US20090278313A1 - Bunko-Style Game - Google Patents

Bunko-Style Game Download PDF

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Publication number
US20090278313A1
US20090278313A1 US12435799 US43579909A US2009278313A1 US 20090278313 A1 US20090278313 A1 US 20090278313A1 US 12435799 US12435799 US 12435799 US 43579909 A US43579909 A US 43579909A US 2009278313 A1 US2009278313 A1 US 2009278313A1
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Prior art keywords
bonus
round
wager
payout
values
Prior art date
Legal status (The legal status is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the status listed.)
Abandoned
Application number
US12435799
Inventor
Judith Edwards
Christopher D. Gifford
William Laycock, III
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EGL Gaming LLC
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EGL Gaming LLC
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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

Abstract

A game is provided based on the results of a random value generator, and a playing surface useful for some versions of the game is also provided. Some versions of the game involve a dice game reminiscent of bunko, in which rewards are given based on the results of die rolls. Like bunko, these versions of the game require infrequent decision-making during play, allowing the players to relax and socialize instead of constantly concentrating on the details of play. A gambling version of the game is provided, in which payouts depend in part on the number of target values rolled.

Description

    CLAIM FOR PRIORITY
  • [0001]
    This application claims the benefit of U.S. provisional application Ser. No. 61/051,030 filed on 7 May 2008; and U.S. provisional application Ser. No. 61/170,957, filed on 20 Apr. 2009.
  • BACKGROUND
  • [0002]
    A. Field of the Disclosure
  • [0003]
    The present disclosure relates generally to games of chance and devices for use therewith.
  • [0004]
    B. Background
  • [0005]
    Bunko is a popular game, played with three dice, that involves attempting to roll a certain target value on the dice to gain points. The target value corresponds to a round of play (the target value during round one is 1, the target value during round two is 2, etc.). As players accumulate points, they move to different tables. Although each player has a partner, scoring is partially by team and partially by individual. Most notably, if a player rolls three target values, she announces “bunko!” and is awarded points which her partner does not share.
  • [0006]
    Bunko's popularity is due to its social nature. It requires a group of twelve. There is no decision-making in bunko, the results being entirely controlled by the results of non-discretionary rolling of the dice; the sole exception is that a player must remember to announce “bunko” upon rolling three target values in a given roll. As a result, there is little pressure on the players to concentrate on bunko. The players may talk without fear of making an error due to the distraction. The players may consume alcohol without fear that their judgment will be impaired and harm their play. Because victory or defeat are not affected by decisions made by the players, those who lose need not feel ashamed and those who win have little basis on which to assert their superiority. Thus bunko creates little competitive animosity, which is an advantage in the minds of many players.
  • [0007]
    There is a long-felt need in the art for casino-compatible games that are attractive to players who do not consider themselves “serious gamblers,” particularly games that are social. Casino games tend to be of two types: games played by groups of players in which play requires decision-making on the part of the players, or solitary mechanical or electronic games that require little or no decision-making. For example, craps and roulette offer myriad wagers that can be placed, requiring at least some understanding of the odds of each wager to maximize the chances of the player coming out ahead. Card games, such as blackjack, baccarat, and poker, require the player to decide when to take cards or discard them. Games such as slots and keno require no decisions on the part of the player, but these games are solitary, and provide little enjoyment to players who take pleasure in the crowd aspect of a casino.
  • [0008]
    As a result, a person visiting a gaming venue who is not interested in the sometimes disconcerting intensity of a game of chance requiring decisions on the part of the player must either play alone with a machine, or choose not to play at all. This results in loss of potential players.
  • [0009]
    As a result, there is a long-felt but unmet need in the art for a casino-compatible game that requires minimal decisions on the part of the player and can be played by a group of players. There is also a long-felt but unmet need in the art for an adaptation of the popular game of bunko to a casino-compatible version with standardized rules for rewards or wagering.
  • SUMMARY
  • [0010]
    A game of chance is provided that is reminiscent of bunko. A playing surface suitable for the game is also provided. The game comprises one or more rounds in which random values are generated and compared to a target value. The player is rewarded when one or more random values generated during a round is a certain target value. In some versions of the game the player is rewarded if the sum of a predetermined number of the random values in a round equals the target value. The target value might vary from round to round, as it does in bunko, or it may be the same in every round. The rewards may be based on a wager placed by the player or placed by others. In some embodiments of the game, a bonus reward is granted based on various events that may occur during one or more rounds; the bonus reward may be based on a separate bonus wager.
  • [0011]
    The game can be played in numerous embodiments and permutations. One embodiment of the game comprises three rounds, in which the target value is five in every round. Three cubic dice are used to generate random numbers. One or more betters place non-bonus wagers on each round, and one or more betters place a bonus wager on a session comprising three rounds. A payout is given on the non-bonus wager if one or more fives are rolled, or if the sum of the values on the three dice is five. A payout is given on the bonus wager if during a session three or more fives are rolled (a round in which the sum of the three dice is five counts for bonus purposes as one roll of five), if three-of-a-kind are rolled during at least one round, or if three fives are rolled during at least one round. The various payouts can be varied to achieve a house edge that provides acceptable revenue for the house and provides an incentive for players to bet.
