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Publication numberUS20070087804 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 11/517,831
Publication date19 Apr 2007
Filing date7 Sep 2006
Priority date9 Sep 2005
Publication number11517831, 517831, US 2007/0087804 A1, US 2007/087804 A1, US 20070087804 A1, US 20070087804A1, US 2007087804 A1, US 2007087804A1, US-A1-20070087804, US-A1-2007087804, US2007/0087804A1, US2007/087804A1, US20070087804 A1, US20070087804A1, US2007087804 A1, US2007087804A1
InventorsBrandon Knowles, Eric Abbott, Robert Ziems
Original AssigneeKnowles Brandon D, Abbott Eric L, Ziems Robert B
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Method and apparatus for wagering on event outcomes of a game
US 20070087804 A1
Abstract
A system for wagering on event outcomes of games is disclosed. The system comprises gaming devices displaying at least one live, simulated or combination thereof sporting game to one or more players. A player of a gaming device may select from one or more sporting games upon which to wager. During play, a sequence of events of one or more sporting games is displayed on the gaming device. The player may wager on the outcomes of the one or more events and payouts are made based on pre-determined payout tables. The resulting outcome of the event is displayed to the player. The player's wager is settled according to whether the player selected the resulting outcome of the event correctly.
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Claims(22)
1. A wireless device for wagering on event outcomes of a game, comprising:
a housing;
a wireless interface configured to transmit information to, and receive information from, a server;
a user interface configured to receive game input from a player;
a display screen configured to display a wagering game to a player;
a memory configured to store machine readable code, the machine readable code utilized in presenting the wagering game to a player;
a microprocessor configured to execute machine readable code, wherein the machine readable code is configured to:
present at least a first wagering opportunity and a second wagering opportunity to a player, wherein the second wagering opportunity is a wager on the same event as the first wagering opportunity; and
award a random bonus to a player using the wireless gaming device.
2. The wireless gaming device of claim 1, wherein the first wagering opportunity and the second wagering opportunity each comprise three or more different possible event outcomes upon which to wager.
3. The wireless gaming device of claim 2, wherein the award of a random bonus is sent to the wireless device via the wireless interface from a bonus server.
4. The wireless gaming device of claim 1, wherein the first wagering opportunity and the second wagering opportunity are based on a live event.
5. The wireless gaming device of claim 1, wherein the first wagering opportunity and the second wagering opportunity are simulated events.
6. The wireless gaming device of claim 1, further comprising a game server configured to generate and communicate, to the wireless device, the first wagering opportunity and the second wagering opportunity and a game outcome is associated with the first wagering opportunity and the second wagering opportunity.
7. The wireless gaming device of claim 1, wherein the wireless device randomly determines when to generate and award the random bonus to a player.
8. The wireless gaming device of claim 1, wherein the first wagering opportunity and the second wagering opportunity represent live or simulated sporting events.
9. The wireless gaming device of claim 1, wherein the random bonus is a progressive monetary award.
10. The wireless gaming device of claim 1, wherein the award of the random bonus is unrelated to the success or failure of the player's wagering opportunity.
11. A method of rewarding players for casino play, comprising the steps of:
providing a wireless gaming device having a display to a player;
generating a wagering event;
presenting the wagering event to the a player via the display on the wireless gaming device wherein the wagering event has three or more outcomes and the player may wager on the three or more outcomes, and where the wagering event is dependent on an actual wagering event outcome of a prior wagering event;
accepting a wager from the player regarding which of the three or more outcomes will occur; and
generating an actual wagering event outcome;
awarding an award to the player if the player correctly wagered on the actual wagering event outcome; and
randomly awarding a bonus award to the player.
12. The method of claim 11, wherein the wagering event is a simulated sporting event which may have three or more outcomes.
13. The method of claim 11, wherein a first wagering event with a wagering opportunity is presented and a second wagering event with a wagering opportunity is presented such that the second wagering event determined by the outcome of the first wagering event.
14. The method of claim 11, wherein generating a wagering event and generating an actual game outcome occurs at a central server.
15. The method of claim 14, wherein the wagering event and the actual game outcome is transmitted from the central server to the wireless gaming device via a wireless communication line.
16. The method of claim 11, wherein randomly awarding a bonus award occurs at a central server and the central server notifies the player via the wireless gaming device.
17. The method of claim 11, wherein presenting the wagering event comprises presenting at least one live video clip to the player.
18. The method of claim 11, wherein the bonus award is awarded to the player when the wireless gaming device is issued to the player.
19. The method of claim 11, wherein the bonus award is selected from the group of bonus awards consisting of show tickets, food discounts, and room rate discount.
20. The method of claim 11, wherein the random bonus is a progressive monetary award.
21. The method of claim 11, wherein the award of the random bonus is unrelated to the success or failure of the player's wagering opportunity.
22. A wireless device for wagering on event outcomes of a game, comprising:
a housing;
a wireless interface configured to transmit information to, and receive information from, a server;
a user interface configured to receive game input from a player;
a display screen configured to display a wagering game to a player;
a memory configured to store machine readable code, the machine readable code utilized in presenting the wagering game to a player;
a microprocessor configured to execute machine readable code, wherein the machine readable code is configured to:
present at least a first wagering event and a second wagering event to a player, wherein the second wagering event is dependant on an event outcome of the first wagering event, and wherein the first wagering event and the second wagering event have three or more possible event outcomes upon which a player may wager; and
award a random bonus to a player using the wireless gaming device.
Description
1. PRIORITY CLAIM

This application claims priority to U.S. Provisional Application No. 60/715,631, filed Sep. 9, 2005.

2. FIELD OF THE INVENTION

This invention relates generally to wagering games and more specifically to improved systems and methods for offering wagering on events of a live or simulated game.

3. BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

In the past, gaming establishments have offered many different games to present wagering opportunities for players. Gaming operators continually vary games available to players to both maintain and increase interest for players. Gaming operators also find it desirable to have diversified profit centers for their gaming establishments. For example, some players prefer table games with an opportunity to both wager and socialize. Other players prefer machine games, where little socialization occurs. In both cases, players attempt to use player skills to increase the odds of winning the game.

It has been possible to offer multiple games to players on a mass scale. However, players may be easily bored when offered repetitive games. This may happen when games provide underlying similar appearances and rules.

