You’ll hear the word ‘theme’ thrown around a lot in the world of online slot gaming. It’s hard to pin down an exact meaning but, essentially, a theme is what a slot is designed around.
These days, a slot can be designed around literally anything, from abstract shapes and patterns to actual movies and TV shows. But some themes keep cropping up in slots time and time again. Here we reveal the reasons why fruit, Irish luck and Ancient Egypt remain the most common themes for slots both online and in real casinos.
Cherries, lemons and oranges have been brightening the reels of slots for as long as most gamblers can remember. Fruit-themed slot machines proved so popular in the 1950s, in fact, they earned an affectionate ‘fruity’ nickname from us Brits. But fruit symbols weren’t always there just to add colour and charm to the reels. They once served a purpose.
Back in the early 20th century, to avoid the gambling restrictions in place across several US states, slot machines often paid out in chewing gum, rather than cash. Fruit symbols were used to show the flavour of gum you could win. If you matched up a line of lemons, for instance, you’d win a stick of lemon-flavoured gum.
The tradition for fruit symbols stuck, even when the slot was free to pay out in cash once more. Hence the abundance of online video slots designed around fruit you see today, like Super Hot Fruits, Berryburst and Durian Dynamite.
A lost civilisation may at first seem an unusual source of inspiration for a gambling machine. But if you think about it, Egyptian-themed slots make a lot of sense. What could get win-hungry gamblers more excited than the sight of ridiculously-wealthy pharaohs and golden tombs stuffed with treasure?
Slot machines designed around Ancient Egypt, such as Cleopatra’s Gold and Pharaoh’s Fortune,have ruled the casino floors of Las Vegas since the 1960s. It’s hardly surprising, therefore, slot manufactures tuned to Egypt first when looking for inspiration for online games after the millennium. This explains the array of online slots designed around pharaohs, pyramids and treasure you now see available on the internet.
No doubt you’ve heard of the ‘luck of the Irish’. The saying originally came about during the gold rush years of the late 19th century, as many of the most successful miners were Irish or Irish-American. Today, however, many believe it means there’s something inherently lucky about the Emerald Isle.
And if there’s anything slot manufacturers want to imply about their slots, it’s that they’re lucky. Barcrest found huge success with Rainbow Riches, the original Irish luck-themed slot machine. Gamblers couldn’t get enough of the pot o’ gold symbols and charming leprechaun character on the reels.
It wasn’t long before a trend for Irish luck-themed slots began, a trend which continues to this day. Indeed, the demand for Irish luck-themed slots shows no signs of slowing down, with online slots like Slots O’ Gold and Finn and the Swirly Spin standing as some of the most popular on the web.