  • [0012]
    Various embodiments of the game fulfill at least one of the following needs in the art, although it is understood that not all embodiments of the game will fulfill them: the need for a casino-compatible game that resembles bunko; and the need for a casino-compatible game with an enhanced social aspect.
  • BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS
  • [0013]
    FIG. 1 illustrates an embodiment of the playing surface.
  • DETAILED DESCRIPTION A. Definitions
  • [0014]
    In the present disclosure references to the plural are intended to encompass the singular, references to the singular are intended to encompass the plural, references using a male pronoun are intended to encompass the female, and references using a female pronoun are intended to encompass the male. The term “including” as used herein is non-exclusive, and is synonymous with “including but not limited to” unless explicitly stated otherwise in the text.
  • B. Game of Chance
  • [0015]
    A game of chance is provided based on the generation of a plurality of random values in which rewards are granted based on the random values generated. The game comprises playing a first round; reading at least three random first round values from a random value generator; awarding a first reward if exactly one of the first round values is a first target value; awarding a second reward if exactly two of the first round values is the first target value; awarding a third reward if exactly three of the first round values is the first target value; and awarding a fourth reward if the sum of any three first round values equals the first target value.
  • [0016]
    Some embodiments of the game further comprise playing a second round; reading at least three random second round values from the random value generator; awarding a fifth reward if exactly one of the second round values is a second target value; awarding a sixth reward if exactly two of the second round values is the second target value; awarding a seventh reward if exactly three of the second round values is the second target value; and awarding an eighth reward if the sum of any three of the second round values equals the second target value. Some embodiments of the game further comprise playing a third round; reading at least three random third round values from the random value generator; awarding a ninth reward if exactly one of the third round values is a third target value; awarding a tenth reward if exactly two of the third round values is the third target value; awarding an eleventh reward if exactly three of the third round values is the third target value; and awarding a twelfth reward if the sum of any three of the third round values equals the third target value.
  • [0017]
    1. Random Values
  • [0018]
    The random values may be any types of values. In some embodiments of the game the values are numbers. In others the values are suits, such as those used in an Anglo-American deck of cards or a subset thereof. In some embodiments the values are colors, patterns, shapes, alphabetic letters, characters, words, images, sounds, or a combination of types of values.
  • [0019]
    One embodiment of the game comprises a set of values in which each value is a suit in combination with a number or letter, which may correspond to any card in the standard Anglo-American deck (jokers of course lacking a suit); this has the advantage of displaying traditional gambling symbolism of the Anglo-American deck. Another embodiment of the game comprises a set of values in which each value is an image of an animal; this has the advantage of being a more attractive game to children. In one example the symbols are hexagrams (a set of six parallel lines, each one solid or broken) found in the I. Ching symbolic system; these values have the advantage of familiarity in the Far East and amongst those knowledgeable in Eastern religion. The values may also be similar or identical to card faces in decks other than the Anglo-American deck, including the German deck, the French deck, the Central European deck, the Jass deck, an Italian deck (of any region), the Spanish deck, the Karuta deck, and the Hwatu deck. Of course, symbols from card faces of any deck can be used, each having the advantage of familiarity to a certain group of players in a certain region of the world.
  • [0020]
    2. Random Value Generator
  • [0021]
    The random value generator may be any device for generating random values. Popular random value generators include dice, cards, spinners, wheels, and computers.
  • [0022]
    In one embodiment the random value generator comprises at least one die. Dice have the advantage of dramatic presentation: players can throw them, there is an anticipatory delay between initiation of the roll and resolution, and they generate a pleasing sound during the roll. Dice have the advantage of being associated both with bunko and with traditional casino games, particularly the popular game of craps. Generally each face of a given die would bear a unique value, but a given value could also be placed on more than one face of a die. The dice may be cubic dice with six sides. Cubic dice have the advantage of familiarity to most rollers, in addition to being used in traditional games such as bunko and craps. However, variations of the game can be placed with other commonly known polyhedral dice, including tetrahedral dice, octahedral dice, decahedral dice, dodecahedral dice, and icosahedral dice. Irregular polyhedra can also be used as dice, although their tendency to favor some faces and not others complicates odds calculations. For casino-based games, precision dice may be used.
  • [0023]
    In some embodiments of the game the dice are thrown by hand, in others a rolling aid is used. Rolling by hand has the advantage of enhanced excitement of the roller and an increased feeling of participation by the roller. Rolling aids have the advantage of preventing unfair manipulation of the dice by the roller. The rolling aid may be for example a dice cup, as is used in backgammon and other games. Dice cups come in a variety of shapes and sizes. The shallow capped cup used in pai gow (a “pai gow cup”) has the advantage of preventing contact between the roller's hands and the dice during the roll, which is an added assurance against manipulation of the dice.
  • [0024]
    Embodiments of the random value generator also include playing cards. Each playing card bears a value. The cards may be dealt to a player or may be drawn by the player. Any type of deck may be used. The number of cards in the deck and the number of cards bearing each value may be manipulated to achieve desirable odds. Cards have the advantage of being associated with traditional casino games such as poker and blackjack. Dealing cards to the players has the advantage of enhanced security against manipulation of the random value generator by the player. Cards also allow the dealer to control the pace of the game, which is an advantage if the game is being centrally managed (for example by a casino).
