The origins of the game of bingo can be traced back to 16th century Italy. In 1530, a national lottery was launched known as ‘Lo Giuoco del Lotto D’Italia.’ It has been played in that country every Saturday ever since.
Throughout the coming centuries, various forms of the game began to develop throughout Europe. The French version, ‘Le Lotto’, was introduced in the 1770′s, and the German variation known simply as ‘Lotto’, was soon to follow. ‘Lotto’ was a popular game for children which was also used as a method for helping kids to improve their math skills.
In Britain, the game became popular with troops passing spare time during the war and was originally known as ‘Housey Housey’. The game soon became popular with the general population and when The British Betting & Gaming Act legitimised existing social gaming, clubs began to be formed.
The clubs adopted the American name of ‘Bingo’ for their new craze and rapidly grew in number occupying existing sites such as picture houses whose success was on the wane with the advent of home television. Bingo halls can now be found in most towns and cities around the world.
The arrival of the internet has also heralded a new era for bingo players. Online and mobile gambling is becoming ever more popular and a 2012 report published by GamblingData UK estimates that the UK online bingo market to be worth an astounding £259.3 million. The ‘Mecca’ bingo group is currently reported to be the UK’s biggest operator by net gaming revenue at £55.8 million.
90 Ball Bingo
Widely considered to be the most popular format of Bingo, particularly in Great Britain. There are 90 balls and one is numbered 1-90. Players each have one or more game cards made up of 27 squares. Each card has 3 rows & 9 columns.
Out of the 27 individual squares on the game card, 15 of them will contain a number between 1 & 90. Each row contains 5 numbered boxes while the remaining boxes are left as blanks. The numbered balls are drawn at random and players have to mark off any corresponding numbers on their game cards. The aim of the game is usually to complete in full row before anybody else does. This is known as a ‘line’. The game continues until somebody completes 2 ‘lines’ and finally the whole game card which is called a ‘Full House’.
80 Ball Bingo
A less common form of bingo but one which is becoming more popular. This time, there are 80 numbered balls and the game card consists of four columns and four rows. All of the 16 squares each contain a number between 1 & 80. Prizes can be awarded in different ways, such as completing a ‘line’, ‘four corners’ or a ‘full house’.
75 Ball Bingo
Popular in the United States, 75 ball bingo is also becoming an online favourite. Played with 75 numbered balls and a game card made up of 5 rows and 5 columns. The middle square on the game card is usually blanked out with a star and is usually given as a ‘free’ square. There are two ways to play 75 ball bingo. The first method involves completing the usual ‘lines’ as you do in the other bingo games. the second way to play involves completing a pre-determined pattern to win.
Joker Jackpot Bingo
This particular variety of bingo differs completely from the other formats previously mentioned. Instead of using numbered balls, the game is played with a deck of cards. A game card is made up of 9 playing cards set out in a 3×3 grid. Each card may also contain up to 2 jokers (one black, one red). Prizes are usually awarded for completing a distinct letter ‘J’ pattern. Prizes are also awarded for completing a ‘full house’ hand. Players may also win prizes for finishing in under 16 cards or finishing on a joker.
Online Bingo Guide
Nowadays, playing bingo could not be any easier. Long gone are the days of having to leave the comfort and security of your own home to play. Just because your playing at home on your own doesn’t mean that you have to miss out on socialising with friends either as many online providers now offer in game ‘chat’ facilities. You can also be safe in the knowledge that your hard earned winnings are safe as they can be transferred straight to your account should you wish. There is certainly no having to look over your shoulder in the car park on the way home because you have an envelope full of cash!
So, if you would like to know how to play online, please follow our step by step guide below:
- The first thing to consider is which site to choose. The most important things to consider are security, promotional offers and also whether you are comfortable playing your chosen sites layout. Often sites will offer great ‘new customer’ only deals but be sure to read the terms and conditions as sometimes the offers are not always as good as they first appear.
- Once you have found a site you want to try check it out first. Some providers may require you to download software before you can play. If this is the case the simply follow the on screen instructions on how to do so. Check out the promotions on offer and also the methods of withdrawing and depositing funds as these can vary between gaming providers.
- Next you will need to open an account. You will be asked for basic details such as your name, email address, etc. You will also probably have to give your address or location so the provider can ensure that you are actually allowed to gamble in that area as gambling laws vary from place to place. It is also worth noting that a lot of promotional offers are only redeemable when open an account. Check if there is an option to enter a promotional code when you are first registering as you may not be able to do so afterwards.
- Once you have created an account you will need to deposit funds in order to pay. The more reputable gaming sites offer a variety of ways to deposit cash in your account. Paypal, Ukash vouchers and Neteller are all valid ways of depositing funds safely if you do not want to enter your credit/debit card details although you can use them if you wish to do so. It is probably a good idea to check before you open an account what type of transactions are available. Never give away your pin code for your bank cards as this will probably result in you being a victim of fraudsters!
- Now you have made your deposit and entered your promo codes its eyes down and time to play! Choose which game you would like to play from the ones that are on offer. Don’t worry about having to keep up as most online games will automatically recognise if you have won. Some even allow you to set the card to mark itself off so if you want to just watch you can do.
- If you find that you are a winner and would like to withdraw your winnings back into your bank, you will have to request a withdrawal. You should be able to do this in a similar way as how you made a deposit. Simply go to your account and follow the instructions on withdrawing funds. You may notice that the money you withdraw does not go instantly to your bank account. Most transactions take a similar amount of time to clear as a cheque.
Hopefully you are now fully prepared to enjoy playing bingo online safely and responsibly. Eyes down and good luck!!