If you’re willing there’s a way

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There are more way tickets possible than you can imagine but the only important one is what wins for you. You have decided, after carefully looking over the pay books in the casino, that you must hit the solid 7 as it pays $14,000 at the Pop 80 rate(Fremont), Deano rate (The D), Island Rate (California) and 40-cent rate (El Cortez).

What can we do to give you a decent chance but not exhaust your bankroll?

In past columns I have advocated playing 8 kings, playing the 8 seven spots, which would theoretically win $112,000 though most casinos limit the maximum win outside of a progressive to $100,000. Thus, do not play the eight as you will spend another 80 cents and not win any more on a solid hit. But why give $12,000 back to the casino because you hit the aggregate limit?

Play the tickets at 60 cents, specifying you want the 80-cent rate and mark it on your ticket. This way you can also play the 8 at 80 cents without going over the aggregate limit should you hit all 8 numbers playing an 8 and 8 sevens. You would win $10,500 for each solid 7 totaling $84,000 and $16,000 for the 80 cent solid 8 totaling $100,000 exactly.

Do not be concerned with other small winners affecting your payout. The casino is not going to pay the small winners a total of $375.80 (an example) and only pay you $99,624.20. And even if they pro-rate everyone’s ticket the practice has always been to pay the full amount up to the aggregate limit ignoring small winners in that same game. Besides pro-rating is quite messy as the method used is based on your bet size and pennies would be involved – a real mess.

Now, if the improbable happens and there is another large winner, then the $100,000 will be prorated based on the bet size of the winners. Wouldn’t it be nice to have such problems?

Another tactic you could try is 9 kings; then play the 7s, 8s, and the 9. You would have a 9, nine 8s, and 36 sevens. Thus we would play less per way to keep the ticket cost affordable and not run over the aggregate limit should we get all our numbers or even 8 of 9.

One tactic is just play the 7s at 20 cents a way, Some casinos may want you to play more per way but if you are a regular player they should not complain as house advantage has nothing to do with bet size unless you go over the aggregate limit. Playing at 20 cents a way, each solid 7 would pay $3,500. Hitting all 36 of your numbers would technically be 36 x $3,500, or $126,000, which would be reduced to $100,000 by the aggregate limit. In the realm of things, not great, but not so bad to walk away with $100K.

If a dime a way is allowed (The D, El Cortez) then go ahead and also play the 8s and 9 as a solid hit results in a win of $63,000. The 9 solid 8s pay $2,000 each and the solid 9 $2,250, thus if you hit everything you win it comes to $83,250. Of course if you want to hit $100,000 on the nose ignore playing the 9s and play the 8s at 20 cents way. Your ticket playing the 7s at a dime and the eights at 20 cents would pay $99,000 for a solid hit of all 9 numbers. I wish I had this problem when I played keno.

Of course most of the time you will hit less than solid but with so many ways you will have good partial pays. In some cases really good pays as if you hit 8 out of 9 besides hitting the solid 8 you will also have a hit of 8 solid 7s. Great game isn’t it? You can still have a substantial win if you do not hit all your numbers but come close.

Compare it to playing video poker where for a quarter player a Royal would pay $1,000 but a sequential royal would pay $12,500. I am sure you will be quite happy with the $1,000 winner.

Best of luck, go get that solid hit!

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