Slot gaming is one of the most important sources of revenue for online casinos and real-world casinos. In many of these establishments, the money casinos bring in from slots vastly outweighs the cash they bring in from all other casino games.
So, it is fair to say that an extensive range of slot games, is a must for any top-quality online casino.
While it is tempting to think that the modern games of today are the ones most popular with players, thanks to the dizzying array of different bonus features and options available, there is a growing number of people who also enjoy more simpler slot gaming options.
As such, the retro slot genre has started to fill that void.
These games hark back to the simpler days of slot gaming, offering customers a chance to play games that look and sound just as good as any modern slot, while offering features and gameplay more akin to older style slots, even going back to the very first slot game ever created.
So let’s learn a little more about how ‘retro’ slots came into being and it all starts at the turn of the 20th century with an inventor.
Charles Fey – The Inventor Of The Original Slot
It seems strange to think that there was a time when there were no slot games but that was the case up until the turn of the 20th century. At that time, a German-born mechanic called Charles Fey invented the Liberty Bell Slot Machine, the first of its kind.
The slot proved to be incredibly popular and soon, Fey began taking orders for replicas of his machine from all over the United States. Business was booming and the slot industry was born.
Over the years, a number of refinements were made to slot games. The first games were entirely mechanical and only had a very small number of possible outcomes on the reels. When the games became electrified and controlled by computer chips, the number of options and potential outcomes of a spin increased markedly.
However, it was the advent of online gaming that allowed slots to develop beyond their physical restrictions. Now operating on the Internet, new games could be developed that had a myriad of new features and hundreds of thousands if not millions (and now billions) of potential outcomes on the reels.
This of course led to exciting new slot games to play, ones with many different bonus features, progressive jackpot prizes and much more.
But despite this, there were a large number of players who also enjoyed the simpler older style of slots. These slots were termed ‘retro’ style games, due to the fact they used older style symbols, tend to have fewer reels and features than more modern games and a gameplay more in common with mechanised slots of yesteryear.
Very soon a burgeoning retro slot scene had developed alongside the more modern games and it is a situation that continues to this very day.
What Are The Characteristics Of A Retro Slot?
Of course, retro slot games come in many different guises and they can be very different to each other but there are some relatively common characteristics these slot games generally tend to share.
These games tend to be three-, four- or five-reel games at most. They tend to use symbols that were very popular in older slot games, such as the famous ‘fruit’ symbols such as the cherries, plums, melons, pineapple, apple, blackberry and similar. Other popular and commonly used ‘retro’ symbols include diamonds, bells, bar symbols and lucky 7 symbols.
Retro slots also may not have some of the extra features of more modern games (such as Free Spins bonuses or progressive jackpots). However, there are games that do marry retro-styled gaming with these more modern features too.
You also tend to find that retro styled slots tend to have fewer pay lines in play than other slot games. Most retro slots have between one and five pay lines, but as is the case with features, you can find retro styled slots that offer more than the usual number of reels and pay lines.
What Are Some Great Retro Slots To Play?
The good news is that most top quality casinos tend to offer an extensive range of retro slot games, as well as the hybrid retro/modern slots that feature elements of both types of games. Taking a look at what is available at one of our partner sites, PlaySugarHouse Casino, we have found a number of games that fit the bill perfectly:
- Lucky Cherry
- Twin Spin Megaways (hybrid)
- Diamond Hearts
- 27 Twenty Seven
- Twin Spin
- Double Diamond
- Wild Wild Gems
- Hotspot 777
- Triple Red Hot 777 (hybrid)
- Fruit Shop
- Double Stacks
- Grand Spinn
- Double Cherry
- Triple Diamond
- Double Jackpot Smokin 777
- Season’s 7s
- Fruit Spin
- Fruit Shop Christmas Edition
All of these games will offer a great chance to experience a number of retro styled, or retro/modern hybrid games of different types and styles.
Why Are Retro Slots So Popular?
One thing you may be considering is why so many retro slots are so popular with people, when there are more modern games with so many more features, often offering much larger cash prizes available to play for the same price?
It’s a fair point but there is a very simple answer to this and that there are a significant number of slot gamers that enjoy simpler, easier to follow games which hold true to the older traditions of slot gaming.
Many people can be put off by games that are overly complex, or which can be difficult to follow. Part of the appeal of the original slot games was that they were very easy to understand and that is what these retro slots have in abundance.
If you haven’t yet tried your hand on a retro slot game then the list above is a great place to start. Pick a slot game that has a small number of reels and perhaps just a few pay lines and you too can enjoy the different yet equally enthralling experience of playing retro slots.