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N.Y. Lottery: We've got a game for you

New York LotteryNew York Lottery: N.Y. Lottery: We've got a game for you

Whether you're looking for instant gratification or prefer to dream big with millions in the bank, the New York Lottery has a game for you.

Lottery machines spew out tickets that could be worth millions of dollars if the astronomical odds are beaten.

Store counters often have racks displaying dozens of colorful choices for those wanting instant "scratch-off" tickets.

Some people play their favorite numbers twice a day, fearing their Daily Number will surely come in if they skip a bet.

You can spend as little as 50 cents for a ticket, or as much as $20 for a single scratch-off ticket that could pay you $10,000 a week for life.

Officials with the New York Lottery — the most popular in the country, with $6.8 billion in reported net revenues last year — count on their players to have a game of choice, so they are more than willing to offer something for everyone.

"We're very aggressive and players like that, they like that choice," said former Lottery Director Nancy Palumbo, who left the Lottery late last year.

Like any successful business, the Lottery closely monitors sales of each game, and asks players and retailers to participate in surveys and focus groups to get ideas what might be popular.

New York usually has about 40 varieties of instant tickets for sale at any given time. Even occasions such as Mother's Day or Christmas can be reasons enough to issue new tickets, featuring pink bouquets or candy canes and snowmen.

They even know which instant games are the most popular in any given week. Often they are the newest ones, along with Win for Life and Cashword.

Ideas for new games even come from other lotteries.

"Lotteries don't compete with each other. They share ideas freely," said Patricia McQueen, lottery editor of International Gaming and Wagering Business magazine. "If something works well in one state, it will be suggested in another state."

But approval by the state Legislature is needed whenever the Lottery wants to offer a new type of game, as was done with Quick Draw and Mega Millions.

Instant 'scratchers'

More than half of the Lottery's sales come from instant tickets, and there are always dozens of varieties to play. On average, two new games are introduced each month.

Bets: $1, $2, $5, $10 or $20.

Odds: Vary per game, but roughly one ticket in five wins something.

Tickets costing $10 or $20 have slightly better odds. The $2 Win for Life game is the Lottery's most popular instant game. The chance of winning the top prize, $1,000 a week for life, is 1 in 7.52 million.

Payout: 65 percent returned to players.

Quick Draw

Players may choose one to 10 numbers; 20 numbers are randomly selected from a field of 80.

Drawing: Every 4 minutes, from 10 a.m.-3 p.m., and 4 p.m. to midnight.

Bets: $1 to $10.

Odds: As low as 1 in 3.86. The chance of winning the top prize of $100,000 for a $1 bet and matching 10 numbers is 1 in 8,911,711.

Payout: 60 percent returned to players.

Daily Numbers

Players select a three-digit number; the winning number is selected from three sets of balls, each containing the numbers 0 through 9.

Drawing: Twice daily, around 12:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

Bets: 50 cents or $1. Can bet for an exact match drawn, matching the three digits in any order, or match the front or back pairs. For an additional $1, players can get an "Instant Win" option, in which three numbers will be printed below the selected numbers. If any digit matches, $1 to $500 is won instantly.

Odds: As low as 1 in 100. Odds of matching three numbers exactly are 1 in 1,000 and would pay $500 on a $1 bet. For the Instant Win option, odds are 1 in 5.31, and winning $500 is 1 in 25,000.

Payout: 50 percent returned to players.

Win 4

Players select a four-digit number; the winning number is selected from four sets of balls, each containing the numbers 0 through 9.

Drawing: Twice daily, around 12:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

Bets: 50 cents or $1. Can bet for an exact match drawn, matching the four digits in any order, or match the front or back pairs. For an additional $1, players can get an Instant Win option, in which four numbers will be printed below the selected numbers. If any digit matches, $1 to $500 is won instantly.

Odds: As low as 1 in 100. Odds of matching four numbers exactly are 1 in 10,000 and would pay $5,000 on a $1 bet. For the Instant Win option, odds are 1 in 5.31, and winning $500 is 1 in 25,000.

Payout: 50 percent returned to players.

