Long live the king ticket in keno!

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by Keno Lil |

King tickets are way tickets that are composed using only
groups of one number. (A single spot that is circled on a keno way ticket is
usually called a king, but sometimes it is called an ace or a one.)

King tickets are simultaneously simple and complex. They are
simple because all the groups are small and are the same size. They are complex
because the number of ways on a king ticket rapidly increases as the number of
spots does.

Here is a chart giving the number of ways on king tickets up
to 10 numbers.

To understand this chart, read across the top until you come
to the number of kings or 1-spots on your ticket. Then read down the column
until reaching the ways you want to play.

For instance, suppose you are marking a ticket with 8 kings,
and you want to play fives. Read across the chart until you come to the 8
column, go down until coming to the 5 row and find the entry “56.”
There are 56-ways to make a 5-spot wager on a king ticket with 8 kings.

One very popular way is to mark the kings, and play the ways
that are one less than the number of kings. For instance, you might mark six
kings, and play the 5-spot ways, giving you a 6-way-5. Or you might mark nine
kings and play a 9-way-8.

Why do this? As many experienced keno players know, it’s a
lot easier to hit a five out of six than it is a solid six. On the king ticket
6-way-5, any five out of six will give you a solid five! On the
9-spot king ticket, any seven out of nine will give you two seven
out of eights!

A casual look at the chart above reveals this fact: On a king
ticket, if you play the ways that are one less than the number of spots kinged,
you will have the same number of ways as the number of spots. Five kings produce
a 5-way-4, ten kings produce a 10-way-9, etc.

The ticket with eight kings is quite interesting, if you have
enough money to play it, and you are interested in hitting the limit.

Here are the limit payoffs for a solid eight:

• 1-way-8 and eight sevens, played for $9.

• 1-way-8 and 28 sixes, played for $29.

• 1-way-8 and 56 fives, played for $57.

The 5-spot way ticket, though costing the most to play,
starts paying serious money for five out of eight (the payoff will be over
$1,000 in most casinos.) A four out of eight probably will return over half the

When you play eight numbers, all circled individually as
1-spots (kings), you have a ticket with a total of 255 ways on it. These are a
1-way-8, 8 sevens, 28 sixes, 56 fives, 70 fours, 56 threes, 28 twos, and 8 ones.

Of course, you don’t have to play all the ways. You can
pick and choose just which ones you want to play. Playing just the eight plus
either the sevens, sixes or fives is enough to give you a $50,000 pay off for
eight out of eight in most casinos.

If you have a keno question, write to me c/o GamingToday
or e-mail me at [email protected].

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