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The Balanced Game Method
The Balanced Game Method

The Balanced Game Method leverages what we know about the characteristics of randomly drawn numbers in lottery-type games to give us a statistical advantage for choosing the winning combination of numbers. It focuses on the mathematical fact that approximately 70 percent of all winning lottery tickets will have a sum that falls between a most probable range of sums for that game.

If for example you choose the numbers 6, 11, 15, 27 and 31 in Lotto Plus, the Sum of your numbers will be 6 +11 + 15 + 27 +31 = 90. The Balanced Game Method states that you are far more likely to win if this sum falls between 68 and 112. Here's why...

Random Numbers Tend To Be Balanced

If you studied a number frequency graph for any lottery game such as Lotto Plus or Cash Pot, you'll find that numbers tend to be more or less evenly distributed over the entire number field. There tend to be roughly even quantities of both high and low numbers drawn. Randomly drawn numbers tend to be balanced, meaning they containing roughly equal high versus low numbers drawn, and roughly equal odd versus even umbers being drawn.

If you add up the five winning numbers for a Lotto Plus or Cash Pot draw, you get a Sum. If you added up the five winning numbers for many or all past draws as we have, you find that most (around 70%) of winning tickets have Sums falling within a specific Most Probable Range of Sums for each game. For Lotto Plus this range is from 68 - 112, and for Cash Pot it is from 40 - 65.

Playing a Balanced Game means ensuring that your combination of numbers is balanced, having a Sum that falls within the statistically most probable range of sums for that particular game, thus increasing your chances of winning the jackpot. This Balanced Game method was first developed by Gail Howard, a Professor and Lottery Editor of the Gambling Times magazine in 1983. While doing research on the New York State Lottery, Gail was shocked to discover that around 10,000 people bought lottery tickets with the number combination 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 for every draw of the New York Lotto. These tickets were practically doomed to lose because the Sum of numbers is way too far out of balance to ever come up in a random drawing.

Her research also showed that there was a natural tendency for novice lottery players is to bet on lower numbers, especially on the calendar numbers 1 to 31, probably because of the heavy emphasis they placed on birth dates, anniversaries, and their children's ages. To alert her readers about these and other statistically unlikely number combinations, she wrote several articles on the topic of playing a balanced game in newspapers and magazines, and published the method in several of her widely read books on the lottery, including "Lotto - How To Wheel A Fortune" and "Lotto Wheel 5 To Win".

Possible Range of Sums

Each lottery has a Range of Possible Sums depending on the quantity of numbers drawn and the field of numbers in the game.

Lotto Plus

The NLCB Lotto Plus game draws 5 unique numbers randomly from a field of 35, so Lotto Plus tickets can have a Sum that ranges from as low as 15 (1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +5 = 15) to as high as 165 (31 + 32 + 33 + 34 + 35 = 165).

Cash Pot

The NLCB Cash Pot game draws 5 numbers randomly from a field of 20, so Cash Pot tickets can have a Sum that ranges from as low as 15 (1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +5 = 15) to as high as 90 (16 + 17 + 18 + 19 + 20 = 90).

Most Probable Range of Sums

Lotto Plus

In Lotto Plus, there is only one five-number combination that adds up to 15 (1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +5 = 15), and only one five-number combination that adds up to 165 (31 + 32 + 33 + 34 + 35 = 165). These two number combinations are the smallest and largest possible sums.

There are however, many five-number combinations that add up to 90. For example, 6 +11 + 15 + 27 +31 = 90, and 9 +13 + 18 + 23 +27 = 90. In fact the Sum of 90, which falls midway between the sums of 15 and 165, is the most frequently occurring sum.

The most probable range of sums for Lotto Plus is 68 - 112, with 67.9% of all winning draws to date having sums that fall within this range.

Cash Pot

Similarly in Cash Pot, there is only one five-number combination that adds up to 15 (1 + 2 + 3 + 4 +5 = 15), and only one five-number combination that adds up to 90 (16 + 17 + 18 + 19 + 20 = 90). These two number combinations are the smallest and largest possible sums.

But there are many five-number combinations that add up to 52.  For example, 1 + 3 + 11 + 17 + 20 = 52, and 4 + 7 + 10 + 13 + 18 = 52. In fact the sums of 52 and 53, which fall midway between the sums of 15 and 90, are the most frequently occurring Sum.

The most probable range of sums for Cash Pot is 40 - 65, with 70.4% of all winning draws to date having sums that fall within this range.

Comparison to Rolling Dice

The sums of lottery combinations can be compared to the sums of combinations if you were to throw a pair of dice. There is only one way to make a 12 (6 and 6), and there is only one way to make a 2 (1 and 1). But there are six ways to throw a 7 (6 and 1), (1 and 6), (5 and 2), (2 and 5), (4 and 3), (3 and 4).

So it is much easier to throw a 7 with two dice than any other number because there are more ways of getting a Sum of 7 than any other Sum.

Statistical Advantages of a Balanced Game

The frequency distribution of possible sums in all lottery games approximate a normal distribution bell curve which has a particular statistical charcteristic that we can use to our advantage when choosing our numbers...

Although only 27.4 percent of all possible sums for the game fall within that game's most probable range of sums, tickets with number combinations that fall between this range account for a whopping 71.32 percent of wins.

The Difference a Balanced Game Makes

What this means is that if you chose a five-number combination in Lotto Plus with a Sum that falls either above or below the 68 to 112 range, your numbers will fail to call 71% of the time. Similarly, if you chose a five-number combination in Cash Pot with a Sum that falls either above or below the 40 to 65 range, you can be sure you are stacking the odds against you 71% of the time!

If you want better odds in any lottery game, it's important to select your numbers in patterns that most closely match the way those numbers are actually drawn. Playing a balanced game - ensuring the sum of your chosen numbers falls within the most probable range of sums is one pattern many players overlook.

Also, because of the natural tendency of novices to bet on lower numbers, playing a balanced game and selecting number combinations with sums at the higher end of the most probable range (from the midpoint number up) tend to generate bigger payouts because there are less winners sharing the prize!

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