Hit the keno Borg and you have it made
July 15, 2014 3:09 AM
by Pesach Kremen
The 9-spot ticket can lead to some interesting possibilities, even if you hit less than all the numbers through the use of King (one number circled) and Deuce (two numbers circled) tickets.
While the odds of hitting 9-of-9 are 1,380,678 to 1, hitting 8-of-9 has lesser odds of 30,681 to 1, and odds of hitting the Borg win (7-of-9) are only 1,689 to 1. The trick is to find a good 9-spot pay table that pays on 4-of-9 and up.
The Pop 80 rate (available downtown under various names: Island rate at California, Pop 80 rate at Fremont, Deano rate at The D, and 40-cent rate at El Cortez) offers an interesting low cost opportunity for hitting 7-of-9 or better due the high-end payouts on a 7-of-7 at this rate.
You can play an all king ticket (nine groups of one) at 20 cents a play and you have one 9, nine 8s, and 36 7s. At 20 cents a way this would cost you $9.20 per ticket for multiple chances at a big win.
Hit 4 or more numbers (3 at The D) and you get some money back. Since you are playing kings you do not have to worry about hitting the numbers the “right” way (this is the beauty of all king tickets) as if you do hit seven or more you have a big win, even at 20 cents a way!
The pays are easy to figure because they are the same regardless of which way you hit the numbers due their being king tickets. Using the standard Pop 80 rate pays at 20 cents per way, let’s examine some of the pays.
If you hit 4 numbers you will have one 4-of-9, five 4-of-8s, and ten 4-of-7s, returning a total of $ 3. Hit 5-of-9 and you have one 5-of-9 ($1), four 5-of-8s ($1.50 each), five 4-of-8s (20 cents each), six 5-of-7s ($3.50 each), and 30 4-of-7s ($.20 each) for a total pay of $35.
Hit 6-of-9 and you have one 6-of-9 ($7.50), three 6-of-8s ($15 each), six 5-of-8s ($1.50 each), six 6-of-7s ($35 each), and 30 5-of-7s ($3.50 each) for a total pay of $376.50.
Hit the Borg (7-of-9) and you have it made even missing two of the numbers. You have one Borg ($50), two 7-of-8s ($300 each), seven 6-of-8s ($15 each), one 7-of-7 SOLID ($3,500), and 35 6-of-7s ($35 each) for a total pay of $ 6,180.
Hit 8-of-9 (Wow!) and you have one 8-of-9 ($500), one 8-of-8 ($4,000), eight 7-of-8s ($300 each), eight 7-of-7s ($3,500 each as these are SOLID 7s) and 30 6-of-7s ($35 each). That’s a total of $35,950.
Hit everything (rare but it has happened) and you win the house limit! The true payoff would be one 9-of-9 at $4,500, nine 8-of-8s at $4,000 each, and 36 7-of-7s at $3,500 each for a total of $166,500, but most often you will win $100,000, the house limit.
As you can see, the KING ticket is powerful. Go for it.
To avoid the house limit problem ask the casino if they will allow 10 cents a way since you are playing 45 ways. You will probably get a different answer from each casino. You may even have to play a different special rate. If so look for the rate with the best top end pay.
By the way, this past week a SOLID 10-of-10 at the excellent $1.15 rate at the El Cortez was hit for $50,000.
If anyone has tried these type of king tickets feel free to email me c/o GamingToday (see address at end of column).
Pesach Kremen is a former UNLV Masters Gaming student, has won and placed in multiple local keno tournaments, and has written several academic papers on Keno. You can reach him at PesachKremen@GamingToday.com.