US20080085760A1 - Method of playing a slot machine game with a player selected pay schedule - Google Patents

Method of playing a slot machine game with a player selected pay schedule Download PDF

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Publication number
US20080085760A1
US20080085760A1 US11/973,702 US97370207A US2008085760A1 US 20080085760 A1 US20080085760 A1 US 20080085760A1 US 97370207 A US97370207 A US 97370207A US 2008085760 A1 US2008085760 A1 US 2008085760A1
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Prior art keywords
pay
player
schedule
pay schedule
symbol
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Abandoned
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US11/973,702
Inventor
Howard M. Marks
Anthony M. Singer
Daniel Mordecal Marks
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PTT dba High 5 Games LLC
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PTT dba High 5 Games LLC
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Priority to US85048606P priority Critical
Application filed by PTT dba High 5 Games LLC filed Critical PTT dba High 5 Games LLC
Priority to US11/973,702 priority patent/US20080085760A1/en
Assigned to PTT LLC DBA HIGH 5 GAMES reassignment PTT LLC DBA HIGH 5 GAMES ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST (SEE DOCUMENT FOR DETAILS). Assignors: MARKS, DANIEL M., MARKS, HOWARD M., SINGER, ANTHONY M.
Publication of US20080085760A1 publication Critical patent/US20080085760A1/en
Application status is Abandoned legal-status Critical

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    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07FCOIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
    • G07F17/00Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
    • G07F17/32Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting
    • G07F17/34Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting depending on the stopping of moving members in a mechanical slot machine, e.g. "fruit" machines
    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07FCOIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
    • G07F17/00Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
    • G07F17/32Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting
    • G07F17/3244Payment aspects of a gaming system, e.g. payment schemes, setting payout ratio, bonus or consolation prizes
    • GPHYSICS
    • G07CHECKING-DEVICES
    • G07FCOIN-FREED OR LIKE APPARATUS
    • G07F17/00Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services
    • G07F17/32Coin-freed apparatus for hiring articles; Coin-freed facilities or services for games, toys, sports or amusements, e.g. casino games, online gambling or betting
    • G07F17/326Game play aspects of gaming systems
    • G07F17/3262Player actions which determine the course of the game, e.g. selecting a prize to be won, outcome to be achieved, game to be played

Abstract

The present invention includes a variety of methods for player selection of a pay schedule for a slot game. In general, the player selects a pay schedule, places a wager, spins the slot reels, and collects awards according to the selected pay schedule. The player may select one of the two or more pay schedules, with each schedule defining winning combinations and the associated award for each combination.

