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Discovery - New PA Raffle Game Change

Topic closed. 67 replies. Last post 1 year ago by GiveFive.

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GiveFive's avatar - Lottery-026.jpg
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Posted: September 13, 2015, 3:26 pm - IP Logged

G5 ... I hear or read what you are saying about more tickets being sold in larger numbers as the raffle game comes to the end.

Not to argue ... but if the RNG is truly just that ... a machine with a certain amount of raffle numbers inside it or on a "computer chip", starting with the very first number (00000001) to the very last number ... whatever that might be at the raffle ending ... if it's not a ticket sell out.

The RNG should have nothing else on that computer chip ... just a bunch of raffle numbers for the drawing.

The RNG should have no idea when the various tickets were bought or where they were bought ... it probably has no idea when the raffle started (Aug 25th) and when it ended. It's only job is to produce 6,000 winning tickets the actual day of the drawing ... Oct 31st.

Now, if there is more information being fed into the RNG ... then different things could be happening with the winning numbers being selected. That would be something else that only the PA Lottery would know about.

I just don't see it ... let's say only 10 raffles tickets were sold until Oct 30th and all of sudden on Oct 30 and 31st there were over 400,000 raffle tickets sold in less than two days ... the RNG can't know that and would just select 6,000 winning tickets when it is turned on the afternoon or evening of Oct 31st. That should be the only programming for the RNG Raffle machine ... select 6,000 ticket numbers.

Open for discussion ... maybe I didn't completely understand what you were saying.

CW

I agree the RNG should have just the numbers on it of the exact amount of tickets sold.  If it's not a sell out, then somebody/something (a person or a software program) has to manually tell the RNG exactly how many tickets were sold.  Cant escape that. 

I'm just wondering if I should attempt to tie the timeframe most tickets are sold to the higher numbered top prize winning tickets.  I guess I'm asking does that make sense or not?  G5

About playing the lottery --  You will lose more than you win. Until you hit a jackpot.  Then everything changes!

    GiveFive's avatar - Lottery-026.jpg
    NY State
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    Posted: September 13, 2015, 3:47 pm - IP Logged

    It's possible the numbers skewing high in some raffles is due to a glitch of some sort, or maybe it's simply random variation.  There's no simple way to really know, and that's the crux of the issue. Other states using RNDs have experienced glitches due to software bugs / misconfiguration.

    The RND and related hardware are closed sourced, and not publicly scrutinized nor even visible. Who knows what the RND is really doing; can't see in there unlike balls that are visible and can be closely examined before, during, and after drawing.

    Hacking is another possibility. While that would seem near impossible, there are potential security holes in places most would never expect, such as, the CPU of the computer. Many modern CPUs (not talking the BIOS, but the actual CPU) can be patched via software (may occur automatically with the user not realizing it). Since the CPU is above all else (ie. hypervisor won't help), an exploit in there could easily escape detection by even the most advanced scanning tools.

    In short, computers have become so complicated, interconnected, and fluid (firmware updates for near everything) that it's near impossible to scrutinize every component (so even if the software itself is secure, the hardware may not be) - RNDs can't be trusted; potentially hackable.

    I'm amazed how little marketing PA Lottery seems to be doing with the raffle. The days are ticking away, and according to a post above, only about 36,000 tickets have been sold. Sure, the sales pace will pick up sharply near the end, but, even considering that, it's shaping up to be another non-sell out. PA Lottery should run some promotions, such as buy a raffle ticket and get a Powerball / Mega Millions ticket free, or a $5 block of Cash 5, or whatever.

    Thanks for responding Ron.  I think everything you wrote is spot on.

    My thinking with regard to using a RNG for a raffle as opposed to a drawing of numbered balls from a fixed matrix (6/49) is the lottery really cant use a rotating glass drum with balls in it for a raffle due to time constraints. I suppose a drum  could be used, but how practical is it to do that?  I would think that it might take a very long time for a rotating drum to spit out 6,000 different winning raffle ticket numbers.  It'd have to be re-loaded after each winning raffle ticket number was produced.  Also there's a good chance of duplicate numbers being drawn, which is no good. With a RNG, the program would spit out a winner, and know that it cant spit that number out a second time. (It would eliminate it from the remaining pool of possible winning ticket numbers.) And it'll get the the complete job of selecting all 6,000 different winning numbers done very quickly!

