Fortune Coin Co. – in this case an electronically controlled game displayed on a colour television. This was the prototype of the first game of this type installed at the Las Vegas Hilton. Fortune Coin Co. were bought by IGT in 1978.

So in the 1970s and 1980s a video slot was a physical machine which displayed it’s reels on a screen rather than actual reels. The workings involved logic boards and CPUs rather than the stoppers and kickers described in more detail here and the only carryover was the lever to start the reels spinning.

Video poker also made it’s way into the casinos in the 1970s and quickly became a popular way of playing this game, perhaps because some players prefer the anonymity of a solitary game. They are still available now at casinos, arcades and online and at their most basic level will deal the player five cards, allow one chance to hold or discard and then pay out according to the pat table. Obviously video poker is not the same as video slot.

The message of this article is that even if your casino of choice displays a list of video slots, they are exactly the same as online slots so there’s no reason for any confusion.