May 28, 2023 by

What are Money Machine Slots?

As observers of the casino entertainment niche, and particularly the online casino niche, we here at Slots Play Casinos see it as an interesting phenomenon in slots that many game providers are now offering what they call money machine slots. It seems that almost every established game developer has a few retro slots and these money machine or casino money machine slots are a favorite at both online and land-based casinos.

The Phenomenon at Land-based Casinos

One of the enduring realities at land-based casinos is that all of their slot games are played at terminals.  When a casino wants to bring in a new slot from a provider it has to take out a number of terminals equal to the number of new terminals coming in.

Why Do Land-based Casinos Have to Take Games Out?

This is simply because land-based casinos have to use all available space on the casino floor.  There is no room for empty space at a land-based casino!

This means that land-based casinos don’t have any room for classic slots.  As new slots come, in older slots−some classics among them−have to go out.  So, it is somewhat ironic that many land-based casinos have brought in what their game developer calls a money machine slot!

Retro is a Modern Phenomenon

Retro slots have been a major motif in online slots for a long time.  That’s because there are no space restrictions at online casinos which exist in cyberspace which as far as we know has no limit.

What, Then, are Money Machine Slots?

Every game developer has their own idea as to what a RETRO money machine slot might be.  It could be a truly retro one-reel slot with one payline or it could be a more modern three-reel slot with as many as 60 paylines.

These slots usually have money symbols instead of any other symbols.  They all seem to have the same theme which, in a word, is: MONEY!  Players win money according to the value of the money symbol that completed a winning payline.

Retro Money Slots are an Example of the Nostalgia Craze

We live in such a fast-paced world that many people are looking for ways to “return” to “the good old days”.  Technology is so much advanced these days that people know inchoately that there is no longer any way to “go home, again”.

Casino money slots are a simple way to imagine that we are no longer in the 21st century and that our lives are slower than they really are.

Nostalgia offers a measure of comfort and escape to people.

Online Casinos Offer an Everyday Remedy to the Fast Pace of Life

We have said on many occasions that online casino gaming, as opposed to land-based gambling, is perfect for the slow unwinding many people need after a long day at work.

At land-based casinos, in contrast, people get off the plane or get out of their car after a long flight or drive and head as fast as they can to the casino where they check into the hotel and then quickly go down to the casino floor.

There is no element of calming and unwinding at a land-based casino.  Thus, the presence of super retro slots at land-based casinos is quite noteworthy.

Nostalgia is a Catch-all Term that Captures Many Emotions and Feelings

Of course, this is not a scholarly treatise on the nostalgic bent in casino gamers that has brought forth retro money machine slots!  Still, it behooves us to take a little time to try to understand the need for nostalgia.

Mono No Aware

This is a Japanese concept that roughly translated means “to have an emotional connection with inanimate objects”.  Many people save things they don’t need and will never need out of a wrongly applied sense of “mono no aware”.

Saving something that someday may have value is one thing but saving broken stuff is altogether different.  This trend, to hoard what we don’t need, was best exemplified by the run on toilet paper when the Covid 19 lockdowns were first announced.

People Love the Music of their Parents’ Generation

People move to the beat and lyrics of even really bad songs when they come on the radio!  The musicals of Hollywood’s Golden Era are popular more for the music than for the storylines.

What are Your Top Ten Smells?

We guess that some of them are reminiscent of childhood smells that we may no longer smell but that are in our smell database.  These smells might include leaves burning in the fall as fathers raked them and burned them on a fall Sunday until fears of air pollution took that smell away.

Another nostalgic smell is the deep country smell we remember from overnight summer camp and summer family vacations.  It is rare to sense this smell in a modern city!  We encountered these smells deep in the country far from any sizable city during the summer months of our childhoods.

Now that everyone has air conditioning, we no longer leave our windows open all the time.  Thus, when some people were young and lived in crowded city neighborhoods where no one had a house and everyone lived in an apartment, a kid just strolling from his or her apartment to the local park would smell the Sunday or holiday cooking from every apartment!

Retro Slots are a Very Small Cog in this Trend

Retro slots will not bring back the past.  At best they offer emotional comfort and a sense of the fun we all had when we were kids.

At this point, we should talk about slots in general and how modern slots add fun to a day that might have forgotten how to have fun.

Modern Slots are Perfect for Vicarious Entertainment

We cannot go back to ancient Rome, Greece, or any other culture that is featured in today’s slots.  A slot with an Egyptian theme simply allows our minds to travel back to ancient Egypt.

We can walk with Cleopatra and the Pharaohs.

Vicarious Entertainment Does have a Major Calming Effect

We race through the days and get back home later than our parents and grandparents did.  We need to unwind but we also feel that the evening is still young and there is much fun to be had in a million different ways.

Slots give us a chance to have fun for a time before we go out to spend the rest of the evening.  Slots are fun to play before we then stream a movie or hunker down to work on the project with a deadline.

Streaming movies is also entertaining.  It is one of hundreds to thousands of entertainments we need.  Working on a project may be professionally satisfying but it is not likely to be fun.

Slots Play Casinos Encourages Vicarious Entertainment

Here at SPC we also encourage real-life entertainment.  The point is that without entertainment and without some kind of nostalgic or retro entertainment, we would be hard-pressed to achieve the calming effect we need to be successful modern men and women.

Slots Play Casinos Informs Gamers about Online Casino Gaming

There is a great deal to learn about casino gaming and online casino gaming.


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Laurie Renfield has been part of the casino scene for both print and virtual media outlets for over two decades. Renfield's research focuses on both land-based casino entertainment and online casino gambling. She is dedicated to making sure that, regardless of where a player decides to compete, they'll achieve the best gambling experience and the most satisfying rewards.

Renfield's mantra for articles to share with our readers is to pick the most relevant and critical subjects for readers to ... [Read Laurie Renfield full bio]