Mega Millions Game Undergoes Changes
On Oct. 28, the multistate game Mega Millions will undergo enhancements designed to create larger jackpots and more millionaires, according to the Louisiana Lottery. The starting jackpot will increase from $15 million to $40 million, and odds of winning the $1 million match-5 prize will get better, going from 1 in 18.5 million to 1 in 12.6 million. The cost per play will increase to $2, the first price adjustment ever.Odds of winning the jackpot will increase from 1 in 258.9 million to 1 in 302.5 million, but changes are designed to produce average jackpots of $371.4 million. To produce these game enhancements, 5 white ball numbers will be removed for a total of 70, and 10 numbers will be added to the field of yellow Mega Ball numbers for a total of 25.The Mega Millions $1 Megaplier ticket add-on option will still allow players to multiply any non-jackpot prize up to 5 times, including the $1 million match-5 prize, depending upon the Megaplier number selected during the drawing.Mega Millions is played in 46 jurisdictions, including Louisiana, by choosing five white ball numbers and one yellow Mega Ball number. The jackpot is won by matching all six numbers, but the game offers eight additional prize levels for matching various combinations of the numbers drawn; six of those prize tiers will increase. Drawings are held Tuesday and Friday nights at 10 p.m.Mega Millions game changes take effect for tickets purchased beginning Oct. 28 for the first drawing on Oct. 31. In order to prepare for these changes, the Lottery has progressively suspended the multidraw purchase option for Mega Millions tickets. The multidraw option allows players to purchase plays for 20, 10, five, four, three or two advance, consecutive drawings. The Mega Millions multidraw option will be reinstated Oct. 28, when sales start for the new game version.In addition, the Lottery's system will be down, and Mega Millions purchases and claims will be unavailable from 9 p.m., Oct. 27, through 5 a.m., Oct. 28.Players are advised to sign the back of their tickets for security purposes immediately after purchasing. The Lottery also encourages responsible play and urges anyone with a gambling problem to call toll-free 1-877-770-7867 for help.