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Publication numberUS20070032285 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/199,315
Publication dateFeb 8, 2007
Filing dateAug 8, 2005
Priority dateAug 8, 2005
Publication number11199315, 199315, US 2007/0032285 A1, US 2007/032285 A1, US 20070032285 A1, US 20070032285A1, US 2007032285 A1, US 2007032285A1, US-A1-20070032285, US-A1-2007032285, US2007/0032285A1, US2007/032285A1, US20070032285 A1, US20070032285A1, US2007032285 A1, US2007032285A1
InventorsBryan Wolf
Original AssigneeWolf Bryan D
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Gaming device having a selection game with player choice and a predetermined game outcome
US 20070032285 A1
Abstract
A central determination gaming system having a selection game. In one embodiment, a predetermined game outcome value is selected and the gaming device determines a supplemental value. The gaming device determines and displays a plurality of value groups. One of the values or the sum of a plurality of the values in each value group equals the selected predetermined game outcome value and sum of each of the values for each value group equals the sum of the selected predetermined game outcome value and the generated supplemental value. The gaming device enables the player to pick one of the value groups and the gaming device picks one or more of the values from the player picked value group. The gaming device picked values are based on or otherwise equal the selected predetermined game outcome value. The gaming device provides the selected values to the player and the selection game ends.
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Claims(50)
1. A gaming device operable under control of a processor, said gaming device comprising:
an interactive game controlled by the processor;
a predetermined game outcome value adapted to be provided to a player in the interactive game;
a plurality of value groups in the interactive game; and
a display device adapted to display the interactive game,
wherein said processor is operable with the display device to control a play of the interactive game by:
(a) determining a supplemental value;
(b) determining and displaying a plurality of values for each of the value groups, wherein for each of the value groups: (i) one of the values or a sum of a plurality of the values equals the predetermined game outcome value; and (ii) a sum of each of the values equals a sum of the predetermined game outcome value and the generated supplemental value;
(c) enabling the player to pick one of displayed value groups;
(d) picking at least one of the values of the player picked group, wherein said picked values are based on the predetermined game outcome value; and
(e) providing to the player the picked values, wherein the provided values equal the predetermined game outcome value.
2. The gaming device of claim 1, wherein for each of the value groups, a sum of one or more of the values is equal to the determined supplemental value.
3. The gaming device of claim 1, wherein for each value group, a range between a minimum displayed value in said value group and a maximum displayed value in said value group is equal.
4. The gaming device of claim 1, wherein a range between a minimum displayed value and a maximum displayed value is different for each value group.
5. The gaming device of claim 4, wherein a sum of the values in each value group is equal.
6. The gaming device of claim 1, wherein each of the value groups is associated with the same average expected value.
7. The gaming device of claim 1, wherein each of the value groups is associated with a different average expected value.
8. The gaming device of claim 1, wherein said predetermined game outcome is selected from a plurality of predetermined game outcomes.
9. The gaming device of claim 1, wherein said predetermined game outcome is stored in a memory device of said gaming device.
10. The gaming device of claim 1, which is configured to receive said predetermined game outcome from a central controller.
11. The gaming device of claim 1, wherein said predetermined game outcome is determined based on a result of a bingo game.
12. The gaming device of claim 1, wherein said interactive game is a bonus game.
13. A gaming device operable under control of a processor, said gaming device comprising:
a game controlled by the processor;
a display device operable with the processor and adapted to display the game;
a predetermined game outcome value provided to a player in the game; and
a plurality of different value groups which the player may pick one of in the game, wherein each of the groups includes a plurality of values and for each of the value groups: (i) one of the values or a sum a plurality of the values equals the predetermined game outcome value; and (ii) a sum of each of the values equals a sum of the predetermined game outcome value and the generated supplemental value,
wherein regardless of which one of the value groups the player picks, at least one of the values in said played picked value group is selected, such that the selected values equal the predetermined game outcome value.
14. The gaming device of claim 13, wherein for each of the value groups, a sum of one or more of the values is equal to the supplemental value.
15. The gaming device of claim 13, wherein a plurality of the value groups each have a different range of determined and displayed values.
16. The gaming device of claim 13, wherein each of the value groups has a different range of determined and displayed values.
17. The gaming device of claim 16, wherein a sum of the values in each value group is equal.
18. The gaming device of claim 13, wherein said predetermined game outcome is selected from a plurality of predetermined game outcomes.
19. The gaming device of claim 13, wherein said predetermined game outcome is stored in a memory device of said gaming device.
20. The gaming device of claim 13, which is configured to receive said predetermined game outcome from a central controller.
21. The gaming device of claim 13, wherein said predetermined game outcome is determined based on a result of a bingo game.
22. A gaming device operable under control of a processor, said gaming device comprising:
an interactive game controlled by the processor;
a predetermined game outcome value adapted to be provided to a player in the interactive game;
a plurality of value groups in the interactive game; and
a display device adapted to display the interactive game,
wherein said processor is operable with the display device to control a play of the interactive game by:
(a) determining and displaying a plurality of values for each of the value groups, wherein for each of the value groups one of the values or a sum of a plurality of the values equals the predetermined game outcome value;
(b) enabling the player to pick one of displayed value groups;
(c) picking at least one of the values of the player picked group, wherein said picked values are based on the predetermined game outcome value; and
(d) providing to the player the picked values, wherein the provided values equal the predetermined game outcome value.
23. The gaming device of claim 22, wherein a plurality of the value groups each have a different range of determined and displayed values.
24. The gaming device of claim 22, wherein each of the value groups has a different range of determined and displayed values.
25. The gaming device of claim 24, wherein a sum of the values in each value group is equal.
26. The gaming device of claim 22, wherein said predetermined game outcome is selected from a plurality of predetermined game outcomes.
27. The gaming device of claim 22, wherein said predetermined game outcome is stored in a memory device of said gaming device.
28. The gaming device of claim 22, which is configured to receive said predetermined game outcome from a central controller.
29. The gaming device of claim 22, wherein said predetermined game outcome is determined based on a result of a bingo game.
30. A method of operating a gaming device, said method comprising:
(a) determining a supplemental value;
(b) determining and displaying a plurality of values for each of a plurality of value groups, wherein for each of the value groups: (i) one of the values or a sum of a plurality of the values equals a predetermined game outcome value; and (ii) a sum of each of the values equals a sum of the predetermined game outcome value and the generated supplemental value;
(c) enabling the player to pick one of displayed value groups;
(d) picking at least one of the values of the player picked group, wherein said picked values are based on the predetermined game outcome value; and
(e) providing to the player the picked values, wherein the provided values equal the predetermined game outcome value.
31. The method of claim 30, wherein for each of the value groups, a sum of one or more of the values is equal to the determined supplemental value.
32. The method of claim 30, wherein for each value group, a range between a minimum displayed value in said value group and a maximum displayed value in said value group is equal.
33. The method of claim 30, wherein a range between a minimum displayed value and a maximum displayed value is different for each value group.
34. The method of claim 33, wherein a sum of the values in each value group is equal.
35. The method of claim 30, wherein each of the value groups is associated with the same average expected value.
36. The method of claim 30, wherein each of the value groups is associated with a different average expected value.
37. The method of claim 30, wherein said predetermined game outcome is selected from a plurality of predetermined game outcomes.
38. The method of claim 30, which includes receiving said predetermined game outcome from a central controller.
39. The method of claim 30, wherein said predetermined game outcome is determined based on a result of a bingo game.
40. The method of claim 30, which is provided through a data network.
41. The method of claim 40, wherein the data network is an internet.
42. A method of operating a gaming device, said method comprising:
(a) determining and displaying a plurality of values for each of a plurality of value groups, wherein for each of the value groups one of the values or a sum of a plurality of the values equals a predetermined game outcome value;
(b) enabling the player to pick one of displayed value groups;
(c) picking at least one of the values of the player picked group, wherein said picked values are based on the predetermined game outcome value; and
(d) providing to the player the picked values, wherein the provided values equal the predetermined game outcome value.
43. The method of claim 42, wherein a plurality of the value groups each have a different range of determined and displayed values.
44. The method of claim 43, wherein a sum of the values in each value group is equal.
45. The method of claim 42, wherein each of the value groups has a different range of determined and displayed values.
46. The method of claim 42, wherein said predetermined game outcome is selected from a plurality of predetermined game outcomes.
47. The method of claim 42, which includes receiving said predetermined game outcome from a central controller.
48. The method of claim 42, wherein said predetermined game outcome is determined based on a result of a bingo game.
49. The method of claim 42, which is provided through a data network.
50. The method of claim 49, wherein the data network is an internet.
Description
CROSS-REFERENCE TO RELATED APPLICATIONS

