Cluster Keno by L. J. Zahm | As pointed out a few weeks ago, Iíve been experimenting with playing just a handful of cards on the Multi-Card (20-card) Keno games.
In the past, Iíve always played all 20 cards. It wasnít just the greed factor, but a belief that the machine somehow didnít respond well when you donít play all the tickets.
But Iím finding the hits still manage to find their way onto the screen, even when playing as few as four cards.
One of the reasons for playing six, eight or 10 cards is the patterns can better cover areas that wasnít possible playing Four Card Keno.
For instance, when I play Four Card Keno and criss-cross overlapping 8-spots, I have to decide which pattern or patterns I must omit.
The best example is the cluster of two adjoining columns: Do I mark the two columns (two 8-spots) along with the two 8-spot boxes above and below the center line, or do I use the two "cross-over" patterns?
With 20-card keno, I can mark all six of those patterns.
Another variation is to mark all six then overlap four more patterns (for a total of 10) that might include mirror image 7-spots.
I had tried this last weekend with some success: the numbers fell in to produce a 7-of-8 winner, as well as a couple of 6-of-7 jackpots.
Using this pattern, one more hit would have produced a solid 8-spot and a solid 7-spot. Thatís quite a jackpot to shoot at!
Another cluster that has worked nicely is an expansion of one I used to play on Four Card Keno a few years ago.
This one involved marking all eight numbers in the columns, then adding a ninth "orphan" at the top and bottom respectively.
This is criss-crossed with the 8-spot cross-over enhanced by the addition of one orphan, plus the two-by-four boxes, also enhanced with the addition of an orphan.
This creates six 9-spots, which can also be overlapped with four 7-spots.
While playing this configuration at Arizona Charlieís, I caught 8-of-9 (seven of eight in a column plus the orphan), plus a 6-of-7.
Once again one number would have been sweet: a solid 9-spot and solid 7-spot.
The point is it can be fun to experiment with different clusters, especially with overlapping patterns.
Try it and maybe youíll be the one to get that last, life-altering, number!