Today lot of players might be curious about knowing the origins of the most ubiquitous games in New Zealand considering the complexities of gambling on the Green Continent. Here we talk about the Pokies History in New Zealand.
Pokies are in fact slot machines for the rest of the world which is known as pokies in New Zealand. This game is quite popular online nowadays in New Zealand. Let’s have a closer look at how it originated and developed into the most popular and engaging game in the pokies history in New Zealand.
Table of Contents
When were pokies introduced in NZ?
It all started in 1991 when it wasn’t called pokies. After gambling became popular all over New Zealand and the electronic gaming machines were called ‘pokie machines’, these machines were considered to be lawful for clubs, sanctioned casinos, hotels, and Returned Services Associations in 1988. At this time also pokies could not gain this much traction as today’s pokies.
It was only in 1989 that the parliament legalized the gambling clubs throughout the nation, and by 2003 the major gambling machines had been officially featured in the largest NZ land-based casinos at Christchurch, Dunedin, Auckland, and Hamilton, including two in Queenstown local casinos.
It made these games straightforward and easy to play for everyone! In the 1990s, the gambling operators wanted to install the machines in Wellington and the capital city surrounding, but in 2001 the government declared that it cannot gamble in the main city of New Zealand. All seven functional major casinos were closed due to the fear of gambling addiction among people.
Modern casino poker machines
The introduction of Electronic Gaming Machines (EGMs) in the late 20th century marked a significant turning point in the New Zealand pokies landscape. EGMs, also known as video slots, brought a new level of convenience and accessibility to the gaming experience.
As the land-based casino industry is governed by the law, all pokies machines are controlled or sponsored by the state bodies like charity funds and are installed usually in hotels and New Zealand pubs. All these games were liked by people due to their large payouts and interesting plays. The large jackpot payout was regulated and taxed similarly to the national lotteries.
As per a new Gambling Act, adopted last September, the act will govern more than 22 thousand slot machines and more than two thousand people. In this regard, all data will be sent to a central monitor, report on how much money has been put on a particular machine, how many wins it offered and what percentage of income was generated from it, etc.
The unique structure of the pokies industry in New Zealand
In New Zealand, the pokies industry operates under a distinctive structure, with corporate societies owning and managing the machines. These societies lease their machines to pubs and clubs, which then host them on their premises. A percentage of the profits generated by the pokies is returned to the community through charitable organizations and sponsorships.
This system ensures that the gambling industry contributes to local communities and supports various causes, such as education, sports, and healthcare initiatives. The Department of Internal Affairs closely regulates this arrangement to guarantee transparency and fairness in the distribution of funds, promoting a more responsible and community-oriented approach to gambling in New Zealand.
The emergence of online pokies
The growth of online pokies can be attributed to increased internet accessibility, convenience, and a wider variety of games. Online pokies attract players with engaging themes, graphics, and unique features that enhance the gaming experience.
Online pokies have been around longer than you can even imagine. The people of New Zealand are very adventurous and are fond of online pokies. The first slot was delivered by Microgaming in NZ for online pokies gaming that started delivering pokies online in 1994. This is the pokies history in New Zealand.
You can discover the first pokies i.e. Fruit Fiesta and Cash Splash, which was delivered at that time, even now online. Since then there were several new pokies that have arrived and have gained popularity towards the end of the 90s. People were well aware of the pokies that were delivered by Playtech and Cryptologic software providers.
The most popular type of all online pokies was having one winning, payline and only three reels. Gradually with time, the product companies start creating all the more energizing pokies that included more winning paylines, more reels, with exceptional images, like Wilds, Scatters, and Bonus Symbols, etc. It all transformed into Expanding Wilds, Sticky Wilds, Locked Wilds, and Shifting Wilds, apart from a few different varieties. These are part of Pokies History in New Zealand.
Microgaming and Playtech Rule the Roost
An act adopted in 2003, prohibits national online gambling or gambling on websites operated by home developers. This has terminated some percentage of the online pokies that were produced years before. As they could not stand the test of time and you cannot find them online anyplace, however, the two organizations: Microgaming and Playtech have developed almost 400 pokies alone, which you can find in most of the latest, distinctive, and completely authorized online casinos.
So long as online casinos are concerned, they should be authorized by the Gambling Act 2003. The best way to play in New Zealand officially is the national lottery website that has no competitors but cannot offer any other gambling online. You can play only legal games and the online equivalent of the top land-based casinos. This is the pokies history in New Zealand.
The Internet era today has introduced online gambling in New Zealand for the players of Kiwi land and it is authorized and controlled by the Department of the Interior Affairs. Every game that includes playing for money is monitored in the country and the winning amount is returned to the fund treasury of the community.
Still, players can play on those legal gambling websites that are operated from abroad and are out of the NZ gambling laws restrictions and legal jurisdiction of the state. So, be a real pokies punter and find out the casino of your choice to give it a shot.
Future Trends and Developments in New Zealand’s Poker Machine Industry
The future of poker machines in New Zealand will likely be shaped by several factors, including technological advancements, legislative changes, and an increased focus on responsible gambling. Innovations such as virtual reality, augmented reality, and artificial intelligence may revolutionize the gaming experience, while blockchain technology could enhance security and anonymity in transactions.
Potential regulatory adjustments could limit pokies availability or redistribute profits to benefit communities. Furthermore, the growing emphasis on responsible gambling and harm minimization measures may lead to the development of more support services and resources to help individuals struggling with gambling-related issues.