The concept of a Fruit Machine may conjure up some sort of healthy smoothie making gadget, but for players in Great Britain it’s popular slang for classic three-reel casino machines. Canadian players may wonder what their Commonwealth cousins are smoking, but simply consider Fruit Machines as a type of old school slot machine that offers straightforward, retro fun with the essential thrill of turning spins into cash wins.
We’ll explain more about these fruity little numbers below, but if you need a shot of Vitamin C(asino) now, our recommended sites below should help you with a neat fix of fruit machine goodness.
How to play Fruit Machines?
Easy game – Fruit machines are possibly one of the easiest casino games to learn for any player, and certainly a perfect introduction to online slot gaming if you’ve never dabbled before. We said earlier that fruit machines are old school slots and they are probably the closest game in spirit to the original Liberty Bell machine that kicked off the whole slot revolution way back in the 1890s! But don’t think that fruit machines are dinosaurs that should have been made extinct by the evolution of sophisticated five-reel online slots. Fruit machines are fun.
Style – Online fruit machines are typically styled to re-create the look and feel of real electro-mechanical machines found in pubs and arcades, so they bring an authentic experience of playing traditional gaming machines to your desktop or mobile. The tried and tested format of three reels and a single payline is king here, and you can usually expect a good serving of classic fruit symbols on the reels too. Cherries, lemons, oranges and melons are familiar favorites, but fruit machines aren’t averse to throwing in less fruity symbols to the mix, so Bars, Lucky 7s and Bells often add to the old school vibe. Online fruit machines are also happy to mix things up a little with extra features more common to five-reel slots (such as Wilds and multiple paylines) to give a little twist to the basic format, so there’s more variety than you may first imagine.
The basics – The basics of playing a typical fruit machine is the simplest cocktail of slot gaming. You stake, you spin and when three symbols match on the payline, you win a cash prize. As mentioned above, online fruit machines have given developers the chance to spice this basic formula up with little added features, but nothing that messes with the core fun of these games.
Two special features often found on real-world fruit machine games in the UK that sometimes appear on online versions are the following:
- Nudge: This is a randomly awarded feature that allows the player to nudge a reel one position up or down after all three reels have stopped. The excitement here is that you may be able to nudge a winning combination on to the payline, snatching victory from the jaws of defeat. A typical presentation of this feature is to have buttons under each reel that flash to show when the player has the option to nudge that reel. Also a fruit machine might allow a player multiple nudges to increase the chance of rearranging the stopped reels into a winning position.
- Hold: Like ‘Nudge’ this is a randomly awarded feature that will allow the player to lock one or more of the stopped reels for their next spin. Also like the Nudge feature, this is usually controlled by button under each reel flashing when the Hold feature is offered on the reel above it. When ‘Holds’ are offered it creates fantastic tension, since it offers choice you don’t usually associate with slots plus the excitement of seeing if the gamble to keep a reel ‘held’ delivers the hoped-for result on the next spin.
Hold and Nudge features are relatively rare on online fruit machines, but do watch out for them as they add a certain je ne sais quoi to proceedings when they’re available.
Our Fruit Machine Favourites
To really get a feel for online fruit machines it’s obvious that a quick spin of some prime examples is the next step. For that reason, we’ve pulled together some fruity treats for you to enjoy at our recommended casinos. Fruit Slots, Mocha Orange and Cherry Red slot are a perfect introduction to the style, while Microgaming’s Lucky Barstard slot is an online fruit machine that includes the Nudge and Hold features discussed above.
A typical online fruit machine may seem old fashioned when measured up against cutting-edge online themed video slots like Immortal Romance, but the best online casinos always have a stash of these old school slot machines for good reason. They are simple, and simply fun. Also don’t underestimate the power of these machines to deliver a big win either. Headline jackpots of hundreds and even thousands times your stake are available, so these old-timers can easily give all singing and dancing five-reelers a run for their money on this level.
Hopefully you’ve now got a taste of what these fruity reels can offer, and with plenty of options to try at our recommended casinos a quick spin for luck is only a click away.