The first half of the twentieth Joker99 slot was a challenging one for the gambling industry as a whole and was characterised by legal regulation. In 1909 slots were made illegal in their home city of San Francisco, and by 1911 this had spread to the entire State of California. However, the small number of slot machine companies, led by Charles Fey became increasingly innovative in identifying loop holes within the law. In an attempt to ensure their machines did not meet the legal classification of a ‘gambling device’ slot machine, manufacturers changed the symbols used on the machines from gambling themed cards to fruits and sweets.
Whilst certainly creative, it was only a matter of time before the authorities recognised the inherent weaknesses in their legislation. The slots industry was dealt a further blow with the ‘State v Ellis’ case, which effectively outlawed all slot machines.
Despite the legal restrictions, the slots industry continued to grow and develop, primarily in Nevada where the gambling industry was free from the legal restrictions faced in other states. On the back of ever increasing demand, the Mills Novelty Company grew to become one of the major players within the industry on the back of producing cheaper slots in lighter wooden cabinets. In 1933 they produced the ‘Castle Front’ slot which came to symbolise the slots market at this time.
A further blow was dealt in 1951, when Congress passed the Transportation of Gambling Devices Act. Despite this, technological advances, initially electro-mechanical development in the 1960’s by the Bally Corporation tool slot machines to new levels of functionality that provided players with more advanced features that added significantly to the entertainment levels experienced by players. Further advances in the 1970’s saw the introduction of Video Slots. It was at this time that International Game Technology (IGT), one of the current giants within the slots industry was established.
With technological advances came the introduction of Random Number Generators (RNG’s), a key development which is still at the core of the land based slots market as well as the ever expanding online pokies market. The slots industry has come a long way since the Liberty Bell was first produced back in 1895, and has faced a tremendous amount of legal challenges and regulation. Despite this the industry has not only survived but has flourished.