Free Online Pokies Australia
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Most popular Australian pokies
Aussies have long been known as the world’s most prolific gamblers. A penchant for pokies seems to run in their blood. That’s why some of the world’s greatest pokies makers have come straight out of the land down under. In fact, Australian providers have taken the lead in boldly going where most pokies makers have never gone before. No matter what your fancy, whether it be exploring the seven seas in Dolphin Treasure, strolling the streets of London in Big Ben or sampling the exotic orient in Dragon Lines, Australian pokies makers have you covered.
Founded in Sydney in 1953, Aristocrat is Australia’s true flagship pokies provider. As an early mover on the global pokies market, Aristocrat quickly ratcheted up its operations to secure its place as one the world’s premier pokies providers and Australia’s largest, hands down. Listed on the Australian Stock Exchange in the early 1990s, Aristocrat has proven to be both a solid innovator, and consistent market performer, cranking out some of the most amazing pokies to be found online today.
Spun off from Aristocrat in 1995 by Aristocrat founder Len Ainsworth, Ainsworth was able to effectively capitalize on Aristocrat’s decades of market experience to launch an exciting series of contemporary online pokies.. Most Ainsworth pokies lean toward high volatility, making Ainsworth pokies a coveted draw for pokies enthusiasts in search of super high payouts in exchange for a limited number of bonus features and smaller wins.
What’s a pokie?
Australian’s are an odd lot indeed. Casual, relaxed and carefree, their use of English in the land down under has taken on a particularly cheeky spin over time. In fact, today’s Australian vernacular is loaded with terms even a native English speaker from the UK, the US or Canada might find perplexing. What’s a brekkie or a bingle? More importantly, what’s a pokie?
No need to worry mate, brekkie is Australian for breakfast, a bingle is Aussie slang for a car accident and a pokie, despite what you may be imagining, is, of all things, a slot machine.
That’s right, Australians call slots pokies. But on God’s green earth, why?
Origins of the term pokie
The word pokie is originally a shortened, colloquial term for poker machine, which may seem odd, as slots and video poker are inherently different games.
Moreover, Australians never really embraced video poker with any degree of real enthusiasm (despite being the world’s number one gambling nation, wagering some $904 per person, per year,
ahead of the Irish at $600 per person per year and American’s at $400 per person per year, as reported by the Queensland Government Statistics Office for 2014-2015).
The term slot machine is fairly straight forward, as from the inception of slots in the late 1890s, players had to insert a coin into a slot, before they could pull the lever and spin the reels. But pokies?
Some have argued that pokies as a term for slot machines comes from the fact that you have to poke a button to get the reels to spin. Logical as it may seem, the argument doesn't hold water, as Australians adopted the term for slots long before the birth of the digital slot machines with buttons instead of a lever, which only emerged on the global stage back in the 1980s.
Furthermore, the word pokie isn't even considered slang in Australia, and has long since become the official word for slots, with casinos, clubs and pubs across the country adopting the term from as early as the 1920s.
While it’s true that each country has tended to create its own standardized word for slot machines, with ‘slots’ being common in the US and Canada, ‘fruit machines’ being the preferred parlance in the UK and ‘puggy’s’ being the Scots word of choice, the actual origin of pokies remains to this day
shrouded in mystery.
For the record, the Scots use of the term ‘puggy’s’ derives from an old Scottish word for monkey and was used to refer to the instrument played by an organ grinder, which perched on a stand and with a crank on one side resembled early slot machines.
How and why the Australians chose the word pokie remains one of the great mysteries of the casino world.
The history of Australian pokies
While it’s fairly clear that Australians were familiar with slot machines from the time they spread around the world like wildfire in the early 20 th century, legalized gambling didn't actually come to Australia until 1956, when the state of New South Wales first legalized pokies gambling in registered clubs.
With a penchant for risk ingrained in their culture as a component part of Australian’s frontier spirit, the love of pokies spread like a viral video does today, quickly enchanting every corner of the continent.
The Australian pokie maker Aristocrat had already foreseen the potential of pokie machines, making the first Australian models, known as Clubman and Clubmaster as early as 1953. The firm would go on to enter the pantheon of global games makers but a few short years later and to this day remains one of the world’s leading manufacturers of both land-based and online pokies.
With pokie mania gripping the continent, it is even said that one of the country’s first gangland wars were a direct result of competing mafia groups attempting to get their favourite pokies into local clubs and pubs ahead of the competition.
By the 1980s, pokies were nearly ubiquitous down under, with state after state conceding to the general population’s love of the game, and video pokies, as we know then today, began to pop up
around the country. Thanks to random number generators and the rapid pace of digital technology’s evolution, the sophistication and number of features, such as multiple paylines, scatters, wilds, free spins and bonus rounds, began to increase exponentially, further soliciting the Australian public’s appetite for pokies.
As the market grew by leaps and bounds, by 1995 Australian games maker Ainsworth would enter the fray as a spin off of Aristocrat focused exclusively on pokies.
Allowing players to play free online pokies as well as pokies for real money lead Ainsworth to quickly gain market share. Today, the company offers up an incredibly broad selection of free pokies for fun including famous online pokies such as Mustang Money, Crystal Cash, Roaring Reels, and Barnyard Bonanza.
To this day, pokies are known to be one of Australian’s favouite past-times, generating some $12 billion in annual revenue despite the mystery surrounding the name.
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