Description

    PRIORITY CLAIM
  • This application is a non-provisional patent application that claims priority to and the benefit of U.S. Provisional Patent Application Ser. No. 60/850,486, filed Oct. 10, 2006, incorporated herein by reference.
  • COPYRIGHT NOTICE
  • A portion of the disclosure of this patent document contains or may contain material subject to copyright protection. The copyright owner has no objection to the photocopy reproduction of the patent document or the patent disclosure in exactly the form it appears in the Patent and Trademark Office patent file or records, but otherwise reserves all copyright rights.
  • FIELD OF INVENTION
  • The present invention relates to a method of operating a slot machine and, more particularly, to player selection of a pay schedule for a slot game.
  • BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION
  • To play a conventional slot machine, the player deposits money into the machine, sets the wager, and then spins the reels. When the reels stop spinning, symbols are displayed, and the player collects credits for winning combinations, if any, according to a pay schedule. Since conventional slot machines are limited to the foregoing methods, players, casinos and manufacturers suffer from the following disadvantages:
      • Players suffer the boredom of playing games using same method of play;
      • Casinos suffer from the players' dissatisfaction with the casino's game selection;
      • Casinos cannot distinguish their game offerings from other casinos; and
      • Game manufacturers cannot distinguish their product line from other manufacturers.
  • Slot manufacturers and casino operators, therefore, have developed new methods of playing slot games to overcome these limitations. One of these methods incorporates multiple pay schedules into the same slot game. Multiple pay schedules may increase popularity by attracting and retaining players with different pay schedule preferences.
  • In slot machines using multiple pay schedules, however, the selection of pay schedule is determined by the slot machine operator. The player has no input and must decide to accept the selected pay schedule or choose to play another game. Thus, there is a need for a slot machine game that allows the player to affect the selection of pay schedule.
  • SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION
  • The present invention includes a variety of methods for player selection of a pay schedule for a slot game. In general, the player selects a pay schedule, places a wager, spins the slot reels, and collects awards according to the selected pay schedule.
  • In a preferred embodiment, the player selects between an all-symbols pay schedule and a one-symbol pay schedule for any spin of the same slot game, as follows:
  • All-Symbols Pay Schedule. By selecting the all-symbols pay schedule, the slot game issues awards for one or more predetermined combinations of each symbol in the symbol set. The wager, therefore, is distributed across many different winning outcomes. For example, an all-symbol pay schedule with awards for symbols 1 to 9:
  • 9-9-9-9-9 10000 9-9-9-9 400 9-9-9 200
    8-8-8-8-8 500 8-8-8-8 200 8-8-8 100
    7-7-7-7-7 240 7-7-7-7 120 7-7-7 60
    6-6-6-6-6 160 6-6-6-6 80 6-6-6 40
    5-5-5-5-5 100 5-5-5-5 50 5-5-5 25
    4-4-4-4-4 40 4-4-4-4 20 4-4-4 10
    3-3-3-3-3 40 3-3-3-3 20 3-3-3 10
    2-2-2-2-2 20 2-2-2-2 10 2-2-2 5
    1-1-1-1-1 20 1-1-1-1 10 1-1-1 5
  • Thus, a slot game using this pay schedule and displaying a winning outcome of 4-4-4-4-4 on a pay line issues 20 credits for each credit wagered upon that pay line.
  • One-Symbol Pay Schedule. By selecting the one-symbol pay schedule, however, the same slot game only issues awards for one symbol in the symbol set. The other symbols remain in the game but no longer pay for any combinations. The wager, therefore, is distributed across very few winning outcomes. For example, a one-symbol pay schedule with awards for the appearance of “9” symbols anywhere on the slot reels:
  • Any One “9” symbol   2 × bet
    Any Two “9” symbols  10 × bet
    Any Three “9” symbols  50 × bet
    Any Four “9” symbols  500 × bet
    Any Five “9” symbols 5000 × bet

