The One-Armed Bandit is the nickname given to the old-style slot machine with a lever on the side. For over 70 years these slots roamed the planet, relieving unwary victims of their money!
Back in 1891 when poker had become fashionable in America, two enterprising New Yorkers Sittman and Pitt devised a poker machine for a solo player.
These early pokie machines were very different from the slot machines we see today and they featured a glass panel behind which were five reels, each having 10 playing cards mounted on it. There were no side levers on these machines so instead, when you'd put in a coin, you pressed a plunger down and this spun the reels thereby flipping the cards over.