Gaming researchers Todd Eilers and Fran Fantini, from Fantini Research, have released the results of their Quarterly Slot Survey.

The survey consisted of 245 gaming venues that hold a total of over 250,000 slot machines all across the United States.

Their results found that the ever popular Wheel of Fortune slot machine outperformed all other slots in the fourth quarter of 2012.

Wheel of Fortune, developed by International Game Technology, was first launched in 1996 and has remained popular ever since rewarding players with over $2.5 billion in jackpots.

International Game Technology Vice President Ron Rivera praised the work of his company for keeping Wheel of Fortune popular for so long.

“The longstanding success of our Wheel of Fortune slots is a testament to IGT’s dedication to developing the games that players truly enjoy to play,” Rivera said.

“From the classic spinning reel game to the new Wheel of Fortune Experience, packed with interactive bonuses and 3D fun, players love these games.”

Bally Technologies Michael Jackson and International Game Technologies’ Mega Bucks featured tied in second place for the best performing slot machine of 2012.

The Michael Jackson slot machine was only released in 2011 but has quickly gained popularity with gamblers because of its interactive features and the inclusion of six popular songs including Billie Jean and Smooth Criminal.

Mega Bucks is known for its major progressive jackpots that often reach over $10 million dollars – the largest ever slot machine jackpot of $39,000,000 was won in 2003 on a Mega Bucks slot machine.

The survey also found that the Bally Technologies’ IView System, which features games such as Virtual Horse Racing, was growing in popularity among casino operators with a third of survey participants saying that they plan to install the system in 2013.

Source: Vegas Inc and PR Newswire