Jumbo lottery tickets sell for three hundred yen apiece. Customers have the option of buying either consecutively or randomly numbered tickets. The same system is used for the hyaku-en kuji one-hundred yen lottery , which is offered locally and more often, but for lesser prize money. When buying tickets for these games, the customer has only to name the lottery and the number of tickets wanted, and whether he or she wants consecutive numbers renban , or random bara. Other games available are in keeping with those found in Western nations: scratch-offs, daily pick threes and fours, and weekly pick sixes.
The pick six game is fun, although players are forced to mark a card before making a bet. In a rare departure from form, the odds of winning although not the percentage of the take returned to the public are written on the back of the pick six, three and four betting slips. There is also a quick-pick option that lets the computer pick the numbers. The prizes here depend on the amount of money in the pool.
If there is no winner of the pick six grand prize, the money is carried over to the following week. In this way, some of the bigger prizes can begin to rival American lottery jackpots. One of the attractive aspects of the Japanese lottery, aside from the fact that it is totally tax-free , is that in the unlikely event of hitting a jackpot, nobody else has to know about it. There is no obligation to come forward.
The lottery association simply places some obscene amount of money in the winner's bank account, and that's it. Of course, tales are told of how someone always finds about the big lottery winner, who is then harassed by lowlifes, suddenly friendly relatives, or both.
Pachinko is unique because the government does not control it. The government tries to police it only by trying to tax pachinko parlor owners. It is technically illegal for pachinko parlors to hand out money directly to patrons, so they hand out tokens instead, which can be redeemed for cash at nearby cashing stations outside the shop, run by a separate token-redeeming business. Each pachinko parlor sets its own machines any way its likes, although most conform to the industry standard.
The word on the street is that the industry standard is roku wari gaeshi, or a sixty percent return. Compare that to an over ninety percent return rate on most Las Vegas slots, and you get a pretty good idea of just how bad a gamble this game is.
Still, it is a mesmerizing activity that promises nightly amusement to those without a social life. In Japanese films and television dramas, scenes of some exhausted husband going out to play the game often follow scenes of domestic spats. Because pachinko requires a considerable investment of time, beleaguered salarymen can use the game to run from family responsibilities, demanding girlfriends, the bullying section chief, the kids who refuse to go to school, and the wife who finds pleasure in a different game.
In other words, the escape pachinko offers has untold appeal. And the off-putting, miserable environment of the average pachinko parlor makes most salarymen feel right at home. Housewives and blue-collar workers may complain about the conditions of the shop, but not the man who works in an office.
White Collar loves this stuff. And because playing pachinko is physically grueling, salarymen feel less guilty if they win. After all, they have worked hard for their winnings. Pachinko is unique because winning, or even dreams of winning, is not really what pachinko is all about. That is why, of all forms of gambling in Japan, none is so quintessentially Japanese as pachinko. What repels foreigners is the noise, the unnecessary steps involving steel balls and plastic boxes, the smoke, the constant barking by attendants, the act of staring for hours into a machine at clicking ball bearings - these being the very things that attract the predominantly male Japanese customer.
Horse racing is a weekend activity, and it attracts people who want to make money. Toto and the lottery offer a chance to dream about that one big score. Pachinko parlors are open every day, offering a long vista of lonely gambling sessions to the escapist, the masochist and the loner in each player. Judging by the enduring popularity of the game, there is a lot to appeal to. There are no legal casinos in existence at the moment, though Tokyo's ultra right-wing governor Shintaro Ishihara has been pushing them for years.
If Governor Ishihara is ever successful, we can easily imagine a Japanese-run casino: Roulette players allowed to bet only after marking their numbers on a card and giving it to a bureaucrat to stamp, sports betting allowed only after signing a declaration of belief in superiority of Japanese national teams, etc. The bicycle racing gambling system was always years ahead of horse racing and keirin does seem to have a devoted fan base. Keirin is a homegrown sport that began very shortly after the end of World World 2.
It involves a group of cyclists doing several laps of the course following, and paced by, a motorcycle. The pacer pulls away several hundred meters before the finish line allowing the riders to sprint for it. Keirin was devised expressly for the purpose of gambling, but had sporting legitimacy conferred upon it in when it became an Olympic event in the Sydney games that year. Soccer gambling on Japanese professional soccer - J. League - comes packaged in a system called "Toto," and, like the lottery, it is possible to buy Toto tickets only at sanctioned Toto booths, which are much more scarce than lottery booths, and found in strange places like electronics stores and used car lots.
The advantage to the Toto system is that people who want to play don't really have to know anything about the sport. The sports dailies usually offer their picks, although randomly picking the winners seems to be just as effective as researching who is going to win. Still, if you're going to play the lottery, you may as well play the lottery. This is interesting. Mahjong Japan style has a culture all its own, and appears to attract some really high rollers.
Unfortunately, this writer spent years researching the ins and outs of pachinko, and as a result has really nothing to say about this game. Like pachinko, it's only a semi-legal form of gambling. For instance, four consecutive Grade 1 race days are observed in mid-November. A race day may have 12 races from 10 am to pm. But there can be days with fewer races, particularly during any major race days. Tokyo, Niigata, and Chukyo Racecourses have tracks that run counter-clockwise, while the other remaining racecourses all have tracks that run clockwise.
Horses in Japan races are loaded into the gates in this order: odd number barrier, even number barrier, and outermost barrier independent of the odd-even barrier number. So, if a race has 15 runners, horse number 15 is loaded last even if it is not in an odd-even barrier. Some exceptions may occur, though. Instances such as difficult horses are loaded first regardless of their number.
Japan has three types of horse racing. Flat Racing is the most common type of horse racing. Horses run on a flat track and the first one to cross the finish line is the declared winner. Also known as Steeplechasing, Jump Racing is an obstacle race for horses. It puts emphasis on the ability of the horse to cross varying obstacles.
Aside from running longer distances, horses also need to navigate fences, water, and hedges. This event holds large purses. The Nakayama Grand Jump has a prize pool of more than million yen. Power Race is the draft racing in the equine world.
This unique horse race is held only in the city of Obihiro located in the Tokachi region of Hokkaido. Horses run short distances of about metres but their power is tested as they run while hauling a heavy sledge. Horses in power racing are usually huge, averaging about 1, kilograms. We are a comprehensive casino guide providing expats a reliable source of gambling information in Asia to keep them on the loop even when they are on the go.
In addition, we also provide expats access to free articles where they can get helpful advice when they travel to the mentioned Asian countries. The website also comes with links to reliable online casinos that grants exclusive bonuses and promotions. If you have any questions, comments, or feedback, feel free to connect with us. Yuna Tanaka September 16, 2. Table of Contents. Sports Betting. Top 4 Online Casinos.
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