  • [0025]
    Embodiments of the random value generator include a computing device that is designed or programmed to generate random numbers. Any algorhythm for producing random numbers may be used. These may include so-called pseudo-random number generators, which have a tendency to repeat after tens of thousands of random numbers have been generated. Pseudo-random number generators have the advantages of relative simplicity and speed of execution. Higher quality random number generators may be used, which have the advantage of less repetition and general higher quality of randomness. For example, high-quality random values can be generated from unpredictable physical processes, such as random noise from an analog circuit.
  • [0026]
    Various other random value generators can be used, such as a top, a flipped coin, a roulette wheel, a spinner, etc.
  • [0027]
    3. Rewards
  • [0028]
    Rewards are available after every round. The rewards may include a monetary reward, a non-monetary prize with monetary value, a purely symbolic reward, or a combination thereof. The symbolic reward may include a victory title (such as “winner” or “runner up”), a victory memento (such as a trophy, cup, stuffed animal, or medal), points, and proxy currency (such as non-exchangeable chips, imitation coins, or imitation paper money). The reward may include a valuable non-monetary prize.
  • [0029]
    If any of the rewards is monetary, the amount may depend on a wager or fee offered by the player, or may be independent of the same. In some embodiments of the game a player pays a fee to play for a certain amount of time or a certain number of rounds and receives monetary rewards; in such an embodiment the amount of the monetary rewards is set based on the fee.
  • [0030]
    In some embodiments of the game a wager is placed by a player, and the monetary rewards are set based on the wager. In some embodiments a wager is accepted for each round, prior to reading the random value generator. Each of the first through twelfth rewards depend on the wager for the appropriate round (the first through fourth rewards depend on a first round wager, the fifth through eighth rewards depend on a second round wager, and the ninth through twelfth rewards are based on the third round wager). The reward will be proportional to the wager.
  • [0031]
    The rewards may vary from one round to the next or the rewards may be constant between rounds. Some embodiments of the game comprise a one-hit payout, a two-hit payout, a three-hit payout, and a three-sum payout. The one-hit payout is honored in a round if exactly one of the random values is the target value. The two-hit payout is honored in a round if exactly two of the random values are the target value. The three-hit payout is honored in a round if at least three of the random values are the target value. The three-sum payout is honored if the sum of three values in a round equal exactly the target value. A payout is a proportion of the wager to the reward; thus, the reward will be the wager multiplied by the payout. In this disclosure the phrase “a payout on a wager” is intended to mean “a payout multiplied by a wager.”
  • [0032]
    The wager may be accepted before each round, or before a set number of rounds. In some embodiments of the game, a wager is accepted before each round. For example, if three rounds are played, the game may further comprise at least one of accepting a first round wager, a second round wager, and a third round wager.
  • [0033]
    In some embodiments of the game in which three or more rounds are played, and in which a wager may be accepted on one or more rounds, the first reward is the one-hit payout on the first round wager, the second reward is the two-hit payout on the first round wager, the third reward is the three-hit payout on the first round wager, the fourth reward is the three-sum payout on the first round wager, the fifth reward is the one-hit payout on the second round wager, the sixth reward is the two-hit payout on the second round wager, the seventh reward is the three-hit payout on the second round wager, the eighth reward is the three-sum payout on the second round wager the ninth reward is the one-hit payout on the third round wager, the tenth reward is the two-hit payout on the third round wager, the eleventh reward is the three-hit payout on the third round wager, and the twelfth reward is the three-sum payout on the third round wager.
  • [0034]
    Games comprising wagers and payouts are gambling games. Gambling typically occurs in the context of a house, which is generally a private casino but may be in some instances a charitable institution, state government, or tribal government. The various payouts are typically set to balance two competing factors: the need to produce income from the game (which is enhanced when the payouts are low), and the need to provide an incentive for players to participate (which is enhanced when the payouts are high). The combination of the payouts is embodied in the “house edge.” The house edge is a value between zero and one, which is the difference between the product of the probability of no payout being honored and the wager and the product of the probability of each payout being honored, the payout, and the wager. Ultimately, the house edge is a measure of the likely return on the player's wagers.
  • [0035]
    The house edge on the wagers described above (designated “non-bonus wagers” in light of the bonus wagers described later) will depend on how much income is deemed to be needed and how much player incentive is deemed to be needed. These will vary depending on the circumstance. The amount of income needed will depend on many factors, most notably the house's costs and the house's for-profit or non-profit status. The amount of needed player incentive is more complex. It may depend on the sophistication of the players, who may avoid games they know to have a high house edge (sophisticated players tend to congregate in gambling centers). It will partially depend on the popularity of the game. The popularity of a given game may vary regionally or according to social trends. The popularity of the game will be enhanced in some cases by the games low degree of player control, which allows players to enjoy the game without suffering for lack of experience in gambling and without demanding concentration on the game, which a player not seriously concerned with gambling will consider more enjoyable.
