''Slingo'' swings online -- Following ''Tetris'' and solitaire, the new game from America Online hooks millions
First Tetris, then solitaire, now… Slingo. America Online’s interactive fad has become the hottest new way to waste time at your computer. A fusion of bingo, slot machines, and chatting, Slingo (keyword: Slingo) burst onto AOL’s PC scene in 1996 after it occurred to land developer Sal Falciglia and TV producer Lou Del Prete to cover a bingo card with numbers generated from spins of a cyberslot, then throw in chat software.
Three years later, 2.4 million AOL subscribers are hooked. Not only have addicts deemed themselves Slunkies, they’ve developed a virtual shorthand, Slingo Lingo (”wtg” means ”way to go”). ”I know three couples [who] met and married as a result of this,” says Del Prete. Rumor has it they registered for the handheld version from Tiger Electronics to take on their honeymoons.