This application relates to the following co-pending commonly owned patent applications: “APPARATUS AND METHOD FOR MODIFYING GENERATED VALUES TO DETERMINE AN AWARD IN A GAMING DEVICE,” Ser. No. 09/957,018, Attorney Docket No. 112300-581; “GAMING DEVICE INCLUDING OUTCOME POOLS FOR PROVIDING GAME OUTCOMES,” Ser. No. 10/261,744, Attorney Docket No. 112300-600; “CENTRAL DETERMINATION GAMING SYSTEM WITH A CENTRAL CONTROLLER PROVIDING A GAME OUTCOME AND A GAMING TERMINAL DETERMINING A PRESENTATION OF THE PROVIDED GAME OUTCOME,” Ser. No. 10/371,723, Attorney Docket No. 112300-1213; “CENTRAL DETERMINATION GAMING SYSTEM WHERE THE SAME SEED IS USED TO GENERATE THE OUTCOMES FOR A PRIMARY GAME AND A SECONDARY GAME,” Ser. No. 10/371,958, Attorney Docket No. 112300-1214; “CENTRAL DETERMINATION GAMING SYSTEM WHICH PROVIDES A PLAYER A CHOICE IN OUTCOMES,” Ser. No. 10/442,318, Attorney Docket NO. 112300-1215; “CENTRAL DETERMINATION GAMING SYSTEM WITH A GAME OUTCOME GENERATED BY A GAMING TERMINAL AND APPROVED BY A CENTRAL CONTROLLER,” Ser. No. 10/383,423, Attorney Docket No. 112300-1216; “CENTRAL DETERMINATION GAMING SYSTEM WITH A GAMING TERMINAL ASSISTING THE CENTRAL CONTROLLER IN THE GENERATION OF A GAME OUTCOME,” Ser. No. 10/431,755, Attorney Docket No. 112300-1217 “CENTRAL DETERMINATION GAMING SYSTEM WITH A KENO GAME,” Ser. No. 10/601,482, Attorney Docket No. 112300-1349; “GAMING DEVICE HAVING AN INTERACTIVE POKER GAME WITH PREDETERMINED OUTCOMES,” Ser. No. 10/934,258, Attorney Docket No. 112300-2310; “CENTRAL DETERMINATION POKER GAME,” Ser. No. 10/945,642, Attorney Docket No. 112300-2311; “GAMING DEVICE HAVING A PREDETERMINED RESULT POKER GAME,” Ser. No. 11/031,663, Attorney Docket No. 112300-2578; “CENTRAL DETERMINATION OFFER AND ACCEPTANCE GAME WITH MULTIPLIER,” Ser. No. 11/048,220, Attorney Docket No. 112300-2619; “APPARATUS AND METHOD FOR GENERATING A POOL OF SEEDS FOR A CENTRAL DETERMINATION GAMING SYSTEM,” Ser. No. 11/046,354, Attorney Docket No. 112300-2684; “APPARATUS AND METHOD FOR GENERATING A POOL OF SEEDS FOR A CENTRAL DETERMINATION GAMING SYSTEM,” Ser. No. 11/071,372, Attorney Docket No. 112300-2685; “METHOD FOR DISPLAYING AN INTERACTIVE GAME HAVING A PREDETERMINED OUTCOME,” Ser. No. 10/829,578, Attorney Docket No. 115004-036; “METHOD FOR DISPLAYING AN INTERACTIVE GAME HAVING A PREDETERMINED OUTCOME,” Ser. No. 10/846,448, Attorney Docket No. 115004-037; and “METHOD FOR DISPLAYING AN INTERACTIVE GAME HAVING A PREDETERMINED OUTCOME,” Ser. No. 10/864,784, Attorney Docket No. 115004-038.

COPYRIGHT NOTICE

A portion of the disclosure of this patent document contains or may contain material which is subject to copyright protection. The copyright owner has no objection to the photocopy reproduction by anyone 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 whatsoever.

BACKGROUND

The majority of the contemporary wagering gaming devices or gaming devices, such as slot machines, randomly generate awards and other outcomes. Such gaming devices typically include a relatively low probability associated with obtaining the highest award, relatively medium probabilities associated with obtaining medium range awards and relatively higher probabilities associated with obtaining low range awards. These gaming devices also include probabilities associated with obtaining losses or no award at all. The probabilities of obtaining the awards and the amount of the awards determine the average expected pay out percentage of these wagering gaming devices. Because the outcomes of these gaming devices are completely randomly determined, there is no certainty that a player will ever obtain any particular award. That is, no matter how many times a player plays the game, since the gaming device generates outcomes randomly or completely based upon a probability calculation, there is no certainty that the game will ever provide the player with a rare outcome, such as a jackpot award, or any other specific value for that matter. On the other hand, due to the random determination, the gaming device can provide the rare outcomes, such as jackpot awards, numerous times in a small number of plays. For example, a probability-based $1 slot machine gaming device may be programmed to payback, on average, 95% of all wagers placed with a 1% chance of generating a $10 win outcome, a 5% chance of generating a $5 win outcome, a 10% chance of generating a $2 win outcome, a 40% chance of generating a $1 win outcome and a 44% chance of generating a $0 loss outcome. However, when one hundred game outcomes are generated by the probability-based slot machine gaming device, the actual payback may be 137% of all wagers placed and the actual generated outcomes may be six $10 win outcomes, one $5 win outcome, eighteen $2 win outcomes, thirty-six $1 win outcomes and thirty-nine $0 loss outcomes.

This uncertainty is faced by players and casinos or other gaming establishments. For example, certain casinos prefer that a relatively high number of players hit low awards while a relatively low number of players hit high awards. When players hit high awards periodically, casinos can attract more players, because of the positive publicity large wins generate. By using desired payback percentages or probabilities, the casinos can also expect to make a certain level of profit. The random determinations can, however, unexpectedly cause casinos to suffer a loss or, on the other hand, to reap great profit in the short run and lose business in the long run due to a reputation for only paying out low awards. Regulatory bodies in certain jurisdictions do not permit the use of probability-based gaming devices in-part for these reasons. These regulatory bodies permit the use of wagering gaming devices which are guaranteed to provide certain or definite awards, so that, for example, a certain number of wins is guaranteed and the overall amount paid back to players is guaranteed. That is, the actual payback percentage is fixed and not an average expected amount. One type of gaming device which complies with this requirement is an instant-type lottery gaming device. An instant-type lottery gaming device includes a finite pool or set of electronic tickets with each electronic ticket assigned to a predetermined game outcome. Alternatively, each electronic ticket could be assigned to a random number or game play seed. Each seed is deterministic of a predetermined game outcome. That is, the gaming device utilizes the random number or game play seed in a random number generating algorithm to generate random numbers that the gaming device then uses to determine and provide the predetermined game outcome. In an instant-type lottery gaming device, as the predetermined game outcome for each electronic ticket is revealed to a player on the gaming device, the ticket is removed (i.e., flagged as used) from the finite pool or set of electronic tickets. Once removed from the pool or set, a ticket cannot be used again to determine another game outcome. This type of gaming device provides players with all of the available outcomes over the course of the play cycle and guarantees the actual wins and losses.

