Online scratch cards for beginners
Scratch cards are an extremely popular form of gambling with hundreds of millions sold around the world each year. With a coin in their hand, or even their fingernail, players scratch off the little boxes to uncover symbols or cash amounts that reveal their prize, making them a fun type of 'instant win' game.
The game made the leap to digital form in the early years of the 21st century. Lottery sites and online casinos started to offer them as a type of internet game where, instead of physically scratching the boxes, players tapped on each square to uncover what was underneath.
Improvements in scratchcard game technology led to variations in this simple formula to the point where there are hundreds of types of virtual scratch cards to choose from, including the extensive selection of free scratch cards on Casino Universe.
But before you play, it's worth checking out this special guide to the world of scratch card casinos and games. Here you'll find everything you need to go about them including how to play them for fun.
The history of scratch cards
You may have heard of the Scientific Games Corporation, or just Scientific Games (or even SG as it's known today). SG is a provider of many online slots and casino games, but did you know it also launched the first-ever scratch cards back in 1974?
SG's debut scratch cards had simple designs and featured small prize amounts, but they quickly caught on among players who enjoyed their 'scratch 'n win' format. All they had to do was buy a card and scratch off the boxes to find out whether or not they had won.
During the 1980s, scratch cards became an international hit, making their way to Canada, Europe, and Australia. Many of these had more intricate designs and bigger jackpot amounts. In the United Kingdom, scratch cards were sold as an offshoot of the new National Lottery brand in the 1990s, and winners made headline news with some of their huge wins.
As ever, the internet started to get involved around the turn of the millennium. Online casinos began offering virtual scratch cards, which could be played from the comfort of your own home. This allowed even more people to enjoy the excitement of scratching and potentially winning big prizes, although the odds of landing a large prize were still exceptionally low.
Scratch cards continue to be a hit with players today. As well as physical versions being available at convenience stores, gas stations, and other retail outlets, many scratch card casinos offer them online. These often take many forms beyond the traditional 'scratch and see' format, including all types of themes and storylines.
Despite their popularity, scratch cards have faced criticism from some who view them as a form of "hidden" gambling that can be addictive and harmful to vulnerable individuals. Like with any other form of betting, it's always prudent to apply safe gambling principles when using them.
You can also play online scratch cards without paying any money with free scratch card games available online.
How to play scratch cards online
Playing scratch cards is very simple: you just pick a game, uncover the hidden layer, and find out what you've won. Yet it's also important to bear some things in mind in your hunt for the ideal scratch card game.
The first is choosing a reputable online casino to play them at. Winning a cash amount from a scratch card isn't worth much if the gambling site offering it cannot be trusted with the payout. The good news is Casino Universe can help you with this. Simply visit our list of best online casinos and use the on-page filters to find the best ones. These options can be found by clicking the 'Recommended' tab, where you will find the highest-rated choices.
Once you've found a casino with a good reputation, it's simply a case of creating an account with them, then choosing a scratch card game to play. You may have to make a deposit to do this, or you may get a no deposit bonus just for signing up. If the game is included in this offer, you can use the bonus funds to start playing.
Alternatively, you can go to our list of free scratch card games to play for free. While there, you can use that page's filters to sort the games by theme or other factors. When you see one you like the look of, simply click on the 'play' icon to get started. Then it's just a case of uncovering the squares, blocks, or whichever design the game has, to uncover your prize.
If playing for real money, it's important to remember to always gamble responsibly and to only play with money that you can afford to lose. Many scratch card games are designed to be addictive and it's easy to lose track of the money you've spent.
Types of scratch card games
Should you decide to take a browse through our list of scratch card games, you may be surprised by the scope and variety of options for you to choose from. Many modern scratch card developers like to go beyond the traditional format of 'scratch and reveal' to explore more adventurous themes.
Here are a few examples of the most common scratch card styles.
- Classic scratchcards
These are the most basic and traditional type of scratch card. They usually have a simple design with a grid of symbols or numbers that need to be matched to win a prize. Classic scratch cards often revolve around lucky symbols or traditional casino games, such as slot machines or roulette.
- Themed scratchcards
These follow a specific theme or brand that might include popular TV shows, movies, or video games. Themed scratch cards often have unique designs and gameplay elements that are tailored to the theme in question.
- Progressive jackpot scratchcards
You may have seen progressive jackpots in other games like slots. Here, the jackpot tends to be larger and it might involve bonus features. Progressive jackpot scratch cards often have a higher cost per card than other types of scratch cards, but the potential payouts are bigger than usual
- Multiplier scratchcards
These scratch cards offer the chance to multiply your winnings by a certain factor, such as 2× or 10×. They typically have a simple design with a grid of symbols or numbers, and the multiplier is revealed after scratching off the covering material.
How to find the best online scratch cards casino games
When you come across Casino Universe's list of scratch card games, you may find it tough to choose between them. To save time, it's worth bearing in mind some objective features that these games have that help you have a better playing experience.
First, take advantage of our sorting tools. Click the 'Recommended' option in the drop-down menu to see the ones that are the most highly thought of. You can also choose 'Recently Added', 'Recently Reviewed', and 'Highest RTP (Return to Player) to see them re-ordered according to those characteristics.
There are also several filters you can use to reduce the list of options. The Game Provider filter is a useful one, letting you see scratch card games by certain developers. Just choose your favourite to see a list of their offerings. 'Game Theme', too, is another useful one if you wish to see a particular theme. 'Mobile Devices', meanwhile, will give you all those games you can play on your mobile device.
When you're done playing with these filters, you'll be left with a list of scratch cards games designed to your tastes. Just pick one and start playing for free to find out whether you like it or not.
Play scratchcards online for free
If you're new to scratchcards and would like to gain experience without wagering real money, Casino Universe offers a collection of free scratch card games for you to play. We offer a wide range of casino games on our website, and you can easily filter by game type to find scratch cards.
With our free scratch card games, you can experiment with different types of scratch cards and get familiar with the gameplay and rules without any risk. Once you feel confident in your abilities, you can move on to playing scratch cards for real money.
Check out our list of online casinos to find a trusted and secure platform to play scratch cards for real money.