The rules of bingo

Bingo is a fairly easy game to learn. There are different rules, or guidelines, as to how different variations of the game are played, but essentially they are all played in the same way.

The rules for both land-based and online bingo are the same, except that in online bingo, the player does a little less work than those of their land-based counterparts, since the online bingo software will do some of the work for the player.

Generally once you've learnt the rules of bingo you're prepared to play bingo wherever, be it land based online. Do however be aware that somtimes the rules do vary slightly, though if a certain venue has specific rules they will generally make the player aware of the variations before gaming begins.

Bingo Patterns

When bingo games are played, either the players need to try and fill up the whole bingo card, or mark off specific patterns.  Patterns can be in the shape of an X across the card, four corners, a line across, or any other pattern or theme that the bingo site wishes to use.

Bingo Card Limits

Many bingo halls and online bingo rooms will allow players to choose how many bingo cards they wish to purchase for a game, however, some bingo games come with a limited number of cards available to each player. When playing land-based bingo, or when playing an online bingo game, which is not marking the bingo cards automatically, players should ensure that they only purchase the number of cards that they can realistically mark off while the bingo numbers are being called.

Rules to specific Bingo variations

75 Ball Bingo

75 ball bingo is played on a bingo card with a 5 x 5 grid.  In most cases, across the top of the card, the letters B-I-N-G-O are spelled out.  Each letter is connected to a set of numbers.  Numbers contained within the B column will include number 1 though 15.  The I is above the column which can contain the numbers 16 though 30.  The N, 31 through 45.  The G, 45 through 60.  The O, 61 through 75.  Only small selections of the numbers from each group are found on each bingo card.

In this version of bingo, it is possible to get 6,000 permutations of the numbers, so 6,000 different bingo cards can be created.  The center square is a free space, and is already considered to be marked off. The caller then calls out the numbers as the bingo balls are drawn. Online bingo rooms often have both a voice calling out the numbers as well as the numbers appearing on the screen.

Once a player has covered all the necessary numbers according to the pattern that is being used in the game, they shout out “bingo,” or press the “bingo” button on their screen.

80 Ball Bingo

The rules for 80 ball bingo are the same as those for 75 ball bingo.  The difference, apart from the number of balls used, is found in the bingo card.  Bingo cards that are used for 80 ball bingo are set out in a 4 x 4 grid, with four numbers going across, and four numbers going down. The board, therefore, has sixteen numbers on the grid.  Patterns that are commonly played are four corners, an X across the bingo card, a horizontal line, a vertical line, a square in the center, blackout bingo, and so on.

90 Ball Bingo

This game is played in a more similar way to the 75 ball bingo game rather than the 80 ball bingo game.  Each bingo card has nine columns and three rows.  Only 15 squares are marked with numbers on the grid.  Bingo tickets (a set of six bingo cards) are sold to players.  All 90 numbers are distributed over the six cards.  This means that every single time a number is called, the player will find it on one of the set of six.  There are three winning patterns used in 90 ball bingo.  Each of these wins a prize, with the main prize going to the final winner.  In order to win the two smaller prizes in this game, players need to cover either a single horizontal line, or two horizontal lines.  For the main prize, players will need to cover three horizontal lines on a single card on their bingo ticket.

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