Since an instant-type lottery gaming machine has a finite pool of predetermined win/loss outcomes, it is possible to configure the pool to specific conditions or criteria requested by the casino or gaming establishment. An example of these conditions or criteria are the number of tickets in the pool and the exact payback percentage or payback sum for the pool as a whole. The payback percentage or sum represents the guaranteed payout for the entire pool of predetermined game outcomes. Other examples of conditions or criteria are what prizes will be awarded and the frequency of winning outcome tickets amongst the total number of tickets for the pool. For example, if a predetermined pool includes twenty $1 tickets and the pool has a payback sum of $10, then the pool might consist of one $5 win outcome, one $2 win outcome, three $1 win outcomes and fifteen $0 loss outcomes and may be represented as the following outcomes: 5, 2, 1, 1, 1, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0. It should be appreciated that the above described pool of twenty tickets is for illustration purposes only and a pool could include any suitable desired number of tickets including a large number such as one million or more.

Even though a pool may contain more than one of the same game outcome (i.e., the loss or the win and if a win, the value), the presentation to the player (such as reel stops in the case of slot machines or simulated slot machines, cards dealt or drawn in the case of simulated card games and the like) is preferably varied for each sequential game outcome. For example, in the twenty ticket pool described above, while three game outcomes may each determine a win game outcome with a value of $1, in a slot machine type game, the three game outcomes are preferably presented to the player as different winning combinations of reel symbols.

Central determination gaming systems are also generally known. A central determination gaming system provides a plurality of individual gaming devices, located in a gaming establishment, such as a casino, coupled by one or more communication links, to a central processor or controller. When a player plays a game on one of the gaming devices, a game outcome is randomly generated by the central controller based on probability data. The generated game outcome and how the game outcome is to be presented or displayed to the player are communicated from the central controller to the individual gaming device and then provided to the player. It should be appreciated that one central processor may continuously run hundreds or thousands of individual gaming devices at once. Additionally, each individual gaming device may include a plurality of different types of games played at a plurality of different denominations.

To comply with the above mentioned regulatory rules that do not permit the use of probability-based gaming devices, central determination gaming systems have been implemented wherein the central system maintains one or more predetermined pools or sets of game outcomes. Each game outcome in each set or pool includes a game outcome component (i.e., a win, a lose, a secondary game trigger or other suitable outcome) with an associated value or payout amount, if any, and a game presentation component (i.e., how the game outcome is displayed or presented to the player). In these systems, when a player makes a wager on one of the gaming devices, the central system independently selects a game outcome from a set or pool of game outcomes and flags or marks the selected predetermined game outcome as used. Once a game outcome is flagged as used, it is prevented from further selection from the set or pool and cannot be selected by the central controller upon another wager. The selected predetermined game outcome is communicated to the individual gaming device. The individual gaming device displays or presents the game presentation component and provides the player the game outcome component with the associated value, if any, for the selected predetermined game outcome. Additionally, certain central determination gaming systems have also been implemented wherein the central system maintains one or more predetermined pools or sets of random number or game outcome seeds.

There are a number of advantages to providing for centralized production of game outcomes at individual gaming devices. Central production or control can assist a casino or other entity in maintaining appropriate records, controlling gaming, reducing and preventing cheating or electronic or other errors, reducing or eliminating win-loss volatility and the like. However, it should be appreciated that existing central determination gaming systems involve minimal to no player interaction other than initiating a game play at a gaming device. That is, similar to an instant type lottery game, the central controller selects a game outcome from the pool and the selected predetermined game outcome is provided to the player with the player unable to influence the provided game outcome. Therefore, a need exists for a central determination gaming system that provides an increased level of player interaction.

Moreover, gaming devices which provide a player one or more awards following one or more player selections are known. In these gaming devices, one or more awards are associated with one or more player selections. A player is enabled to pick one or more of the selections and the gaming device provides the player any award(s) associated with the player picked selection(s).

As the game outcome in a central determination gaming system is predetermined by the central controller and involves minimal to no player interaction and as the game outcome in a player selection type game is determined by which selections a player picks, an inconsistency may occur if the award(s) associated with the player's picked selection(s) differs from the selected predetermined game outcome. This inconsistency can interfere with the play of the selection game because if the selected predetermined game outcome and the award(s) associated with the player's picked selection(s) differ, the player may be provided a game outcome they did not pick or the gaming device may provide the player a game outcome different from the selected predetermined game outcome.

For example, in one selection type game, a player is displayed a plurality of value groups to pick from wherein each value group includes a plurality of values. After the player picks a value group, the gaming device picks one of the values from the player picked value group and provides the player the picked value. It should be appreciated that to provide the player a predetermined game outcome value in this type of selection game, the gaming device must insure that each of the value groups includes the predetermined game outcome value. However, if each of the value groups includes the predetermined game outcome value, it would become obvious to a player after a few games that the value in each of the value groups will be provided to the player, regardless of which value group the player picks.

Accordingly, a need exists to provide a selection game which involves a high degree of player interaction that is operational in a central determination gaming system.

SUMMARY

The present disclosure relates in general to gaming device having a selection game with a player choice and a predetermined game outcome. The selection game includes a plurality of displayed value groups. Each value group includes a plurality of values, wherein for each value group, one of the values or the sum of one or more of the values equals a predetermined game outcome value. The gaming device enables the player to pick one of the value groups. After the player picks one of the value groups, the gaming device picks one or more of the values from the player picked value group, wherein the picked values are based on or otherwise equal the predetermined game outcome value. The gaming device provides the selected values (i.e., which equal the predetermined game outcome value) to the player and the selection game ends.

In one embodiment, upon the initiation of game play, a predetermined game outcome value or payout is selected. The predetermined game outcome value represents the payout which must ultimately be provided to a player. For example, a predetermined game outcome value of four-hundred is selected.

In one embodiment, the predetermined game outcome value is stored in a central controller. In this embodiment, upon a player initiating game play at the gaming device, the initiated gaming device communicates a game outcome request to the central server or controller. Upon receiving the game outcome request, the central controller independently selects a game outcome value from a set or pool of game outcome values and flags or marks the selected game outcome value as used. Once a game outcome value is flagged as used, it is prevented from further selection from the set or pool and cannot be selected by the central controller upon another wager. The selected game outcome value is communicated to the individual gaming device to be utilized in the initiated game. In another embodiment, the predetermined game outcome value is stored in a memory device of the gaming device. In this embodiment, the gaming device selects a game outcome value from a set or pool of stored game outcome values and flags the selected game outcome value as used. In another embodiment, upon a player initiating game play at the gaming device, the gaming device enrolls in a bingo game. In this embodiment, a bingo server calls the bingo balls that result in a specific game outcome value. The resultant game outcome value is communicated to the individual gaming device to be utilized in the initiated selection game.

After the predetermined game outcome value is selected, the gaming device randomly determines a supplemental or designated value. The supplemental value may be greater than, less than or equal to the selected predetermined game outcome value. For example, the gaming device randomly generates a supplemental value of two-hundred-fifty.