  • [0036]
    Thus, the house edge may be set at any value between zero and one (0-100%). In a casino environment, in which players have a range of choices of games to play, and in which the casino must cover its overhead, a house edge that is generally considered a desirable balance between income and incentive is about 2-5%. The easier it is to attract players, the higher the house edge may be. Thus a wide range of house edges on the non-bonus wager may be desirable under various circumstances. Various casino games have widely divergent house edges. Depending on the bet, the house edge in craps ranges from 1.41% to 13.89%. The house edge in keno ranges from 25-29%. The house edge for most slot machines is 2-15%. The house edge for blackjack (as played in Las Vegas, Nev.) is 0.28% if properly played. The house edge for sic-bo ranges from 2.78-33.33%. All of these games are commercially successful, despite the great variation in house edge. Thus, it is clear that a house edge anywhere from about zero to about 33% will be acceptable. An even higher house edge will be acceptable under some circumstances, as the edges cited above are for major casino games under normal circumstances. If players have fewer options, a house edge as high as, for example, 50% may be acceptable.
  • [0037]
    One possible scheme of payouts on the non-bonus wager comprises a one-hit payout of about 1:1, a two-hit payout of about 2:1, a three-hit payout of about 3:1, and a three sum payout of about 1:1. This scheme has the clear advantage of being easily memorized by players, as they merely multiply their wager by the number of target values to determine how much they have won. As shown in Table 1, in an embodiment of the game comprising three rounds in which three cubic dice are rolled each round, this scheme also has the advantage of providing a competitive house edge of 2.3148%, which provides a good incentive for players to participate and will generally provide adequate revenue.
  • [0000]
    TABLE 1
    Event Probability Payout Reward
    Three hits  0.463% 3:1 0.013889
    Two hits  6.9444% 2:1 0.138889
    One hit 34.7222% 1:1 0.347222
    Three-sum  2.7778% 1:1 0.027778
    Lose 55.0926% −1:1   −0.550926
    Non-Bonus House Edge 0.023148

    It is within the capabilities of those of ordinary skill in the art to vary one or more of the payouts to adjust the house edge as needed, without undue experimentation.
  • [0038]
    Some embodiments of the game further comprise accepting a bonus wager and awarding a bonus payout on the bonus wager. The bonus wager is placed before a session comprising one or more rounds. The payout on the bonus wager depends on the occurrence of certain events during the session. The bonus wager has the advantage of providing additional wagering opportunities, and of providing higher payouts for rare events. Because the bonus payout may depend on combinations of over three random values, it may provide higher payouts than the non-bonus payouts on events rarer than those with which the non-bonus payouts are associated.
  • [0039]
    Some embodiments of the game comprise defining a “bonus hit” as having occurred if any value rolled is the target value, or if the sum of any three values rolled in a given round equal the target value; and at least one of (a) awarding a three-hit bonus payout on the bonus wager if the union of the first round values, the second round values, and the third round values comprises exactly three bonus hits; (b) awarding a four-hit bonus payout on the bonus wager if the union of the first round values, the second round values, and the third round values comprises exactly four bonus hits; (c) awarding a five-hit bonus payout on the bonus wager if the union of the first round values, the second round values, and the third round values comprises at least five bonus hits; (d) awarding a three-of-a-kind bonus payout on the bonus wager if at least one of the first round values, the second round values, or the third round values comprise three identical values; and (e) awarding a bunko bonus payout on the bonus wager if at least one of the first round values, the second round values, or the third round values comprise three of the target value. In some versions, if more tan one bonus condition applies, then only the single highest applicable bonus payout on the bonus wager is honored; this has the advantage of simplicity and ease of calculation.
  • [0040]
    The bonus wager has the further advantage of providing another means to adjust the income derived from the game. For example, the non-bonus house edge may be reduced if there is a relatively high bonus house edge. Although the house's income will be reduced on the non-bonus wagers, increased income from the bonus wagers may compensate. The bonus wager also provides the player the enhanced excitement of making a high-risk high-reward wager without making the overall odds unfavorable to the player.
  • [0041]
    In one example, the three-hit bonus payout is about 1:1, the four-hit bonus payout is about 1:1, the five-hit bonus payout is about 20:1, the three-of-a-kind bonus payout is about 3:1, and the bunko bonus payout is about 5:1. This provides a bonus house edge of 12.4906%, as shown in Table 2.
  • [0000]
    TABLE 2
    Event Probability Payout Reward
    Five-hit 0.9631% 20:1  0.192611
    Four-hit 3.6933% 1:1 0.036933
    Three-hit 13.5200% 1:1 0.135200
    Bunko 0.9954% 5:1 0.049772
    Three-of-a-kind 6.7215% 3:1 0.201646
    Lose 74.1068% −1:1   −0.741068
    Bonus House Edge 0.124906

    Again, it is well within the abilities of one having ordinary skill in the art to vary the payouts to produce a desired bonus house edge.
  • [0042]
    The bonus house edge may be adjusted to achieve a desirable return on both bets cumulatively. In embodiments of the game in which the bonus bet is optional, such a “cumulative house edge” will partially depend on the behavior of players, in particular how often players place bonus wagers and how large the bonus wagers are compared to the non-bonus wagers. These data will of necessity be determined empirically, and may well vary from venue to venue. The desirable range of cumulative house edges is the same as the range discussed for the non-bonus house edge. The bonus house edge may be within a wide range, and may be much higher than what would normally be considered an acceptable edge for the non-bonus wager because of the optional nature of the bonus wager. For example, a bonus house edge of up to 60% (or any sub-range therein) would be appropriate under some circumstances, for example if the non-bonus house edge is low, or if one or more bonus payouts are very high (creating a high degree of risk-reward excitement).