Operators of gaming establishments are continually being challenged to provide novel approaches to gaming to improve cash flow and profits. Machine wagering provides for maximized returns on investment because of the use of less expensive real property per player. Table games take up more real property space, and require more people intensive oversight.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

An event prompted wagering system is disclosed which may comprise gaming devices configured to display at least one live, simulated or combination thereof, sporting game or other activity or any other wagering event to one or more players. The wagering device may be configured to optionally display more than one event or game, and as such, players of the gaming device may selectively view different sporting games or wagering events. A sequence of events is displayed to each player on their gaming device. Each player may be offered one or more wagering opportunities with an associated payout schedule on one or more outcomes of one or more events of the wagering event. Each player may select one or more event outcomes and wager on which event outcome will occur. The resulting outcome of each event is displayed to each player. Players' wagers are settled according to whether players selected the actual event outcome of an event correctly.

To establish a sequential flow in play from one event to the next event, multiple events may be presented to the player thereby allowing the player to wager on an event by event basis. It is contemplated that each sequential event may be related to or depend upon an outcome in one or more prior events. Thus, a second wagering event may depend on the outcome of a first or prior event. In this manner, a player may become involved in the event by event action that comprises the game or activity thereby drawing the player into the flow of events and allowing the player to wager on one or more events that form the game. Moreover, variety is provided by having subsequent events dependant on prior event outcomes.

Multiple wagering opportunities on continuing events of an ongoing game offer an attractive alternative for operators of gaming establishments. Additionally, wagering games with multiple wagering opportunities during a game may provide players with greater choices to lessen boredom and enhance players' interest in the game. An advantage of players having greater interest in a game is that they may continue to play the game. Such a gaming opportunity appeals to a great number of players, leading to increased profit opportunities for wagering establishment operators. Currently, systems that provide multiple wagering opportunities during the course of live or simulated gaming event are unavailable in the gaming industry.

In one embodiment a wireless device is provided for wagering on event outcomes of a game. The device comprises a housing containing a wireless interface configured to transmit information to, and receive information from, a server. This device also includes a user interface configured to receive game input from a player and a display screen configured to display a wagering event, such as a game, to a player. Also part of the device is memory configured to store machine readable code such that the machine readable code is utilized in presenting the wagering game to a player. A microprocessor is configured to execute machine readable code. In this example embodiment the machine readable code is configured to present at least a first wagering opportunity and a second wagering opportunity to a player such that the second wagering opportunity is dependant on an outcome of the first wagering opportunity. The machine readable code may also configured to award a random bonus to a player using the wireless gaming device.

In one embodiment the first wagering opportunity and the second wagering opportunity each comprise three or more different possible event outcomes upon which to wager. It is contemplated that the award of a random bonus may be sent to the wireless device via the wireless interface from a bonus server. It is further contemplated that the first wagering opportunity and the second wagering opportunity may be based on a live events and/or simulated events. In addition, the device may further comprise or communicate with game server configured to generate and communicate the first wagering opportunity and the second wagering opportunity. In addition, a game outcome is associated with the first wagering opportunity and the second wagering. It is contemplated however, that the wireless device or a server may randomly determine when to generate and award the random bonus to a player.

Also disclosed is a method of rewarding players for casino play. This method comprises first providing a wireless gaming device to a player and generating a wagering event. Then presenting the wagering event to the player via a display on the wireless gaming device such that the wagering event has three or more outcomes and the player may wager on the three or more outcomes. It is further contemplated that the wagering event is dependent on an actual game outcome of a prior wagering event. The method also accepts a wager from the player regarding which of the three or more outcomes will occur and generating an actual game outcome. If the player wagered properly, the method then awards an award to the player and may randomly award a bonus award to the player if the player is randomly selected.

In one embodiment the wagering event is a simulated sporting event which may have three or more outcomes. It is contemplated that a first event with a wagering opportunity is presented and a second event with a wagering opportunity is presented such that the second event is determined by the outcome of the first event. In one embodiment the step of generating a wagering event and generating an actual game outcome occurs at a central server. Likewise, the step of randomly awarding a bonus award may occur such that the bonus award may be selected from the group of bonus awards consisting of show tickets, food discounts, and room rate discount.

The foregoing and other articles, features, and advantages of the invention will be apparent from the following more detailed description of the exemplary embodiments of the invention, as illustrated in the accompanying drawings. The various features may be utilized or claimed alone or in any combination. The claims are not limited to specific example embodiments set forth below.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The components in the figures are not necessarily to scale, emphasis instead being placed upon illustrating the principles of the invention. In the figures, like reference numerals designate corresponding parts throughout the different views.

FIG. 1 is a block diagram showing a device tracking assembly of a multiple wagering system according to the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a block diagram showing a portion of a wireless device configured for use with the device tracking assembly of FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a front side perspective view showing a gaming machine configured for use with the device tracking assembly of FIG. 1.

FIG. 4 is an exemplary screen shot showing a golf wagering game with an event prompted wagering opportunity on a portion of a display of a game device.

FIG. 5 is an exemplary screen shot showing an outcome of the event of FIG. 4 on a portion of the display.

FIGS. 6A-6D are flow diagrams of an exemplary method for offering wagering on events of a game.

DESCRIPTION OF THE INVENTION

In this application, certain terminology has been abbreviated to facilitate readability. To aid the reader, the following table provides a list of abbreviations as used herein.

EPWG—events prompted wagering game.

EPWS—events prompted wagering system.

DTA—device tracking assembly.

TID—tracking interface device.

DAS—device auditing servers.

GMIS—gaming media interface servers.

WI—wireless interfaces.

WLI—wire line interfaces.

IPD—initial player data.

WLK—wire line kiosks.

WDK—wireless device kiosks.

RID—remote information devices.

WGD—wireless gaming devices.

Furthermore, the term “player” means a person who may wager on the outcome of one or more events of a live or simulated game and the term “competitor” means a person or team member of a live or simulated game which is shown to a “player”.

