We’ve looked at ways to increase our winning chances when playing Keno tournaments. If you find one to play in soon, here is a tip.
Remember that when you’re playing in a tournament, you’re not only playing against the house as normal, but against other Keno players. You must adjust your playing strategies if you want a decent chance of winning one of these affairs.
Some Keno tournaments offer an actual positive expectation at the outset for all players (because of the prize fund). This is a rare situation in a casino. The intelligent player will take advantage of this situation.
To optimize a Keno ticket for tournament play, we want to match its top payoff as closely as possible to the buy-in amount. Thus to optimize a 2-spot (which normally pays 12 for 1) for a $1,500 buy-in tournament, we’ll want to play it for $125. When hit, it will pay an even $1,500.
Let’s remember that if we play a regular $1 2-spot in such a tournament, we’ll only win about 6 percent of the time, or about one-half as many tournaments as we should. Here are the results of 1,000 tournaments with a $125 2-spot and everyone else playing $1 tickets:
|Total wins by 1-spots are 37|
|Total wins by 2-spots are 300Â|
|Total wins by 3-spots are 54|
|Total wins by 4-spots are 79Â|
|Total wins by 5-spots are 170Â|
|Total wins by 6-spots are 144Â|
|Total wins by 7-spots are 85|
|Total wins by 8-spots are 131|
So by optimizing the 2-spot to pay $1,500, we increase our tournament winning percentage from 6 to 30 percent! Some tournaments outlaw the use of 1-or 2-spots, but the same effect can be achieved by playing any ticket that has a high percentage of its pays at the top end, such as 5-spots, 8-spots, or any so called "catch all" tickets.
Several factors make certain tickets better than others for tournament play. Good tournament tickets return a high percentage of their winnings on the top end. (Like 5-spots, 8-spots, 2-spots, 1-spots, or any "catch all" tickets.)
Also, good tournament tickets have a top end payoff that is close to the buy-in amount. (For instance, the $2 5-spot above has a top end payoff of $1,600, which is close to the $1,500 buy in amount.)
Good tournament tickets have a top end win frequency that is close to the buy-in amount. (A 5-spot wins once every 1,551 games.)
Many tournaments require that you play a $10 ticket per game, either as a specific rule, or for practical strategic reasons. Here is a good tournament ticket: Mark 10 numbers, grouped 3-2-2-1-1-1. This will give you a 10-way-5, and will cost you $10 at $1 a way.
If you have a Keno question that you would like answered, please write to me care of this paper, or contact me on the web via email at [email protected].