  • [0043]
    In some embodiments of the game a wager is accepted from an additional player (or a plurality of additional players). The additional player is not the “roller,” but places her wager on the results of another's roll (the term “roll” being used broadly in this context to refer to reading the results of the random value generator). In such embodiments the roller may be required to place a non-bonus wager on each round. This has the advantage of increasing the excitement of the roller having her turn. In other embodiments the roller may participate so long as at least one player places a wager. This has the advantage of allowing a roller to participate who may be perceived to be on a “lucky streak,” but has no interest in placing a wager.
  • C. Playing Surface
  • [0044]
    The disclosure provides a playing surface 1 for use in the disclosed game (and potentially for other purposes as well), as illustrated in FIG. 1. The playing surface 1 comprises a stickman area 100 and a player area 200. The stickman area 100 and the player roughly correspond to an area that can be reached by a stickman positioned adjacent to the stickman area 100 and by a player positioned adjacent to the player area 200, respectively. The stickman area 100 may be an area reachable by the stickman using a reach-enhancing tool for manipulation of dice, cash, or chips, such as a craps stick. The stickman area 100 will advantageously be positioned outside of the easy reach of all players, to prevent tampering with dice, cash or chips. The distance from the position of the player to the stickman area 100 may be for example about at least 18-24 inches.
  • [0045]
    In some embodiments of the surface the player area 200 comprises a primary wager area 300. A number of primary wager areas 300 may be present equal to the capacity of the surface to accommodate players, one per player. The primary wager area 300 may comprise a non-bonus wager spot 40, which designates where a non-bonus wager is placed prior to a round. The non-bonus wager spot 40 is detectable to the player due to the presence of a mark. The mark may be a visible mark, such as a circle printed on the surface, or any other visibly detectable mark. The mark may be a tactile mark, for example an area of differential roughness from the surrounding parts of the surface. In some embodiments the mark is both visible and tactile. Some embodiments of the surface comprise a plurality of non-bonus wager spots 40 in the primary wager area 300. Any number of non-bonus wager spots 40 may be present, for example a number equal to the number of rounds in a session. In some embodiments in which the primary wager area 300 comprises a plurality of non-bonus wager spots 40, the primary wager area 300 comprises a first round non-bonus wager spot 41, a second round non-bonus wager spot 42, and a third round non-bonus wager spot 43. In such embodiments each of the plurality of non-bonus wager spots 40 may be marked in the same manner as the others, or all non-bonus wager spots 40 may be marked differently.
  • [0046]
    The non-bonus wager spot 40 is positioned close enough to the player to allow the player to easily place wagers, but far enough from the player to prevent or render more difficult tampering with the wager without detection. The distance from the player to the non-bonus wager spot 40 may be for example about 5-6 inches.
  • [0047]
    In some embodiments of the surface the primary wager area 300 comprises a bonus wager spot. The bonus wager spot 50 may be marked in any manner that is appropriate for the non-bonus wager spot 40. The bonus wager spot 50 may be marked with dramatic colors or shapes to reflect the high-risk high-reward nature of the bonus wager; this is desirable to encourage the placement of bonus wagers. The bonus wager spot 50 may be anywhere in the primary wagering area 300, advantageously close enough to the player to allow the player to easily place wagers, but far enough from the player to prevent or render more difficult tampering with the wager without detection. In some embodiments of the surface the bonus wager spot 50 is slightly further from the players than the non-bonus wager spot 40, for example about 6-8 inches.
  • [0048]
    Some embodiments of the surface comprise a dice spot 60. The dice spot 60 is detectably marked. The dice spot 60 is detectable to the stickman. In some embodiments of the surface the dice spot 60 is detectable to the players as well. Some embodiments of the surface comprise a dice spot 60 that is located in the stickman area 100. Some embodiments of the surface comprise a plurality of dice spots 60 in the player area 200. Some such embodiments comprise one dice spot 60 per primary wager area 300, so that each player has a dice spot 60.
  • [0049]
    The stickman area 100 may further comprise at least one of a chip bank 70 and a cash repository 80.
  • [0050]
    Some embodiments of the surface further comprise at least one of: a rules display 90, a payout display 100, and a game identifier 110. In such embodiments these elements will be positioned so that they can be perceived and understood by players and potential players. The rules display 90 and the payout display 100 explain in some communicative medium the rules of the game and the payoffs, respectively. The communicative medium may be any known in the art, including alphabetic letters, characters, illustrations, symbols, tactile media (such as Braille or Moon type), or audio. The game identifier 110 comprises a display showing what game is being played, for example comprising the written name of the game and/or an illustration or symbol associated with it.
  • [0051]
    Some embodiments of the surface comprise a component of a table, for example a “D” shaped table typically used in casino card games. The surface may also be part of an equivalent structure, for example a bar.
  • D. Facilities
  • [0052]
    The disclosure provides facilities and processes for their operation. One embodiment of the facilities comprises a table for playing any of the games disclosed herein. In this context a “table” refers to any area that is set up and specifically used for a particular game at some point in time. Also provided is a process comprising operating a gaming facility and performing any of the games disclosed herein at the facility. The facility may be solely or primarily dedicated to gaming, such as a casino. The facility may also have another primary purpose and provide games, for example a cruise ship with an onboard casino or a fair with a gaming tent. Such facilities, although diverse, are generally well understood by the public.