The gaming device next determines and displays a plurality of value groups, wherein each value group includes a plurality of values. In one embodiment, each value group includes the same number of values. In one embodiment, the gaming device determines the values in each of the value groups by distributing the predetermined game outcome value and the supplemental value across each of the values for each of the value groups. For each value group: (i) one of the values or the sum of one or more of the values equals the selected predetermined game outcome value; and (ii) the sum of each of the values equals the sum of the selected predetermined game outcome value and the generated supplemental value. It should be appreciated that in each embodiment which includes more than two values in each value group, as the selected predetermined game outcome value and the generated supplemental value represent only two values, one or both of the selected predetermined game outcome value and the generated supplemental value must be split or divided up into two or more values for each of the value groups.

For example, for a first value group of four values, the gaming device divides the selected predetermined game outcome value of four-hundred into a value of twenty-five and a value of three-hundred-seventy-five. For the first value group, the gaming device also divides the generated supplemental value of two-hundred-fifty into a value of fifty and a value of two-hundred. After determining the values for each of the values in the first value group, the gaming device displays each of the four determined values (i.e., the values of twenty-five, three-hundred-seventy-five, fifty and two-hundred) for the first value group.

For a second value group of four values, the gaming device divides the selected predetermined game outcome value of four-hundred into a value of one-hundred, a value of one-hundred-twenty-five and a value of one-hundred-seventy-five. For this second value group, the gaming device determines not to divide the supplemental value and thus the supplemental value of two-hundred-fifty will be associated with one of the selections. Accordingly, after determining the values for each of the selections in the second value group, the gaming device displays each of the four values (i.e., the values of one-hundred, one-hundred-twenty-five, one-hundred-seventy-five and two-hundred-fifty) for the second value group.

It should be appreciated that since each of the value groups includes the same number of values and the sum of the values is the same for each value group, each value group is associated with the same average expected value. In one embodiment, although the sum of the values for each value group is the same, the gaming device varies the volatility of each value group. For example, one value group with a high volatility may include a large range between the highest value in the value group and the lowest value in the value group. In this example, another value group with a low volatility includes a small range between the highest value in the value group and the lowest value in the value group.

In one embodiment, after determining the values in each of the value groups, the gaming device enables the player to pick one of the value groups. After the player picks one of the value groups, the gaming device picks one or more of the values from the player picked value group. In this embodiment, the gaming device picked values are based on the selected predetermined game outcome value. That is, the gaming device picks one or more values that add up to the selected predetermined game outcome value. The gaming device provides the selected values to the player and the selection game ends. It should be appreciated that since the gaming device picks one or more values that add up to the selected predetermined game outcome value, regardless of which value group the player picks, the gaming device provides the selected predetermined game outcome value to the player.

For example, if the player selected the first value group described above, the gaming device would pick the values of twenty-five and three-hundred-seventy-five which add up to the selected predetermined game outcome value of four-hundred. On the other hand, if the player selected the second value group, the gaming device would pick the values of one-hundred, one-hundred-twenty-five, one-hundred-seventy-five which add up to the selected predetermined game outcome value of four-hundred.

Accordingly, the selection game disclosed herein involves a high degree of player interaction and also provides a selected predetermined game outcome value to a player

Additional features and advantages are described in, and will be apparent from, the following Detailed Description and the figures.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE FIGURES

FIGS. 1A and 1B are perspective views of alternative embodiments of the disclosed gaming device.

FIG. 2A is a schematic block diagram of an electronic configuration of one embodiment of the disclosed gaming device.

FIG. 2B is a schematic block diagram illustrating a plurality of gaming devices in communication with a central controller.

FIG. 3 is a schematic block diagram illustrating one embodiment wherein a selected predetermined game outcome is provided to a player based on a selection game.

FIGS. 4A, 4B and 4C are front elevational views of one embodiment disclosed herein illustrating a selection game which provides a predetermined game outcome value to a player.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION

Referring now to the drawings, two alternative embodiments of the disclosed gaming device are illustrated in FIGS. 1A and 1B as gaming device 10 a and gaming device 10 b, respectively. Gaming device 10 a and/or gaming device 10 b are generally referred to herein as gaming device 10.

In one embodiment, as illustrated in FIGS. 1A and 1B, gaming device 10 has a support structure, housing or cabinet which provides support for a plurality of displays, inputs, controls and other features of a conventional gaming machine. It is configured so that a player can operate it while standing or sitting. The gaming device may be positioned on a base or stand or can be configured as a pub-style table-top game (not shown) which a player can operate preferably while sitting. As illustrated by the different configurations shown in FIGS. 1A and 1B, the gaming device can be constructed with varying cabinet and display configurations.

In one embodiment, as illustrated in FIG. 2A, the gaming device preferably includes at least one processor 12, such as a microprocessor, a microcontroller-based platform, a suitable integrated circuit or one or more application-specific integrated circuits (ASIC's). The processor is in communication with or operable to access or to exchange signals with at least one data storage or memory device 14. In one embodiment, the processor and the memory device reside within the cabinet of the gaming device. The memory device stores program code and instructions, executable by the processor, to control the gaming device. The memory device also stores other data such as image data, event data, player input data, random or pseudo-random number generators, pay-table data or information and applicable game rules that relate to the play of the gaming device. In one embodiment, the memory device stores a pool of predetermined game outcome values which will be provided to the players during the play of the interactive selection game.

In one embodiment, the memory device includes random access memory (RAM), which can include non-volatile RAM (NVRAM), magnetic RAM (MRAM), ferroelectric RAM (FeRAM) and other forms as commonly understood in the art. In one embodiment, the memory device includes read only memory (ROM). In one embodiment, the memory device includes flash memory and/or EEPROM (electrically erasable programmable read only memory). Any other suitable magnetic, optical and/or semiconductor memory may be implemented in conjunction with the disclosed gaming device.

In one embodiment, part or all of the program code and/or operating data described above can be stored in a detachable or removable memory device, including, but not limited to, a suitable cartridge, disk, CD ROM, DVD or USB memory device. A player can use such a removable memory device in a desktop, a laptop personal computer, a personal digital assistant (PDA) or other computerized platform. The processor and memory device may be collectively referred to herein as a “computer.”

In one embodiment, as illustrated in FIG. 2A, the gaming device includes one or more display devices controlled by the processor. The display devices are preferably connected to or mounted to the cabinet of the gaming device. The embodiment shown in FIG. 1A includes a central display device 16 which displays a primary game. This display device may also display any secondary game associated with the primary game as well as information relating to the primary or secondary game. The alternative embodiment shown in FIG. 1B includes a central display device 16 and an upper display device 18. The upper display device may display the primary game, any suitable secondary game associated with the primary game and/or information relating to the primary or secondary game. In another embodiment, at least one display device may be a mobile display device, such as a PDA or tablet PC, that enables at least a portion of the primary or secondary game to be played at a location remote from the gaming device. As seen in FIGS. 1A and 1B, in one embodiment, the gaming device includes a credit display 20 which displays a player's current number of credits, cash, account balance or the equivalent. In one embodiment, gaming device includes a bet display 22 which displays a player's amount wagered.

The display devices may include, without limitation, a monitor, a television display, a plasma display, a liquid crystal display (LCD) a display based on light emitting diodes (LED), a display based on a plurality of organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs), a display based on polymer light-emitting diodes (PLEDs), a display including a projected and/or reflected image or any other suitable electronic device or display mechanism. In one embodiment, as described in more detail below, the display device includes a touch-screen with an associated touch-screen controller. The display devices may be of any suitable configuration, such as a square, a rectangle or an elongated rectangle.