An events prompted wagering game (EPWG) may be any game having one or more random events, wherein a player may optionally wager on one or more random outcomes of one or more wagering events offered during the course of the game. A payout to a player may be immediate on resolution of a wagering event outcome, after an accumulation of wagering event outcomes or in any other manner designated in the game. The value of a wager may be variable or may be predefined and determined by the player or the house. It is contemplated that an operator of the game may select a schedule of payouts to a player, which may be contained in a pay out table. Any EPWG may be live, simulated or combinations thereof.

Exemplary Events Promoted Wavering System

According to FIG. 1, an events prompted wagering system (EPWS) for offering EPWG comprises a device tracking assembly (DTA) 100. The DTA 100 permits communication between one or more operators of one or more events prompted wagering games (EPWG) and one or more remotely located players. The players may access one or more gaming devices configured to receive or to have pre-loaded one or more EPWG.

The DTA 100 may comprise a tracking interface device (TID) 110 communicating with one or more device auditing servers (DAS) 112. The tracking may comprise physical tracking of the device or tracking of player play. The DAS 112 processes player data to audit player wagering in an EPWG environment. The DAS 112 may further initiate player tracking. Player tracking permits an operator of an EPWG to provide incentives to a player based on a player's wagering activities.

Furthermore, the DTA 100 may comprise one or more gaming media interface servers (GMIS) 114. In one embodiment, the GMIS 114 provide EPWG and updates one or more events during play of EPWG to one or more players. According to FIG. 1, the GMIS 114 communicates with both the TID 110 and the DAS 112. Furthermore, in another embodiment the GMIS 114 may communicate to one or more media devices (not shown) that provide live or simulated EPWG. The media devices may also provide one or more wagering options, game statistics, environmental conditions and the like to the players.

The DTA 100 may further comprise one or more wireless interfaces (WI) 116 and one or more wire line interfaces (WLI) 118. Examples of WI 116 and WLI 118 include routers using various secure communication data protocols. Each WLI 118 may be hard wired into the TID 110 and may comprise any high speed wireline, fiber optic technology or combinations thereof. High speed wireline and fiber optic technology permit nearly real-time communication between the TID 110 and players. The WI 116 may comprise secured cell networks and/or secured satellite networks or combinations thereof. It is contemplated that other rapid speed interfaces and secure communication protocols may be useful. The TID 110 may be a main computer or a bank of computers or one or more central processing units. The TID 110 may be linked to one or more servers such as the DAS 112 and the GMIS 114 and one or more routers (any communication device) such as the WI 116 and the WLI 118.

In one embodiment, a WI 116 or WLI 118 may receive initial player data (IPD) from one or more secured terminals. In other embodiments, player data may not be provided. The IPD may comprise one or more of the following: verifiable player identity, optional biometric data, player account number, player card information, verifiable currency equivalents, and the like. The term “currency equivalents” means monetary currency notes or coins, redemption slips or redemption cards, credit or debit cards, and the like. The term “biometric data” may include player fingerprints, iris scans, facial profiles, photographs and the like taken at the time of the IPD from the player.

Referring to FIG. 1, the secured terminals may comprise, but are not limited to, any of the following: (a) one or more wireless device kiosks (WDK) 122, (b) one or more wire line kiosks (WLK) 124 or one or more remote input devices (RID) 126. A RID 126 may be wireless or wire line.

One or more players may visit the WDK 122 or the WLK 124 to provide information to an operator representative. In this scenario, the operator representative provides IPD to the TID 110. Alternatively, each player may directly provide IPD from one or more RID 126.

In one embodiment the TID 110 receives IPD from each player through one or more of the WI 116 or the WLI 118. The TID 110 communicates each player's initial IPD to the DAS 112. The DAS 112 creates a data base for each player and verifies each player's IPD. Upon satisfactory verification of each player's IPD, the DAS 112 authorizes issuance of a wireless gaming device (WGD) 200 configured to play one or more EPWG remotely.

An advantage of the WGD 200 may be that a player may wager on events of the EPWG at any time or location suitable to the player. In one embodiment, it is contemplated that an operator may offer EPWG on demand. In yet another embodiment an operator may specify when one or more EPWG are available for player participation. An operator may benefit by selecting quantities and varieties of EPWG depending on resources available to the operator.

The WDK 122, WLK 124 and RID 126 may be located on a portion of any operator controlled wagering environments. Examples of operator controlled wagering environments include one or more gaming establishments licensed to provide wagering games. It is contemplated that operator controlled wagering environments may include one or more non-gaming establishments where appropriate governmental and regulatory measures have been implemented. Referring to FIG. 1, the WDK 122, WLK 124 and RID 126 may be located in a hotel room 120 of the gaming establishment, a restaurant 120, a lounge 120, a poolside area 120, a recreation area 120 and the like. The WDK 122, WLK 124 and RID 126 may be located in one or more gaming areas designated by the gaming establishment.

Exemplary Gaming Devices

FIG. 2 illustrates one embodiment of a wireless gaming device (WGD) 200 issued to or made available to a player who may have provided IPD as described above. In this embodiment the WGD 200 may be configured to offer one or more EPWG.

The WGD 200 may comprise any type device capable of receiving and displaying information, to one or more authorized players. The WGD 200 may further comprise any device capable of sending information, including but not limited to data to a remote location. The information may comprise, but is not limited to the following: text, audio, vibration, and images. In one embodiment the WGD 200 comprises a tablet device. In other embodiments it is contemplated that the WGD 200 may comprise any secured device supplied by the operator of the EPWS including, but not limited to the following: a personal station player, a personal digital assistant, laptop computer, web enabled cellular telephone, tablet PC, web pad, or a MIRA Internet appliance and the like.

As shown in FIG. 2, the WGD 200 is embodied to communicate over a wireless network. Accordingly, in one embodiment, the WGD 200 includes an antenna 202 which connects to a wireless interface 204 of the WGD 200. The antenna 202 and the wireless interface 204 operate in unison to receive signals transmitted from one or more remote locations or to transmit signals to the remote locations. As described above, other systems and methods for communication with remote locations are possible. The wireless interface 204 may perform decoding, demodulation, and other processing as necessary to receive and transmit information with remote locations. It is contemplated that such communication with remote locations would be secured and controlled by an operator of an EPGS.

In one embodiment communication may occur through a secured wireless cellular network strategically placed in a variety of locations. It is contemplated that such locations may include a portion of one or more wagering establishments, a portion of any other non-wagering establishments and the like.

