Keno is similar to Lotto. It was first introduced in China many years ago. The game was brought to the USA in the mid 1800's by the Chinese immigrants who came to work in the mines and on the railroad. It is a very popular game and very easy to play. It is an exciting pastime and, most importantly, it offers the possibility of winning large payouts on relatively small wagers.
There is also the video version of Keno. These are slots-like coin operated machines. It plays using the same principle with similar rules of the regular Keno, but you get the results much faster.
To play Keno, you select a minimum of 4 but no more than 10 numbers between 1 and 80. Each selection is called a 'Spot', so if you select 10 numbers you are playing a 10 Spot game. Keno tickets are located at tables throughout the Casino and in the Casino's Keno lounge. The Casino provides a 'Keno crayon' for this purpose.
The keno player can pick as many numbers as desired. This is done by circling or otherwise marking them with a pencil. Once the player has picked their numbers, they must bring their card back to the clerk at the keno booth. The clerk will then issue a receipt after recording the player's numbers.
Simply mark a blank Keno ticket with the numbers of your selection. Then present your ticket to the Keno desk with your wager and the clerk will give you a duplicate ticket. In a few minutes, twenty numbered Keno balls will be drawn at random from a barrel containing 80 numbered balls, and if enough of your selected numbers are drawn, you are a winner. The results are displayed on screens, called Keno boards, throughout the Casino.
Minimum bets can be as low as 5 cents, although some Casinos only accept bets of $1 or more. The house's Keno brochures give you information about payoffs and various tickets you can play.
The amount of money you win is dependent upon the type of ticket you play and the number of 'spots' caught. You may play as many tickets as you wish. You could win as much as $50,000 on a $1 wager in some Casinos.
The round of a Keno game is called a Keno race. In many Casinos, 'multi-race' Keno is featured, where you can play a number of consecutive Keno races at one time.
To avoid having a void ticket, a keno player can purchase a "multi-race" ticket with the same picked numbers on anywhere from 2 to 20 tickets. When the maximum number of games is finished, the player can then redeem any winnings and avoid the peril of a void ticket. Another option is the "stray and play" ticket, which is usually a number of games greater than 30. Unlike standard keno tickets, the "stray and play" doesn't have to be redeemed immediately and is often good for up to a year after purchase.
The house advantage on Keno varies according to the Keno game played. It is always around 30% or more. The chance of hitting one number in 80 is 0.25%, making Keno among the worst bets you can make.