Pokies (also known as poker machines) are highly popular electronic gaming devices that can be found across Australia. Similar to slot machines, pokies are games which require players to create matching combinations of symbols across gaming reels in order to win a prize. Poker machines have a long history in Australia and are still very popular today.
The first poker machines were developed in Australia during the 1950s, after local gaming developers witnessed the success of slot machines in America. Citizens quickly took to the game, after gambling was legalized in 1954. Over the years, poker machines have developed and grown with the advancement of digital technology.
Poker machines have just started making the transition from Australian casinos and restaurants to the online world. Nowadays, you can find land-based games designed by IGT and Aristocrat on the internet – and you can even download them to your phone!
The main difference between slot machines are poker machines are the bonus rounds. In the land-based casino market, slot machines usually have “pick a prize” bonus games, whereas pokies offer free spins. While pick a prize rounds can provide one large lump sum, free spins offer players the chance to continually pick up huge prizes.
In addition to earning five free spins or more, all wins during the round are multiplied. Also, players can retrigger their free spins, so they they can end up having dozens by the time the round is over. It is also common for the number of wild symbols to be multiplied, making for even greater chances of hitting a winning combination of symbols.
One of the major benefits of playing pokies online is that players can obtain a wide range of cash bonuses that they would not be given in land-based casinos. These bonuses include free cash for registering and depositing, which can be used to wager on online pokies, in addition to loyalty programs in which players can accumulate points simply by playing their favourite pokies games.
In the online world, players are also likely to escape the potential pokies reform. Currently, the Australian government has suggested that players precommit to spending a particular amount of money before playing pokies at land-based venues, an idea that has been met with a great deal of resistance. Fortunately, the changes would only apply to gambling in the land-based world, while pokies players at online casinos can continue to play to their heart’s content.