Mega Millions

Players select five numbers from a field of 56, and the Mega number from a field of 46. Tickets are sold in 12 states for the same drawings, allowing for larger jackpots.

Drawing: Every Tuesday and Friday at 11 p.m.

Bets: $1. Tickets matching all five numbers plus the Mega number win the jackpot. Other cash prizes are given for matching as few as three numbers, or even just matching the Mega number.

Overall odds: 1 in 39.89. The chance of winning the jackpot, which starts at $12 million, is 1 in 175,711,536.

Payout: 50 percent returned to players.

Take Five

Players select five numbers from a field of 39.

Drawing: Daily, around 11:21 p.m.

Bets: $1. Matching three, four or all five numbers results in a cash prize, the size depends on the total bet and number of winners. Matching two numbers results in a free play.

Overall odds: 1 in 8.7. The chance of winning the jackpot, which is split among all first-place winners, is 1 in 575,757.

Payout: 50 percent returned to players.

Lotto

Players select six numbers from a field of 59. Two sets of numbers are given for each $1 bet.

Drawing: Wednesday and Saturdays around 11:21 p.m.

Bets: $1. Tickets with all six winning numbers win the jackpot. Smaller prizes are awarded for matching five, four or three numbers.

Overall odds: 1 in 46.02. The chance of winning the jackpot, which starts at $3 million, is 1 in 45,057,474.

Payout: 40 percent returned to players.

Pick 10

Players select 10 numbers from a field of 80; 20 numbers are randomly selected.

Drawing: 9 p.m. daily.

Bets: $1. Matching all 10 numbers wins $500,000; other cash prizes are awarded for matching nine, eight, seven, six or no numbers.

Odds: 1 in 17. The chance of matching 10 numbers is 1 in 8,911,711.

Payout: 50 percent returned to players.

The Journal News

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10 comments. Last comment 10 years ago by JimmySand9.
Page 1 of 1
Avatar

United States
Member #1826
July 11, 2003
2645 Posts
Offline
Posted: January 31, 2007, 1:32 pm - IP Logged

"For an additional $1, players can get an "Instant Win" option, in which three numbers will be printed below the selected numbers. If any digit matches, $1 to $500 is won instantly."

O.K., this is news to me. I had no idea NY had a Instant Win option for their digit games. Could somebody enlighten me on this?

(insert signature here)

    Avatar
    Delaware
    United States
    Member #30273
    January 14, 2006
    494 Posts
    Offline
    Posted: January 31, 2007, 3:27 pm - IP Logged

    "For an additional $1, players can get an "Instant Win" option, in which three numbers will be printed below the selected numbers. If any digit matches, $1 to $500 is won instantly."

    O.K., this is news to me. I had no idea NY had a Instant Win option for their digit games. Could somebody enlighten me on this?

    It's a new thing they are doing just like New Jersey and Florida (on Fantasy 5).

      Avatar

      United States
      Member #1826
      July 11, 2003
      2645 Posts
      Offline
      Posted: January 31, 2007, 5:58 pm - IP Logged

      It's a new thing they are doing just like New Jersey and Florida (on Fantasy 5).

      I see nothing of the sort on their website.

      (insert signature here)

        Avatar
        Delaware
        United States
        Member #30273
        January 14, 2006
        494 Posts
        Offline
        Posted: January 31, 2007, 6:03 pm - IP Logged

        I see nothing of the sort on their website.

        I'm seeing the "lucky sum" add-on game, which is definitely different than what is mentioned in the article.

          Avatar

          United States
          Member #1826
          July 11, 2003
          2645 Posts
          Offline
          Posted: February 1, 2007, 2:37 pm - IP Logged

          Oh, it's real. I just got this e-mail.

          Thank you for your e-mail. 
          Instant Win is not a new feature. It has been around for quite some time. It is a Lottery game that 
          offers our Numbers and Win 4 players the opportunity to win prizes up to $500 INSTANTLY while playing 
          their regular numbers, for an additional $1 wager. 
          How to Play: 
          1.  Play your NUMBERS or WIN 4 wager. 
          2.  Ask for Instant Win 
          3.  Match one or more of your paid wager number(s) to any/all the Instant Win numbers in 
          the EXACT position. 
          4.  Win prize(s) shown under the Instant Win matching numbers. 
          5.  You can cash you Instant Win portion immediately.  Your Instant Win numbers will appear at the 
          bottom of your Numbers or Win 4 ticket. 
          Thank you for your interest in the New York Lottery.
          Hopefully I'll get the odds for this soon.

