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Gaming Guru

David Newstead

Fruit machines becoming popular online

16 November 2009

Fruit machines over the years have become a ubiquitous part of British culture and can be found in pubs, casinos and cafes across the UK. These entertaining money making machines have a wide fan base drawn to their individual, often highly amusing themes and the skill element these games have – the one thing that sets them apart from regular 3 reel slot machines.

Their introduction of fruit machines to an online format was inevitable and many casinos have adopted these fun, quirky games and given them pride of place in lobbies. They immediately and naturally appealed to the large British player bases, but their huge multiplier jackpots, great themes and their unique elements have meant they now have a much wider, more international audience, with players from the US, Australia and Europe all giving their reels a spin.

Based on a simple 3 reel slot engine, fruit machines naturally appeal to 3 reel fans, but that's not to say 5 reel players don't play them. With a good bonus game and a bit more depth to each spin, fruit machines are perfect for fans of that slot genre too.

Look for "nudges" and "holds". Awarded randomly, these can be make or break features. Doing exactly as advertised, fruit machines actually allow players to hold some reels for the next spin or nudge the reels down to reveal a new symbol or line up winning combinations. Any slots player will tell you how frustrating it can be to see the symbol you need for a huge payout just one position away. Well with fruit machines, if you're lucky enough to get the nudges you need, you can simply nudge the reels down until you line up those big symbol combos!

Some games and players use the reels almost entirely to launch the bonus game (known as a trail), with other coin wins seen as just a perk. These exciting, rewarding games are normally off-screen and fun filled. They can vary from simple dice or hi/low games to bonus reels and free spins but they all offer a wide variety of rewards. Normally launched by any win on the reels or by the collection of points through smaller symbols contained on the main reels, these games are often key to jackpots that can reach as high as 2000 times your stake! They're always generous and fun, with big rewards that can range from cash, nudges, win spins (a guaranteed win on the reels on a free spin) and more. Watch out for the pitfalls and no when to cash-in your prize though!

In fruit machines a little bit of strategy can really pay off. Trigger trail games more often by using your nudges and holds to move the trail symbols into the payline, or simply increase your chances of hitting the required number by holding already qualifying/scoring reels. In doing this you will hit the trails more often and keep more coin in your balance.

One final bit of advice: always read the paytables and learn how the trail is triggered and optimise your strategy accordingly.

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