Why Are Pokies Called Pokies?

why Are pokies called pokies
Why are they called pokies

If you’re a regular casino player from New Zealand, the term “pokies” likely rings familiar in your ears. It’s a common nickname for poker machines in the land of the Kiwis, and you might have wondered: why are pokies called pokies in the first place?

With a particular place in the hearts of gamblers and gaming fans in Australia and New Zealand, the phrase “pokies” is a quirky and interesting slang expression.

In certain areas, the name “pokies” is frequently used to refer to pokie machines, giving the gaming industry a distinctive appeal.

History of the word Pokie

history of online pokies
History of Online Pokies

If you’re familiar with Australia or have explored online casino websites, the term “pokie” might have caught your attention. Often used to refer to pokies machines, particularly Down Under, the story behind this nickname is both exciting and culturally rich.

Learn more – Gambling is not a new phenomenon, it existed for centuries.

Origins of “Pokies”

The term “pokies” has become synonymous with pokies machines, and it’s a popular term in Australia and New Zealand. This word derives from “poker machines,” the earliest form of gambling machines.

These machines gained immediate popularity among Australian gamers in the early days of digital entertainment.

Aristocrat Leisure’s Influence

The journey of “pokies” is intertwined with Aristocrat Leisure, an Australian company founded in 1953. This company significantly introduced these gambling machines to Australia, making them a household name.

Despite the evolution of pokies, the term “pokies” has remained, even though the connection to “poker” has diminished.

Evolution and Recognition

While video pokies have replaced mainly traditional poker machines, Australians affectionately refer to them as “pokies.” This term’s staying power speaks to its cultural significance.

The history of “pokies” in New Zealand reveals that they arrived in 1987 and quickly gained popularity. The machines initially featured poker suits, bells, horseshoes, and fruit symbols. The poker symbols stood out, leading to the term “pokies.”

A Cultural Shortening

The shorthand reference of “pokies” for pokies machines emerged from taking the recognizable “pok-” from “poker” and making it into slang. This linguistic evolution reflects the unique and enduring connection between Australian culture and the world of casino gaming.

Relationship to Poker Machines

  • Connection to the poker game: The term “pokie” is thought to come from the word “poker machine“. The first type of poker machine introduced to Australia in the early 1900s was called a “poker machine” because the winning combinations were based on poker hands. Over time, “poker machine” was shortened to “pokie”.
  • Evolution of gaming machines and their association with “pokies”: The first pokies machines were invented in the late 1800s in the United States. They were originally called “fruit machines” because they featured symbols of fruits such as cherries, lemons, and oranges. Pokies were introduced to Australia in the early 1900s. The first poker machines in Australia were called “poker machines” because the winning combinations were based on poker hands. Over time, “poker machine” was shortened to “pokie”.

Connection to the Poker Game

The first pokies in Australia were called “poker machines” because the winning combinations were based on poker hands. The most common winning combinations were the same as those in five-card poker, such as a royal flush, a straight flush, and a full house.

This connection to the poker game is why pokies are still called pokies today, even though the winning combinations on modern pokies are not always based on poker hands.

Evolution of Gaming Machines and Their Association with “Pokies”

The machines have evolved significantly since the first pokies were introduced in Australia. Modern pokies now feature a wider variety of symbols and winning combinations, and they often have bonus features such as free spins and multipliers.

However, the term “pokie” has remained the same, and it is now the most common term used to refer to pokies machines in Australia and New Zealand.

The association between pokies and poker machines will likely continue for many years. The term “pokie” is firmly established in Australian and New Zealand culture and reminds us of the history of pokie machines in these countries.

Introduction to Online Pokies

Introduction to Online Pokie
Introduction to Online Pokies

Before the world worried about the new millennium, the online gambling industry, known as iGaming, was already making its mark. As early as 1994, Microgaming pioneered the creation of real-money virtual pokie machines, setting the stage for what was to come.

Other companies like Playtech followed, but UK developers held a dominant position during this era, as websites mainly hosted games from a single supplier.

By 2004, even before the game-changing iPhone emerged in 2007, Microgaming had already developed the first mobile casino software. During the same year, they introduced the original licensed pokies game, “Lara Croft: Tomb Raider,” which later spawned a successful sequel titled “Lara Croft: Temples and Tombs.” Mobile gaming gained prominence, leading developers like NetEnt to prioritize a mobile-first, touch-optimized approach.

Thanks to gaming pioneers, online pokies have become widely accessible to people worldwide, including those in New Zealand. The online pokies market in New Zealand is fiercely competitive, with various international developers vying for attention. This competition continually pushes the boundaries, introducing innovative features to engage Kiwi players.