The WGD 200 further may comprise one or more microprocessors 206 or other computing devices such as a DSP, ARM, ASIC, or any type of processors. The microprocessors 206 connect to the wireless interface 204 of the WGD 200 to perform analysis and processing on data including but not limited to text, audio and imaging. It is contemplated that data may be sequential or parallel and may be streamed to provide continual and nearly real-time updates.

The processor 206 also connects to or communicates with a first memory 208, a second memory 210, a display device 212, a player interface 214, and a removable media reader 216. The first memory 208 and the second memory 210 may comprise any type memory capable of storing data. In various embodiments the memory 208, 210 may comprise RAM, ROM, a hard disk drive, flash memory, optical memory, CD or DVD ROM, or a CD-RW media. In one embodiment the memory 208, 210 is configured to store any or all of data, software code and programs, video data, pictures, graphics, machine readable code, and processor executable logic code.

The display 212 may comprise any type system configured to display information to a player. In one embodiment the display 212 incorporates touch screen capability for use by a player with a stylus or other pointing device. In another embodiment the WGD 200 may include a microphone or other similar device to provide audio data to the DTA 100. The player interface 214 may optionally provide access to additional systems for a player to enter information from the WGD 200. The player interface 214 may comprise a track ball or mouse type device, one or more keys, buttons, a keyboard, microphone, speaker, voice recognition system, pointing device, or any other device or system capable of receiving input from a player.

The media reader 216 comprises an interface or drive capable of reading, writing, or interfacing with a media. The media may comprise ROM, a hard disk drive, flash memory, optical memory, CD or DVD ROM, or a CD-RW media. In one embodiment the media reader 216 is configured as an input/output port to receive and send data over a hardwired connection. In such a configuration the media reader configured as a port may comprise one of the following: a USB port, Firewire (IEEE1394) port, serial port, or parallel port and the like.

A power source 218 connects to the processor 216 to provide power for operation. Although not shown it is contemplated that the power source 218 may also connect to other systems or devices of the WGD 200 as necessary to achieve operation and as understood in the art.

In operation the WGD 200 receives information over the antenna 202 and the wireless interface 204. Upon receipt of data the processor 206 may reformat the received data for viewing on the display 212 or for use by a player. The data received by the processor 206 via the antenna 202 and the wireless interface 204 may be stored either permanently or temporarily in the first memory 208 or second memory 210 or both.

Alternatively data may be received via the media reader 216. As an advantage of the system shown in FIG. 2, the data used for display to a player may be dynamically received over the wireless link when requested by a player or intermittently received on an update basis to achieve faster operation. It is further contemplated that the WGD 200 may also be loaded with data, such as through a media reader 216 configured as a port, and thereafter serve as a stand alone system complementary to the DTA 100. Data input through the media reader 216 may be inaccessible by a player after a predetermined time as required by security considerations of governmental or regulatory agencies.

The WGD 200 may be further configured using the systems shown in FIG. 2 to receive player input. A player may provide input to the system via the player interface 214 or a touch screen equipped display 212. Any type of information may be received from a player and the type and use of such information is discussed below in greater detail. Player information may be stored in the memory 208, 210 or uploaded to a server for processing and further storage. Other information in addition to or instead of player information may also be received by the WGD 200.

It is contemplated that the WGD 200 may execute software to provide an interactive experience to a player. In one exemplary embodiment the system is configured to provide one or more EPWG selected by a player. In this embodiment, a player may select various player options that are most suited to the player's interactivity requirements. Examples of player's interactivity requirements during one or more EPWG include, but are not limited to selection of game, length of game, amounts of wagers, currency equivalence replenishment, and the like.

The WGD 200 may be configured to randomly award a bonus to a player when the WGD is issued to the player. This bonus may be currency equivalents or other forms of compensation such as show tickets, food discounts, room rate discounts and the like.

FIG. 3 illustrates an example embodiment of a gaming machine 300 configured to present an EPWG to a player. According to this embodiment of the gaming machine 300, no or only limited initial player data (IPD) is required to authorize use of the gaming machine 300 in contrast to the WGD 200. As illustrated in FIG. 3, the gaming machine 300 may be any device configured to provide an interactive experience of one or more EPWG similar to the WGD 200 as described above.

The gaming machine 300 may comprise any type device capable of receiving and displaying information to one or more players. The information may be received from a remote location. The gaming machine 300 may further comprise any device capable of sending information including but not limited to data to a remote location. The information may be, but is not limited to the following: text, audio and images. It is contemplated that the gaming machine 300 may be configured to both communicate via a wirelessly or wired medium, with one or more DTA 100. Each gaming machine 300 may be hard wired into a remote location such at the DTA 100 (described above). It is contemplated that communication between the gaming machine 300 and a remote location may be similar to the above description for communication of the WGD 200 or by any other devices including internal (in-built in the gaming machine 300) and external routers, cellular stations, satellite and the like. Communication may occur in any manner known in the art or developed in the future.

Referring further to FIG. 3, the gaming machine 300 may comprise one or more displays 310. The display 310 may comprise any type system configured to display information to a player. In one embodiment the display 310 incorporates touch screen capability for use by a player with a player's finger or other pointing device. As illustrated in FIG. 3, in yet another embodiment, the gaming machine 300 may be configured as a “video” type gaming machine.

In addition the gaming machine 300 may comprise various interfaces, hardware devices and software which facilitate player and operator interactivity as described above for the WGD 200. For example, a portion of the gaming machine 300 may comprise an image recording device configured to capture optional player biometric data or to facilitate security of the gaming machine 300.

The gaming machine 300 may further comprise at least one receptacle 320 for receiving and recognizing currency equivalents and a payout dispenser 330 for paying the player. The receptacle 320 may comprise a scanner, bar code reader, magnetic stripe reader, coin hopper, paper and/or coin currency reader, credit card reader, player card reader, and the like. In comparison to the WGD 200, an advantage of the gaming machine 300 is that a player simply provides currency equivalents recognizable by the receptacle 320. In one embodiment a player deposits currency equivalents in the receptacle 320 to receive player credits. Player deposits of currency equivalents entitle the player to play the EPWG for the opportunity to receive winnings. The player may replenish credits in the gaming machine 300 with further currency equivalents without resorting to formalized security protocols that may interrupt flow of the EPWG. If the player is a winner of one or more wagering events of the EPWG, the player is awarded currency equivalents, such as a monetary payout (such as coins), credits representing monetary value, points or tangible prizes, or any other award.

