Online casinos have been around for a little under three decades by now. They emerged soon after the internet became mainstream, and have been sticking around ever since. They are the latest step in the long evolution of organized gambling that started hundreds of years ago. While iGaming has gone all high-tech, it still has elements that have remained mostly unchanged since the very beginning of the casino industry. Tradition indeed meets modern technology in these games that have been invented a century ago but which you can play today mostly unchanged at the Spin online casino Ireland.
Blackjack has been around, in one form or another, since the 16th century – at least that’s how far back mentions of the game go. It was first described in a short story written by Miguel de Cervantes, the writer of Don Quixote, in 1601. The game spread from Spain to France and England, and later to North America. Here, it spread especially during the Klondike Gold Rush, earning the name that we know today.
Legend has it, one of the saloons where it was played invented an attractive bonus – a special payout for a hand of 21 points consisting of an ace of spades and a black Jack. The name stuck, giving us one of the most recognizable casino games of all.
Blackjack is available everywhere, from gaming machines in betting shops to the best-known online casinos, both in real-life, virtual, and live dealer online game form.
The origins of baccarat are unclear. Some say, it was a game that appeared in Asia and brought to Europe at the beginning of the 17th century, while others think that it happened the other way around. What’s certain, in turn, that it has been with us for centuries.
In the early 19th century, baccarat was the game of choice for the French nobility, predominantly played in private rooms – then, as gambling regulation gradually replaced bans across Europe, the game regained its place in casinos. And, apparently, it is here to stay.
Baccarat is very easy to learn and is very fast-paced. In the casino variations, players don’t need to make any decision aside from deciding which hand they want to bet on – the rest of the work is done by the dealer. The game is played in brick-and-mortar casinos across the world (it is especially popular in Asian casinos) as well as online, both in a random-number-generator and live-dealer version to this day.
Roulette has a rather interesting story. The roulette table was probably born out of a combination of several different games of chance played in France at the time, while the wheel probably owes some credit to French physicist, mathematician and overall Renaissance man Blaise Pascal who tried to create a perpetual motion machine. The game in its current form has been played in France since the late 18th century. After a few decades in which France was the core of European gambling, German spa owners made it their goal to lure some of the high society to their resorts. Thus, they introduced a new roulette table with a slightly lower house edge. The plan worked, creating a new pole for European gambling.
When a wave of gambling bans hit Europe, the roulette table used in Germany took refuge in Monaco – this variant is known today as European roulette. The original French roulette wheel made it across the ocean, spreading from New Orleans to the entire North American continent – today it is known as American roulette.
Roulette is played all over the world – it is a game without which a casino is not a casino – and has been around for centuries.
Slot machines are perhaps the youngest among the casinos’ “greatest hits” – they’ve been around for “only” around 120 years. In the late 19th century, a kind of mechanical poker machine emerged that was very popular – but inherently limited by its large number of possible winning combinations that made it impossible for it to function without human assistance. A San Francisco mechanic thought he can improve on its design – and he did, simplifying the machine, reducing the number of possible winning combinations and creating an automated payout mechanism so that the machine could function without human intervention – except for the player, of course.
The slot machine became insanely popular. Soon after its introduction, several companies have started building similar devices – some of them are around to this day. In a few years, the slot machine was approved by the authorities of Nevada, finding its way into Las Vegas casinos, and starting on its conquest of the gambling establishments around the world. The emergence of video slots in the 1970s gave the industry a breath of fresh air, and the casinos’ transition to the internet opened up countless new possibilities. Today, slot machines are everywhere, from high-profile casino lobbies to the small betting shops on the corners – and countless slot machines can be played online.
Keno is a simple, lottery-like game that is often part of the state lotteries’ offer – but it is a staple in casinos, too. The game is truly ancient – legend has it that the Han Dynasty, ruling China between 202 BC and 220 AD, used a keno-like lottery game to fund the construction of the Great Wall.
The keno slip is in many ways similar to a traditional lottery ticket, with 80 numbers on it. The numbers are extracted automatically by a machine (or by a random number generator in online casinos). The more winning numbers a ticket has, the bigger the payout. In brick-and-mortar establishments, keno numbers are extracted at regular intervals, and players can buy tickets at any time. State lotteries have daily or weekly keno games. And in online casinos, a game of keno can be initiated by the players themselves at any time.
The game of keno has remained mostly unchanged for millennia, so it is the game of chance that truly stood the test of time.