Online bingo is big all around the world, and although it might be more popular in the UK, the game is rapidly gaining fans in the United States too.
Of course, when it comes to online bingo, there are loads of different types, and in the US, they prefer to play American Bingo. Sometimes known as 75 Ball bingo, this game has a few major differences between the standard 90 Ball Bingo that’s commonly played in the UK.
In America, everything is bigger, with big cars, houses, cities and burgers. However, American bingo features a lower number of balls and smaller bingo cards than the game you’re probably used to playing. This usually means that American bingo games are faster and offer more chances for players to win.
The History of American Bingo
Bingo has been around in many different forms for several centuries, making it one of the oldest games you can play online today! However, while people have played some form of bingo for centuries, it wasn’t until the 1920s that modern Bingo was formed. A man named Hugh Ward is credited as being the one who helped to come up with the modern rules of the game and popularised it.
From that point on, the game of bingo began to feature at carnivals and fairs around the US. It was at a carnival that Edwin Lowe, a toy merchandiser, first experienced bingo in 1929. Lowe saw the potential in bingo and brought the game to the public. He’s even credited with giving the game the catchy name that we still use today when we have a winner.
Since then, bingo has become highly popular with lots of people all over the world. In the US, this game has traditionally been popular with churches and charity organisations as a way of fundraising. Today, bingo halls exist in certain states, and while Americans can’t play online bingo for real money, American bingo can still be enjoyed by players all over the world.
Key Features of American Bingo
Even if you’ve never played any form of bingo before, you don’t need to worry. The game is nice and simple to learn and even easier to play. Just follow our guide, and you’ll soon be having loads of fun and hopefully winning too!
In any form of bingo, you have Bingo tickets which contain numbers. Numbers are called out throughout the game, and when your numbers are called, you cross them off your ticket. Winners are declared when players achieve a certain pattern, and the type of patterns you need will depend on the game you’re playing. The American bingo rules are explained in more detail below.
Bingo tickets, sometimes also known as bingo cards, all contain a grid filled with numbers. In American bingo, each ticket contains a 5×5 grid featuring twenty-four numbers plus one free space in the middle. The numbers are randomly generated when you buy your ticket, and you can buy single tickets or strips.
A strip features three bingo tickets and includes every number from 1-75. Rules can vary depending on which variation you play, but in most cases, you can buy up to six strips, so eighteen tickets in total. Of course, the more tickets you buy, the better your chances are of winning although you could still win with just one ticket.
When you join a game of American bingo, you’ll buy your tickets and then wait for the room to fill up. Once the room is full, the game begins, and numbers are called out at random. In online games, the numbers are chosen using a random number generator to ensure that it’s completely fair.
Every time a number is called out, you can check to see whether it’s on any of your tickets and mark it off. Don’t worry about missing out though, as the game will mark off any matching numbers automatically. As you cross off numbers on your tickets, you’ll be looking to make a pattern to win.
To make your tickets easier to read, groups of numbers are contained within specific columns.
- B column – contains numbers 1-15
- I column – contains numbers 16-30
- N column – contains numbers 31-45
- G column – contains numbers 46-60
- O column – contains numbers 61-75
How to Win
There are lots of different ways to win in bingo. In the American version of the game, multiple winners can be called from one game. If you want to know how to play bingo, you’ll need to look for these patterns to win:
- Lines – Lines are a straight line of five numbers across the card. These can be horizontal, vertical or diagonal.
- Patterns – Patterns are specific groups of numbers that will be explained before the game starts. Some common types of patterns include crosses, letters and four corners.
- Full House or Coverall – A full house is where every space on a ticket is crossed out and this usually pays out the biggest prize to the lucky winner. In American Bingo, this is usually referred to as a coverall.
Some games also combine different winning conditions, so you might need to get a line and a pattern or a line and a coverall. If you’re unsure, check the rules of the room before you play or ask one of the staff members in the chatroom.
The bingo game will always automatically identify when a player has won, so don’t worry if you’ve forgotten to mark your ticket. The game will also always announce who won and their prize when it happens.
The Main Differences Between British and American Bingo
As you can see, the American version has a few major differences when compared to the classic games of UK bingo you’re used to. The game is still just as easy to play, but it’s worth making a note of the differences before you get started so you know exactly how to play.
The main differences between British bingo and American bingo are as follows:
- Fewer balls – Of course, the American version of bingo features a total of 75 numbered balls, 15 less than in the classic UK version of the game. This means that games are generally completed a big quicker, letting players enjoy more games in a shorter space of time. The fact that there are fewer balls also changes how many numbers on a bingo cards. 75 is the highest number in bingo.
- Different tickets – Because there are fewer numbers in American bingo, the tickets are slightly different too. Each American bingo ticket contains a 5×5 grid, with 24 numbers and one free space in the centre. Although the tickets look different, you use them in the same way, daubing numbers as they’re called out and the free space in the middle counts as a daubed number.
- New ways to win – One of the best aspects of American bingo is that there are new ways to win such as patterns. Bingo patterns come in a variety of shapes and add a fun new way to win as well as potentially leading to big prizes. Many American bingo games feature progressive jackpots that can be won by completing a specific pattern on your bingo ticket.
Why is American Bingo So Popular?
American bingo is quickly becoming just as popular as traditional bingo rules UK. The game is just as easy to play and understand but offers a faster pace and the potential for bigger prizes. Thanks to the growing popularity of online Bingo, American bingo is taking the world by storm.
Here are some of the most common reasons why players say they love to play American bingo:
- Unique patterns – The unique patterns that are required for a win always add a bit of variety to the game. Different games require different patterns meaning no two games of American bingo are alike. This variety helps to make the game stand out more compared to other forms such as 90 Ball bingo.
- Fast-paced – Because American bingo uses fewer balls, games tend to be faster than 90 Ball Bingo. Winners are found quicker, and this means you can get more games in during a shorter period of time. If you love fast-paced Bingo and quick wins, you’ll no doubt love playing American Bingo.
- Bigger prizes – In American bingo, players can match patterns on their tickets for big potential prizes. While most games feature standard lines and full house prizes too, a special jackpot is usually available to be won by those who are lucky enough to make a pattern. Some American bingo games have rollover jackpots that keep getting bigger until someone wins them.