    Don't get me wrong, I'm no fan of computerized drawings due to the hacking risk.  But I kind of think the lottery is in a box here.  Time is of the essence as they have to publish the winning numbers in a reasonable amount of time.  G5

    About playing the lottery --  You will lose more than you win. Until you hit a jackpot.  Then everything changes!

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      Pa
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      Posted: September 14, 2015, 9:56 pm - IP Logged

      Any reason to think that doing this quarterly was a good idea for the PA lottery?  Doesn't look like they will ever sell out now, I guess that is good for the buyer.

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        Posted: September 14, 2015, 10:42 pm - IP Logged

        Any reason to think that doing this quarterly was a good idea for the PA lottery?  Doesn't look like they will ever sell out now, I guess that is good for the buyer.

        Well ... I for one would hate to see the raffle end ... if they sell at least 300,000 tickets, then all the prizes are covered and they make a small profit of over $800,000. There is no other game with odds of 125,000 to one for winning $1 million dollars.

        Spending $20 on a raffle ticket seems like a better deal than spending $20 on a scratch off ticket.

        Also ... a person with 5 or 10 tickets could win a million dollars more than once ... even win $100,000 with a million dollars. That would be real luck but it could happen.

        The tickets should have been on sale much earlier in Aug with advertising. It might be a good idea to buy several tickets scattered in Sep and Oct ... if the tickets sales are low then the odds will be better for players but then the raffle will probably end ... if the Lottery loses money.

        Another thing ... how many people from out of state that drive to PA twice a year to buy raffle tickets, actually know there is a raffle game being sold now. Many are planning to buy tickets in Dec and have no idea there are raffle tickets on sale now.

        I am very happy with a raffle game going every three months ... I will move more money there and away from other games ... have to go with those odds while they last.

        ...

          dr65's avatar - black panther.jpg
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          Posted: September 15, 2015, 8:57 am - IP Logged

          The odds are good. Cash 5 here in PA used to have those odds until some knucklehead

          thought it would be better to add more numbers hence increasing the odds by millions.

          The raffle isn't as exciting as it once was for me, it's hum-drum now and with the offering

          at 4 times per year, it's just another game they're hoping to profit from by holding it more

          often.

          PA already has too much going. The average person can't or just plain doesn't want 

          to play everything available: Cash 5, Match 6, Treasure Hunt, Cash 4 Life,

          Daily 2, 3, 4 & 5 twice per day and the national games to boot...PB & MM.

          A little bit of something is better than a whole lot of something. There is no thrill especially

          considering many people come up blank. People will get wise to and grow weary of the

          reason the lottery is using to justify having too many games: player demand. How many times

          have I read a director or spokesperson saying: this is what the players want or we have

          added games/increased frequency/added drawings twice per day due to player response 

          and need? The real reason is $$$$$$$$.

          Enough already PA! It's become too much to keep up with and too much to keep throwing

          money at and away. Right now they have too many 'fish' on the hook. It would be hard and

          probably impossible to reduce the amount of games they have. Get rid of one type and people

          who like it are probably not going to take up another in its place. This equates to lost profit.

          The thinking process is way off in PA but the bottom line is making money and keeping current

          in the offerings other states give to players. More games, more money, more fun for everyone,

          right? No, they are wrong.

          Way back Match 6 was ended but I think player complaints or a realization by the brains at hq's

          that it was a game people actually liked and would spend money on brought about a revival.

          That game is one I actually like and know I was frustrated and confused as to why they

          stopped it.

          Less would be more but no one understands that in this greed driven state. Sometimes 

          keeping up with the Jones's will make you wonder why you thought you could or even should.

          Player satisfaction, hope and desire is what keeps these games going. All of these things will

          be lost if someone in this state doesn't start showing some smarts instead of true colors.

          246 ~~ 485 ~~ 369 ~~ 890 ~~ 705 ~~ 357 ~~ 129 ~~ 165 ~  007 ~ 225 ~ 818 ~ 440 ~  7775 5557

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            Posted: September 15, 2015, 3:00 pm - IP Logged

            The odds are good. Cash 5 here in PA used to have those odds until some knucklehead

            thought it would be better to add more numbers hence increasing the odds by millions.

            The raffle isn't as exciting as it once was for me, it's hum-drum now and with the offering

            at 4 times per year, it's just another game they're hoping to profit from by holding it more

            often.