    Thus, a slot game using this pay schedule and displaying a winning outcome of three “9” symbols anywhere on the reels issues 50 times the total bet for that spin. However, the combination of 4-4-4-4-4 used in the All-Symbols pay schedule example above would not result in any award.
  • The selection between all-Symbols and one-Symbol pay schedule does not affect the overall expected value of the game. In other words, the player does not gain any advantage by selecting one pay schedule over another. However, the secondary characteristics of the game, such as hit frequency, volatility and top award, may be affected by the player selection. For example, the all-symbols pay schedule may have a 93% expected value with a 36% hit frequency, low volatility and 50,000 credit top award; the one-symbol pay schedule may have a 93% expected value with 16% hit frequency, high volatility, and 500,000 credit top award.
  • In an alternative embodiment, the player may select between three different pay schedules for any spin of the slot game, as follows:
  • All-Symbols Pay Schedule. The first pay schedule uses all ten symbols, with symbols 1 to 9 awarding line pays and symbol 10 awarding a scatter pay, as follows:
  • 9-9-9-9-9 8000 9-9-9-9 300 9-9-9 150
    8-8-8-8-8 400 8-8-8-8 200 8-8-8 800
    7-7-7-7-7 225 7-7-7-7 100 7-7-7 50
    6-6-6-6-6 150 6-6-6-6 75 6-6-6 30
    5-5-5-5-5 100 5-5-5-5 50 5-5-5 20
    4-4-4-4-4 50 4-4-4-4 30 4-4-4 15
    3-3-3-3-3 40 3-3-3-3 20 3-3-3 10
    2-2-2-2-2 30 2-2-2-2 15 2-2-2 8
    1-1-1-1-1 20 1-1-1-1 10 1-1-1 5
    Three 10's anywhere on reels  3 × Total Bet
    Four 10's anywhere on reels  25 × Total Bet
    Five 10's anywhere on reels 100 × Total Bet
  • Thus, a slot game using this pay schedule and displaying a winning outcome of 3-3-3 on a pay line issues 10 credits for each credit wagered upon that pay line; the same game displaying four “10” symbols anywhere on the reels issues 25 times the total bet wagered on that spin.
  • Three-Symbols Pay Schedule. The second pay schedule uses just three symbols, with line pays for symbols 7 to 9 and no pays for any other symbols, as follows:
  • 9-9-9-9-9 12000 9-9-9-9 2000 9-9-9 500
    8-8-8-8-8 4000 8-8-8-8 800 8-8-8 300
    7-7-7-7-7 1000 7-7-7-7 400 7-7-7 200
  • Thus, the same slot game using this pay schedule and displaying a winning outcome of 7-7-7-7 on a pay line issues 200 credits for each credit wagered upon that pay line. However, the combinations of 3-3-3 and four “10” symbols used in the 10-Symbol pay schedule example above would not result in any award.
  • One-Symbol Pay Schedule. The third pay schedule uses only one symbol, with a scatter pay for symbol 9 and no pays for any other symbols, as follows:
  • One 9 anywhere on reels   1 × Total Bet
    Two 9's anywhere on reels   20 × Total Bet
    Three 9's anywhere on reels   40 × Total Bet
    Four 9's anywhere on reels  600 × Total Bet
    Five 9's anywhere on reels 10000 × Total Bet
  • Thus, the same slot game using this pay schedule and displaying a winning outcome of four “9” symbols anywhere on the reels issues 600 times the total bet for that spin. However, the combinations of 7-7-7-7 used in the Three-Symbol pay schedule and the combinations of 3-3-3 and four “10 symbols used in the 10-Symbol pay schedule example above would not result in any award.
  • The selection of pay schedule does not affect the overall expected value of the game. Each of the pay schedules maintains the overall expected value with different secondary characteristics. For example, the 10-Symbol pay schedule may have a 92% expected value with a 42% hit frequency, low volatility and 50,000 credit top award; the Three-Symbol pay schedule may have a 92% expected value with 25% hit frequency, medium volatility, and 400,000 credit top award; and the One-Symbol pay schedule may have a 92% expected value with 12% hit frequency, high volatility, and 1,000,000 credit top award.
  • In addition to the foregoing embodiments, the present invention may also be modified and adapted into many other forms, including but not limited to the following:
  • In one embodiment, the present invention allows for any type of pay schedule. For example, a pay schedule may include: all symbols; subset of symbols; only one symbol; only line pays; only scatter pays; other methods of pays; and/or any combination of these pays. In addition, the pay schedule may use any type of award, such as credits, currency, or prizes.
  • In another embodiment, the present invention allows for two or more pay schedules. For example, a slot game may include five pay schedules: a ten-symbol pay schedule; a seven-symbol pay schedule; a five-symbol pay schedule; a three-symbol pay schedule; and a single-symbol pay schedule.
  • In another embodiment, the present invention allows for any method of selecting a pay schedule. For example, the player may select a pay schedule using: a button hard-wired to the game's button panel; a touch-screen button on the video display; and/or any other mechanical, electro-mechanical or electronic method.
  • In another embodiment, the present invention allows for selecting a pay schedule at any time. For example, the player may select a pay schedule: before any spin; during any spin; after any spin; only after one or more winning or losing spin; only after wagering, winning or losing a pre-determined number of credits; only in response to a pre-determined symbol combination or other event; at random; and/or any combination of these times.
