# Rail City casino has great keno ticket minimums

April 21, 2015 3:00 AM
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Rail City is a stand-alone casino in Sparks (east of Reno, bus route 11) that has a very simple rule for minimums on tickets – play as long as the total money adds up to the ticket minimum.

The return to the players is quite competitive. Those liking plenty of ways, this casino is for you. Their rates are: \$1 (D) regular; \$1 (C) gold; \$1.10 (S) special; \$1.25 (E); \$1.50 (F); \$1.25 (X) super bonus; \$1.50 (L) outer limit (casino does not take control of your ticket); \$0.01 (A) penny rate (100 game minimum).

Checking through the pay tables you will find both balanced (regular), high-end oriented, and rates with a lot of small payouts for hitting just a few numbers. The calculations are in pennies for simplicity but as the ticket costs \$1.10 it is assumed to be \$1 for way payoff purposes thus the numbers below are approximate.

I like the \$1.10 rate in that a 6-of-7 pays \$500, an excellent pay. A 7-of-7 still pays \$10,000, thus a penny ticket would pay \$100 for a solid 7 and \$5 for a 6-of-7.

Let’s take a fun ticket of 8 kings. A king is one number circled. With 8 kings there is one 8, eight 7s, 28 sixes, 56 fives, 70 fours, 56 threes, 28 twos, and 8 ones. If you are familiar with Pascal’s triangle this can help a lot in figuring king ticket ways.

At \$1 per ticket, one choice would be the 28 sixes at 3 cents each, totaling 84 cents. Then play the eight 7s at 3 cents each, totaling 24 cents. Finally, play the one 8 at 2 cents. Thus you have \$0.84 + \$0.24 + \$0.02 = \$1.10, the minimum required.

Playing 2 cents for a solid 8 pays \$500. Playing 3 cents for a solid 7 pays \$300. Paying 3 cents for a solid 6 pays \$60. But there is so much more! If you hit a solid 8 you have also hit 8 solid 7s and 28 solid 6s paying a total of \$4,580!

Of course, playing the entire \$1.10 as a straight ticket 8-spot would pay \$25,000. But if you hit 7-of-8 straight up for \$1.10 you get \$1,500. One 7-of-8 at 2 cents pays \$100, a solid 7 pays \$300.

Getting seven 6-of-7s pays a total of \$105. The 7 solid 6-of-6s pays a total of \$140. Finally, the 21 5-of-6s pays a total of \$23.10. Adding all the wins comes to \$668.10.

Hit 7 or more and the straight ticket pays better: 6-of-8 as a \$1.10 straight ticket pays \$100, on the way ticket it pays \$2 at 2 cents a way (at 3 cents a way – whoopie!). You also have a pay for two 6-of-7s that totals \$30. In addition there are six 5-of-7 hits paying a total of \$1.20.

You have one solid 6-of-6 paying \$60 and 12 five-of-sixes paying a total of \$13.20. Finally, you have 15 four-of-sixes paying a total of \$1.57. Thus, on the way ticket you have a grand total pay of \$107.97.

Thus, most of the time you will get more from the way ticket, but if you hit it really big the straight ticket is better.

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.