            PA already has too much going. The average person can't or just plain doesn't want 

            to play everything available: Cash 5, Match 6, Treasure Hunt, Cash 4 Life,

            Daily 2, 3, 4 & 5 twice per day and the national games to boot...PB & MM.

            A little bit of something is better than a whole lot of something. There is no thrill especially

            considering many people come up blank. People will get wise to and grow weary of the

            reason the lottery is using to justify having too many games: player demand. How many times

            have I read a director or spokesperson saying: this is what the players want or we have

            added games/increased frequency/added drawings twice per day due to player response 

            and need? The real reason is $$$$$$$$.

            Enough already PA! It's become too much to keep up with and too much to keep throwing

            money at and away. Right now they have too many 'fish' on the hook. It would be hard and

            probably impossible to reduce the amount of games they have. Get rid of one type and people

            who like it are probably not going to take up another in its place. This equates to lost profit.

            The thinking process is way off in PA but the bottom line is making money and keeping current

            in the offerings other states give to players. More games, more money, more fun for everyone,

            right? No, they are wrong.

            Way back Match 6 was ended but I think player complaints or a realization by the brains at hq's

            that it was a game people actually liked and would spend money on brought about a revival.

            That game is one I actually like and know I was frustrated and confused as to why they

            stopped it.

            Less would be more but no one understands that in this greed driven state. Sometimes 

            keeping up with the Jones's will make you wonder why you thought you could or even should.

            Player satisfaction, hope and desire is what keeps these games going. All of these things will

            be lost if someone in this state doesn't start showing some smarts instead of true colors.

            All true about too many lottery games ... I think the decision to add a two number game was crazy. Why waste precious dollars on that dopey game for such a small return?

            Yes, the Cash 5 had odds of 1:575,757 with 39 numbers and now it is 1:962,598 with 43 numbers. I hardly play unless the jackpot is $600,000 or higher and I might not even play that anymore.

            That's why I have dropped most all the games for the Raffle game ... I still throw some dollars on Treasure Hunt but I hardly win anything on that game. The game only has 30 numbers with odds of 1:142,506 ... today the jackpot was $40,000 and I spent $3 on three sets of numbers and won nothing. I will probably walk away from that game also.

            If I completely quit all the games and throw all my money on the Raffle game ... the 1:125,000 odds are even better than the Treasure Hunt game.

            Even if I win nothing on the Raffle game ... I'm not winning on the other games anyway, so in my mind I feel I should work the Raffle game ... if I'm going to lose money ... might as well go with the odds and a little hope.

            Another nice thing with the Raffle ... if you do win $1 million with a ticket, you don't split with anyone ... but it's all luck in the end.

            ...

              GiveFive's avatar - Lottery-026.jpg
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              Posted: September 15, 2015, 6:09 pm - IP Logged

              Until very recently, I was thinking I'd buy eight or nine raffle tickets next week, but I've re-thought that, and I've decided that I'll probably wait until next month to buy them.  That's because I'm wondering how many tickets have been sold to date.  Ticket sales could be sluggish until sometime in October, and I don't think that I want a lot of lower numbered tickets. 

              When and where a player buys their tickets doesn't make an ounce of difference, but I'd prefer the ticket numbers to not to be concentrated in a narrow range.

              About playing the lottery --  You will lose more than you win. Until you hit a jackpot.  Then everything changes!

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                Posted: September 25, 2015, 10:32 am - IP Logged

                I bought my first ticket on Wednesday, it was in the 59,000 range with 37 days or so remaining. I am hoping that the lottery doesn't scale back the prizes when it doesn't sell out.

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                  Posted: September 25, 2015, 11:07 am - IP Logged

                  I bought my first ticket on Wednesday, it was in the 59,000 range with 37 days or so remaining. I am hoping that the lottery doesn't scale back the prizes when it doesn't sell out.

                  I bought a ticket yesterday ... Thursday ... it was just under 65,000. I heard from another member later in the day who had just bought a ticket and it was over 65,000.

                  Sales are clipping along ... I hope they can sell 100,000 tickets by Oct 1st and 200,000 (or more) in October. As I posted earlier ... 300,000 sold tickets will cover all the prizes and give the lottery a small profit of just under a million dollars ... if they sell 350,000 to 400,000 tickets then they do better ... but they won't lose any money.

                  I would think ticket buying will pick up in Oct in the final 2 or 3 weeks ... the mad rush to get that ticket (s).