  • E. EXAMPLES
  • [0053]
    1. Casino Game Styled After Bunko
  • [0054]
    One embodiment of the game is a game suitable for play in a commercial casino that is styled after the popular traditional game bunko. The random value generator in this version is three cubic dice, as are used in bunko. The target value is the same number throughout the game, for example five. Each roller throws the dice for a three-round session. The roller has the option of placing a non-bonus wager on each round and a bonus wager on each session. It is not mandatory that the roller herself place a wager, so long as a player places a wager. The dice are rolled using a pai gow cup to prevent manipulation of the dice by the roller. In some versions a casino employee (referred to herein as the “stickman,” although unlike craps, a stick is not necessarily used to manipulate the dice) may retrieve the pai gow cup after it has been shaken by the roller to reveal the roll. In other versions the player herself reveals the roll. In any case, the stickman retrieves the dice between rolls to prevent manipulation of the dice, Wagers in the form of chips are placed on designated spots located on a playing surface (such as those described above), and there may or may not be a designated spot for placing the pai gow cup to reveal the roll. Such designated spots are located on the surface a distance from the players that limits the players' ability to tamper with the wagers or pia gow cup without detection.
  • [0055]
    The house honors payouts on the non-bonus wager in the form of a one-hit payout at 1:1, a two-hit payout at 2:1, a three-hit payout at 3:1, and a three-sum payout at 1:1. The payouts are the same for all three rounds. The non-bonus house edge is 2.1348%. The house honors payouts on the bonus wager at the end of a session, in the form of a three-hit bonus payout of 1:1, a four-hit bonus payout of 1:1, a five-hit bonus payout of 20:1, a bunko payout of 5:1, and three-of-a-kind payout of 3:1. If more than one bonus payout condition is met, only the highest bonus payout is honored. This is independent of and in addition to any non-bonus payout. The resulting bonus house edge is 12.4906%.
  • [0056]
    2. Table for Use with the Game
  • [0057]
    An exemplary embodiment of the playing surface is a D-shaped table as shown in FIG. 1. The stickman occupies the middle portion of the linear side of the D. The table accommodates six players, who are positioned around the curvature of the table. The table comprises six primary wager areas 300 scorresponding to the positions of the six players. Each primary wager area 300 comprises three non-bonus wager spots 50. The three non-bonus wager spots 50 correspond to the first round wager, the second round wager, and the third round wager. The non-bonus wager spots 40 may be numerically marked to indicate the round corresponding to the wager on that spot.
  • [0058]
    The non-bonus wager spots 40 are positioned close enough to the player to allow the player to easily place wagers, but far enough from the player to prevent or render more difficult tampering with the wager without detection. In this exemplary embodiment the non-bonus wager spots 40 are positioned about 5-6″ from the edge of the table.
  • [0059]
    Each primary wager area 300 further comprises a bonus wager spot 50. The bonus wager spot 50 is distinct in appearance from the non-bonus wager spots 40. In this exemplary embodiment the bonus wager spot 50 is positioned to the right of the non-bonus wager spot 40 s, and slightly more distant from the player, about 6.5-7.5″ from the player's edge of the table.
  • [0060]
    The table comprises a dice spot 60 located near the stickman (adjacent to the chip bank 70 described below, and at least about 24″ from the player) and about equidistant from the two corners of the table. The dice spot 60 is marked by a circular marking slightly larger than the diameter of the pai gow cup. The table further comprises a chip bank 70 and a cash repository 80 in front of the stickman.
  • F. Conclusions
  • [0061]
    The invention can be embodied in a wide variety of forms and media including, but not limited to, single player slot video machines, multi-player slot video machines, electronic games and devices, lottery terminals, scratch-card formats, internet gambling sites, software as well as in-flight, home, and Internet entertainment. In addition, the invention can be readily implemented as a computer program product (e.g., floppy disk, compact disc, etc.) comprising a computer readable medium having control logic recorded therein to implement the features of the invention as described in relation to the other preferred embodiments. The control logic can be loaded into the memory of a computer and executed by a central processing unit to perform the operations described herein.
  • [0062]
    The foregoing description illustrates and describes the processes, machines, manufactures, compositions of matter, and other teachings of the present disclosure. Additionally, the disclosure shows and describes only certain embodiments of the processes, machines, manufactures, compositions of matter, and other teachings disclosed, but, as mentioned above, it is to be understood that the teachings of the present disclosure are capable of use in various other combinations, modifications, and environments and is capable of changes or modifications within the scope of the teachings as expressed herein, commensurate with the skill and/or knowledge of a person having ordinary skill in the relevant art. The embodiments described hereinabove are further intended to explain certain best modes known of practicing the processes, machines, manufactures, compositions of matter, and other teachings of the present disclosure and to enable others skilled in the art to utilize the teachings of the present disclosure in such, or other, embodiments and with the various modifications required by the particular applications or uses. Accordingly, the processes, machines, manufactures, compositions of matter, and other teachings of the present disclosure are not intended to limit the exact embodiments and examples disclosed herein.

Claims (31)

  1. 1. A method of playing a game of chance, comprising:
    (a) playing a first round;
    (b) reading at least three random first round values from a random value generator;
    (c) awarding a first reward if exactly one of the first round values is a first target value;
    (d) awarding a second reward if exactly two of the first round values is the first target value;
    (e) awarding a third reward if exactly three of the first round values is the first target value; and
    (f) awarding a fourth reward if the sum of any three first round values equals the first target value.
