Gaming in the 80's

For those that experienced the 80’s, its hard to forget the fond memories of being able to wear bright neon clothes, making mix tapes and working out with Jane Fonda. And for those born after this golden decade, it’s clear to see that the 80’s is still having an impact on future generations, with today’s teens still listening to Bon Jovi whilst fashion stores such as Asos and Topshop are bringing back 80’s fashion style.

However, one aspect of the 80’s that was most iconic was the culture of gaming. With the likes of large land-based casinos and bingo halls popping up, as well as the introduction of electronic betting games and the first at-home video games, the 80’s was a decade of development not just for the gaming market but also for the gabling sector. Let’s take a look at home gaming helped to shape this decade…

The Introduction of video gaming

With big names such as Atari and Nintendo launching, Video Gaming is one form of gaming that became incredibly popular during this era. From Super Mario to Donkey Kong, these classics were the epitome of digital gaming and introduced an at- home gaming experience like no other. Some of the major video gaming milestones of this decade included –

  • The release of Final Fantasy in 1987 (one of the first RPG games to be developed)
  • The United States was introduced to Japan’s popular Pac-Man
  • Nintendo’s creation of Donkey Kong, which then led to the character Mario
  • 1989 saw Nintendo release the handheld 8-bit Game Boy which included the popular game Tetris.
  • The first Flight Simulator game released by Microsoft

The 1980’s also saw the introduction of character Super Mario in the arcade game Mario Brothers.

However, there were also struggles in the US video gaming industry during this time. In 1983, the North American video gaming market experienced a significant crash with causes being attributed to an over-saturated market, increased competition from the computer gaming market and a surge in the release of very poor quality games.

However, whilst the video gaming market experienced a wave of highs and lows throughout the decade, one sector that really began to gather speed was the gambling sector.

The growth of slot games

Whilst the decades belonging to the early half of the 20th century restricted the growth of the gaming industry due to heavy laws and restrictions, the legalisation of gambling in the UK in 1961 enabled a huge amount of growth for the sector. Thanks to this law, the 1980’s was categorised by the likes of large land-based casinos and even super casinos in Vegas, as well as the development of bingo halls. These venues became iconic places for people to spend their Friday and Saturday nights, with venues also offering live music and fully stocked bars.

However, one thing that really grew this industry was the development of the first electronic slot game in 1975.  The emergence of electronic slot machines were a direct result of efforts to make traditional slot machines more interactive, convenient and interesting for players. So what set these slot games apart from their predecessors? Electronic slots brought many benefits that simply couldn’t be offered through their manual counterparts, including the addition of more pay lines instead of just one in the middle of the screen, as well as the introduction of free bonuses.

Land based casinos began to grow in the 80’s helping slot games become popular in this era.

Slot machines of the 21st Century

Fast-forward to today and most slot machine games are now played online where there are a vast variety of providers, different themed games and different online features to keep players amused.  Some of the most popular features of online slot games now include –

  • Ease of use – Whether you’re on train commuting to work, or in a rush and only have five minutes to spare, online slots games can be played anywhere, at any time, and on any device.
  • Variety of themes – These days the competition is fierce, and with hundreds of online vendors to choose from, even people with the most niche of interest will find something to spark their interest. What’s more, many franchises have jumped on board, meaning there are even movie and TV show themed slot games available.
  • Lots of bonuses and large jackpots – From free spins, to new customer bonuses, mini games and more, there are lots of features to keep players excited. There are also life-changing amounts of money to be won!
  • Affordability – With many online slot games offering very small wagers for each spin, there’s no need to raise the stakes too high. Whether you’re in it to win big, or are just there for the fun, online slot games offer something for everyone.

Themed slot games

As can be seen above, slot games of the 21st century have really raised the bar compared to that of the 80’s. However, with the sheer volume of competition between vendors, it now takes a lot of creativity and the latest graphics technology to keep players loyal. One of the ways vendors are doing this is through themed online slot games, in which leading software companies are now jumping on the back of blockbuster releases such as Jurassic Park, King Kong and Bridesmaids to popularise their games. So if Netflix isn’t quite keeping you entertained, themed online slots could be next on the cards!

Overall, online slot games have come along way since the 80’s. What was once a classic game played in only licenced casinos can now be played from the comfort of your very own front room. So what are you waiting for? Give online slot games a try!