Lotteries regularly go through changes
One thing that always stays the same in the gaming industry is constant change. Games and prizes seldom stay the same for years on end. Everything from slot machines to table games to the lottery is subject to change to create more fun, provide more prizes, and get players to spend more money.
For example, slot machines go through many changes over the time they sit on a casino floor. Game themes change, cabinet design is “improved,” payback percentage is changed, number of lines, prize amounts, and jackpot lockup levels are all fiddled with to increase play and make more money. Changes may or may not improve your chances of winning a prize, but they do tend to attract more play and more players.
With lotteries, changes in games, game play, and prizes can increase the amount of money players spend, increase the number of players who buy tickets, and of course increase the amount of profits the lottery operator makes.
For example, recently the Ontario Lottery Corporation changed the way their Lotto 6/49 Lottery is played, so there are now two jackpot prizes to win per ticket per draw. Normally on a 6/49 game, you match six numbers out of forty-nine numbers plus a bonus number for the progressive top award, and match a lesser amount of numbers for smaller jackpots and prizes. The jackpot could get as high as $50-60 million dollars.
With the new Lotto 6/49, you now match six numbers to win the jackpot of a fixed $5 million dollars, and match a lesser amount of numbers to win smaller prizes. In addition to this “classic” is the new Gold Ball Jackpot. With this additional draw, a unique ten digit Gold Ball number is selected from all tickets that have been played in that draw game, so that the Gold Ball prize is a guaranteed $1 million dollars to someone who has bought a ticket.. Using a set of 29 white balls and one gold ball, one ball is drawn. If it is a white ball, the prize is the million dollars. The Gold Ball Jackpot starts at $10 million and can get as high as $68 million. So every time a white ball is drawn, a player wins $1 million and the Gold Ball jackpot gets bigger. So if all the white balls get drawn, and only the gold ball is left, that means that a player is now guaranteed to win that $68 million as only the gold ball can be drawn.
This change will hopefully provide that “classic” experience draw that players have known for a long time, albeit the top jackpot is now fixed. To attract new players, and hopefully get current players to buy more tickets, the new Gold Ball draw provides a guaranteed prize for every draw and the current progressive jackpot amount if the gold ball is drawn. Also, by now having two draw games on a ticket, players may spend more due to having a “double chance” of winning some big money for the same $3 ticket purchase.
Although most of us hate change, lotteries and their games are always going to change to try and make them bigger and better for players. Some will like the new changes, some will hate them, some won’t care. But we still get a chance to win big jackpots and none of us are going to say “no” to one million or 5 million dollars.