A game controller (not shown) may be provided for controlling the various devices of the gaming machine 300 and/or for providing game information. For example, the game controller may be arranged to generate video and audio data for presentation by the display 310 and speakers (not shown) of the gaming machine 300. The game controller may be arranged to detect a signal from the receptacle 320 indicating the receipt of currency equivalents and for registering credits corresponding to those inputs, for subtracting credits for wagers placed by a player, and for causing a coin delivery mechanism to deliver coins from a coin hopper to the payout dispenser 330 for payment of winnings and/or return to a player of non-wagered credits. One or more player input devices may provide an output to the gaming controller for use in play of the EPWG. For example, in response to a “bet one” input by a player, the gaming controller may be transmitted a signal which causes the gaming controller to initiate presentation of the EPWG.

During play of the EPWG, both visual and audio announcements may be transmitted from the GMIS 14 or from other elements of the TDA 100 to any gaming machine 300 (or any WGD 200) configured with the display 310 and speakers (not shown) to receive visual and audio data. Without any limitation, such announcements may include prizes awarded to any players of the EPWG as described above, time limits during tournament EPWG, data indicating future EPWG availability, specific player directed offerings, bonus rounds and the like.

It will be appreciated that any gaming device (such as the gaming machine 300 or the WGD 200) may have a variety of configurations, and that the gaming devices illustrated and described above are but example of devices for implementing any EPWG of the present invention. Any specific embodiments of the operation of any EPWG described below may be applied to any suitably configured gaming device.

Exemplary Events Prompted Wagering Game

Referring now to FIG. 3, in various embodiments a portion of the display 310 of the gaming machine 300 may comprise one or more events of one or more EPWG. In one embodiment, an example of an EPWG may be a tennis game 360 with an event of the tennis game being as illustrated in FIG. 3. Any events of the tennis game 360 may be dynamically updated on the display 310. A player of the gaming machine 300 may be offered one or more wagering opportunities on one or more event outcomes 340 during the tennis game 360.

By way of example, a portion of the display 310 of FIG. 3 may further include tennis game data of one or more events. The tennis game data may comprise wagering opportunities, odds updates, currency equivalent balance data, environmental conditions (such as temperature, rain, time of day), competitor status (past and current injuries, forced and unforced errors), and the like.

By way of illustration of one embodiment of an event having a wagering opportunity in a tennis game 360, a player may be offered one or more event outcomes 340 (shown as A, B, C, D and E) of a serving event. For each event, the player may wager on one or more event outcomes 340 of the serving event. Examples of possible event outcomes 340 of the serving event may be: “competitor A serves an ace (3:1 odds); B serves a fault (1:3 odds); C serves a double fault (1:50 odds); D serves a let (1:10 odds)” or “E skip this wager”, and the like. It is contemplated that the player may wager on any of two or more different possible outcomes for the event. The outcomes are determined by the type of game and event that is presented to the player. Any type sporting event or game, live or simulated, may be provided for the player to place wagers.

In the exemplary game of tennis, the competitor may be poised to serve the ball. The player may bet on which outcome, out of numerous possible outcomes, of the serve or volley of the tennis ball will occur. The next event may thus depend on the outcome of the prior event. For example, who serves the next tennis volley may depend on who won the prior tennis volley. Unlike other games, the subsequent events and the potential betting opportunities and outcomes may depend on earlier event outcomes or wagers by the player. For example, in video poker, each hand is independent of the prior hand. In slots, each reel spin is independent of the prior reel spin. In keno, each ball or number selection is independent of the prior round of play.

Odds updates indicate what a player may win based on any offered wagering opportunity on an event outcome 340 during the tennis game 360. For example “3:1 odds” indicates a payout of $3 if the player wagers $1 at the time a wagering opportunity is offered on an outcome of an event. Furthermore, a portion of the display 310 may comprise player's credits and wager amounts 350.

A player may select one or more wagers to hedge the player's wager. It is understood that a hedged wager may earn a different payout compared to a single wager. For example, a player may select both the “A serves an ace” outcome and the “B serves a fault” option with a combined 1:1 odds.

After the player completes one or more wagers on the outcome of the serving event, the gaming processor plays out the event of the EPWG and a portion of the display 310 of the gaming machine 300 may show the completed serving event. In contrast to other games, an intense, highly graphical and dynamic display of the live or simulated event may occur. This builds player involvement as compared to prior art video poker or slots games, which provide a rather fixed and repetitive display to the player.

Furthermore, a player's wagers may be resolved by the gaming processor of the gaming machine 300 and the display 310 may show data such as player's pays or losses, updated competitor statistics, and the like as described above. Further wagering opportunities on event outcomes may be offered to the player as the tennis game 360 proceeds. The GMIS 114 may have a similar function as that of the gaming processor for a remote wireless device 200 as described above.

It will be appreciated that wagering opportunities offered on an event outcome during an EPWG (such as the tennis game 360 described above) may substantially increase player interest and involvement. An operator of the EPWG and the player will benefit by this increased player interest and involvement.

In an embodiment of a simulated EPWG, a player of a gaming machine 300 may interrupt play of the gaming machine at any time after a wager on an event outcome is offered. In one embodiment an output interface (not shown) of a gaming machine 300 or a WGD 200 may issue a card or a ticket having data such as optical, magnetic or printed data and the like to the player. The card or ticket may comprise user ID, unique password and EPWG identification issued by the gaming machine 300 or the WGD 200 to the player. Additional data stored on the card or ticket may include time and event when the EPWG simulation was discontinued and credits available. The card or ticket may comprise any data that may be recognized by a reading device coupled to a gaming device such as the gaming machine 300 or the WGD 200.

The player may resume wagering on any subsequent event outcomes offered on the gaming machine 300 or the WGD 200 during the EPWG by submitting the card or ticket to one or more input interfaces (such as the receptacle 320 of the gaming machine). The card or ticket may be interchangeable between a gaming machine 300 and a WGD 200. The player's card or ticket may permit resumption of the EPWG simulation at the time of the event where the EPWG was interrupted or after any subsequent event after the EPWG was interrupted.