More recently, the evolution of online and mobile casinos has transformed pokies into live casino games. Looking ahead, the future of pokies might involve virtual reality, providing an exciting prospect for a potential VR pokies experience.

How do Pokies Work?

how do pokies work
How Do Pokies Work

Whether you’re playing pokies machines at local venues across New Zealand or trying your luck with online pokies at virtual casinos, the basic mechanics of how these games operate are quite similar.

Contrary to common misconceptions, pokies machines are entirely based on chance. When you hit the spin button, a computer determines the outcome of each spin. While futuristic ideas like advanced technology might influence pokies in the future, they remain distant possibilities for now.

It’s important to note that every pokies machine is designed to give players back less than the total amount it takes over time. This characteristic ensures that, in the long run, players will inevitably lose funds.

Most online pokies have Return-to-Player (RTP) rates exceeding 95%, making them more generous than their land-based counterparts. However, this is significant even with a typical loss rate of 3% to 4%.

Each pokie machine has a built-in computer program capable of generating numerous random outcomes every second. When you press the spin button, the machine selects one random outcome from this vast pool.

This process repeats continuously, generating new options every second, day and night. The results are always fair since pokie machines cannot think or remember.

Upon placing your bet, the machine generates an outcome featuring symbols on the display. Importantly, this outcome is entirely independent of previous or upcoming game results. If the machine declares you a winner, you’ll receive your credits.

Popularity of Pokies in New Zealand

popular pokies in new zealand
Popular Pokies in New Zealand

Pokies are a popular form of gambling in New Zealand. They are the most popular type of casino game in the country. According to the New Zealand Gambling Commission, pokies accounted for 46.1% of total gambling expenditure in 2020.

There are several reasons why pokies are so popular in New Zealand:

  • They are easy to play and understand. Pokies are a relatively simple game, and the rules are easy to learn. This makes them a popular choice for people who are new to gambling.
  • They offer the potential for big wins. Pokies can pay out large jackpots, which can appeal to gamblers. The largest-ever jackpot paid out on a pokie machine was in New Zealand in 2016. The jackpot was worth NZ$30.7 million.
  • Pokies are widely available in pubs, clubs, and casinos all over New Zealand. This makes them a convenient and accessible form of gambling for many people.
  • Pokies are often seen as a form of entertainment and social activity. They are a way to socialize with friends and family, which can make them a more appealing option than other forms of gambling, which can be seen as more isolating.

However, it is essential to remember that pokies can be addictive and that there is always the risk of losing money. If you are considering playing pokies, it is necessary to gamble responsibly and to set a budget before you start playing.

Pokies are popular in New Zealand, as seen by the many machines dispersed around the nation and the active online communities of players.

  • Book of Dead by Play’n GO: This pokie game is based on the ancient Egyptian Book of the Dead. It has five reels, ten paylines, and several bonus features, including free spins and a gambling feature.
  • Mega Moolah by Microgaming: This pokie game is a progressive jackpot pokie, which means the jackpot grows larger until it is won. It has five reels, twenty paylines, and several bonus features, including free spins and a progressive jackpot.
  • Starburst by NetEnt: This pokie game is classic with simple but addictive gameplay. It has five reels, ten pay lines, and a colourful and attractive design.
  • Big Bass Bonanza by Pragmatic Play: This pokie game is based on fishing. It has five reels, twenty paylines, and several bonus features, including free spins and a respin feature.
  • Jurassic Park by Microgaming: This pokie game is based on the popular movie Jurassic Park. It has five reels, twenty-five paylines, and several bonus features, including free spins and a multiplier feature.

These are just a few of the many popular pokies that are available in New Zealand. Pokies are a great, fun, and exciting way to gamble.

Choose your place to play pokies in NZ.

Conclusion – Why are pokies called pokies

Pokies are called “pokies” because they are neat adventures in gaming and language. They started with poker machines tied to card games we love. This cool nickname is stuck in Australia and New Zealand. Even as games got fancier, “pokies” stayed, reminding us of excitement, luck, and casino fun.

It’s a name that shows these places’ cool history and culture. Whether playing in a casino or online at home, “pokies” is an excellent word that reminds us of gaming machines’ good times and interesting pasts.

Whether spinning the reels in a lively casino or enjoying online pokies from the comfort of your home, the name “pokies” is a delightful reminder of these beloved gaming machines’ enduring popularity and captivating history.

Mamta Sharma

Mamta is a spirited writer hailing from Wellington, bringing a youthful zest to the world of digital content. Merging her love for narrative with an eye for detail, Ella crafts stories that resonate and engage the modern reader.