Bingo is one of the most popular online games for people to play, if for no other reason than it is a relatively simplistic one to understand. Regardless of the type of bingo that you choose to play, whether it be 90-ball or 75-ball, for example, most people are aware that they have tickets that have numbers on them and they mark the numbers off on their tickets as they are drawn and announced. Games usually start with one line, then two lines and then a Full House, which is the entire ticket, with some other types also played on occasion.
The reason for playing is to win prizes, which is the key factor for most people. With the majority of online bingo sites, such prizes are often cash-based. Games that have a jackpot are even more sought after, given that they offer players the chance to win larger sums of money than a regular game would. Of all of the jackpots that you can play for, escalator jackpots are arguably the most interesting thanks to the fact that they get easier to win the longer the game goes on for. For this reason, games with escalator jackpots are always popular to play.
What Is an Escalator Jackpot?
The first place to start is by explaining what an escalator jackpot actually is. It is essentially a progressive jackpot that is noteworthy thanks to the fact that it gets easier to win as time passes. It is all about the number of calls in which you need to call House in order to win the jackpot, which goes up over time. With normal progressives, the jackpot is triggered if you are able to call House within a given number of calls. This remains the same for the duration of the game and is a constant, which is why they are so often hard to win.
With escalator jackpots, meanwhile, the number of calls in which you need to get House to trigger the jackpot increases. Sometimes this increase will occur after every 24-hour period, whilst other times it goes up much quicker than that. It all depends on the promotion in play, but the point is that the more time passes, the easier the jackpot is to trigger. Perhaps a game starts with needing you to get House within 23 calls to trigger the jackpot, then an hour later it’s 24 calls, then 25 calls and so on.
Obviously the more calls that you have to trigger a jackpot, the easier it will be to win it. Getting House within as few as 23 calls on a 90-ball game means that you need to get virtually every number on your ticket from the moment that the calls are made. That isn’t a common occurrence, obviously, which is why it’s tricky to win jackpots. It also explains why escalator jackpots are so popular when they become available. As you might imagine, they aren’t all that common because companies don’t want to give away jackpots if they don’t have to.
Other Jackpot Types
Now that we know how escalator jackpots work, it is worth having a look at other jackpot types to see how they differ. The most common form of jackpot offered in bingo is a progressive jackpot, which usually have a minimum starting point and then increases every time a player plays the game. Some progressive jackpots will start as low as £100, whilst others can begin as high as £100,000. Regardless, that is just the starting point and is designed in order to ensure that there is a minimum amount that can be won from the get-go.
Every time someone plays the game, a nominal figure is paid into the jackpot in order to ensure that it increases. This might be as little as 5%, but if you have hundreds of people paying £1 per ticket then it soon adds up. This can see progressive jackpots reach impressive heights, especially as a lot of bingo sites are actually linked together, meaning that every player that plays a game on any site pays into the progressive jackpot. The good news is that the jackpot builds much quicker, but the bad news is that there are more players trying to win it.
Progressive jackpots, which is the type of jackpot that an escalator jackpot is, just with a different way of winning it, are different from fixed jackpots. With a fixed jackpot, there is a predetermined amount of money that can be won and no amount of players taking part in it will change that. The amount on offer is known before the game gets underway and there are usually smaller prizes to be won before the main prize gets triggered. In essence, fixed and progressive are the two different types of jackpot on offer.
How Jackpots Work in Bingo
The important thing to bear in mind when it comes to bingo jackpots is that the amount on offer is not one-hundred percent likely to be won, but rather is the maximum amount that can be won if certain conditions are met. Regardless of whether you’re talking about a fixed jackpot, a standard progressive jackpot or an escalator jackpot, if the conditions outlined by the rules of the game aren’t won then the jackpot will not be triggered. This doesn’t mean that no money is won, but rather that the main jackpot will roll over to the next game.
Imagine a world in which you’re playing a bingo game with an escalator jackpot on offer. It started life out requiring House to be called within 23 numbers, but has now grown to needing House to be called within 30 numbers. There are three prizes on offer within the game, which are 1 line, 2 lines and House, with £12.50 on offer for 1 line, £25 for 2 lines and £150 for House, plus a jackpot that has grown to be worth £15,320. Whilst you’re playing, if you get 1 line then you’ll win the £12.50 no matter what happens in the rest of the game.
Obviously others might get 1 line at the same time as you so the £12.50 will be divided by the number of players that have won, but you get the idea. Equally, if you hit 2 lines then you’ll win a share of £25 and if you manage to get House then you’ll win some or all of the £150. Whether or not you also get a share in the £15,320 will depend on whether House has been called within the 30 numbers that are required by the escalator jackpot rules. If it isn’t, then the next game might trigger the jackpot if it is called with 31 numbers.
You Need to Keep Your Eye Out for Escalator Jackpots
The nature of escalator jackpots is such that they will almost certainly be triggered earlier than fixed prize and standard progressive jackpots. The result of this is that companies tend not to rush their usage, instead limiting it to when they are running a special competition or promotion. Escalator jackpots are extremely popular, so they commonly get used by companies in order to encourage more users to sign up with the site and deposit funds in order to take part. In other words, don’t expect to see them every week.
As you might imagine, there are pros and cons to the use of escalator jackpots. They present punters with the chance to win large prizes, with the pot increasing every time it isn’t won. Escalator jackpots also benefit from the knowledge that they will be won sooner rather than later, simply because the number of calls that you need to get House within keeps getting larger, which means it is theoretically easier to win. On the other hand, the fact that they aren’t always available and are usually used as part of a promotion means that they are rare and will be extremely popular.
One of the jackpot types that is worth knowing about in the world of bingo is the community jackpot. This is when a specific amount of the jackpot, say 50%, is paid to the winner and the other 50% is paid to all of the people that were playing the game at the time that the jackpot was triggered. For the ease of mathematics, let’s say that there is a £10,000 jackpot on offer and 501 tickets being played in the room. The jackpot is triggered by one person, who takes home £5,000. The other £5,000 is split between the rest of the players, with each ticket getting £10.
Escalator jackpots are just as likely to be included in the community jackpot style that is on offer from some bingo providers. It means that not only is the jackpot guaranteed to be won by a certain point in the game, but that everyone taking part in it is guaranteed to take home at least a little bit of extra money when it’s triggered. You can understand why such games are so popular, even though the main jackpot amount isn’t won in total by the person who triggers it. Of course, if more than one player triggers the jackpot then that 50% of the amount will be shared by the number of winners too.