The fruit machine happens to be a term used in Britain to refer to slot machines. By fruit machine, land-based machines are being referred to, although video slots are descended from them.
Usually found in amusement arcades, pubs and casinos across Britain, a fruit machine is also known as “fruities”, have been popular for a long while and will likely remain so for the foreseeable future. In the US where they originated, a fruit machine is the Slot Machines. Australians, however, refer to them as “Pokies.”
Fruit Machine: A Detailed Explanation
A Fruit machine is easily found in amusement arcades, pubs and casinos across the length and breadth of Britain. These slot machines were invented in the US at some period during the late 19th century. There, the name slot machine took root and they are still being called by that even now.
The reference to slot machines as fruit machines comes from the fact that fruits were the original icons to show up on the reels of such machines. Fruits were actually used for a good reason. This was because such early slot machines paid out wins in chewing gum and fruit chews.
The varied fruits on the show, therefore, determined the taste of such candy. Thus, landing a watermelon combo resulted in players being awarded watermelon-flavoured chewing gum or fruit chews.
Using sweets and candies as prizes was an attempt to circumvent the strict gambling laws then in effect due to the puritanical atmosphere of the period. When gambling gained widespread acceptance, the prizes were then changed to cold cash. Still, the fruit icons remained in place as they were then so popular, even when slot machines made their way to the UK.
The usual fruits seen on slot machines include cherries, apples, lemons, plums and watermelons. However, over the years nearly every sort of fruit has made an appearance on one slot machine or the other.
In classic fruit machines, fruits are for middle wins, bars are for the least wins, while icons like bells and lucky sevens denote the biggest wins. Usually, players need to land multiple fruit icons on a payline in order to record a win, and some fruits are also more valuable than others.
The earliest fruit machine employed a lever or handle that was used to move the reels. This earned it the name of the one-armed bandit.
Starting from the heady period of the 1960’s, such mechanical slots were replaced by others which were electronically powered. As a result of this, buttons were used instead of levers and handles.
In this 21st century, there are still quite a few fruit machines in pubs, arcades and casinos across the UK. When these machines are played online in an online casino, they are termed “Slots” or online slots.