Thus, in contrast to prior art games wherein a player was forced to give up the ‘hot machine’, in one embodiment of the method and apparatus described herein the player may retain and return to the ‘hot game’ such that the particular game may be restored and resumed by the player at a later time. In one embodiment the game status is stored in a game server or other memory for any period of time to allow the player to resume play at a particular point in the game.

In an embodiment of a live EPWG, a player may elect to discontinue play on the gaming machine 300. The player may resume wagering on any outcome of any event of the EPWG that may be subsequently offered on the gaming machine. A live event may comprise a live event or game that is happening in real time or which happened in the past. Any credits accumulated by the player may either be paid to the player or stored for future use by the player when resuming play of the EPWG (as described above for an interrupted simulated game) in various embodiments of a simulated or a live EPWG, or a combination of both.

It will be appreciated that there may be time lags between each event in an embodiment of a live or a simulated EPWG. For example, in a golf game, there is a several minute period of time between a particular players swings. During such time lags, a portion of the display 310 may show another wagering opportunity of the EPWG or any other EPWG offered to the player. A player may wager on one or more wagering opportunities offered during any EPWG. One advantage of simultaneously offering more than one wagering opportunity may be to increase income opportunities for operators of the EPWG. Yet another advantage may be to maintain player interest during the EPWG.

In other embodiments the method and apparatus described herein may be configured to offer wagers on individual or cumulative events of one or more EPWG tournaments with one or more optional wagering opportunities during events of EPWG of the tournament. For example, playing statistics of teams of the tournament may provide wagering opportunities wherein each player may wager on the winning order of teams or of individual competitors of teams at various stages of the tournament.

Another wager based on these playing statistics may be a wager based on an outcome or results of a group of competitors, such as but not limited to, any team score above a predefined number of points.

In yet another wager based on these playing statistics, a player may wager on the number of times an action occurred during a certain common event of the EPWG. For example, in a golf tournament, the wager may be: “how many times an approach shot landed within 20 feet of a specific green”, or “which group of competitors of the tournament most consistently drove into the middle of the fairway on the fifth hole”.

In yet another embodiment of an EPWG tournament one or more simultaneous events may be shown on the display 310. In addition to one or more wagering opportunities on an outcome of each simultaneous event, one or more coupled outcomes of the simultaneous events may be offered as one or more wagering opportunities to players of the EPWG tournament.

It is understood that these examples of events are merely illustrative of several embodiments of wagering events of a tournament. An advantage of these added wagering opportunities may be to increase player interest and involvement in each event or the actions of selected competitors during each event of the. For example, players may pick one or more favorite competitors and may optionally wager on the activities of the selected favorite competitors at various stages of an EPWG and of the tournament as a whole. For example, a player may be inclined to wager on their favorite team or competitor instead of a generic slot reel.

In yet another exemplary embodiment, an operator of the EPWS may configure the gaming device to provide any of the following: mystery awards, progressive awards or random prizes and the like. For example, each player's wager may be assigned one or more randomly generated player numbers (or indicia) and a stub (or vector) of each of the numbers represented by a data field for the numbers and for the stubs. At predetermined times a random number generator linked to any EPWG selected by the player may choose one or more of the numbers. An advantage of awarding bonus prizes to players may be to increase player excitement and interest in a selected EPWG.

In one embodiment, a player may activate automatic wagering on one or more offered wagering opportunities on events of the EPWG. In one example embodiment, the automatic wager feature allows a player to set one or more automatic wagers which are placed for the player by wagering system as the game progresses event by event. By way of example and not limitation, the game may comprise a boxing match, and each event is a 15 second (or a duration based on the amount bet or determined by the player) boxing round. The player may place an auto bet on a particular boxer (competitor) to win each round and then, after placing the auto wager, sit back in a more relaxed state, and let the gaming machine display the visually enjoyable game (boxing match) in an event by event (round by round) manner. The wagering system automatically credits or deducts winning and losing bets. Thus, the player is enticed to play not only to win wagers, but also to enjoy the visual and audio display of the event by event game.

In yet another embodiment, the display 310 may show another event having a wagering opportunity if no wager is received from the player after a predetermined time. An advantage of progressing through events of the EPWG after predetermined times is to maintain player's interest in the EPWG.

In order to learn the features of an EPWG, in one embodiment a player may initiate player education by time-limited display of one or more event demonstrations without player wagering. An advantage of player education may be to increase player knowledge and comfort in the EPWG and thereby appeal to a greater number of players.

FIG. 4 illustrates an exemplary embodiment of a further contemplated EPWG, such as a golf game 400. The EPWG may be any game played or engaged in by a competitor. Examples of EPWG include, but are not limited to sporting games incorporating a competitor versus another competitor, teams versus teams and the like or combinations thereof. Some examples of contemplated sporting games are football, baseball, soccer, hockey and the like, horse racing, dog racing, auto racing, golf, tennis, bowling, boxing, basketball, chess, cricket, badminton, swimming, hunting, fishing, motorcycle racing, bicycling, skating, track and field, skiing, horse jumping, diving, rock-climbing, kayaking, boating, fencing, karate, judo and the like or fighting of any sort including simulated wars or battles either human, animal, robotic, or alien, logging type competition, board games, shooting competition, curling, polo, archery, gymnastics, sailing, softball, table tennis, volleyball, darts, weightlifting, wrestling, or any other sport or game.

Referring to FIG. 4, in one embodiment of an EPWG, a portion of a display 310 of a gaming machine 300 or a WGD 200 may comprise one or more events of a golf game 400. Visual images, text data 420 and combinations thereof may be displayed. In one embodiment of text data 420, the text may include “hole number”, “competitor name”, “strokes”, “to pin”, “lie” as illustrated in FIG. 4, as well as other text such as competitor statistics and the like. Visual images may include one or more golfers 410, one or more golf course objects, one or more hazards 430, one or more golf balls 460 (see FIG. 5 and description below), environmental conditions 470 and the like. In one embodiment golf course objects may include tees, flags and the like. In another embodiment, hazards may include water, trees, divots, bunkers, shrubs and the like. In yet another embodiment, environmental conditions 470 may include humidity level, rain, wind speed and direction, and the like.