  2. 2. The method of claim 1, wherein the random values are numbers, the first target value is five, the second target value is five, and the third target value is five.
  3. 3. The method of claim 1, further comprising:
    (a) playing a second round;
    (b) reading at least three random second round values from a random value generator;
    (c) awarding a fifth reward if exactly one of the second round values is a second target value;
    (d) awarding a sixth reward if exactly two of the second round values is the second target value;
    (e) awarding a seventh reward if exactly three of the second round values is the second target value; and
    (f) awarding an eighth reward if the sum of any three of the second round values equals the second target value.
  4. 4. The method of claim 3, further comprising:
    (a) playing a third round;
    (b) reading at least three random third round values from the random value generator;
    (c) awarding a ninth reward if exactly one of the third round values is a third target value;
    (d) awarding a tenth reward if exactly two of the third round values is the third target value;
    (e) awarding an eleventh reward if exactly three of the third round values is the third target value; and
    (f) awarding a twelfth reward if the sum of any three of the third round values equals the third target value.
  5. 5. The method of claim 4 further comprising at least one of the following betting cycles:
    (a) accepting a first round wager, wherein the first reward is a one-hit payout on the first round wager, the second reward is a two-hit payout on the first round wager, the third reward is a three-hit payout on the first round wager, and the fourth reward is a three-sum payout on the first round wager;
    (b) accepting a second round wager, wherein the fifth reward is the one-hit payout on the second round wager, the sixth reward is the two-hit payout on the second round wager, the seventh reward is the three-hit payout on the second round wager, and the eighth reward is the three-sum payout on the second round wager; and
    (e) accepting a third round wager, wherein the ninth reward is the one-hit payout on the third round wager, the tenth reward is the two-hit payout on the third round wager, the eleventh reward is the three-hit payout on the third round wager, and the twelfth reward is the three-sum payout on the third round wager.
  6. 6. The method of claim 5, wherein the one-hit payout is about 1:1, the two-hit payout is about 2:1, the three-hit payout is about 3:1, and the three sum payout is about 1:1.
  7. 7. The method of claim 5, further comprising: accepting a bonus wager and awarding a bonus payout on the bonus wager.
  8. 8. The method of claim 7, further comprising awarding a bonus payout on the bonus wager according to a schedule comprising:
    (a) defining a “bonus hit” as having occurred if any value rolled is the target value, or if the sum of any three values rolled in a given round equal the target value;
    (b) awarding a three-hit bonus payout on the bonus wager if the union of the first round values, the second round values, and the third round values comprises exactly three bonus hits;
    (c) awarding a four-hit bonus payout on the bonus wager if the union of the first round values, the second round values, and the third round values comprises exactly four bonus hits;
    (d) awarding a five-hit bonus payout on the bonus wager if the union of the first round values, the second round values, and the third round values comprises at least five bonus hits;
    (e) awarding a three-of-a-kind bonus payout on the bonus wager if at least one of the first round values, the second round values, or the third round values comprise three identical values;
    (f) awarding a bunko bonus payout on the bonus wager if at least one of the first round values, the second round values, or the third round values comprise three of the target value; and
    (g) awarding only the single highest applicable bonus payout on the bonus wager.
  9. 9. The method of claim 8, wherein the one-hit payout is about 1:1, the two-hit payout is about 2:1, the three-hit payout is about 3:1, the three-sum payout is about 1:1 the three-hit bonus payout is about 1:1, the four-hit bonus payout is about 1:1, the five-hit bonus payout is about 20:1, the three-of-a-kind bonus payout is about 3:1, and the bunko bonus payout is about 5:1.
  10. 10. The method of claim 8,
    (a) wherein a non-bonus house edge is a function of the one-hit payout, the two-hit payout, the three-hit payout, and the three-sum payout;
    (b) wherein the non-bonus house edge greater than at least one of about 0%, about 5%, about 10%, about 15%, about 20%, about 25%, about 30%, about 35%, about 45%, and about 50%; and
    (c) wherein the non-bonus house edge is less than at least one of about 0%, about 5%, about 10%, about 15%, about 20%, about 25%, about 30%, about 35%, about 45%, and about 50%.
  11. 11. The method of claim 8,
    (a) wherein a bonus house edge is a function of the three-hit bonus payout, the four-hit bonus payout, the five hit bonus payout, the three-of-a-kind bonus payout, and the bunko bonus payout; and
    (b) wherein the bonus house edge is from about 0% to about 60%.
  12. 12. The method of claim 8 further comprising at least one of:
    (a) accepting an additional first round wager;
    (b) accepting an additional second round wager;
    (c) accepting an additional third round wager; and
    (d) accepting an additional bonus wager;
    and further comprising awarding a payout on at least one additional wager.