  • In another embodiment, the present invention allows for any number of pay schedule selections. For example, the player may select (or switch) pay schedules: one or more times; a random number of times; up to a fixed number of times; a number of times determined by the amount wagered, won, or lost; a number of times determined by a symbol or symbol combination; a fixed number of times for each pay schedule; any combination of these methods; and/or any other method of determining the number of pay schedule selections.
  • In another embodiment, the present invention allows for any discrepancy between the mathematical characteristics of pay schedules. For example, pay schedules may offer different expected values, hit frequencies, volatilities, awards, top awards, and/or other characteristic. In addition, pay schedules may also include different number of symbols, types of winning combinations, number of winning combinations, types of awards, number of awards, and/or value of awards.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • The accompanying figures illustrate various stages of a preferred embodiment of the present invention:
  • FIG. 1 shows a representative game screen with a winning symbol combination paid according to a first, player-selected pay schedule.
  • FIG. 2 shows a representative game screen with another winning symbol combination paid according to a first, player-selected pay schedule.
  • FIG. 3 shows a representative game screen with a winning symbol combination paid according to a second, player-selected pay schedule.
  • FIG. 4 shows a representative game screen with another winning symbol combination paid according to a second, player-selected pay schedule.
  • FIG. 5 shows a first representative pay schedule titled All-Symbols Pay Schedule.
  • FIG. 6 shows a second representative pay schedule titled One-Symbol Pay Schedule.
  • DESCRIPTION OF A PREFERRED EMBODIMENT
  • To play a preferred embodiment of the present invention, the player initializes credits, selects a pay schedule, sets the wager, spins the reels, and collects awards in accordance with the player selected pay schedule, as detailed below with reference to FIGS. 1 to 6:
  • Initialize Credits. The player initializes credits by depositing money in the form of coins, gaming tokens or paper currency into a coin head (not shown) or bill acceptor (not shown). Coins and gaming tokens are collected in a reservoir (not shown) inside the gaming machine; paper currency is collected in the bill acceptor (not shown) inside the gaming machine.
  • If the coins, gaming tokens or paper currency are validated as authentic, the player accrues the appropriate number of playing credits on the Credit meter 116. More credits may be initialized, if necessary, by additional deposits. Alternatively, any method of initializing credits may be used including debit cards, credit cards, smart cards, or other form of electronic funds transfer.
  • Select a Pay Schedule. After accruing credits on the Credit meter 116, the player selects one of two pay schedules. Both of the pay schedules apply to the same underlying base game, with the same number of reels, symbols, and order of symbols on the reels. The player may view the available pay schedules on the video display by pressing the Pay Schedule button 170.
  • FIGS. 5 and 6 display the pay schedules from which the player may select, including: all winning symbol combinations and associated awards 172; a Next button 174 and Back button 176 to toggle between different pay schedule display screens; and a Select button 178 to select one a pay schedule. For example, the player presses the Pay Schedule Button 170, views the awards 172 by toggling between the two pay schedules using the Next button 174 and Back button 176, and selects the All-Symbols Pay Schedule, as displayed in FIG. 5, using the Select button 178. The player may change the selected pay schedule at any point prior to spinning the reels.
  • Set the Wager. The player sets the wager by selecting pay lines and setting the bet per pay line. The wager is calculated by multiplying the number of selected pay lines by the bet per pay line. For example, the player places a 5-credit wager on each of the nine available pay lines for a 45-credit total bet. The total bet amount is displayed on the Total Bet meter 122.
  • To select pay lines, the player uses the Select Pay Lines button 108 and views the number of selected pay lines on the Select Pay Lines meter 118. The player uses the Select Pay Lines button to select pay lines in a predetermined order. For example, the first pay line selectedis always pat line 1, second pay line selected is always pay line 2, ect. Alternatively, fewer or greater than nine pay lines may be used with any order of pay line activation.
  • To set the bet per pay line, the player uses the Bet Per Pay Line button 110 and views the amount bet per pay line on the Bet Per Pay Line meter 120. The same amount is wagered on each pay line. For example, the player may place up to 5-credit wagers on each pay line. Alternatively, wagers of any amount may be placed on a pay line, with the same or different amount wagered on each pay line.
