How to Play Bingo Online: Our Brief Guide to Ultimate Fun
Now that you’ve found your favourite games are available on the Internet, as well, in addition to the buzz of land-based clubs, let me show you around so that you can see the great variety of game types developed for you. This short article will cover the most common variations which are offered in the bingo rooms of popular UK sites.
Some are very traditional, you know them and there’s no real need to bring them to much focus. Others are less known to the wide public and several are even available on a couple of sites only. We start by a handy table that contains our top suggestions for UK players and a quick instruction of how to join the fun in less than 5 minutes.
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A Step-By-Step Instruction to Your Games
In order to start playing, you need to do fewer things than when you plan a visit to your local hall. I know you’ll figure it out for yourself but I want to be as helpful as possible. That’s why below you see our easy-to-read-and-follow informational guide. Feel free to consult it and use it in the future.
Open Your Account: First of all, you have to open your player account. That is the same as obtaining your club membership card, yet not quite. While in a land-based hall you will need to fill in paperwork and wait for about a quarter of an hour to get the plastic in your hand, online sites will let you join in less than 5 minutes and you will be sitting comfortably at home, instead of jumping from foot to foot in front of a counter.
Choose from the Portfolio: Once you’re done, you can go in and open the Lobby. Unlike brick-and-mortar clubs where you can enter and even sit down at a table (given no one is guarding their “lucky seat”) to watch the game, online operators allow only registered members to enter the sites’ lobbies. Here, you will be able to see all the bingo rooms where the magic happens. Simply take a pick from the portfolio of game variations. There will be at least 2 of them, but the rooms are usually more than 5. The game type is shown next to the room’s name. In the Lobby, you can also access the schedule, pre-buy tickets for future lucrative events and take part in chat sessions.
Click “Play”: There is no bad or wrong choice on this step. You just click the bright-coloured button and make ready for what comes. And what may come? It’s hard to tell in detail, but it comes as entertainment, new friends, surprise gifts, heart-warming chats and plenty of bingo!
Variations Available Online Which UK Players Love
The physical halls which you’ll find in nearly every community offer primarily British bingo. That is the traditional variant played on paper and electronic terminal. Of course, the fun springs from many sources, and not just the game variant. That’s why we love physical halls. This paragraph, however, will reveal before you the best advantage of online play: variety. You’ll read about innovative types and about special combinations or games with additional bonus features which are possible only online.
- British Bingo Played with 90 Balls: The ticket has 27 fields on it, 9 columns by 3 lines. Not all the fields contain a number, some are empty. There are 5 numbers on each line and four empty boxes. I suppose most of you are familiar with the card layout. The nine vertical columns contain the nine decades of numbers, so you can find the called ones faster. If 55 is drawn, you need to look in the fifth column. That makes following the game easier. With online auto-daubing, however, such considerations became superfluous. You are sure to have all the called numbers marked and you’ll collect your wins, even when you aren’t present in the room. Still, I can advise you to be there as the action involves much more than balls getting called. The prizes are 3: Any 1 Line, Any 2 Lines and Full House where the winners shout “Bingo!”
- American Bingo with 75 Balls: This game is played on a square ticket of 5×5 cells with 24 numbers on it. The central square is marked “FREE”. The numbers called are fewer than in the previous variant, so the gameplay is faster. Each of the five columns is headed by one of the letters of B-I-N-G-O and each number is called along with the letter of its respective column. That way, you will know where to look for that number and not waste time. The “B” column can hold numbers between 1 and 15, the “I” one holds those from 16 to 30, and so on. It can be played for a variety of prizes: with patterns and for lines. What really attracts players to this bingo variation are the patterns. They can be various shapes, letters, numbers or funny symbols. When the entire card is covered, we have a Blackout. If you play for lines, the 5 separate prizes are the top advantage of the variant.
