I had my bingo wings at the ready, bingo lingo all lined up and my dabber all filled up. Online bingo off I went. The modern world has evolved and I my trusty dabber wasn’t needed as it is all automated. Bingo lingo can still be used but I didn’t feel a bit of a prat talking to the computer screen. And we won’t talk about my bingo wings.
No I had not had a mad moment, I had been asked to join in the Netmums Bingo room that had been organised on Sky Bingo. The Netmums Bingo Room is open on Monday and Tuesdays from 8pm to 10p. They also very nicely give you an extra £20 once you have deposited and played £5 but remember to use the bonus code of Bingo when you register. Once you have played £5 of bingo of your own money the £20 bonus is added to your account.
So what was it like? The account page and registration is easy to understand even for a newbie and the subtle grey and purple colouring is modern and easy on the eye. I liked all smooth and slickness of it and felt Sky knew what they were doing.
The Netmums room wasn’t open till 8pm so I had a good look around. Into the lobby I ambled. You’re first presented with a list of the upcoming games. By the time I had figured out what was what and what to press the chosen games was already started. Back to the lobby I went. After awhile I figured out to ignore the first few upcoming games as even my fast broadband with Sky’s busy network couldn’t make it to the game in less than a minute.
There are a lot of rooms to choose from. 90 Ball, 80 Ball, 75 Ball, Variety and Multi player. I stayed in the 90 Ball section. Even within that there are rooms to choose. Just some of the rooms are Speed for those who want their bingo fast and quick, the Value room where the tickets are 5p and the Pennies room where the tickets start at 1p. So there is a variety of games and tickets can be bought at varying prices. I liked that you can buy tickets so cheaply but I didn’t like the fact that if you stayed in one room the prices were not the same for every game. If you’re not paying full attention you could easily buy more expensive tickets than you thought you were.
There were though a few things that struck me as I potted around the site. To me an online bingo player is either there just to play bingo or they are there for the more social side of bingo as most bingo sites have a chat facility. The other rooms didn’t come across as particularly chatty. There was the usual WDW, 2TG and I never win in the chat history but there was a lack of social chat. Now this of course may be right up your street but it wasn’t till I went into the Netmums room and there was the chatty feel. If I am about to gamble the kids inheritance away I would like to have a good chat with friends as I do it. Yes it helped that in the Netmums room we all had the common interest of being part of Netmums , but I genuinely felt happy for the others when their names came up on a win.
The other thing I noticed was that because the ticket prices can change on each game there were a lot of people swapping rooms hunting out the ticket prices they want.
For me there were 3 main bug bears with the site. These of course are my personal preference. If I play bingo online its more the social side. I dotn want to feel like I am just part of a cattle market of players. I am there to play a few games of bingo, not to play on slot games as I know where the casino section is.
- The games were far too fast. The numbers were being pulled out of the virtual machine too fast for me. It felt too rushed even in the normal rooms, in the speed room it was just over in seconds.
- A quarter of the screen is devoted to a manic flashing of slots and games. If I wanted to play those I would go and find them in the casino section. I finally figured how to decrease some of the flashing by turning off the animations, but it still flashed away in the corner annoying me. Why have a casino section and a bingo section when a quarter of the bingo section is devoted to casino. For me it lessens the bingo section.
- The chat screen for me was too small. Sip your coffee and any chat you were having has disappeared leaving you to play Russian roulette with the slider bar to catch up.
So the important bit, would I play again?
No. The only thing that saved the whole thing for me was having a Netmums room. If that wasn’t there I would have given up on the whole thing a lot earlier. For me Sky Bingo is too geared up to just take money and doesn’t cater for the social side of bingo.
I am a member of the Netmums Parent Bloggers Network, a unique community of parent bloggers from around the UK who have been handpicked by the Netmums team from our database to review products and brands on their behalf. I am paid an expenses fee to cover my time (and childcare if the fee is big enough!) but Netmums have no editorial control whatsoever about what I blog about. Being a member of the Netmums Blogging Network means that I get to try out products and brands and get my expenses covered but that I retain full editorial integrity.