The display devices of the gaming device are configured to display at least one and preferably a plurality of game or other suitable images, symbols, playing cards and indicia such as any visual representation or exhibition of the movement of objects such as mechanical, virtual or video reels and wheels, dynamic lighting, video images, images of people, characters, places, things and faces of cards, tournament advertisements and the like. In one alternative embodiment, the symbols, images and indicia displayed on or of the display device may be in mechanical form. That is, the display device may include any electromechanical device, such as one or more mechanical objects, such as one or more rotatable wheels, reels or dice, configured to display at least one and preferably a plurality of game or other suitable images, symbols or indicia.

As illustrated in FIG. 2A, in one embodiment, the gaming device includes at least one payment acceptor 24 in communication with the processor. As seen in FIGS. 1A and 1B, the payment acceptor may include a coin slot 26 and a payment, note or bill acceptor 28, where the player inserts money, coins or tokens. The player can place coins in the coin slot or paper money, ticket or voucher into the payment, note or bill acceptor. In other embodiments, devices such as readers or validators for credit cards, debit cards or credit slips could be used for accepting payment. In one embodiment, a player may insert an identification card into a card reader of the gaming device. In one embodiment, the identification card is a smart card having a programmed microchip or a magnetic strip coded with a player's identification, credit totals and other relevant information. In one embodiment, money may be transferred to a gaming device through electronic funds transfer. When a player funds the gaming device, the processor determines the amount of funds entered and the corresponding amount is shown on the credit or other suitable display as described above.

As seen in FIGS. 1A, 1B and 2A, in one embodiment the gaming device includes at least one and preferably a plurality of input devices 30 in communication with the processor. The input devices can include any suitable device which enables the player to produce an input signal which is read by the processor. In one embodiment, after appropriate funding of the gaming device, the input device is a game activation device, such as a play button 34 which is used by the player to start any primary game or sequence of events in the gaming device. The play button can be any suitable play activator such as a bet one button, a max bet button or a repeat the bet button. In one embodiment, upon appropriate funding, the gaming device begins the game play automatically. In another embodiment, upon the player engaging one of the play buttons, the gaming device automatically activates game play.

In one embodiment, as shown in FIGS. 1A and 1B, one input device is a bet one button 36. The player places a bet by pushing the bet one button. The player can increase the bet by one credit each time the player pushes the bet one button. When the player pushes the bet one button, the number of credits shown in the credit display preferably decreases by one, and the number of credits shown in the bet display preferably increases by one. In another embodiment, one input device is a bet max button (not shown) which enables the player to bet the maximum wager permitted for a game of the gaming device.

In one embodiment, one input device is a cash out button 38. The player may push the cash out button and cash out to receive a cash payment or other suitable form of payment corresponding to the number of remaining credits. In one embodiment, when the player cashes out, the player receives the coins or tokens in a coin payout tray 40. In one embodiment, when the player cashes out, the player may receive other payout mechanisms such as tickets or credit slips redeemable by a cashier or funding to the player's electronically recordable identification card.

In one embodiment, as mentioned above and seen in FIG. 2A, one input device is a touch-screen 42 coupled with a touch-screen controller 44, or some other touch-sensitive display overlay to allow for player interaction with the images on the display. The touch-screen and the touch-screen controller are connected to a video controller 46. A player can make decisions, such as which playing cards to hold or discard and input signals into the gaming device by touching the touch-screen at the appropriate places.

The gaming device may further include a plurality of communication ports for enabling communication of the processor with external peripherals, such as external video sources, expansion buses, game or other displays, an SCSI port or a key pad.

In one embodiment, as seen in FIG. 2A, the gaming device includes a sound generating device controlled by one or more sounds cards 48 which function in conjunction with the processor. In one embodiment, the sound generating device includes at least one and preferably a plurality of speakers 50 or other sound generating hardware and/or software for generating sounds, such as playing music for the primary and/or secondary game or for other modes of the gaming device, such as an attract mode. In one embodiment, the gaming device provides dynamic sounds coupled with attractive multimedia images displayed on one or more of the display devices to provide an audio-visual representation or to otherwise display full-motion video with sound to attract players to the gaming device. During idle periods, the gaming device may display a sequence of audio and/or visual attraction messages to attract potential players to the gaming device. The videos may also be customized for or to provide any appropriate information.

In one embodiment, the gaming machine may include a player or other sensor, such as a camera in communication with the processor (and possibly controlled by the processor) that is selectively positioned to acquire an image of a player actively using the gaming device and/or the surrounding area of the gaming device. In one embodiment, the camera may be configured to selectively acquire still or moving (e.g., video) images and may be configured to acquire the images in either an analog, digital or other suitable format. The display devices may be configured to display the image acquired by the camera as well as display the visible manifestation of the game in split screen or picture-in-picture fashion. For example, the camera may acquire an image of the player and that image can be incorporated into the primary and/or secondary game as a game image, symbol or indicia.

In one embodiment, as illustrated in FIG. 2B, one or more of the gaming devices 10 may be connected to each other through a data network or a remote communication link 58 with some or all of the functions of each gaming device provided at a central location such as a central server or central controller 56. More specifically, the processor of each gaming device may be designed to facilitate transmission of signals between the individual gaming device and the central server or controller.

In one embodiment, all of the gaming devices which are coupled to the central processor are configured to play the same type of game. In an alternative embodiment, a plurality of the gaming devices are configured so that different gaming devices may be used to play different types of games. That is, some gaming devices may be used for playing a slot machine style game, others may be used for playing a poker style game, others may be used for playing a blackjack style game, and the like. In another embodiment, a plurality of gaming devices may each be configured for playing a plurality of different games.

In another embodiment, one or more of the gaming devices are in communication with a central server or controller for monitoring purposes only. In this embodiment, each gaming device stores a pool of predetermined game outcomes to be provided to the player in a memory and the central server or controller monitors the activities and events occurring on the plurality of gaming devices. In one embodiment, the gaming network includes a real-time or on-line accounting and gaming information system operably coupled to the central server or controller. The accounting and gaming information system of this embodiment includes a player database for storing player profiles, a player tracking module for tracking players and a credit system for providing automated casino transactions.

In one embodiment, a plurality of the gaming devices are connected together and to a central controller through a data network. In one embodiment, the data network is a local area network (LAN), in which one or more of the gaming devices are substantially proximate to each other and an on-site central server or controller as in, for example, a gaming establishment or a portion of a gaming establishment. In another embodiment, the data network is a wide area network (WAN) in which one or more of the gaming devices are in communication with at least one off-site central server or controller. In this embodiment, the plurality of gaming devices may be located in a different part of the gaming establishment or within a different gaming establishment than the off-site central server or controller. Thus, the WAN may include an off-site central server or controller and an off-site gaming device located within gaming establishments in the same geographic area, such as a city or state. The WAN gaming system may be substantially identical to the LAN gaming system described above, although the number of gaming devices in each system may vary relative to each other.

In another embodiment, the data network is an internet or intranet. In this embodiment, the operation of the gaming device can be viewed at the gaming device with at least one internet browser. In this embodiment, operation of the gaming device and accumulation of credits may be accomplished with only a connection to the central server or controller (the internet/intranet server) through a conventional phone or other data transmission line, digital signal line (DSL), T-1 line, coaxial cable, fiber optic cable, or other suitable connection. In this embodiment, players may access an internet game page from any location where an internet connection and computer, or other internet facilitator are available. The expansion in the number of computers and number and speed of internet connections in recent years increases opportunities for players to play from an ever-increasing number of remote sites. It should be appreciated that enhanced bandwidth of digital wireless communications may render such technology suitable for some or all communications, particularly if such communications are encrypted. Higher data transmission speeds may be useful for enhancing the sophistication and response of the display and interaction with the player.

