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Keno Strategy: Key Takeaways to Increase Your Winning Chances

Keno Strategy
  • Is there a strategy to win more at Keno online? Combinatronics says that...

  • Keno players look for ways to win big more than they should
  • Combinatronics can 'solve' the game of Keno
  • Use the formula in this article to calculate your Expected Return (ER) when you play real money Keno games

Keno: you either hate it or love it.

Some Casino games are just like that - you either enjoy endless sessions regardless of the house edge and your winning chances…

…or even 50 seconds at the table will feel like a lifetime.

The game of Keno is one of them.

Some people play for hours at land-based and online Casinos while others look at it and wonder why it is even allowed on the Casino floor.

I write this guide assuming you belong to the first kind. After all, you wouldn't be looking for the basics of Keno strategy if you weren't planning to play Keno online and (perhaps) win some money, too.

What Can You Expect From This Article?

I'll tell you what this article is not:

This isn't a guide for beginners who don't know what Keno is. Ruta Rimkiene from wrote an excellent one titled Keno for Dummies where you find everything you need to get started.

It's also not a guide to picking the lucky numbers to win at Keno every time you play.

That's because there's no Keno strategy or system that can guarantee a 100% success rate, regardless of numbers of Keno tickets you buy.

I don't plan on telling you how to pick numbers to increase your chance of winning, but I do have some ideas that will help you win more than you do today.

Are you ready to start?

Keno Bonus Free Games Multi Race Cards
Keno Odds Hot and Cold Numbers Combinatronics

Keno Isn't for Suckers

Strategy to win at Keno

Many self-proclaimed professional gamblers call Keno "a game for suckers" for its horrendous house edge.

While this is theoretically correct and the 25 to 40 percent house edge of some Keno games is indeed almost criminal, those who know gambling know also that Keno offers a great value for money.

See the contradiction here?

On one hand, the house edge is big enough to tell you that you are likely to lose often and to never hit the life-changing jackpot the screen promises you.

But then - think about how you play Keno.

A full game of Keno can last up to 10 minutes from start to finish, and it might not cost you more than $1 or $2 to play. And that's while you are treated like a king with complimentary drinks and snacks flowing to your seat as if there was no tomorrow.

Now, think about Slots.

At an average of six seconds per spin, how far will $1 or $10 bring you?

Keno is a great game to chill and fantasize about big and semi-impossible wins. It is a game for dreamers who want to have fun but don't want to spend an unreasonable amount of cash for that.

Make Sure You Get a Bonus to Play Keno

While land based Casinos treat you with drinks and snacks, online Keno sites keep you on their pages with bonuses and promotions.

That's why, as a Keno player, you need to spend some time to shop around for the best Keno deals, as long as they come from reputable and trusted names.

Keno Strategy: Key Takeaways to Increase Your Winning Chances 101
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Finding the right bonus to play might not seem an important part of an effective Keno strategy, but the extra money you get on the right site can be the best way to fight the house edge and win money when the numbers are drawn.

To do this well, you might need to do some research and not rely on the usual suspects. With online Keno not being the most popular gambling game in the world, the sites that specialize in it are often niche ones.

Take La Fiesta Casino, for example.

While this might not be the best-known gambling operator in the world, their 400% bonus gives you up to €1,000 to play Keno online and that's a lot of money.

Hellovalot, if you ask me.

To know more about the offer (and to claim the bonus), just visit this page and open a free account.

Play Free Keno Games Online

Keno's games are so cheap that most sites don't offer a free version of this game. If you don't pay, you can't play.

La Fiesta Casino is not like that.

Before this article turns into a promotion of this Casino (which isn't), let me tell you this:

You can play 13 Keno games for free and with no registration required.

La Fiesta is the only site to offer so many free Keno games. That's why I think they deserve a praise.

Through the free games you can:

  • apply the strategy tips below
  • understand Combinatronics is a real thing
  • accept that Keno numbers come whenever they feel like - not when you ask them to.

Cold Numbers, You Say?

Don't base your Keno strategy on cold numbers and hot numbers - unless you want to be sure to leave your money at the Casino.

Whether you use the Quick Pick feature available at most online Casinos or you focus on your kid's birthday you have the same winning odds.

This isn't to say you should just use the Quick Pick option every time you play. Part of what makes Keno fun is the idea to call luck with what is dear to us.

So - make each game special.

Write down a list of numbers that mean something to you, perhaps make each group challenge each other taking notes on how often one prevails over the other and, don't stress too much about the results.

In lottery-like games like Keno, you just need to sit back and wait for the numbers to be drawn.

Multi Race Cards

The best way to save some time, especially if you plan on playing the same numbers all over again, is to pick the Multi Race Cards that most online Keno sites offer you.

The Multi-Race cards allow you to play the same numbers over a series of consecutive Keno games.

Keno Winning Numbers System for Real Money Ga~.jpg

Multi-Race Cards don't increase your chances to win money at Keno but help you save time and spare you from the annoyance of having to click on the same numbers times and times again.

Winning Odds in Keno

Your interests in Keno strategy tells me you don't know much about the odds in Keno and your true chances to win big on this Casino game.