  13. 13. A method of playing a game of chance, comprising the steps of:
    (a) accepting a first round wager, a second round wager, and a third round wager;
    (b) accepting a bonus wager;
    (c) reading a set of random values from a random value generator, the set of random values comprising a first round subset that comprises three random values, a second round subset that comprises three random values, and a third round subset that comprises three random values;
    (d) awarding a payout on at least one of the first round wager, second round wager, or third round wager according to a schedule comprising:
    (i) awarding a one-target payout on the first round wager if the first round subset comprises exactly one of a target value;
    (ii) awarding a two-target payout on the first round wager if the first round subset comprises exactly two of the target value;
    (iii) awarding a three-target payout on the first round wager if the first round subset comprises exactly three of the target value;
    (iv) awarding a three-sum payout on the first round wager if the sum of any three values of the first-round subset equals the target value;
    (v) awarding the one-target payout on the second round wager if the second round subset comprises exactly one of the target value;
    (vi) awarding the two-target payout on the second round wager if the second round subset comprises exactly two of the target value;
    (vii) awarding the three-target payout on the second round wager if the second round subset comprises exactly three of the target value;
    (viii) awarding the three-sum payout on the second round wager if the sum of any three values of the second-round subset equals the target value;
    (ix) awarding the one-target payout on the third round wager if the third round subset comprises exactly one of a target value;
    (x) awarding the two-target payout on the third round wager if the third round subset comprises exactly two of the target value;
    (xi) awarding the three-target payout on the third round wager if the third round subset comprises exactly three of the target value;
    (xii) awarding the three-sum payout on the third round wager if the sum of any three values of the third-round subset equals the target value;
    (e) awarding a bonus payout on the bonus wager according to a schedule comprising:
    (i) defining a “bonus hit” as having occurred if any value rolled is the target value, or if the sum of any three values rolled in a given round equal the target value;
    (ii) awarding a three-hit bonus payout on the bonus wager if the set of random values comprises exactly three bonus hits;
    (iii) awarding a four-hit bonus payout on the bonus wager if the set of random values comprises exactly four bonus hits;
    (iv) awarding a five-hit bonus payout on the bonus wager if the set of random values comprises at least five bonus hits;
    (v) awarding a three-of-a-kind bonus payout on the bonus wager if at least one of the first round subset, the second round subset, or the third round subset comprises three identical values;
    (vi) awarding a bunko bonus payout on the bonus wager if at least one of the first round subset, the second round subset, or the third round subset comprises three of the target value; and
    (vii) awarding only the single highest applicable bonus payout on the bonus wager.
  14. 14. The method of claim 13, wherein the one-hit payout is about 1:1, the two-hit payout is about 2:1, the three-hit payout is about 3:1, the three-sum payout is about 1:1, the three-hit bonus payout is about 1:1, the four-hit bonus payout is about 1:1, the five-hit bonus payout is about 20:1, the three-of-a-kind bonus payout is about 3:1, and the bunko bonus payout is about 5:1.
  15. 15. The method of claim 13
    (a) wherein a non-bonus house edge is determined by the one-hit payout, the two-hit payout, the three-hit payout, and the three-sum payout;
    (b) wherein the non-bonus house edge greater than at least one of: about 0%, about 1%, about 2%, about 3%, about 4%, about 5%, about 10%, about 15%, about 20%, about 25%, about 30%, about 35%, about 45%, and about 50%; and
    (e) wherein the non-bonus house edge is less than at least one of: about 0%, about 1%, about 2%, about 3%, about 4%, about 5%, about 10%, about 15%, about 20%, about 25%, about 30%, about 35%, about 45%, and about 50%.
  16. 16. The method of claim 15, wherein the non-bonus house edge is about 2-5%.
  17. 17. The method of claim 16,
    (a) wherein a bonus house edge is a fuinction of the three-hit bonus payout, the four-hit bonus payout, the five hit bonus payout, the three-of-a-kind bonus payout, and the bunko bonus payout; and
    (b) wherein the bonus house edge is from about 0% to about 60%.
  18. 18. The method of claim 13, wherein the random value generator comprises three dice.
  19. 19. The method of claim 13, wherein the random values are numbers, the first target value is five, the second target value is five, and the third target value is five.
  20. 20. (canceled)
  21. 21. (canceled)
  22. 22. (canceled)
  23. 23. (canceled)
  24. 24. (canceled)
  25. 25. (canceled)
  26. 26. A playing surface for use with the method of claim 1, comprising:
    (a) a player area, the player area comprising:
    (i) a non-bonus wager spot;
    (ii) a bonus wager spot; and
    (b) a stickman area comprising a dice spot.
  27. 27. The playing surface of claim 20, wherein the non-bonus wager spot is a first round wager spot, and further comprising:
    (a) a second round wager spot; and
    (b) a third round wager spot.
  28. 28. The playing surface of claim 21, further comprising a plurality of player areas.
  29. 29. The playing surface of claim 20, wherein said playing surface is part of a table.
  30. 30. A process comprising operating a gaming facility and performing the game of claim 1 at said facility.
  31. 31. The process of claim 24, wherein the facility is selected from the group consisting of a casino and a passenger liner.
US12435799 2008-05-07 2009-05-05 Bunko-Style Game Abandoned US20090278313A1 (en)

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US7654530B2 (en) * 2006-11-07 2010-02-02 Ray Smith Casino-type wagering game based on card color
US7562877B1 (en) * 2007-05-05 2009-07-21 Teresa Lyn Hess, legal representative Two hand twenty-one wagering game
US7686307B1 (en) * 2008-09-15 2010-03-30 David Moss Multistage wagering card game and method therefor

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