The History of Bingo: Where Did It All Begin?

The History of Bingo: Where Did It All Begin?

The actual origins surrounding the history of bingo is quite unclear, with different editions of the game originating in different countries, at different times.

Apparently, early variations of the game began in Italy and in France where the game was known as ‘Le Lotto’, yet it first made its mark in the USA in the 1920s where it was a popular game at travelling fairs across the country.

With bingo gaining in popularity in the country, purpose-built bingo halls were erected all over the nation, and they offered a variety of different games from the ‘national game’, which saw bingo halls linked together to offer a bigger jackpot.

The most popular variant of bingo in this UK is 90 ball bingo, yet in the US people prefer playing a 75 ball version of the game. American bingo doesn’t differ too much from the documented UK edition, other than the number of grids found on a ticket. For the states, Hugh J. Ward is the man credited with bringing the game a more recognised identity, as he standardised bingo and actually published a rule book in 1933.

Toymaker and salesman Edwin Lowe helped grow the game even further, as he is recorded as being the figure to bring Bingo over to New York City, where you can still find many places to play the historic game today.

Development Online

People began to play bingo online in the early 2000s, but it really took off in the middle of the 21st Century.

Since then the online bingo world has grown to become a digitally dependent one. Whether it be through our smartphones, tablets or iPads, technology has made accessing the internet such an easy task. This development of such devices has subsequently led to the rise of online casinos, with brands around the world having to adapt to such a change, in order to survive.

Taking games into the virtual world is a phenomenon that has only escalated too, leading onto the activity of online gambling. The very first site to do so was The Gaming Club, when Microgaming established the website back in 1994. Since then, casinos have continued to follow the trend and push the majority of their resources to the web, as opposed to physical halls and casinos.

Online, you can now discover hundreds and thousands of bingo providers at sites such as Which Bingo. This is another trend to recognise when it comes to online bingo rooms, as game developers are able to create a variety of themed lobbies for you to play in. Long gone are the days of online bingo rooms with simple settings and no colour. Now, you can choose from many themes like Deal or No Deal and even Age of the Gods. Many sites likes to offer a large selection to all their players, as customer satisfaction is certainly a number one priority,

In terms of the online history of bingo, this didn’t officially hit the scenes until 2003. Since moving online, bingo has actually grown to accommodate for a range of players of all ages. Of course, please remember, you must be aged 18 or over to gamble!

How Do You Play Bingo?

If you are sitting there wondering how to play bingo, then don’t worry, as it couldn’t be easier. In a bingo hall, you would be given a card with numbers on, and when the caller calls out one of the numbers on your card, you mark it off. The winner is the first to mark off all of the numbers on their card.

More specifically, you will need to cross off all the numbers across a certain line. Typically, you will need to do this across a single horizontal line, or in some cases, two lines. Please, however, note that patterns can occur in many different shapes, depending on your game.

You may also recognise the term ‘full house’. This is arguably the most iconic saying in the ‘bingo lingo’, and it is when all the numbers in a grid have been ticked off. No matter what game you are playing on bingo night, this is the biggest prize possible! Let’s hope you’ll be one of the lucky few to see all the numbers crossed off if you choose to play online with us.

However, there are often also smaller prizes on offer for completing a line on a card or marking off four corners. In the UK, it is popular for players to buy a strip of six cards (each containing 15 numbers) as this means that every time a number is called, they will be able to mark off a number on one of their cards.

Lisa Bianconi
Author: Lisa Bianconi

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