  • In addition, the player may use the Bet Max button 112 to place the maximum bet per pay line on all pay lines. Alternatively, any wager may be assigned a button.
  • Spin the Reels. The player uses the Spin button 114 to randomly rearrange the symbols displayed in the symbol matrix 190. The symbol matrix 190 contains three symbol positions for each of the five slot reels 156-164 for a total of fifteen symbol positions 126-154. Alternatively, any number of reels with any number of symbol positions may be used.
  • The slot reels 156-164 spin and randomly stop one reel at-a-time, from left to right, until all five reels have stopped and all fifteen symbol positions 126-154 of the symbol matrix 190 are revealed. Alternatively, any size symbol matrix may be used and any method may be used to rearrange symbols in the symbol matrix.
  • Awards. Following a spin of the reels, the player collects credit awards for all winning combinations, if any, according to the selected pay schedule. Winning combinations may include symbols that appear in specific positions, in a specific order on a pay line (“line pays”); symbols anywhere on a pay line (“line scatter pays”); or symbols anywhere on the slot reels (“reel scatter pays”). Some or all of these winning combinations may be available in the pay schedule selected by the player.
  • The number of credits awarded for a winning combination depends on the selected pay schedule and the credits wagered. For line pays and line scatter pays, the number of credits wagered on the winning pay line multiplies the number of credits indicated by the selected pay schedule. For reel scatter pays, the total number of credits wagered multiplies the number of credits indicated by the selected pay schedule.
  • After calculating the scatter pay and/or line pay awards, the game adds the credit values to the player's balance of credits. As long as the player has credits on the Credit meter 116, the player may continue to play the gaming machine or the player may also collect the balance of credits by pressing the Cash Out button 102. In addition, the player may press the Help button 106 to view the rules of the game.
  • More specifically, FIGS. 1 to 4 illustrate representative games in which the player selects a pay schedule and receives credit awards for winning symbol combinations listed the selected pay schedule, as follows:
  • In FIG. 1, the symbol matrix 190 contains a winning 2-2-2-2-2 line pay combination at 126-134. The selected All-Symbols pay schedule (see FIG. 5) states that 2-2-2-2-2 pays 20 credits per credit wagered on the payline and, therefore, the game issues a 100 credit award, or 20 times 5, as shown on the Paid meter 124.
  • In FIG. 2, the player decides the use the same All-Symbols pay schedule (as shown in FIG. 5). The symbol matrix 190 contains a winning 9-9-9 line pay combination at 136-140. The selected All-Symbols pay schedule (see FIG. 5) states that 9-9-9 pays 100 credits per credit wagered on the payline and, therefore, the game issues a 500 credit award, or 100 times 5, as shown on the Paid meter 124.
  • The player decides the switch pay schedules, so he presses the Pay Schedule button 170, toggles to the One-Symbol pay schedule (as shown in FIG. 6) using the Next button 174, and selects the new pay schedule using the Select button 178.
  • In FIG. 3, the symbol matrix contains a winning scatter symbol combination with three “9” symbols at 140, 152, 134. The selected One-Symbol pay schedule (see FIG. 6) states that three “9” symbols pays 50 times the total bet and, therefore, the game issues an award of 2250, or 45 times 50, as shown on the Paid meter 124.
  • The player decides the switch pay schedules again, so he presses the Pay Schedule button 170, toggles to the All-Symbols pay schedule using the Back button 176, and selects the new pay schedule using the Select button 178.
  • In FIG. 4, the symbol matrix contains a winning scatter symbol combination with four “10” symbols at 138, 150, 152, 134. The selected All-Symbols pay schedule (see FIG. 5) states that four “10” symbols pays 5 times the total bet and, therefore, the game issues an award of 225, or 45 times 5, as shown on the Paid meter 124.
  • Content with his winnings, the player presses the Cash Out button 102. The gaming device issues 3,415 credits.
  • Preamble to the Claims
  • The many features and advantages of the invention are apparent from the description and illustration of the preferred embodiments. The invention, however, is not limited to these embodiments, as the invention is capable of other embodiments and of being practiced and carried out in various ways. For example, features incorporated in one embodiment may be used in other embodiments to yield another embodiment. Additionally, features mentioned in any embodiment may be interchanged with similar features not mentioned that perform the same or similar functions. And, finally, the phraseology and terminology used to explain the embodiments are only descriptive and should not be regarded as limiting. The claims, therefore, seek to cover all features and advantages of the invention that fall within the true spirit and scope of the invention.