** Spoiler Alert: these numbers might kill your love for Keno **

But since I promised to tell you everything you need to play Keno with the best strategy there is - let's have a look at some scary numbers.

What are the chances you will hit all the 20 numbers?

The key to winning big and to bring home the seven-figure top prize offered in many Keno games is to play for 20 numbers and nail all of them. So, the question is: how likely is this to happen?

To paraphrase Joan Kung, here's where "Learning Mathematics Helps Us Be Virtuous."

Numbers show there are 3,535,316,142,212,172,000 different ways for a group of 20 numbers to be picked from a total of 80 numbers.

Theoretically, you have more chances to win at Roulette by throwing your chips on the table while blindfolded than to hit 20 numbers and win the jackpot in Keno.

But you don't need to play all the 20 numbers, do you?

If the 20-spot ticket isn't going to be included in our games for obvious reasons, let's see what happens when you play Keno with a 6-spot ticket.

Your winning chances increase (but don't jump from your chair just yet).

0-0.166021 in 6
1-0.363491 in 2.75
2-0.308321 in 3.25
3$10.129821 in 7.7
4$50.028541 in 35
5$750.003101 in 322.5
6$2.0000.000131 in 7,962

If you sum up the probabilities you have to catch 0, 1, or 2 numbers (the three occasions where you don't win anything) - things get a little on the sad side.

That's because you discover you have 83.78% chances to lose your game. And that's not to mention the 13% on the table, because that's when you win nothing more than your initial bet.

That's why a good bonus is SO important.

Adding free money to your bankroll you finance your losing games in the hope that when Lady Luck decides to smile at you, it's with a win of 4, 5, or 6 numbers.

Because that's where the real money is.

In case you are curious to see the odds of hitting all the numbers, including those in between 6 and 20, the table below is for you:

01 in 843.380 (0.11857057%)
11 in 86.446 (1.15678605%)
21 in 20.115 (4.97142576%)
31 in 8.009 (12.48637168%)
41 in 4.877 (20.50318987%)
51 in 4.287 (23.32807380%)
61 in 5.258 (19.01745147%)
71 in 8.826 (11.32954556%)
81 in 20.055 (4.98618021%)
91 in 61.420 (1.62814048%)
101 in 253.801 (0.39401000%)
111 in 1,423.822 (0.07023351%)
121 in 10,968.701 (0.00911685%)
131 in 118,084.920 (0.00084685%)
141 in 1,821,881.628 (0.00005489%)
151 in 41,751,453.986 (0.00000240%)
161 in 1,496,372,110.872 (0.00000007%)
171 in 90,624,035,964.712
181 in 10,512,388,171,906.553
191 in 2,946,096,785,176,811.500
201 in 3,535,316,142,212,173,800.000

Cold / Hot Numbers in Keno

Since I mentioned them earlier, let's go a little deeper on the concepts of Cold Numbers and Hot Numbers in Keno.

Cold Numbers: These are the numbers drawn less frequently. Usually, a number is added to the list of the cold numbers when it isn't drawn for 15 consecutive times.

Hot Numbers: These are the numbers that are drawn most frequently in a sequence of five Keno games. Some will tell you there are numbers that are hotter than others: don't believe them. It isn't true.

how to win keno

Combinatronics to Win at Keno

Here's where things get a little more complicated. If you made it till this part of my Keno strategy guide, take a deep breath and get ready to swim through numbers and calculations.

What is Combinatronics? "Combinatorics is a branch of mathematics about counting – Combinatorics can help us count numbers of orders in which something can happen." (Source: Mathigon)

I am not going to go into all details of Combinatorics (after all, even the MIT says "it is not an easy task" to define it), but I want you to learn this:

The way Keno works allows you to calculate your expected return every time you play - and this doesn't often happen in gambling.

Combinatronics helps calculate the different ways you can arrange a portion of a larger group of items - exactly what happens with the numbers in Keno:

There's 80 of them, but only 20 help create a winning combination.

After you apply Combinatronics to understand the probabilities in Keno you can calculate the Expected Return (ER) and figure out how much money you are likely to win (or lose) in a given number of games.

Here's how you calculate : ER = Payoff x Probability

Using an example provided by the always useful Mensa Guide to Casino Gambling (see here) by Andrew Brisman, we can proceed to calculate the E (Expectation), the exact amount of money we can expect to win or lose over the long run with a given bet:

Winning SpotsPayoffProbabilityExpected Return
  Total ER:0.7008 

For the table above, we have that:

E = Total ER - Amount Bet: 0.7008 - 1 = 0.2992

(And that's also how you calculate the House Edge, which here is of 29.92%)

Play Keno Online

This concludes our journey through the bizarre world of Keno strategy.

If you have questions, remarks, or you would like to talk about Combinatronics and its applications to win at Keno, you are welcome to leave a comment below - I would love to talk Keno and Keno strategy with you.

Otherwise, just play it!

(Cit. Mad Men: Season 5, Episode 8)

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Can it get any better than that?

It Kennot!

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