What is a One Armed Bandit?
Also known as a slot machine, fruit machine or the slots. This staple part of any casino, virtual and physical, earns its name from the simple lever mechanism that originally set the game in motion, although most modern units will utilise a button function. Usually consisting of three or more spinning reels, players will hope to align various symbols (traditionally, images of fruit) in order to win. Some machines also incorporate stop buttons or skill-stop buttons to pause specific reels for a time.
The One Armed Bandit Explained
Despite the low amount required to pay (starting at mere cents or pennies), one armed bandits are often the financial backbone of a house, sometimes bringing in as much as 80% of the profit. While the cost is low, the machines are notoriously addictive, and it’s not uncommon to have some players stay in front of them for hours at a time. Some players will even dedicate themselves to a single machine. While the results of the reels are random, many believe that they will hit a jackpot after so many specific spins.
The machine designs are vast and many and have come a long way since the first Liberty Bell model. Some will be made to fit the specific establishment, while others will be themed around a film or famous band. Modern digital models will usually solely use a touchscreen in place of buttons or a traditional lever.
While the main aim is to see a vast amount of coins fall out into the drop bucket or drop box, some machines will offer free spins and lesser prizes. These prizes will usually be stated on the side or front of the machine on a sheet that shows what symbol combinations result in said prizes.
The bandits have a high payout rate, which entices players all the more. There have even been some historical jackpot errors where the machines have paid out in the millions.
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