This isn’t a game confined to brick-and-mortar lottery gaming, either. With the rise of online casinos, there are now scratch games on the Internet. These add a whole new dimension to scratchies, but they might be harder to find, because players are more likely to search for them on Internet lotto sites than online casinos.
Scratchies are found in a lot of different places, so we’ll offer info on several topics before you know how to play the scratch card games. If you’re at all confused, read on to learn everything you need to know in order to get started.
First, let’s talk about traditional scratches: the kind you’ll find at a convenience store or some other local vender. In Australia, these games are created by your state lottery as an additional product to go along with the weekly draws. Companies like Tatts, SA Lotteries and NSW Lotteries sell these inside states in which they’re licensed by the government to offer lottery tickets.
The biggest advantage to scratchies is that they instantly give you a result. Also, they can be played at any time, rather than the once-a-week results you get from a typical lottery game. Even daily lottery draws on smaller traditional lotteries only happen once a day.
When you want to buy a scratchie, you’ll notice that there are numerous different games. You’ll also notice they come in various denominations. This allows you to pick a game that you can afford and that has a theme or prize in which you’re particularly interested. For instance, you could play a game with a football theme or one that promises a lucky winner prize money for the rest of their lives.
Regardless of the game you pick, the actual gameplay will be very similar. On any scratchie, there’s a playing area that’s covered with a thin film of removable material. Most players will scratch this off using a coin, though a key or anything else with a little sharpness (preferably metal) will work as well. The rules vary from game to game, but there’s not too much variety. Usually you’ll be looking to reveal special keywords or symbols, complete a puzzle, or match identical symbols in order to earn a prize. Some more complex scratchies may even include several games in one or second chance opportunities with special draws for all the losing ticket holders. If you buy one of these game cards, remember to hold onto it, even if you lose in the initial phase.
We want to throw in a word of warning when talking about the physical scratchies offered by lotteries. It’s possible–unlikely, but certainly not unheard of–that a card can reveal an “incorrect” result when you scratch it off. It’s also possible to be confused as to whether you’ve won or lost, particularly in games that use pictorial symbols and the like. This can lead to a lot of confusion for players. One dispute over a $100,000 prize ending up going to court.
There’s a simple solution to this, though it’s one that many casual players are unaware of. If you’re not sure about the result of a card, simply give it to the vender who sold it to you and have them scan it. As it turns out, all scratch cards have a code at the bottom that dictates whether or not a particular scratchie is a winner or not. In the case of any disputes or misprints, it is this code that ultimately determines whether or not you win. In essence, the part of the game where you scratch the card is just to give you some amusement, and ultimately has no bearing on whether you win or not. It’s something like a one-in-a-million occurrence that the results of your scratching will be different than the intended result).
If your card is a winner, you can redeem it with the vender for cash or for new cards. In the case of large jackpot prizes, you may have to contact the state lottery in order to collect your prize instead. Whenever you win a big prize amount or you feel the need to have the vendor scan your instants, remember to sign the scratchcard in the appropriate spot. Most players don’t do this for small prizes, but it’s a good idea when playing the weekly lottery games and it’s a good idea with the scratchies, if a lot of money is exchanging hands. Signing the card assures no one else will profit if you fail to get everything coming to you.
The only difference is that because you are playing on your computer screen. You won’t be doing any scratching–please don’t rub your monitor with a coin to see if it works. Instead, you’ll be using the same point-and-click method you would with any other online casino games. If you play using a mobile device, you’ll use the standard touchscreen method (so you can scratch a little).
When you play scratchies online, you’ll need to sign up for an account at the real money online casino site of your choice. Once you’ve registered an account, you’ll be able to find any scratchies available at that site in the lobby, usually categorized under a catch-all category such as “other casino games”. You might have to search around a bit, because the online scratch cards don’t get the same attention as blackjack, roulette, and online pokies. Once you find them, the casino will show you all of the different instant scratch games available for you to choose from.
You can pick any of the games you like and you’ll be taken to a screen designed specifically for that scratchie. Some games may also be available in a free play mode, if you want to test them first. Unlike land-based scratch off games, you’ll be able to choose the size of the cards you play from a range of options–no more worrying about whether you can really afford that $5 ticket even if it looks a lot more fun than the $1 games.
Once you’ve picked your game and denomination, you’re ready to play. Just hit the new card button and a brand new scratchie will be generated for you. You’ll have two different options on how to reveal your results: you can either use your mouse to “scratch” the card and reveal what is underneath, or you can press a button to instantly find out if you’re a winner. The scratching option is better if you want to play at a more leisurely pace or like the gaming aspect of scratchies, while the instant reveal is best if all you care about is finding your results as fast as possible. For those who love playing the offline scratchcards, we recommend the point-and-click method.
Unlike with the traditional scratchies we described above, there will never be ambiguity about the results of an online scratch game. What you see is what you get: if the card says you’re a winner, you’ve won, and the winnings will be instantly deposited into your account. Win or lose, you’ll then have the option of purchasing more cards and playing again.