- Bingo 80, a Successful Cross-Over: Owing to the fact that plenty of players loved the American version of the game, a newer one sprang to combine the advantages of the two traditional types. A decade ago it used to be called “innovative” and was on offer at selected places, but nowadays you’ll find it on almost all sites. The card is a 16-field square: 4×4, all filled in. You can play with patterns and have several chances to win prizes, similar to the 75-ball game, or you can win by lines, like the more typical European game. It appeared as a speed game, because of the fewer cells on the card, and for some time it used to be the most interesting and unusual variation available online.
- A Game with 75 Balls at Wink
- The Lobby with the Bingo 90 Games
- Lobby Preview of the 75-ball Rooms
Here are some of the more recently developed variations which are played with the normal balls and numbers which are marked on tickets. The difference is in the total number of balls and the winning combinations. The latest one appeared in 2015. As the public is hungry for more, we may expect even newer variants to spring up.
- Speed Bingo with 30 Balls: This was the first one to appear in the form of a speed game. The ticket has just 9 cells. They are filled with numbers and you can win 1 Line, 2 Lines and Full House. There are good winning chances due to the small number of both balls and cells to be filled in, plus many games can be played in an hour. As much as the need for speed was serious, this variant somehow didn’t manage to come into its full rights. Maybe speed versions of the other games made this one slightly redundant, or maybe it was something else. The fact remains that it’s hard to find nowadays.
- Playing with 50 Balls: You can do that at Tombola, where the numbers on your card look as bubble wrap and pop when called. The other place is Gala Bingo where the Coconut Island room holds the eponymous game. The tickets for this variant are 2×5 grids. To add a special feel to the experience, effects are added. Coconuts fall to the ground and crack open to show the numbers. There are audio effects, too. The game is available on the go, with some of the additional features to be enjoyed on particular platforms only.
- Bingo 60: This is an interesting game type offered at some selected sites. Tombola, for example, give you the possibility to win playing with 5 colours of tickets that have different layouts. They all have 3 lines, just the number of columns vary. Orange is played with 2 columns, green – with 3, and red, purple and blue sport one more than the previous one. Other websites will feature just a 5×3 grid. The chances to win here are rather good, due to the relatively small number of balls. As this is a rarely featured variation, it’s enjoyable for its novelty.
- Rainbow Riches with 40 Balls: The latest game variant to arrive was developed by the software giant Virtue Fusion, bingo arm of PlayTech. Based on the popular slot of the same title, this entertaining game features cards that look like double four-leaf clovers and gives away several additional bonuses. One of them is the Rainbow Jackpot. It’s a progressive community JP and when it’s won, all the players in the room get a piece of it. When it’s hit depends on the leprechaun that moves along the rainbow. The typical bingo wins are a Clover and Full House.
- The Coconut Island, a 50-Ball Room at Gala
- Rainbow Riches Is a 40-Ball Bingo Game
- The City Hall Room Holds Bingo 30
- Instant Bingo, a.k.a. Video Bingo: This is a nice single-player variant that you may play anytime. The online websites that use software by Microgaming offer plenty of these games. In them, you will play in a manner similar to slots. You don’t need to wait for participants, or for the room to open. There is a pay table with each title and you may choose how much you’ll bet. The prizes come instantly, of course.
- Bingo Played with Cards: There are several such games. In them, you’ll use a hand of cards instead of a typical bingo ticket, but drawing of lucky numbers is still there. Cards are drawn and they need to be matched with your “hand”. Some of these combined games have extra features that bring additional prizes. For instance, Snap! by Gamesys will reward you also in case you happen to have a winning poker hand.
- Games with Bonus Features: There is an entire host of branded games based on popular TV shows. They run in the traditional way and after the standard game qualifying players participate in the bonus round where they can see special features from their favourite programmes. All the major shows, such as X Factor, Britain’s Got Talent, Deal or No Deal and Who Wants to Be a Millionaire have their representation with various software providers.
Conclusion: We Recommend
What I can definitely advise is that you check around, join several of the top providers recommended on this website and try the variety on offer. Some of the variations combine features of the traditional favourites, and some go even further to incorporate the best-loved characteristics of other types of games, such as cards, arcade or slots. That is one of the top advantages of getting online and joining a gaming site: the diversity you’ll find there is not to be matched with any real-life club.