Playing US Slots
American gamblers love slot machines. They’ve come a long way since the one-armed bandit days and online slot machines are now the game of choice for a significant number of US players.
The lure of potentially life-changing jackpot amounts has helped create a real buzz in USA online casinos and as a result there are now thousands of different slot machine variations for players to choose from.
The biggest problems a player face is choosing from the colossal number of slot machine games and deciding which of the hundreds of casino websites they should use to play. Nevertheless, choice is a good problem to have and we’ll help you to make much more informed choices so that no matter which online slot casino you’ll play at will be a good one.
As well as helping you choose, this guide will bring you up to speed on gambling law, including which USA online casinos are legal, and tell you what to look out for and what to avoid when selecting a place to play slot machines from the comfort of your own home.
US Slot Machine History
It was the 1890s when US slot machines first became available, although they’d be almost unrecognisable by today’s standard. The first machine was designed and made by Sittman and Pitt in Brooklyn in 1891. It was a five-reel machine containing playing cards and was more of a precursor to modern video poker than a slot machine, but it was the first machine to employ a one-armed bandit mechanism.
A couple of years late in 1895, Charles Fey was up to something on the opposite side of the country in San Francisco. He devised a machine containing only three reels and five different symbols. The symbols were diamonds, hearts, spades, horseshoes and a Liberty Bell. The Liberty Bell gave the machine its name and this is more or less considered the birth of the modern slot machine.
One armed bandits considered to be built and they became more and more advanced. Bally made the first electronic slot machine in 1963 and it was over a decade later that the first proper video slot machine surfaced. The machine made by Fortune Coin Co. Of Las Vegas was fairly rudimentary by today’s standards, but it laid the foundations for the modern age. The machine was approved by the Nevada State Gaming Commission and appeared in casinos in the late 1970s.
Technology moves fast, and it wasn’t long before video slots became more complicated, with second screen bonus rounds and complicated payline structures. This technology was easily transferred to creating games for online use at the start of this century.
Is It Legal to Gamble on US Slot Machine Websites?
The law in the US is tricky, as it’s implemented by individual states. Depending on which state you live in the simple answer to this question is either yes or no. You would need to check the law within the state you live, or are visiting, before logging on and using any USA online casinos.
The legal age of gambling varies from state to state. In some instances, it is 18 and in some 21, if it’s even allowed at all.
There are however three laws which affect the whole country when it comes to gambling, although online gambling legality is currently determined at state level. The laws are the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992, the Interstate Wire Act and the Unlawful Internet Gambling Act of 2006.
The laws surrounding gambling in the US are incredibly strict and when it concerns online gambling, including slot machines, some states are not legal at all, whereas the likes of Nevada, Pennsylvania and New Jersey are still in their relative infancy having only legalized online gambling within the last few years.
US laws and state laws severely limit the number of USA online casinos which are legal to use for players. However, there is still a great deal of choice and you should make sure to only use legal sites which we recommend in order to stay on the right side of the law.
What Makes a Great US Slot Machine Website?
If you want to play at any of the legal USA online casinos there is more to think about than remaining within the law. There are a number of things which make one site more attractive than another and you need to take some of the following factors into consideration too:
The main thing to consider, as a player, is what can be best for you when you join one of the USA online casinos to play slot machines. This usually takes the form of financial reward. After all, casinos are competing with each other for your attention.
The most usual way they do this is to offer a financial incentive such as a deposit bonus. This involves the casino doubling the amount of your first, and sometimes several subsequent, deposit(s). These are often generous, and a player can find themselves with $1000 or more in free bonus money with which to start their online slot machine adventure.
Some casinos offer free money without a deposit, although this is often a small amount such as $10 or $20, but it’s a chance to play for free. Another method is to give players a pre-determined number of free spins on a chosen slot machine. This is a great chance to get to know a game without any financial risk.
All bonuses have different terms and conditions and players are generally required to ‘play through’ a bonus amount several times before a withdrawal of funds is possible.
Speed is very important with gambling. Players want to be able to deposit money immediately so they can start playing right away. This is generally not problematic, but withdrawals can be. Some casinos wait for up to 48 hours after you submit a withdrawal request before they process it, and some take a long time to send money back to your account even after this pending period.
We’ll tell you which are the fastest and most reliable in terms of payments.
Nobody wants to play slot machine games that look visually unappealing or perform poorly. There are some sites that offer games where the gameplay is below par, but the good news is that most work with some of the top software providers to ensure you always have a fantastic online gaming experience.
You might wish to play slot machines on the move on a mobile device such as a smartphone or tablet. Many USA online casinos offer the choice of a downloadable app for this or they have made their website available in a mobile-friendly version to facilitate gameplay wherever you might be.
Sites to Avoid
Not all sites are recommended, even the legal ones. Some can be a problem in terms of poor gameplay or unreliable payments and we will tell you which we have blacklisted in order to ensure that online slot machine playing is never a disappointment.