Elements of the Game
Before starting, it is good to know the items needed to play the game. The critical elements of bingo are:
1. Bingo Ball Blower
An essential part of the bingo game is calling out numbers. Thus, this is a crucial item, as it generates random bingo numbers by mixing 75 letters-
numbered balls of equal sizes, which are called out. Alternatively, you may use an online number generator. Still, the suspense of drawing the balls from the blower adds more excitement to the game.
2. Bingo Cards
A bingo card (scorecard) is an individual sheet divided into a grid of 25 squares of 5 rows and five columns. The letters B I N G O are printed above the columns, with one letter above each column.
Twenty-four squares are randomly assigned numbers and one free space at the center. The squares are filled according to the following specifications:
• The five boxes in the “B-column” have numbers between 1 and 15.
• 16 to 30 for boxes in the “I-column.”
• 31 to 45 for squares in the “N-column.” This column has four numbers and one free space.
• 46 to 60 for squares in the “G-column.”
• 61 to 75 for squares in the “O-column.”
You can find the cards at your local store or online.
3. Bingo Marker
It is used to mark on the cards as the numbers on your cards when they are called. You could also use chips or pieces of paper to serve this purpose.
The caller is the person that out the letter-numbers combination to the players.
How to Set Up the Game
• Ensure each player gets at least one scorecard (bingo card).
• Explain the rules of the game and the letter-number combinations work.
• Choose the caller; this person still gets to play the game. However, if you are playing at a bingo hall, there’s a designated caller who will not participate in the game.
• Pass out the bingo cards to all the players; they may have more than one card so they can keep track of all the numbers and letters on each card. Using multiple cards though trickier, increases your chances of winning the game.
• Give each player bingo chips or a bingo marker. Put a chip on the free space; it is filled automatically.
• Put the balls in the ball blower.
How to Play Bingo
Follow the steps below to get the game going:
1. The caller selects a ball from the pile at random without looking and reads it out loud multiple times, so everyone hears it.
2. Check if your card has the letter-number combo called out. If so, place a chip or mark on that square. For example, if the caller says “N-42”, check for the number 42 under column N on your cards. If you have it, mark the square.
3. Keep playing till a player get five marked squares in a vertical, horizontal or diagonal pattern.
4. Yell “Bingo” once you get the required pattern on your card, so everyone knows you have won.
5. If multiple players shout “Bingo” simultaneously, they all win.
6. Ensure to shout “Bingo” before the caller moves on to another number, so it counts.
7. Once someone wins the round, everyone clears their cards to start a new game.
8. Mix up all the bingo balls for a new game.
Now that you are up to speed with the rules of bingo, you can go on to play like a pro and win amazing prizes while having fun.