Social gaming: Is this the future for online bingo?
While bingo used to be classified by most as a game for the elderly, recent online casino innovations have started to change the perception of the game and it is easy to see why.
For a game that was originally played in church or community halls and often attracted the attention of pensioners looking for a way to socialise, having access to the game on a computer or mobile device has changed everything. Not only has it caught the eye of online casino gamers, but also those who enjoy the chance to chat while they play.
Of all casino games, only a handful encourage conversation between players, particularly when it comes to online slots and standard variants of table games like roulette, blackjack, baccarat and craps. The Live Casino area of online casinos has incorporated social gaming as players chat directly with the virtual dealer and other players as they place bets.
Thanks to high definition cameras and live streaming, these conversations happen alongside play in real-time and give you the sense of being right in the thick of things as you would be in a real-life casino.
What is social gaming?
Social gaming is all about communication. In social games, players are encouraged to communicate with one another using real-time chat which extends beyond the bounds of games played at online casinos.
Network and multiplayer online games like first-person shooters, community games like Minecraft and others all allow the player to connect and chat as they work together or compete with one another.
Bingo, of the church hall variety, has always been a social game as players engaged with one another between rounds while they wait for the caller to announce the numbers drawn.
Is social gaming the future of online bingo?
While chatting isn’t part of every online bingo offering, it has gained popularity over the years as the market has seen a gentle rise in uptake, especially over the time of sheltering during the Coronavirus pandemic.
As a large portion of UK casinos have had to shut for a time, players investigated gambling online and found it to not only be safer but offer a great deal of convenience.
Given the length of time the pandemic has persisted, the industry has noticed a significant change in the bingo ecosystem as they note an interesting shift in the consolidation of providers and a move from brick and mortar bingo halls to the online alternative.
Another component of social gaming can be seen in the popularity of esports betting as punters predict the outcome of virtual, fantasy sports matches, played by online gamers. With the growing fan base of YouTube and Twitch, players from all over the world sign in to watch these games using live streaming while the gamers themselves rake in the big bucks in ads and sponsorship deals.
We already noted the importance of player interaction here, which confirms the importance of social gaming in all games, including bingo. Given what the online market is up against in terms of the need to continuously up their game, social gaming clearly holds a great deal of potential.
By adding player engagement to the online variant of what is already a very social game, online casino game developers may soon find an uptick as players from all walks of life give online bingo a go.