Occasionally I’ll come across a term being used in a specific setting, and then see it being used in an adjacent setting and I get a bit confused myself. One of those words is accumulator, which is an element that can be found on certain slots.
I traditionally saw the word used specifically around Advantage or Bonus Slots: Meters that grow and show progression or growth of elements that can provide specific value to a player. This could be things like the free spin counters on progressive free games machines, or filling of meters on games like Electromax.
However, while discussing some topics with the team at Everi, I noticed the use of accumulator being used more broadly to cover anything that can show a progression over time. The definition they provided is both concise and more broadly incorporating of a variety of slot design elements:
Functionally, an accumulator is a meter with a discrete number of states which can be represented in many interesting ways to the player.Everi team
So, this also incorporates things like the pots, cauldrons, fireworks and so forth games have that show them slowly lighting up, filling with coins, etc. as game play progresses. And as we’ve covered here in depth previously, those elements do not indicate a bonus is due. Instead, they indicate history, of some amount of time since the last time the feature was triggered.
These can also go along with things like the bags in Fu Dai Lian Lian and the Boost element, which activates a boosted bonus when the bags reach a certain size.
So, when you see an element where something is visually progressing, that is most likely an accumulator. However, you’ll need to better understand the game to understand whether it’s an accumulator connected to any expected value, or just simply an entertainment element of the game that has no material impact on what’s happening on the screen.