All About Keno Game

Number games like Keno were born out of necessity, used to fund dwindling state economies during times of war and recession. Keno originated in China, where it is believed to have been played with the help of carrier pigeons, who would carry the results of Keno games from big cities to small towns and villages, coining the name “baige piao” or “white ticket dove”.

Outside of China, Keno is a hugely popular game that can be found in online and offline casinos, as well as betting shops, bingo halls, and everywhere else people gamble. It’s also hugely popular here in New Zealand, where it’s often played online.

Keno is easy to set up, it provides benefits for both the provider and the player, and it can be played across a wide betting range. It’s the ultimate gambling game and that’s why the popularity of Keno has endured for so long in NZ.

Whether you’re a seasoned expert or a complete novice, this free guide to online Keno games in NZ will provide some much-needed insight into this classic numbers game. We’ll look at variants, strategies, rules and more, putting this RNG number game on a pedestal where it belongs.

There are many different variants of real money Keno available online. Some online casinos offer just 1 or 2 variants, others go as high as 4 or 5, but you’ll rarely find more than that as there are very few differences between them.

The main differences from one game to the next are the aesthetics, with some games opting for the simple, straightforward visuals and some going all-out with the neon embellishments. In terms of gameplay, the differences all come down to:

  • Numbers: Typical online Keno games have 80 numbers, but there are some with more and some with less.
  • Bets: Many games have a wide betting range, beginning at a few cents and increasing to a few dollars, but the variant of game will dictate the exact range.
  • Spots: Some games will let you play as many as 15 “spots”, others are limited to 10 or less.
  • Bonuses: Keno is a straightforward game that offers many features and countless hours of fun, but this can be improved with the addition of some bonus features and side bets.

Rules of Online Keno Games

The rules of online Keno are very straightforward and are standard across most variants of this game. As with land-based casino variants, the game begins when players choose their numbers.

Typically, a player can choose between 1 and 15 numbers—the more they choose, the more they can win and the higher the odds will be. They then need to set a stake, which varies depending on the game variant but often begins at just a few cents and goes all the way to several dollars, after which they just need to bet and wait.

The balls are drawn, the numbers are revealed, and the winnings are paid accordingly. A typical game of Keno will draw 10 numbers and return jackpots in the millions or hundreds of thousands for players who match a Full House (all 10 numbers).

If just 1 ball is chosen and revealed, the payout is typically 1/1 or 2/1, which means a $1 bet will return a profit of $1 to $2. The payouts increase as more numbers are played, but so do the odds of winning and the numbers required to get a return.

For instance, if 10 numbers are played and just 4 are matched, the game will typically not payout. However, if 7 numbers are played and 4 are matched, it can double or triple the stake, and if 4 are played and all 4 are matched it can return payouts as high as 50/1.

How to play online keno like a professional?

Keno Top Tips

Take a look at these top tips for when you play online Keno:

  1. Choose online Keno games with a high payout or a low House Edge.
  2. Watch a few games before you play to get a feel for it.
  3. Look at the pay-table and play in a way that suits your expectations.
  4. Set a bankroll for each session and make sure you follow it.
  5. Stick to the same numbers each time.
  6. If one game is not working for you, try one of the many other Keno variants.

How to Win? Keno Best Strategies

There is no easy way to beat Keno, nor is there an effective strategy that works every time. However, there are a few ways you can keep your profits high and your losses low. Firstly, take on board the tips provided above. Secondly, keep all these Keno strategies and tips in mind:

Play Big; Bet Small

The beauty of real money Keno is that you can stake small amounts of money to win huge sums. This is how the game should be played. Don’t concern yourself with getting a small return, simply bet an amount that you don’t mind losing and hold out for those big wins.

You may go days, weeks or months before a big win comes along, but when it does it will be memorable.

Document Your Sessions

Keep track of how much money you’re spending and how much you’re earning and record those details for every game and every session. This will keep problem gambling to a minimum and will give you a detailed report of your failures and successes.

Gamblers have a way of focusing on the wins and forgetting about the losses, believing there are much more of the former than the latter, even if that’s not the case. By documenting your sessions you will know for sure.

Choose Numbers that Mean Something

As discussed above, it helps to stick with the same numbers as that way you can avoid confusion and keep it simple. It also helps if these numbers have meaning, such as birthdays or anniversaries.

This won’t increase your chances of success, but it will help you remember them and ensure the big wins are more meaningful when they eventually occur.

Relax, Enjoy and be Realistic

You shouldn’t play online Keno games because you expect to win. This is the attitude that many players have and it can be quite damaging. After all, if everyone won, the casino wouldn’t profit and the industry would collapse.

You should never play with the expectation that you will win and you should always avoid playing with more money than you can afford to lose. It’s also imperative that you limit your sessions to an hour or two, never play angry, frustrated or drunk, and consult a Responsible Gaming help section if you feel you’re losing control.

Payouts for Online Keno

The Return to Player (RTP) average can differ greatly for games of online Keno. This number will be displayed in the Game Stats/Rules of all variants and the higher it is, the greater your chance of winning will be.

It may also be displayed as a House Edge, in which case a smaller number is more beneficial. Generally speaking, online Keno variants are more favourable than offline ones as competition is greater and there is more of an emphasis on fairness.

Most games are above 90% and a select few go as high as 98%. To have the best chance of winning, you should avoid all online Keno variants that are lower than 90% and try to find ones that are 95% or higher.

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Glossary of Online Keno

Here are a few simple things you need to know about online Keno before you play:

  • Spot: This term is used to denote a number. If you play “3 spot”, it means you are playing 3 numbers. The “Spots Selected” should be displayed at all times.
  • Jackpot: This is the maximum amount that can be won and it is achieved by betting on the maximum spots and matching all of them.
  • Hits: The number of spots that can be placed, typically ranging from 1 to 15.
  • Keno Board: The board of numbers that appears at all times, typically ranging from 1 to 80 in numerical order from left-to-right and top-to-bottom.
  • Bet: The amount of money you can bet on a single game. This can be increased with the “+” symbol and reduced with the “-“ symbol.

Interesting Facts about Keno

Still not had your fill of online Keno? Take a look at these interesting facts about the game:

  1. Origins: Although Keno originated in China, it found its home in the US and Las Vegas in particular. It is believed to have been introduced to the country by Chinese immigrants, who simplified it to make it more accessible.
  2. The Great Wall: It is believed that cash from Keno games helped to build the Great Wall of China and fund one of the greatest empires in the ancient world.
  3. Etymology: The name “Keno” comes from the French “quine”, which refers to a winning set of lottery numbers.
  4. Popularity: In some European countries, including Greece, Keno is the most popular way to gamble and is given pride of place in betting shops nationwide. Here in New Zealand, it’s not as widespread offline but it is huge online.
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