          (insert signature here)

            Avatar
            Delaware
            United States
            Member #30273
            January 14, 2006
            494 Posts
            Offline
            Posted: February 1, 2007, 8:44 pm - IP Logged

            Oh, it's real. I just got this e-mail.

            Thank you for your e-mail. 
            Instant Win is not a new feature. It has been around for quite some time. It is a Lottery game that 
            offers our Numbers and Win 4 players the opportunity to win prizes up to $500 INSTANTLY while playing 
            their regular numbers, for an additional $1 wager. 
            How to Play: 
            1.  Play your NUMBERS or WIN 4 wager. 
            2.  Ask for Instant Win 
            3.  Match one or more of your paid wager number(s) to any/all the Instant Win numbers in 
            the EXACT position. 
            4.  Win prize(s) shown under the Instant Win matching numbers. 
            5.  You can cash you Instant Win portion immediately.  Your Instant Win numbers will appear at the 
            bottom of your Numbers or Win 4 ticket. 
            Thank you for your interest in the New York Lottery.
            Hopefully I'll get the odds for this soon.

            Then what is the lucky sum game on their website? And why is this first time I'm hearing about this?

              Avatar

              United States
              Member #1826
              July 11, 2003
              2645 Posts
              Offline
              Posted: February 2, 2007, 4:53 pm - IP Logged

              Instant Win Odds :

              $1
              1 : 10
              $21 : 20
              $5
              1 : 50
              $10
              1 : 100
              $201 : 200
              $25
              1 : 500
              $40
              1 : 1,000
              $100
              1 : 2,500
              $500
              1 : 25,000
              Overall Odds
              1 : 5.31
              Payout %
              65%

              You many play with Numbers, Win 4, or even Pairs.

              (insert signature here)

                Avatar

                United States
                Member #10720
                January 23, 2005
                933 Posts
                Offline
                Posted: February 3, 2007, 5:29 pm - IP Logged

                The Instant Win is like nj Instant Match. I don't like such a thing because it is a form of QP and it can't be systemized. The Lucky SUM thing is new: you win a separate prize for the TOTAL OF the digits matching the TOTAL OF the winning digits. Thus 0-5-9 SUM is 14 so if you played 7-1-6 you would win the Lucky Sum because it also adds to 14 even though nothing matched. Some SUMs will pay more because there are less STR combinations that add up to it i.e. 9-9-9 is the only one that adds to 27.

                  Avatar
                  Delaware
                  United States
                  Member #30273
                  January 14, 2006
                  494 Posts
                  Offline
                  Posted: February 3, 2007, 5:50 pm - IP Logged

                  The Instant Win is like nj Instant Match. I don't like such a thing because it is a form of QP and it can't be systemized. The Lucky SUM thing is new: you win a separate prize for the TOTAL OF the digits matching the TOTAL OF the winning digits. Thus 0-5-9 SUM is 14 so if you played 7-1-6 you would win the Lucky Sum because it also adds to 14 even though nothing matched. Some SUMs will pay more because there are less STR combinations that add up to it i.e. 9-9-9 is the only one that adds to 27.

                  I guess what I am confused about here is why is this the first time I'm hearing about the instant win in New York. Why isn't it advertised on their website? I shouldn't be too surprised I guess because when I tried to purchase an advance draw NY Lotto ticket last year no one knew how to, until one clerk decided to experiment and figured it out by trial and error (no misprint tickets). I believe I might have posted this when it happened.

                    Avatar

                    United States
                    Member #1826
                    July 11, 2003
                    2645 Posts
                    Offline
                    Posted: February 4, 2007, 5:41 pm - IP Logged

                    I guess the New York Lottery may now be the most mysterious lottery in North America.

                    (insert signature here)