Eyes down bingo fans, there is something pretty exciting coming your way… but it’s a little bit different to what you might be used to.
Live Casino specialists Evolution Gaming have released a new live casino game called Mega Ball, and it is perfect for bingo players.
We understand that the words ‘live casino’ might scare some people off, but bear with us here, because a live casino is much more diverse than it used to be.
No more is it solely a destination for blackjack players and roulette enthusiasts, these days it is more accessible then ever and full of game show style games that are much more engaging and exciting than their table top cousins.
Mega Ball is the latest addition, and since it draws a lot of inspiration from our beloved bingo you will definitely want to at least consider giving it a shot. Let’s dive in.
How to Play Mega Ball
The first thing to say here is that this game is super easy to play.
Just like online bingo, it’s a case of buying however many tickets you feel comfortable with, then letting the software do the rest. The player simply sits back and watches the balls come in.
Each card that you buy has 24 random numbers displayed as well as a ‘free’ number in the middle, and you are hoping that the balls drawn will match your numbers and create lines in order to win money. Sound familiar?
20 balls are drawn each round, and after that the Mega Ball bonus round begins. A random multiplier between 5x and 100x is applied to the next ball drawn and that ball becomes the Mega Ball. If the Mega Ball contributes to a line win then your payout on that card will be multiplied by the amount decided at the beginning of the bonus round – so if the multiplier was 10x and the Mega Ball completed a line on your card, then assuming you paid £1 for your card that line would pay £10 instead of the usual £1.
We will take you through in more detail, but that is the gist of it.
Understanding the Interface
When you load the game you will be greeted with a screen that looks something like this:
Don’t be intimidated by all of the various different buttons, many of them have very little to do with the actual game. Let’s run through the various things you can see:
- Live Stream – The game itself being played out in front of you with the live host talking you through the action and keeping things engaging, just like on a TV game show. Much more fun than a chat room admin right?
- Cards – Directly below the stream are the golden card options. You can buy 1 card, 10 cards, 15 cards, or 25 cards, and if you keep clicking them the number multiplies to a maximum of 200 cards.
- Value – This little toggle sits underneath the cards and allows you to increase or decrease your bet amount per card. It is set to £1 by default, so ten cards would equal a £10 bet, but it can go as low as 10p and as high as £100.
- Paytable – The bottom left shows the paytable based on the amount you are betting per card. This will change automatically as you adjust the value.
- Customisation Buttons – At the top right you can see some other buttons that are not related to gameplay. In order from left to right they are; chat box, screen layout, sound, settings, game history, settings/rules, full screen. You never have to touch these unless you want to.
- Timer – If you were wondering what the number ten with the green circle around it means, that is the timer counting down how long is left to get your bet on before the game begins.
There are a few others things like your balance and a button to go back to the lobby, but they don’t really need explaining, so let’s move on to the game.
The first thing you need to do is decide how much you want to bet per card. You can choose between 10p and £100 so the game really does cater to players on all budgets.
Next, you need to choose how many cards to buy. There are pre-set buttons for this but you can click them more than once to get the specific number you want.
As you can see in the image above, for this game we went for 10 cards at £0.10p each, making a total bet of £1.00.
The really cool thing is that you are able to change your numbers on any card if you don’t like the look of them. That means that if your gut is telling you that your cards are no good you can listen to it. Just hit the refresh button in the middle of the card you want to change until you are happy.
Betting time doesn’t last long so you do have to be quick, but it doesn’t take long to get through a round either, so if you want to go at a slower pace you can just play every other round, for example.
Once betting time is up the game will begin and the machine will drop all 51 balls into the drum and start to draw them one at a time.
The software will mark off your cards for you and bring those that are closest to winning to the front so you can keep an eye on them. It also rather helpfully shows you which balls you need to win x amount of money. In our image you can see that number 36 will win us £0.30p as it will complete a line on 3 different cards, whereas numbers 19, 22, 48, 2, and 38 will all win us £0.10p since they each are needed to complete a singe line of various cards. Now you know what numbers to cheer for.
There are 12 possible lines on each card and you can win on multiple lines, although it is impossible to get a full house because there are 24 numbers on your card and only 20 balls are drawn. A full house doesn’t exist in Mega Ball.
Completed lines are marked on each card as is every ball that matches a number, and you can also see which balls have been drawn in the bottom right of the screen.
Once all 20 balls have been drawn the bonus round begins.
This starts with a spin of the multiplier wheel to establish how much the Mega Ball is going to multiply winning lines by. 5x is the smallest number and 100x is the biggest, but the multiplier will only apply if the ball that is drawn in this round completes a winning line on one of your cards.
Sometimes a second bonus round occurs so you get two Mega Balls for the price of one. Both can boost your winnings, but if both balls contribute to the same winning line then only the highest multiplier will be paid out, not both.
At the end of this round you will see how much you have won and it will be added to your balance before the whole thing starts again.
Is Mega Ball the Same as Bingo?
Although it is not the same game it is pretty darn close.
One of the key differences is that other players don’t have an impact on your chances of winning. There is no jackpot or anything like that, so just because someone else wins it doesn’t mean you no longer can.
Another benefit is that you can set the game according to your budget, so in a way the winning potential is up to you. If you have more cash to wager then you stand to make more money if you win.
Look at this excerpt from the base game paytable and you will see what we mean:
|Card Value||1 Line||2 Lines||3 Lines||4 Lines||5 Lines||6+ Lines|
We should make it clear that this relates to lines on the same card, but as you can see, there are huge potential winnings from relatively small stakes, and they only get bigger as card prices increase. Plus, the fact that you can buy the exact number of cards you like (up to 200) makes this incredibly flexible.
In terms of interaction, well, it’s less interactive than real bingo as the cards are marked for you, but it’s about on par with online bingo. It is more engaging though as the host will chat to you if you ask them questions, and you can talk with other players in chat too.
Strategy & How to Win
Just like bingo, this is a game of chance. That means that there is nothing you can do to alter the way the game plays out, it’s all down to the luck of the draw.
However, you can be strategic with your bankroll to maximise your play time and spread your session over multiple rounds. Splurging everything on a single round is unlikely to bring success.
It would be good advice to never bet more than 10% of your bankroll during any single round. This way, you should get plenty of mileage out of the money you have available, and with any luck you will get at least a few small wins along the way which will help you to eke this out further until a big win hopefully comes your way.
Another strategy would be to get out at a pre-determined point. As you can see from the paytable above, you can potentially be in serious profit even before the bonus round begins, but however it happens, set yourself an amount of money that you will be happy to walk away with. If you get to that point, stop playing, withdraw your winnings, and enjoy them.
The game comes with an RTP of around 95%, so it’s fairly similar to slots – or side games as you might call them. If you play these sorts of games and have a strategy, that same strategy will likely fit Mega Ball too, perhaps with a little tweak.