A portion of a display 310 may further comprise wagering opportunities on an event of the EPWG (golf game 400). As illustrated in FIG. 4, a portion of the EPWG may comprise a golfer 410 located at a tee on hole 1 of a golf course. The golfer 410 may drive a golf ball 460 in a number of directions. The outcome of where the golf ball 460 lands may represent a wagering opportunity. It will be appreciated that the outcome of where the golf ball 460 lands after a competitor swings a club is an example of an event where a wagering opportunity may be offered to a player of an EPWG (the golf game 400). In another embodiment, an outcome on a club selection by a competitor may be another wagering opportunity that may be offered to a player of the EPWG.

In one embodiment of the golf game 400 each direction may be labeled with indicia such as text, numbers, icons, color codes and the like on the display 310 of the gaming machine 300. These indicia may provide for facile reference to a wagering opportunity by a player of the EPWG. Without limiting the scope of this disclosure, in one embodiment of a wagering opportunity offered to a player, examples of indicia as illustrated in FIG. 4 may include: A(3:1), B(5:1), C(2:1), D(1:) and the like. To better understand the meaning of these example indicia: A(3:1) may be a 3 to 1 wager that the competitor will land in a sand trap; B(5:1) may be a 5 to 1 wager that the competitor will land in water; C(2:1) may be a 2 to 1 wager that the competitor will land 200-250 yards in the left rough; D(1:1) may be a 1 to 1 wager that the competitor will land 225-250 yards in the fairway, and so on. In one embodiment a player may be offered the opportunity to skip a wager and thereby move to another wagering opportunity of the ongoing EPWG.

Each wagering opportunity (A, B, C and D as illustrated in FIG. 4) may be displayed to a player of the EPWG on a portion of the display 310 proximate to a visual image of the location of a possible event outcome. For example, as illustrated in FIG. 4, the indicia “A(3:1)” may be located proximate to a sand trap. Alternatively, each wagering opportunity may be displayed on a wagering interface 440 of the display 310 (as illustrated in FIG. 4, E may be the “skip a wager” option described above). In one embodiment, a player may wager by touching on the display 310 at the visual image of a possible event outcome (for example, on a portion of the sand trap) or on a portion of the wagering interface 440 corresponding to the sand trap event outcome.

It is understood that a wager may be received from a player using any wagering interface provided on any gaming device (such as the gaming machine 300 or the WGD 200) of the EPWS accessible by the player. A player may wager any amount up to a player's credit limit defined by the player's currency equivalents (such as currency equivalents recognized by the receptacle 320 of the gaming machine 300). As illustrated in FIG. 4, a portion of the wagering interface 440 may further comprise one or more player information interfaces 450. In one embodiment the player information interfaces may be a player's credits (shown as 250 credits in FIG. 4) and a player's wager amount (shown as 25 credits in FIG. 4). It is understood that player information interfaces 450 may be located on any portion of a gaming device (such as the gaming machine 300 or the WGD 200).

After one or more wagers are received from the player, the event may be played out on the display 310. It is understood that the outcome of the event may be announced to the player, displayed or both.

FIG. 5 illustrates an event outcome of the wagering opportunity shown in FIG. 4 (see description above). According to the embodiment of an event outcome shown in FIG. 5, the player 410 has driven a golf ball 460 a distance of 225-250 yards in the fairway (shown as D(1:1) in FIG. 5). As illustrated in FIG. 5, the location D(1:1) may have an indicia (WINNER) 510 to show the result of a wager placed on a winning outcome of an event of the EPWG. The display 310 may further show outcomes (such as A(3:1) and the like) with an indicia (LOSER) 520 to show the result of a wager placed on a losing outcome. It is understood that the indicia for a winning or a losing outcome may be text, images, audible sounds or any combinations thereof.

Furthermore, the winning outcome and the losing outcomes may be shown on a portion of the wagering interface 440 corresponding to each offered wagering opportunity of each event outcome. Specifically in the embodiment of FIG. 5, D is the winning outcome and A, B and C are the losing outcomes, with E being the “skip a wager” option described above in FIG. 4.

As an advantage over prior games, in one embodiment the player will be able to visually see that there was a winning opportunity in the round of play had the player selected the proper outcome. Thus the ability to win was in the players control, and at least in this embodiment, the player had a one in 4 chance of selecting a winning outcome. This is in contrast to other wagering games, wherein the player may not have any opportunity to win or not perceive any winning opportunity. For example, in video poker the cards dealt to the player, originally or in the draw, in some hands are not winners and nothing the player can do can make them winners. In slots, the player perceives the computerized game as controlling or determining when the player wins or loses. The method and apparatus described herein allows a player to select from wagering options, at least one of which will occur in the event.

To illustrate one embodiment of an event outcome, the player's information interface 450 shows “275 CREDITS” in FIG. 5. In one embodiment, the player's information interface 450 may show a win amount of “WIN 25” in FIG. 5, based on a payout of 25 credits wagered by the player (see “25 ON D” selected by a player in FIG. 4).

For a different event outcome (any of A, B or C, but not D for the event shown in FIGS. 4 and 5) the wager of “25 on D” selected by the player would lose and the player's information interface 450 may show “225 CREDITS”, based on forfeiting the player's wager of “25 on D” illustrated in FIG. 4. Furthermore, it will be appreciated that if the event outcome of FIG. 5 showed the golf ball 460 landing in the fairway at a distance of 275 yards, the player's wager of “25 on D” could also lose. An operator of the EPWG may select the payout tables applicable to any wagering opportunities offered to any player.

After the conclusion of the above described event, another event may be provided to the player upon which to wager. The next event that is displayed to the player depends on the outcome of the one or more previous events. Following from the last example, the competitor swings at the ball at the location where the ball came to rest after the previous swing. If the ball had landed in a sand trap, then the competitor would swing from the sand trap. Alternatively, if the ball had landed on the putting green, then the competitor would put from the green. Numerous sports next event depends on the prior event. This provide continuity and variety to the wagering event presented to the player. Moreover, wagering opportunities may differ from one event to the next based on the event being offered, which is part of the flow of the game.

