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Your Ultimate Guide To Keno

Keno is a great choice for people who prefer playing games of chance. It’s one of Malaysia’s most popular casino games in both land-based and online casinos. The game offers players an opportunity to win huge prizes from small stakes. In addition, the game is easy to play, making it a great choice for beginners. 

Keno is available in both free and real money modes in virtually all online casinos in Malaysia. It has also been optimized to work on mobile devices, which means players can wager on the go. In this guide, we take an in-depth look at Keno, covering everything you need to know, from the game’s history and glossary to gameplay and winning tips. 

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The History of Keno 

Keno was invented in China about 2000 years ago by Cheung Leung of the Chinese Han Dynasty to generate more revenue to build the Great Wall of China and fund the endless wars. He decided to introduce the game to the general public after many people refused to pay taxes. The game was initially nicknamed “White Pigeons” because they were used at the time to deliver the results of the game’s outcome to villagers. 

The idea worked marvelously for Cheung Leung as he was able to generate a lot of money for his Kingdom. The people were also happy because they enjoyed the game. This led to the massive popularity of Keno in China. It was later taken to the United States by railway workers in the 1800s. By 1866, the game had become popular in Houston, Texas. It was also renamed the Chinese Lottery. 

The game was taken to the West in the early 1990s, and it was being played in Nevada. However, it was called Race Horse Keno at that time, mainly because lotteries were against the law, but horse racing was permitted. When the government passed laws to start taxing horse racing, there was no need to present the game as horse racing. They renamed it Keno. 


How to Play Keno 

Keno has numbers ranging from 1 to 80, and players are required to get a ticket with these numbers. The next step is choosing numbers that are likely to be drawn. This depends on the version of Keno you’re playing, but essentially, you’ll need to choose 2 – 10 or 1 – 15. For some versions, you can choose up to 20 numbers. This is more common in land-based casinos.

Players have to match certain spots. The more spots you match, the highest the payout. A payout table shows how much players can win when they match a specific amount of numbers. Some versions of Keno show hot and cold numbers. Hot numbers appear more often, while cold numbers don’t appear regularly.

Players can place different bets depending on the number of groups they choose. There’s also a possibility of boosting your return by opting for combination bets.

Straight ticket – This is the most common wager. It involves marking the numbers you want to bet and placing them as a single wager. The numbers you can pick will vary depending on casino rules.

King bet – This refers to a single circled number on a ticket. It can be used alone or with other groups to form a unique bet. 

Combination ticket – As the name suggests, this bet combines different tickets into one ticket.

Most Common Keno Glossary 

To play Keno, you must understand its terminology. Here are the most popular Keno terminologies you must familiarize yourself with.

  • All or nothing – A ticket that pays out in two ways only: if the number you choose is drawn or if none of the numbers are drawn.
  • Ball game – This is the most common form of Keno where plastic balls with numbers are drawn live.
  • Blank – Refers to a ticket that has not been played. 
  • Bankroll – The amount set aside for gambling.
  • Caller – This is the act of the numbers in a game of Keno.
  • Catch – When you’ve selected, have been drawn.
  • Draw – Refers to mixing balls.
  • Edge – A Keno ticket in which all the numbers on Edge have been marked.
  • Spot – The number marked on a ticket.
  • Ticket – This is a ticket with numbers from 1 through 80.
  • Progressive – This refers to a type of Keno that features a prize pool that increases gradually as players place wagers.
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Tips and Strategies for Playing Keno 

While Keno is a game of chance, there are a few things you can do to increase your chances of winning. Here are a few tips and strategies you can try.

Manage your bankroll – The first and obvious strategy is managing our bankroll. Only bet what you can afford to lose. This is one of the best practices of responsible gambling.

Play free mode games – There’s no better way to familiarize yourself and hone your skills than by playing free versions of Keno. Most online casinos offer Keno in free mode. You only need to sign up to play these games.

Avoid playing maximum spots – You might be tempted to hit maximum spots, but that’s highly encouraged. They are risky and should therefore be avoided. 

Understand odds – It’s also important to understand the odds. Keep in mind that the odds in Keno are not favourable despite being one of the simplest casino games. It’s, therefore, important to focus on small payouts rather than huge wins. 

Have fun – Like most casino games, the odds are in favor of the house when playing a game of Keno. As such, you may want to take Keno as a hobby and not a source of income. If you play several spots and are not lucky, call it a day and wait for another day. 

Choose a reputable casino – This list wouldn’t be complete without mentioning casinos. It’s important to choose a casino that is reputable and offers games from leading software providers.

What You Need To Know About Playing Keno 

You can play Keno at both land-based and online casinos. However, playing online is even more fun and presents better opportunities for making a profit. Here are a few things you need to know about playing Keno online. 

Pick a reputable online casino

Choosing an online casino with a good reputation is always important. Be sure to check online reviews to see what other gamblers are saying about casinos. This will give you a better idea of whether to commit to the online casino or not.

Licensing and security

An online casino that holds a license from a reputable jurisdiction is trustworthy. Some of the most reputable licensing bodies include Malta, UK Gambling Commission, and others. The online casino should also use the latest encryption technology to ensure user data is protected. 

Bonuses and promotions

One of the main advantages of playing online is access to incentives, including bonuses and promotions. Both new and existing players can take advantage of these offers. However, reading the fine print is always important to avoid last-minute surprises. 

Payment method 

There are many payment methods you can choose. However, ensure that your preferred method is accepted in your country or region. Some of the most popular payment methods you can use include e-wallet, bank transfers, and cryptocurrency.

Games From Reputable Software Providers

A great online casino should have a large selection of games. For example, they should offer different variants of Keno and other types of games. You must also choose an online casino that has partnered with leading software providers like Microgaming, NetEnt, Play’n Go, and others.

Customer support

The best online casinos offer customer support around the clock through channels like live chat, phone, and email. It is a very important aspect of modern casinos because if you have any problem at any stage of gambling you have to be sure that professional customer support will be there to help you at any time.


Keno is one of the most popular casino games in Malaysia. The main advantage of this game is that it is easy to play. Both beginners and experienced players will find this game interesting to play. However, you must understand Keno’s gameplay and lingo to start playing the game. Despite being a game of chance, you can use a few strategies to enhance your winning chances. You can play Keno in both land-based and online casinos. Playing in online casinos is more advantageous because it allows you to wager on the go and access a wide range of perks. Before playing Keno online, be sure to choose a reliable, reputable, and licensed online casino. 


Absolutely! However, ensure you choose an online casino that lists games from reputable software providers.

Yes, you can play Keno on your mobile device. Most software providers and casinos are optimized to work on mobile devices.

Of course you can play Keno for free. Most online casinos offer the demo version of the game.

There's no sure way of winning Keno, but you can boost your chances by managing your bankroll, avoiding maximum spots, understanding odds, and playing free games.

You can play Keno either online or at land-based casinos. There are several online casinos that operate in Malaysia nowadays.

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