Harry Williams founded Williams Electronics during the Second World War. Though the manufacturing and importing costs during the war made production virtually impossible, Williams in that time, invented the tilt feature on a pinball table. Once the war ended, Williams was able to put his first gaming devices into production including pinball and fortune telling machines. The first pinball machines that Williams released was named “Suspense” in 1946.
In the following decades, Williams continued to design and manufacture electronic games machines. The production of pinball machines was their modus operandi, and they continued to innovate the form, creating the two inverse bottom flippers that still remain part of the pinball experience today. They also created machines based on sports, such as a baseball game.
In the 1970s, Williams branched out into the burgeoning video games market. Noting the success of Atari’s iconic Pong game, Williams followed that same year with a version of their own. This was their first step into the coin operated arcade game market, and the company also began to design electronic, arcade versions of pinball.
Despite a turbulent gaming industry in the eighties, Williams continued to expand under the umbrella of WMS (which was, of course, short for Williams).
In 1991, WMS created a new division called WMS Gaming which began to develop video lottery terminals (VLTs or Pokies). This would set the groundwork for the company’s direction moving forward. Despite releasing a pinball machine in 1992 based on the Addams Family Movie, which would go on to be the biggest selling pinball machine of all time, the demand for such devices dwindled throughout the 90s.
So, their attention turned to WMS Slots, their first being “Reel ‘em In,” released in 1996. As terrestrial casinos on Native American reservations increased in number, WMS went from strength to strength in their new specialty.
WMS does not have a long history of making progressive slot games. And it’s certainly got a lot to do before it can compete with the likes of Microgaming and Netent in this department. The Mega Moolah and Divine Fortune games remain the gold standard when it comes to jackpot slot games. Currently, there’s only one slot game that cuts the mustard for Canadians, which is Dancing in Rio.
WMS also features an exciting range of branded slots. Their most notable and popular titles are Ruby Slippers and the Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Both are considered classics and capture the glory of 20th century Hollywood. A lot of these games also include extra features not found in standard WMS slots. At the time of writing, the best WMS brand slots our experts have tested are Wizard of Oz Ruby Slippers and Willie Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.
In 2012, WMS formed the subsidiary Williams Interactive to focus on their online gaming development. This would allow WMS to emphasise and streamline their real money casino and freemium offerings on desktop, tablet and smartphone in the mobile casino first era.
Orrin Edidin, who became President and CEO of Williams Interactive at the time, said that the restructure would allow the creation of a “single organization to unify the company’s efforts in online wagering and interactive gaming distribution channels, while drawing upon our extensive existing library of great gaming content.”
In 2016, WMS was reorganised again and fully incorporated into Scientific Games. The WMS brand sits with other gaming legends Bally Technologies, and Barcrest as members of the Scientific Games family.
If you want to play such classic WMS slots, we have reviewed and listed all the top casinos in Canada that have them, right here!
We have compiled a list of online casinos in Canada that offer WMS games. These casinos are licensed to operate and feature WMS’s most popular games.
Some WMS online slots and vintage casino games stand out more than others. These include Amazon Queen, Montezuma, Raging Rhino, Oz, and Ruby Slippers.