There are just 12 face down cards remaining. One of those cards is the jackpot-winning Joker. Two of those cards are Aces that win a moto.
Despite the jackpot exceeding $8,000, ticket sales actually declined last week. Check out the last five weeks of action on this nifty chart.
You can see that the jackpot keeps increasing every week, but ticket sales have not increased as expected. The Walkabout actually sold 6.5% fewer tickets last week with a $8,419 jackpot than it did two weeks earlier with a $7,433 jackpot. So what the hell is going on?
The decline in ticket sales is a total mystery to me. Three weeks ago, I estimated that the bar would sell 975 tickets. The bar sold 982. I came within seven tickets. I thought I was hot shit. I thought this prediction stuff was easy.
Since then, I keep estimating that ticket sales will steadily increase as the jackpot increases. That’s only logical. But I’ve been wrong.
Maybe I haven’t properly factored in that the tourist high season has ended, the hot season has begun, and there are fewer tourist dollars to go around. A fun-loving tourist will drop twenty dollars on Joker Draw tickets just to impress a couple of skanky bargirls. A stingy sexpat expects a precious $20 bill to get him drunk, get him laid, and get him a tuk tuk to Martini’s.
Is it possible that, regardless of wagering demand, the Walkabout staff just doesn’t have the ability to sell much more than 900 tickets in a single night? No, that is not possible. Back in December 2009, the jackpot reached $13,000 in Week 48 of the game. The bar sold about 4,000+ tickets that week and in future weeks. Of course, that was also during the tourist high season. But it shows that if the demand is there, the bar can easily sell far more tickets than it is currently selling.
In any event, I’m going to conservatively estimate that the Walkabout sells 1,050 tickets this week. That’s more than the 918 tickets that they just sold last week, but it’s a lot less than the 1,200 tickets that I’ve recently been predicting.
With 1,050 tickets in the drum Friday night, and 12 cards left on the board, the odds of a patron winning the $8,878 jackpot with a single $1 ticket would be 1 in 12,600. Remember, just a few weeks ago we were talking about the game offering roughly 1 in 15,000 odds to win about $7,000. Sucker bet territory. Now, a few weeks later, the game will be offering about a 1 in 12,600 chance to win almost $9,000. That’s much closer to being a fair bet.
And keep in mind that there are still two $800 Aces remaining. So your ticket also gets you a 2 in 12,600 chance at winning $800. Overall, the approximate “expected return” on a $1 ticket purchased Friday night will be a respectable 83 cents. With three tickets also getting you a free beer, it’s hard to complain too much about the wagering value being offered.
Simply having your ticket pulled from the drum will give you a 25% chance of winning something. Specifically, the ticket holder will have a 1 in 12 chance of pulling the $8,878 jackpot-winning Joker (an opportunity worth $740) and a 1 in 6 chance of pulling an $800 Ace (an opportunity worth $133). That will make the called ticket “worth” $873. Would a skanky bargirl turn down a $700 offer for her winning ticket? Try it and let me know.