The beauty of the 12-spot keno ticket

Jan 19, 2010 5:05 PM

 

These tickets open door to multiple ways

 

The 12-spot has a lot of charms, mathematically speaking that is. As a number it is eminently divisible, or as the math major would say it has a lot of factors. It is divisible by 1 of course, but also by 2, by 3, by 4 and by 6. In the world of keno that means that there is a plethora of way tickets that can be constructed using a set of 12 numbers. Also if you choose to play the 12-spot as a way ticket itself, there are many ways to construct a 12-spot way.

The 12-spot has never been especially popular. Historically the only ticket larger than the 10 that has gotten a lot of play was the 15-spot, and then starting about 20 years ago the few special 16-spots and 20-spots. The 15-spot got a lot of action in the 50’s and 60’s because it was simply the largest ticket available to play, and it was a favorite of the newer keno players. Although it is nearly impossible to hit solid, the 15 in general offered a high frequency of small winners and the occasional hit of 11 or 12.

Notwithstanding this history, the 12-spot is a completely playable ticket, as I proved a few years ago. To put it simply, if you play a bunch of straight $1 tickets (millions of them) a player playing straight 6-spots and a player playing straight 12-spots will have similar outcomes in terms of the best way to construct a 12 is by using groups of six. Two sixes make one 12, 3 sixes make a 3-way-12, 4 sixes make a 6-way-12, and 5 sixes make a 10-way-12 in the familiar pattern of Pascal’s Triangle. When constructing a way ticket always remember the Half Rule: The best ways are constructed using a group half the size of the desired way. Half of 12 is six.

Also playable are 12s constructed of groups of 4 and groups of 3. Three groups of 4 make one 12, 4 groups of four make a 4-way-12, five groups of 4 make a 10-way-12, etc. Four groups of three make one 12, five groups of three make a 5-way-12, and six groups of three make a 15-way-12, etc. All of this is familiar from Pascal’s Triangle.

Deuces and kings may also be used to construct 12-spot ways, and these are very powerful tickets when they hit, but they are closer and closer to straight tickets in how they hit, so you may find that the low hit frequency offsets the big winners. I don’t play deuce and king way tickets very often anymore for this reason but yes they can be exciting when they hit!

 Well that’s it for this week, Good Luck! I’ll see you in line!

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