In another embodiment, as described above, one or more gaming devices are in communication with a central server or controller. The central server or controller may be any suitable server or computing device which includes at least one processor and a memory or storage device. In alternative embodiments, the central server is a progressive controller or another gaming machine in the gaming system. In one embodiment, the memory device stores different game programs and instructions, executable by a gaming device processor, to control the gaming device. Each executable game program represents a different game or type of game which may be played on one or more of the gaming devices in the gaming system. Such different games may include the same or substantially the same game play with different pay tables. In different embodiments, the executable game program is for a primary game, a secondary game or both. In another embodiment, the game program may be executable as a secondary game to be played simultaneous with the play of a primary game (which may be downloaded to or fixed on the gaming device) or vice versa.

In this embodiment, each gaming device at least includes one or more display devices and/or one or more input devices for interaction with a player. A local processor, such as the above-described gaming device processor or a processor of a local server, is operable with the display device(s) and/or the input device(s) of one or more of the gaming devices.

In operation, the central controller is operable to communicate one or more of the stored game programs to at least one local processor. In different embodiments, the stored game programs are communicated or delivered by embedding the communicated game program in a device or a component (e.g., a “chip” to be inserted in a gaming device), writing the game program on a disc or other media, downloading or streaming the game program over a dedicated data network, internet or a telephone line. After the stored game programs are communicated from the central server, the local processor executes the communicated program to facilitate play of the communicated program by a player through the display device(s) and/or input device(s) of the gaming device. That is, when a game program is communicated to a local processor, the local processor changes the game or type of game played at the gaming device.

In another embodiment, a plurality of gaming devices at one or more gaming sites may be networked to a central server and operable to provide one or more progressive awards to one or more players. A progressive award is an award amount which includes an initial amount funded by a casino and an additional amount funded through a portion of each wager made on the progressive gaming device. For example, 1% of each wager on the primary game of the gaming device may be allocated to the progressive award or progressive award fund. The progressive award grows in value as more players play the gaming device and more portions of the players' wagers are allocated to the progressive award. When a predetermined game outcome value associated with the progressive award is selected or determined, the accumulated progressive award is provided to the player. After the progressive award is provided to the player, the amount of the next progressive award is reset to the initial value and a portion of each subsequent wager is allocated to the next progressive award as described above. In one embodiment, the progressive award payout is associated with one or more of the predetermined game outcomes which are stored in the pool of predetermined game outcomes.

In one embodiment, a host site computer is coupled to a plurality of the central servers at a variety of mutually remote gaming sites for providing a multi-site linked progressive automated gaming system. In one embodiment, a host site computer may serve gaming devices distributed throughout a number of properties at different geographical locations including, for example, different locations within a city or different cities within a state.

In one embodiment, the host site computer is maintained for the overall operation and control of the system. In this embodiment, a host site computer oversees the entire progressive gaming system and is the master for computing all progressive jackpots. All participating gaming sites report to, and receive information from, the host site computer. Each central server computer is responsible for all data communication between the gaming device hardware and software and the host site computer.

In one embodiment, the gaming device can incorporate any suitable primary or base wagering game. The gaming machine or gaming device may include some or all of the features of conventional gaming machines or devices. The primary or base game may comprise any suitable reel-type game, card game, number game, player interactive game or other game of chance susceptible to representation in an electronic or electromechanical form which produces the selected predetermined game outcome. In one embodiment, the interactive selection game or event may be employed as the primary game. In another embodiment, any suitable primary game may be employed and the interactive selection game or event may be employed as one or more secondary games.

In one embodiment, as illustrated in FIGS. 1A and 1B, a base or primary game may be a slot game with one or more paylines 52. The paylines may be horizontal, vertical, circular, diagonal, angled or any combination thereof. In this embodiment, the gaming device displays at least one and preferably a plurality of reels 54, such as three to five reels 54 in either electromechanical form with mechanical rotating reels or video form with simulated reels and movement thereof. In one embodiment, an electromechanical slot machine includes a plurality of adjacent, rotatable wheels which may be combined and operably coupled with an electronic display of any suitable type. In another embodiment, if the reels 54 are in video form, the plurality of simulated video reels 54 are displayed on one or more of the display devices as described above. Each reel 54 displays a plurality of indicia such as bells, hearts, fruits, numbers, letters, bars or other images which preferably correspond to a theme associated with the gaming device. In this embodiment, the gaming device utilizes the selected predetermined game outcome value to determine a specific reel symbol combination to be displayed or presented to the player. The gaming device awards prizes when the reels of the primary game stop spinning if specified types and/or configurations of indicia or symbols occur on an active payline or otherwise occur in a winning pattern, occur on the requisite number of adjacent reels and/or occur in a scatter pay arrangement.

In one embodiment, a base or primary game may be a poker game wherein the gaming device enables the player to play a conventional game of video poker and initially deals five cards all face up from a virtual deck of fifty-two card deck. Cards may be dealt as in a traditional game of cards or in the case of the gaming device, may also include that the cards are randomly selected from a predetermined number of cards. If the player wishes to draw, the player selects the cards to hold via one or more input device, such as pressing related hold buttons or via the touch screen. The player then presses the deal button and the unwanted or discarded cards are removed from the display and replacement cards are dealt from the remaining cards in the deck. This results in a final five-card hand. The final five-card hand is compared to a payout table which utilizes conventional poker hand rankings to determine the winning hands. The player is provided with an award based on a winning hand and the credits the player wagered.

In another embodiment, the base or primary game may be a multi-hand version of video poker. In this embodiment, the player is dealt at least two hands of cards. In one such embodiment, the cards are the same cards. In one embodiment each hand of cards is associated with its own deck of cards. The player chooses the cards to hold in a primary hand. The held cards in the primary hand are also held in the other hands of cards. The remaining non-held cards are removed from each hand displayed and for each hand replacement cards are randomly dealt into that hand. Since the replacement cards are randomly dealt independently for each hand, the replacement cards for each hand will usually be different. The poker hand rankings are then determined hand by hand and awards are provided to the player.

In one embodiment, a base or primary game may be a keno game wherein the gaming device displays a plurality of selectable indicia or numbers on at least one of the display devices. In this embodiment, the player selects at least one and preferable a plurality of the selectable indicia or numbers via an input device or via the touch screen. The gaming device then displays a series of drawn numbers to determine an amount of matches, if any, between the player's selected numbers and the gaming device's drawn numbers. The player is provided an award based on the amount of matches, if any, wherein the number of matches is based, at least in part, on the selected predetermined game outcome.

In another embodiment, if the selection game is implemented as a primary game, then in addition to winning credits in the primary game, the gaming device may also give players the opportunity to win credits in a bonus or secondary game or bonus or secondary round. The bonus or secondary game enables the player to obtain a prize or payout in addition to the prize or payout, if any, obtained from the base or primary game.

In one embodiment, the bonus or secondary game may be any type of suitable game, either similar to or completely different from the base or primary game. In one embodiment, the gaming device includes a program which will automatically begin a bonus round when the player has achieved a triggering event or qualifying condition in the base or primary game. In one embodiment, the triggering event or qualifying condition may be a selected outcome in the primary game or a particular arrangement of one or more indicia on a display device in the primary game. In another embodiment, the triggering event or qualifying condition may be by exceeding a certain amount of game play (number of games, number of credits, amount of time), reaching a specified number of points earned during game play or as a random award.