                  If they sell 300,000 to 350,000 tickets ... the Lottery makes money and the players get better odds on all the prizes. It's a win-win for everybody ... the Lottery can operate one game where they still make some profit and have really good odds for the players.

                  ...

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                    Posted: October 1, 2015, 10:31 pm - IP Logged

                    Coworker said he wouldn't buy any tickets until the last month of sales, hoping to get a number later in the sequence.  Little did he know the sales are so poor, his ticket was in the 88K range with 30 days to go.  That is less that 18% of total sales since the on sale date of August 25.  This is still good for the player, odds will increase because they wont sell out, just hoping the lottery keeps the same prizes, even if they don't reach their break even point in sales.  This could be the last millionaire raffle if sales continue to slide.

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                      Posted: October 1, 2015, 11:37 pm - IP Logged

                      Coworker said he wouldn't buy any tickets until the last month of sales, hoping to get a number later in the sequence.  Little did he know the sales are so poor, his ticket was in the 88K range with 30 days to go.  That is less that 18% of total sales since the on sale date of August 25.  This is still good for the player, odds will increase because they wont sell out, just hoping the lottery keeps the same prizes, even if they don't reach their break even point in sales.  This could be the last millionaire raffle if sales continue to slide.

                      Yes, it's not looking good at this point ... however, I'm expecting a surge in the last two weeks. That's when I will be buying the bulk of my tickets. I bought a few tickets in Sep just to have some lower numbers but the last 2 or 3 weeks in Oct could see sales start to pick up.

                      Still going for that magic number of 300,000 tickets sold to cover the prize totals. This might be the raffle where having 5 or 10 tickets could pay off with several winning tickets for some people.

                      With people noticing that many of the higher prizes over the years have been higher numbers near the end of the game ... this could be the waiting game for many people.

                      It will be terrible if we lose the PA Raffle or they are forced to change the prize structure with less prizes.

                      There are many people that still don't know there is a raffle actually going on ... on Sep 30th I bought a raffle ticket to finish off the month ... it was at a Sheetz and the guy working behind the counter had no idea there was an active raffle game ... he thought I was too early so I explained and yes he printed me out a ticket.

                      I still say there could be many tickets sold to people outside of PA ... but they have no clue that raffle tickets are currently on sale or that the whole PA Raffle time frame has changed ... they are still thinking New Year's and the 4th of July time frame.

                      How many thousands of tickets could that be from all the states that border PA ?

                      Just have to see how it all plays out.

                      ...

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                        Posted: October 3, 2015, 7:12 am - IP Logged

                        Just wanted to add to my last post ... I am hoping someone from the PA Lottery might read this for consideration.

                        Maybe this change to having the raffle every 3 months will work ... still have a possible rush on tickets for October. However, if things don't work out ... but I hope the raffle can still be every 3 months with the same prize structure ... I'm thinking maybe change the raffle drawing to every 4 months ... three times a year.

                        They would have 4 months to sell tickets instead of 3 months but I think another raffle in 3 months should be tried ... by that time more people will be aware that the raffle game has made this change to a new schedule.

                        I am just finding that many people are still not aware of a raffle drawing on Oct 31st. This will change with the next raffle drawing on Jan 31st and beyond. Also, as I mentioned earlier ... a lot of "out of state" players are also not aware of the raffle schedule change.

                        As long as the raffle prizes are covered, maybe try three more drawings at 3 months ... if it's not working out then consider going every 4 months or three times a year and see how that works.

                        ...

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                          Posted: October 4, 2015, 8:45 pm - IP Logged

                          Does anyone know if the PA lottery can reduce the number of prizes if they don't reach their break even point?

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                            Posted: October 6, 2015, 2:40 pm - IP Logged

                            Bought a ticket today and it was in the 110s.  Seems a low number with only 25 days to go.

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                              Posted: October 6, 2015, 3:01 pm - IP Logged

                              Bought a ticket today and it was in the 110s.  Seems a low number with only 25 days to go.

                              I bought a ticket late this morning and it was under 110,000 and it was over when you bought one. I bought a ticket on Sep 30th ... so in 6 days they have sold just over 27,000 tickets.

                              That's not bad for 6 days ... if that continues every 6 days and sales also pick up in the last 3 weeks ... they might get to 300,000 tickets sold, at least to have money for all the prizes with a small profit.

                              There may be many people waiting for the last two weeks and also from out of state.

                              Let's hope for the best ... that the Raffle doesn't end.

                              CW