Exemplary Method of Playing Events Prompted Wavering Games

FIGS. 6A to 6D is a flow diagram showing a progression of events during one or more EPWG. Referring to FIG. 6A, in step 600, a player accesses a gaming device (such as a WGD 200 or a gaming machine 300). In step 602, after accessing the gaming device, player tracking may optionally begin if player tracking is an option, enabled, or desired. Player tracking may be initiated as described above or in any other manner as understood in the art.

In step 604 a live, simulated or combination thereof EPWG may be loaded in the gaming device. In one embodiment the gaming device may be configured, display, communicate and/or receive one or more live, simulated or combination thereof EPWG. Communication from a remote site may occur. Alternatively in another embodiment the gaming device may be configured to have one or more pre-loaded simulated EPWG. In yet another embodiment the gaming device may be configured to have a portion of one or more simulated EPWG working in co-operation with one or more live, simulated or combination thereof EPWG communicated and received substantially simultaneously from one or more remote sites.

In step 606 a player's currency equivalents are credited to the player. Player currency equivalents may be received directly in the gaming device or may be received by an operator of an EPWS as described above. A portion of a player's currency equivalents may be pre-allocated as a lien for any portable gaming device supplied to the player from a remote site.

In step 608, a player's credits are shown on a portion of a display of the gaming device. After display of the player's credits, in step 610 the player may select to play one or more live and/or simulated EPWG shown on the display of the gaming device.

In step 612, a player may be offered one or more optional pre-game wagering opportunities for one or more EPWG selected by the player in prior step 610. Some illustrative examples of pre-wagering opportunities may be wagers on the final score of a game between two teams, point spread between two competitors of a game and the like. In one embodiment pre-wagering opportunities comprise wagering opportunities on the outcome of two or more events.

FIG. 6B follows on from FIG. 6A. In step 614, a player may select to make no pre-game wagers, while in step 616 pre-game wagers may be received from the player. In step 618, the player's current credits may be updated and shown on a portion of the display of the gaming device. Following on, in step 620 sequential EPWG events are shown to the player on the display of the gaming device.

In step 622 optional wagering opportunities for outcomes of an event of one or more EPWG may be offered to a player on the display. A player may optionally accept the offered wagering opportunities on the outcomes of an event as shown in step 624 or decline the offered wagering opportunities as shown in step 626. If a player declines the offered wagering opportunities of step 626, the player may be offered new optional wagering opportunities as shown in step 628. It is contemplated that in one embodiment a player may decline any wagering opportunities on any events of the EPWG and continue playing the EPWG until the player subsequently decides to accept one or more offered wagering opportunities on outcomes of any events of the EPWG. Other embodiments may not allow a player to not wager on an event.

After accepting any offered wagering opportunities on an event, in step 630 a player's credits and/or bonuses may be updated and shown on the display of the gaming device. In one embodiment of the gaming device a portion of the gaming device other than the display may be configured to show a player's credits and bonuses.

The event and action by the competitors and the outcome of the wagering event may be displayed to players in step 632. This may comprise a live display or simulated event display that encourages player involvement or interest. Resolution of wagers to each player may occur at step 634 based on the players' prior wagers in step 624 described above. In any type of EPWG, players' wins and losses may be determined and awarded in a manner consistent with the description above in either of a tennis game or a golf game of an EPWG.

FIG. 6C follows on from FIG. 6B. In step 636, players' credits may be updated based on the outcome of wagering on the event of step 622 and a player may optionally decide whether to continue playing in the EPWG in step 638. Incentives such as bonuses (as described above) may be offered to a player to continue playing in the EPWG.

If a player continues to play in one or more EPWG the next event of each EPWG may be displayed in step 640. A player may continue to play each EPWG with events having wagering opportunities being offered to the player according to the sequence of steps beginning from step 622 described above. Unlike other wagering events, prior events and/or the outcome of those prior events may determine future events which are displayed to the player and/or wagering opportunities for current or future events.

Optionally, in step 642 a player may run out of credits available for further play of an EPWG. A player's credits may be replenished by the player in step 644, thereby permitting the player to continue playing in an EPWG according to step 640 followed by the sequence of steps beginning from step 622 described above. Alternatively, should the player decline to replenish credits in step 642, any pre-game wagers (see description above) may be optionally refunded or forfeited as shown in step 650. In step 652 if the gaming device is portable a player may relinquish use of the gaming device when the player runs out of available credits. For a non-portable gaming device, a player may reactivate the gaming device beginning with step 600 described above.

If a player voluntarily decides to discontinue wagering in any EPWG as shown in step 646, any pre-game wagers (see description above) may also be optionally refunded or forfeited as shown in step 650. However, when all events of an EPWG end (step 648), as illustrated in step 654, any pre-game wagers may be resolved with a player.

FIG. 6D follows on from FIG. 6C. In step 656, a player's credits may be updated and shown on a portion of the player's gaming device (such as the display), followed by step 658 where the player may receive credits and bonuses depending on the outcomes of any offered pre-game wagers. It is contemplated that a player may select to receive the credits and/or bonuses immediately after completion of an EPWG as described above or to play in yet another EPWG as shown in step 660. If the player selects to continue play in another EPWG, the player may begin from the sequence of steps beginning from step 608. Otherwise, a player may relinquish use of the playing device. When the playing device is a portable device, any lien paid by the player for use of the gaming device may be refunded to the player.

It is further contemplated that one or more event, game, or sports related ads may be generated and integrated into the event, game, or part of the display. Ads may also be displayed during periods between events or games. The ads may be associated with the game or event or tailored to the match the player, game or event. For example, in the game of auto racing, car ads or particular branded cars may be may used to increase sales of the cards and generate advertising revenue. In the case of tennis, particular shoe or racket ads or player discounts may be utilized to increase interest, ad revenue, and product sales.

While the invention has been particularly shown and described with reference to preferred embodiments thereof, it will be understood by those skilled in the art that the foregoing and other changes in form and details may be made therein without departing from the spirit and scope of the invention.

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Classifications
U.S. Classification463/16, 463/43, 463/39, 463/42
International ClassificationA63F9/24
Cooperative ClassificationG07F17/3288, G07F17/32
European ClassificationG07F17/32P2, G07F17/32
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