In one embodiment, once a player has qualified for a bonus game, the player may subsequently enhance his/her bonus game participation through continued play on the base or primary game. Thus, for each bonus qualifying event, such as a bonus symbol, that the player obtains, a given number of bonus game wagering points or credits may be accumulated in a “bonus meter” programmed to accrue the bonus wagering credits or entries toward eventual participation in a bonus game. The occurrence of multiple such bonus qualifying events in the primary game may result in an arithmetic or geometric increase in the number of bonus wagering credits awarded. In one embodiment, extra bonus wagering credits may be redeemed during the bonus game to extend play of the bonus game.

It should be appreciated that if the gaming device enables the player to play one or more other suitable games in addition to the interactive selection game, then regardless of how the predetermined game outcome value is ultimately provided to the player, either as a value or payout from the primary or base game, as a value or payout from the secondary or bonus game, as a lose from the primary or base game or as a lose from the secondary or bonus game, the game outcome value is predetermined. For example, a predetermined game outcome value of $10 may be presented to the player as a $10 win outcome in the primary or base game, a $10 secondary or bonus game win outcome or any combination of payouts in the primary or base game and secondary or bonus game that result in a total payout of $10. Either way, the player is provided $10 and that particular game outcome is removed from the set of game outcomes.

Referring to FIG. 3, after game play is initiated, a predetermined game outcome value is selected as indicated in block 102. For example, as displayed in FIG. 4A for illustration purposes only (i.e., not actually displayed to the player) a predetermined game outcome value 202 of seven-hundred is selected.

In one embodiment, the predetermined game outcome value provided to the player is selected by a central server or controller and provided to the player at the gaming device. In this embodiment, each of a plurality of such gaming devices are in communication with the central server or controller. Upon a player initiating game play at one of the gaming devices, the initiated gaming device communicates a game outcome request to the central server or controller. Upon receiving the game outcome request, the central controller independently selects a game outcome value from a set or pool of game outcome values and flags or marks the selected predetermined game outcome value as used. Once a game outcome value is flagged as used, it is prevented from further selection from the set or pool and cannot be selected by the central controller upon another wager. This type of gaming device provides players with all of the available awards or other game outcome values over the course of the play cycle and guarantees the amount of actual wins and losses. For example, if a pool or set includes thirty $5 game outcome values and one is selected and flagged, the flagged $5 game outcome value cannot be selected again but the other twenty-nine non-selected $5 game outcome values remain available for subsequent game outcome selections. The selected predetermined game outcome value is communicated to the individual gaming device to be utilized in the interactive selection game.

In one embodiment, the central controller maintains at least one predetermined set or pool of predetermined game outcome values for each type of game provided on the gaming devices. In an alternative embodiment, the central controller maintains a plurality of predetermined sets or pools of predetermined game outcome values for each type of provided game. In another embodiment, the central controller maintains a predetermined set or pool of predetermined game outcome values for each denomination of each type of game provided on the gaming devices. In another embodiment, the gaming device selects one of the predetermined game outcome values stored in a memory device of the gaming device.

In one embodiment, each predetermined game outcome value includes an outcome component, such as a win, a lose, a secondary game triggering or other suitable outcome. For example, one game outcome value may be a win $5 game outcome and another game outcome may be a lose or $0 game outcome. Each set or pool of predetermined game outcome values may include a plurality of each type of predetermined game outcome value. For example, a pool of one thousand game outcomes may include hundreds of a lower valued predetermined game outcome (i.e., a $1 game outcome) and one or few of the higher valued predetermined game outcome (i.e., a $1000 game outcome). In one embodiment, a plurality of the game outcome values in the predetermined set or pool are different. In another embodiment, all of the game outcome values in the set or pool are different.

In one embodiment, each game outcome may also include a presentation component. A presentation component is how the predetermined game outcome value is presented or displayed to the player. In order to increase player entertainment, a plurality of equal valued game outcomes have different presentation components. That is, the same $5 game outcome value is presented or displayed to the player in a different way. For example, in a slot machine style game, each of the same game outcome values are displayed or presented to the player as a different reel symbol combination.

In an alternative embodiment, the central controller maintains at least one set or pool of game outcome seeds. Each game outcome seed is a unique random number seed which is deterministic of a game outcome value. In this embodiment, as described above, the central controller selects one or more game outcome seeds from the set or pool of game outcome seeds. The central controller flags the selected predetermined game outcome seed(s) as unavailable and communicates the selected predetermined game outcome seed(s) to the gaming device. The gaming device utilizes the selected predetermined game outcome seed(s) in one or more random number generating algorithms to generate the selected predetermined game outcome value.

It should be appreciated that in this embodiment, if any one or more than one designated gaming devices configured for playing a certain game receive the same specific game outcome seed, the resulting game outcome values will always be the same even though the different gaming devices operate independently from one another. That is, if a plurality of the same gaming devices each run the same game outcome seed through one or more predefined random number generating algorithms, each of such same gaming devices will generate the same series of random numbers that correspond to the same game outcome values.

In another embodiment, a predetermined game outcome value is determined for each of a plurality of linked or networked gaming devices based on the results of a Bingo or Keno game. In this embodiment, each individual gaming device utilizes one or more Bingo or Keno games to determine the predetermined game outcome value provided to the player for the interactive game played at that gaming device. In one embodiment, the Bingo or Keno game is displayed to the player. In another embodiment, the Bingo or Keno game is not displayed to the player, but the results of the Bingo or Keno game determine the predetermined game outcome value for the interactive game.

In various Bingo (or Keno) embodiments, as each gaming device is enrolled in the Bingo game, such as upon an appropriate wager or engaging an input device, the enrolled gaming device is provided a different Bingo card. Each Bingo card consists of a matrix or array of elements, wherein each element is designated with a separate indicia, such as a number. It should be appreciated that each different Bingo card includes a different combination of elements. For example, if four Bingo cards are provided to four enrolled gaming devices, the same element may be present on all four of the Bingo cards while another element may solely be present on one of the Bingo cards.

In operation of these embodiments, upon providing a different Bingo card to each of a plurality of enrolled gaming devices, the central controller randomly selects or draws, one at a time, a plurality of the elements. As each element is selected, each gaming device determines if the selected element is present on the Bingo card provided to that enrolled gaming device. If the selected element is present on the Bingo card provided to that enrolled gaming device, that gaming device marks or flags the selected element on the provided Bingo card. This process of selecting elements and marking any selected elements on the provided Bingo cards continues until one or more predetermined patterns are marked on one or more of the provided Bingo cards. It should be appreciated that in one embodiment, the gaming device requires the player to engage a “daub” button (not shown) to initiate the process of the gaming device marking or flagging any selected elements.

After one or more predetermined patterns are marked on one or more of the provided Bingo cards, a game outcome is determined for each of the enrolled gaming devices based, at least in part, on the selected elements on the provided Bingo cards. As described above, the game outcome each gaming device determines for the Bingo game is utilized by that gaming device to determine the predetermined game outcome value provided to the player in the displayed interactive game. For example, a first gaming device to mark selected elements in a predetermined pattern is provided a first outcome of win $10 which will be provided to a first player in a first interactive selection game regardless of how the first player plays in the first interactive selection game and a second gaming device to mark selected elements in a different predetermined pattern is provided a second outcome of win $2 which will be provided to a second player in a second interactive selection game regardless of how the second player plays the provided second interactive selection game. It should be appreciated that as the process of marking selected elements continues until one or more predetermined patterns are marked, this embodiment insures that at least one Bingo card will win the Bingo game and thus at least one enrolled gaming device will provide a predetermined winning game outcome to a player in an interactive selection game. It should be appreciated that other suitable methods for selecting or determining one or more predetermined game outcome values may be employed.

