Learning how to play 90 ball bingo will be pretty easy, it is the most popular bingo game in the UK and you will find it at 99% of UK bingo sites (don't quote me on that!)
90 ball bingo is most popular form of online bingo currently on the bingo market. Its popularity comes down mainly to the number of gamers that play the bingo game. 90 ball bingo is more commonly found in the UK, as well as several other countries in Europe, South America and of course Australia.
Although all bingo games have relatively the same rules, 90 ball bingo differs from the popular 75 ball bingo found in the United States, in a few key areas, namely the patterns required to complete a game of bingo, and the winning combinations. A 75 ball bingo game common in North America, will require a player to complete the entire grid of numbers, whereas in 90 ball bingo, there are generally (there are exceptions in certain big prize games), only three ways to win a prize in bingo.
90 ball bingo is played on a 9 X 3 grid, also known as the bingo card. There are three horizontal rows of numbers, and three vertical columns intersecting them. Not all of the squares on a 90 ball bingo card has a number; in fact there are only 5 numbers per line, making a total of 15 numbers on the bingo card in total. Generally speaking, the numbers in the first column range from 1 to 9, the second from 10 to 19, the third 20 to 29, and so on and so forth until in the final column the numbers are up, and can include the number 90.
When you play 90 ball bingo, it is important to remember that the game is typically played in three stages, although there may be more if it is a high stakes big money bingo game. The first stage is the one line game, the second the two lines games, and third the full house. In order to complete a line (and win the first prize) a player must mark off all of the numbers that are drawn on one line. In order to have two lines (and win the second prize), a player must mark off all the numbers on two lines that are drawn. Finally, a player can win the top prize for having a full house that is having his or her bingo card completely marked off of numbers. Naturally, the prizes increase in value from the one line to two lines, to full house stages.
Once a player has purchased their cards, and there is always a limit to the number of cards that a player may purchase; the game can begin. Numbers will be drawn at random from a pot, and it is the duty of the player to check these numbers off their card, with a bingo marker. If you are playing online, the numbers are normally automatically crossed off for you. When playing bingo, specifically in the UK, many of the numbers have special names applied to them. For example, the number 22 coming out of the draw might be announced as “two little ducks, twenty two”, because the number looks like two little ducks. This helps the players know which number has come up if they didn’t hear the number, or can’t see it for themselves. Sometimes the numbers are also called differently, in that they don’t look like anything. “Key in the door, number four” for instance, is called such simply because it rhymes.
These funny terms for numbers are just one more example of how bingo can be enjoyable when playing. For example, “two fat ladies” personifies the number 88, and that always gets biggest laughs! Most of the time though it is not relevant for a player to remember these phrases, in order to know the numbers, at least certainly not in online bingo. In the last few years there have been some new bingo lingo terms made up which can be guaranteed to cause a laugh, with ‘Wills and Kate’ number 8 and Calvin Klein number 59!
If you are playing in a bingo hall, don’t forget to shout out “line, or house, or full house” if you have won. If you are playing online, you’ll pick up your winnings instantly and automatically without needing to be paying attention!