ScratchSmarter considers the top 3 prize levels for every game a ‘top prize’ when calculating our SmartFactor for SC, and for all states. If we can’t get the top 3 prize levels from the website, we submit Freedom of information requests to get all game level details.
South Carolina publishes all prize levels and all prizes remaining for all prize levels for all games.
|Top Six Prizes||Wins Remaining|
|$50,000 w/ EXTREME||$50,000||2,000,000||3|
|$50,000 w/ GREEN MATCH||$250,000||600,000||10|
|$3,000,000 w/ $3 MILLION||$3,000,000||2,000,000||3|
“The following Minnesota State Lottery instant scratch games are prize claim eligible. This list includes both active and previous scratch games.
Players have one year from each game’s end date to claim prizes for that game.
Scratch tickets are only valid to be claimed up to one year after the game’s end date.
Unclaimed Scratch Game Prizes
Scratch tickets expire one year from the end date of the game. If the one-year deadline falls on a weekend, holiday, or a day that Minnesota State Lottery offices are closed due to a legal holiday, you have until the end of the next business day to claim a prize. Prizes claimed by mail must be received by the Lottery within the claim period. The Lottery recommends that players use registered mail to send Tickets and Ticket Claim forms to the Lottery and that players keep a copy of the front and back of any Ticket sent. Only prizes of $500 or more are listed here with the exception of games that have no larger prizes.
THIS ANSWER IS TIME SENSITIVE AND ONLY APPLIES TO OUR PENNSYLVANIA REPORT FOR THE WEEK OF 10/5/18—————————–The quick answer is YES – we always account for ticket reprints. REPRINTS are one of the FIRST BIG SECRETS we discovered which led us to start ScratchSmarter. We built our entire algorithm around this issue and have it fully integrated into our reporting process.How do we account for it? Its based on two things: 1) how we calculate the SmartFactor and 2) how we gather the data every day.So, when the reprint occurs, the outstanding prizes is updated on the PA Lottery website. We pull those numbers daily and add them to our database. When we see the very top prize change from a low number to a higher number, it indicates a reprint. Our SmartFactor value for that game will change, usually from a RED value to a higher red OR yellow value. However over time, that game can potentially change to a green game, like Extreme Green has done recently. This is, after all, why the lottery did the reprint. They want a hot selling game to continue selling and they can’t do it until the odds get better.
PLEASE NOTE THIS QUESTION IS ONLY RELATIVE TO THIS WEEKS REPORT (10/5/18)
YES – if you can find this game, you should play it! If you win on these games, the ticket is valid until the LAST DAY TO CLAIM, not the Game End date. Read about these two important dates here: GAME END DATE vs LAST DATE TO CLAIM
The answer to this question comes down to two things:
- our algorithm
- the frequency of data collection
Our SmartFactor algorithm takes into account the detail of data we’re able to collect for each state. In the case of NY Lottery, we collect data two ways – by scraping it from the lottery website every day AND by submitting a freedom of information request on a regular basis. They do not publish the Est % of tickets sold through either of these data sources. But this is where the FREQUENCY of data collection becomes important.
The frequency of data collection allows us to gather and store the game data on a regular schedule in our database. We do not just look at the game data at one point in time. We collect it, store it, and use it over time. We’ve been doing this since 2011. The more data we collect over time the more confidence we have for our estimated % of tickets sold calculation.
We start by scraping the games from the website every day. This tells us when there are new games released. We then ask for the detailed prizes remaining through the freedom of information request (FOIA)
The FOIA report the NY Lottery sends out provides the total prizes paid and the total prizes unpaid for ALL prize levels for all games. With this information, our algorithm will work backward, using each games overall odds to calculate the total number of tickets printed. At that point, we have everything we need to determine the estimated % of tickets sold for the date of that FOIA Report.
We’ve invested a lot of time, energy and experience to automate this process and perform it every time we collect the data. By doing this over and over again, and tracking all of this data over time, we’ve become very accurate and confident with our Estimated % sold for NY lottery.
However, to be completely honest, the NY lottery is one of our toughest states for processing lottery data. Most states publish everything we need on their website. NY Lottery does not. For our analysis to work, we are not 100% automated. The FOIA step requires manual intervention in our automated processes. Because of this manual step in our process, we have a team of data stewards who focus on reviewing and validating the NY lottery data we collect every week.
Once in a while, we’ll repost a NY report when we catch an error. This has happened 3 times over the last 2 years, so we are not perfect. Even with our occasional ‘reposts’, we know we have the very best process and detailed data for NY Scratch-off games that anyone is going to get.
*Denotes games that have been reordered or have been delivered to the Florida Lottery in more than one shipment.