In one example of the above-described embodiment, the predetermined game outcome may be based on a supplemental award in addition to any award provided for winning the Bingo game as described above. In this embodiment, if a gaming device marks elements in one or more supplemental patterns within a designated number of drawn elements, a supplemental or intermittent award or value associated with the marked supplemental pattern is provided to the player as part of the predetermined game outcome. For example, if the four corners of a Bingo card are marked within the first twenty selected elements, a supplemental award of $10 is provided to the player as part of the predetermined game outcome. It should be appreciated that in this embodiment, the player of a gaming device may be provided a supplemental or intermittent award regardless of if the enrolled gaming device's provided Bingo card wins or does not win the Bingo game as described above.

After selecting, determining or receiving the predetermined game outcome value, the gaming device generates a supplemental value as indicated in block 104. For example, as displayed in FIG. 4A for illustration purposes only (i.e., not actually displayed to the player), the gaming device randomly generates the supplemental value 204 of eight-hundred. In different embodiments, the supplemental value may be randomly determined, predetermined, determined based on the player's wager, determined from the occurrence of one or more symbols or determined based on any other suitable method. In different embodiments, the supplemental value may be greater than, less than or equal to the selected predetermined game outcome value.

In addition to determining a supplemental value, as indicated in block 106 of FIG. 3, the gaming device determines and displays a plurality of value groups. Each value group includes a plurality of values. In one embodiment, the gaming device determines the values in each of the value groups by distributing the predetermined game outcome value and the supplemental value across each of the values for each of the value groups. For each value group of this embodiment: (i) one of the values or the sum of a plurality of the values equals the selected predetermined game outcome value; and (ii) the sum of each of the values equals the sum of the selected predetermined game outcome value and the generated supplemental value. In other words, for each value group, the selected predetermined game outcome value and/or the generated supplemental value are split amongst or divided up into the plurality of values for that value group. It should be appreciated that in each embodiment which includes more than two values in each value group, as the selected predetermined game outcome value and the generated supplemental value represent only two values, one or both of the selected predetermined game outcome value and the generated supplemental value must be split or divided up into two or more values for each of the value groups.

In one embodiment, each value group includes the same number of values. In different embodiments, the number of value groups may be randomly determined, predetermined, determined based on the player's wager, determined from the occurrence of one or more symbols or determined based on any other suitable method. In different embodiments, the number of values in each value group may be randomly determined, predetermined, determined based on the player's wager, determined from the occurrence of one or more symbols or determined based on any other suitable method.

In one embodiment, a plurality of values in a plurality of value groups are different. In another embodiment, a plurality of values in each value group are different. In another embodiment, each value in a plurality of value groups is different. In another embodiment, each value in each value group is different. In another embodiment, a plurality of values in a plurality of value groups are the same. In another embodiment, a plurality of values in each value group are the same.

FIG. 4A illustrates one example of this embodiment wherein the gaming device displays three value groups, wherein each value group includes three values. In this example, for a first value group 206 a (labeled as “Group I”), the gaming device divides the selected predetermined game outcome value of seven-hundred and the generated supplemental value of eight-hundred into the values of seven-hundred 208 a, three-hundred 208 b and five-hundred 208 c. For a second value group 206 b (labeled as “Group II”), the gaming device divides the selected predetermined game outcome value of seven-hundred and the generated supplemental value of eight-hundred into the values of eight-hundred 208 d, four-hundred-fifty 208 e and two-hundred-fifty 208 f. For a third value group 206 c (labeled as “Group II”), the gaming device divides the selected predetermined game outcome value of seven-hundred and the generated supplemental value of eight-hundred into the values of one-hundred 208 g, eight-hundred-fifty 208 h and six-hundred 208 i. In this example, the generated supplemental value is split up into two values for the first value group and the selected predetermined game outcome value is split up into two values for the second value group and third value group.

In one embodiment, the sum of each of the determined values for each of the value groups equals the sum of the selected predetermined game outcome value and the generated supplemental value. Accordingly, in this embodiment, as each of the value groups includes the same number of values and the sum of the values for each value group is equal, each value group is associated with the same average expected value. For example, as illustrated in FIG. 4A, the sum of the values for each of the value groups equals one-thousand-five-hundred and each value group is associated with an average expected value of five-hundred.

In one embodiment, although the sum of the values for each value group is the same, the gaming device varies the volatility of each value group. For example, one value group with a high volatility may include a large range between the highest or maximum value in the value group and the lowest or minimum value in the value group. On the other hand, another value group with a low volatility includes a small range between the highest value in the value group and the lowest value in the value group. Varying the volatility for each value group while maintaining that each value group is associated with the same average expected value, enables the player to pick the volatility of the game by picking a value group or subset of possible values to obtain.

In one embodiment, after determining and displaying each of the values for each of the value groups, the gaming device enables the player to pick one of the value groups as indicated in block 108 of FIG. 3. For example, as illustrated in FIG. 4B, the player picks value group 206 c. Appropriate messages such as ““YOU SELECTED GROUP III” may be provided to the player visually, or through suitable audio or audiovisual displays.

After the player picks one of the value groups, the gaming picks one or more of the values from the player picked value group as indicated in block 110 of FIG. 3. The gaming device picks values based on the selected predetermined game outcome value. In this embodiment, the gaming device picks one or more values that add up to the selected predetermined game outcome value. For example, as illustrated in FIGS. 4C, the gaming device picks values of one-hundred 208 g and six-hundred 208 i from the player picked value group 206 c. It should be appreciated that since the gaming device picks one or more values that add up to the selected predetermined game outcome value and one or more values in each value group may be combined to form the selected predetermined game outcome value, regardless of which value group the player picks, the gaming device provides the selected predetermined game outcome value to the player. Appropriate messages such as “OF THE VALUES IN GROUP III, YU ARE AWARDED THE VALUES OF 100 AND 600” and “YOUR TOTAL AWARD VALUE IS 700” may be provided to the player visually, or through suitable audio or audiovisual displays.

In another embodiment, the gaming device generates a different supplemental value for each of a plurality of the value groups. In this embodiment, for each value group: (i) one of the values or the sum of one or more of the values equals the selected predetermined game outcome value; and (ii) one of the values or the sum of one or more of the values equals the generated supplemental value for that value group. It should be appreciated that in this embodiment, because the supplemental values are different for a plurality of the value groups, each value group may or may not be associated with the same average expected value. In an alternative embodiment, the values in each value group are determined based on distributing the predetermined game outcome value across each of the values for that value group. In this embodiment, for each value group, one of the values or the sum of one or more of the values equals the selected predetermined game outcome value. It should be appreciated that in this embodiment, the gaming device does not generate a supplemental value.

It should be understood that various changes and modifications to the presently preferred embodiments described herein will be apparent to those skilled in the art. Such changes and modifications can be made without departing from the spirit and scope of the present invention and without diminishing its intended advantages. It is therefore intended that such changes and modifications be covered by the appended claims.

Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US8152628Sep 12, 2005Apr 10, 2012IgtMethods and devices for authentication and licensing in a gaming network
US8162749Dec 1, 2008Apr 24, 2012Aristocrat Technologies Austrailia PTY LimitedGaming system and a method of gaming
US8382575Sep 17, 2010Feb 26, 2013Speilo Manufacturing ULCSystem and method for identifying errors in slot machine and video lottery terminal games
US20120149453 *Dec 14, 2010Jun 14, 2012The State of Florida Department of the LotteryMethod of administering a game of chance
Classifications
U.S. Classification463/16
International ClassificationA63F9/24
Cooperative ClassificationG07F17/3244, G07F17/3262
European ClassificationG07F17/32K, G07F17/32M2
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
Aug 8, 2005ASAssignment
Owner name: IGT, NEVADA
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:WOLF, BRYAN D.;REEL/FRAME:016879/0569
Effective date: 20050805