Claims (1)

1. A method of playing a game of chance comprising:
a. a player making a wager to participate in the game;
b. a player selecting a pay schedule from two or more pay schedules;
c. randomly selecting one or more outcomes;
d. displaying the outcomes to the player; and
e. awarding the player based on the appearance of at least one outcome included in the selected pay schedule.
US11/973,702 2006-10-10 2007-10-10 Method of playing a slot machine game with a player selected pay schedule Abandoned US20080085760A1 (en)

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Cited By (2)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US20100016059A1 (en) * 2008-05-23 2010-01-21 Scott Sims Gaming system and a method of gaming
US20100056254A1 (en) * 2008-08-28 2010-03-04 Kathleen Nylund Jackson Symbol alignment scheme for multiline gaming machines

Citations (5)

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Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US5123649A (en) * 1991-07-01 1992-06-23 Bally Manufacturing Corporation Gaming machine with dynamic pay schedule
US5851147A (en) * 1996-09-17 1998-12-22 Stupak; Bob Player-selected variable jackpot gaming method and device
US5902184A (en) * 1995-01-19 1999-05-11 Aristocrat Leisure Industries Pty Ltd. Slot machine game with dynamic scorecard
US6068552A (en) * 1998-03-31 2000-05-30 Walker Digital, Llc Gaming device and method of operation thereof
US6712693B1 (en) * 2000-08-28 2004-03-30 Igt Method and apparatus for player selection of an electronic game payout

Patent Citations (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US5123649A (en) * 1991-07-01 1992-06-23 Bally Manufacturing Corporation Gaming machine with dynamic pay schedule
US5902184A (en) * 1995-01-19 1999-05-11 Aristocrat Leisure Industries Pty Ltd. Slot machine game with dynamic scorecard
US5851147A (en) * 1996-09-17 1998-12-22 Stupak; Bob Player-selected variable jackpot gaming method and device
US6068552A (en) * 1998-03-31 2000-05-30 Walker Digital, Llc Gaming device and method of operation thereof
US6712693B1 (en) * 2000-08-28 2004-03-30 Igt Method and apparatus for player selection of an electronic game payout

Cited By (5)

* Cited by examiner, † Cited by third party
Publication number Priority date Publication date Assignee Title
US20100016059A1 (en) * 2008-05-23 2010-01-21 Scott Sims Gaming system and a method of gaming
AU2009202035B2 (en) * 2008-05-23 2012-04-19 Aristocrat Technologies Australia Pty Limited A gaming system and a method of gaming
US8187080B2 (en) 2008-05-23 2012-05-29 Aristocrat Technologies Australia Pty Limited Gaming system and a method of gaming
US9011237B2 (en) 2008-05-23 2015-04-21 Aristocrat Technologies Australia Pty Limited Gaming system and a method of gaming
US20100056254A1 (en) * 2008-08-28 2010-03-04 Kathleen Nylund Jackson Symbol alignment scheme for multiline gaming machines

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Owner name: PTT LLC DBA HIGH 5 GAMES, NEW JERSEY

Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNORS:MARKS, HOWARD M.;SINGER, ANTHONY M.;MARKS, DANIEL M.;REEL/FRAME:020330/0693

Effective date: 20071221

STCB Information on status: application discontinuation

Free format text: ABANDONED -- FAILURE TO RESPOND TO AN OFFICE ACTION