Canadian Patents Database / Patent 2220878 Summary

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(12) Patent Application: (11) CA 2220878
(54) English Title: BLACKJACK GAME SYSTEM AND METHODS
(54) French Title: SYSTEME ET METHODES POUR JOUER AU BLACKJACK
(51) International Patent Classification (IPC):
  • A63F 1/18 (2006.01)
(72) Inventors :
  • FORTE, STEVEN L. (United States of America)
  • SINES, RANDY D. (United States of America)
(73) Owners :
  • DIGIDEAL CORPORATION (United States of America)
(71) Applicants :
  • CASINOVATIONS, INC. (United States of America)
(74) Agent: RICHES, MCKENZIE & HERBERT LLP
(74) Associate agent:
(45) Issued:
(86) PCT Filing Date: 1995-10-13
(87) Open to Public Inspection: 1996-11-14
Examination requested: 2000-12-07
(30) Availability of licence: N/A
(30) Language of filing: English

(30) Application Priority Data:
Application No. Country/Territory Date
08/439,687 United States of America 1995-05-12

English Abstract




A blackjack or other card game system (10, 200, 300, 400, 600) having a
plurality of player counters (40, 510, 540) which count the blackjack hands or
other player jackpot tally events dealt to players. The system also includes
at least one dealer counter (40, 510, 540) which counts the number of bust
hands of the dealer or other dealer jackpot tally events. Displays (22, 202,
203, 451-456) are included for both the dealer and players to indicate the
counts. The counters are typically zeroed at the end of each hand if a tally
event has not occurred. Jackpots are awarded when the tally counts exceed
predefined thresholds. A tabletop retrofit game system (205, 405) is shown for
mounting upon blackjack tables. A special round of play having modified rules
can be used as part of the jackpot award.


French Abstract

Un système (10, 200, 400, 600) utilisant des cartes pour jouer au blackjack ou similaire présente une pluralité de compteurs de jeu (40, 510, 540) qui comptent les donnes de blackjack ou d'autres événements tels que les cagnottes attribuées aux joueurs. Le système comprend également au moins un compteur de distribution (40, 510, 540) qui compte le nombre de donnes éliminatoires ou de donnes émises par le distributeur et donnant droit à l'attribution de la cagnotte. Des affichages (22, 202, 203, 451-456) sont prévus aussi bien pour le distributeur que pour les joueurs, afin d'indiquer les comptes. Les compteurs sont normalement remis à zéro à la fin de chaque donne si la cagnotte n'a pas été attribuée. Les cagnottes sont attribuées quand le comptage dépasse un seuil prédéfini. On décrit un système (205, 405) selon l'invention qui peut être monté sur une table de blackjack existante. On peut utiliser un tour de jeu spécial avec des règles modifiées, comme partie de la récompense attribuée avec la cagnotte.


Note: Claims are shown in the official language in which they were submitted.



24

CLAIMS
1. A method for playing a series of hands of the card game blackjack or casino
twenty-one involving a dealer and at least one player. comprising the following steps:
providing at least one player counter which is capable of registering at least one
player count value for each player, the player counters serving to register player count values
indicating the number of player jackpot tally events which are attributable to each player;
dealing a card hand to the at least one player;
identifying all players who qualify for a player jackpot tally event;
incrementing the at least one player counter to selectively increase the player count
values for players identified in the prior step as qualifying for a player jackpot tally event;
awarding a first player jackpot bonus to any player whose player count value meets
or exceeds a first player jackpot threshold.
2. A method as recited in claim 1 wherein the player jackpot tally events include
natural hands dealt to the player.
3. A method as recited in claim 1 wherein the player jackpot tally events include
natural hands dealt to the dealer.
4. A method as recited in claim 1 and further comprising awarding a second
player jackpot bonus to any player whose player count value which meets or exceeds a
second player jackpot threshold; wherein the second player jackpot threshold is greater than
the first player jackpot threshold and the second player jackpot bonus is greater than the first
player jackpot bonus.
5. A method as recited in claim 1 wherein the step of incrementing the player
count values includes manually operating a player key corresponding to each player identified
as qualifying for a player jackpot tally event in the current hand being played.6. A method as recited in claim 1 further comprising zeroing the at least one
player counter to zero for all players not identified as qualifying for a player jackpot tally
event after the current hand being played.
7. A method as recited in claim 1 and further comprising:
providing a dealer counter which is capable of registering multiple dealer countvalues indicating the number of dealer jackpot tally events;
incrementing the dealer counter to selectively increase the dealer count value if a
dealer jackpot tally event occurs;
zeroing the dealer count value to zero if a dealer jackpot tally event does not occur
in the current hand being played;
displaying the dealer count value;





awarding a first dealer jackpot bonus to said players when the dealer count value
meets or exceeds a first dealer jackpot threshold.
8. A method as recited in claim 7 wherein the dealer jackpot tally event includes
a bust hand dealt to the dealer.
9. A method as recited in claim 7 and further comprising awarding a second
dealer jackpot bonus to all players when the dealer count value meets or exceeds a second
dealer jackpot threshold; wherein the second dealer jackpot threshold is greater than the first
dealer jackpot threshold and the second dealer jackpot bonus is greater than the first dealer
jackpot bonus.
10. A method as recited in claim 7 wherein the step of incrementing the dealer
count value includes manually operating a dealer key.
11. A method as recited in claim 7 and further comprising:
awarding a second player jackpot bonus to any player whose player count value meets
or exceeds a second player jackpot threshold;
wherein the second player jackpot threshold is greater than the first player jackpot
threshold and the second player jackpot bonus is greater than the first player jackpot bonus;
awarding a second dealer jackpot bonus to all players when the dealer count value
meets or exceeds a second dealer jackpot threshold;
wherein the second dealer jackpot threshold is greater than the first dealer jackpot
threshold, and the second dealer jackpot bonus is greater than the first dealer jackpot bonus.
12. A method for playing a series of hands of the card game blackjack or casino
twenty-one involving a dealer and at least one player, comprising the following steps:
providing at least one electronic player counter which is capable of registeringmultiple player count values for each player, the player count values indicating the number
of consecutive natural hands dealt to individual players;
providing an electronic dealer counter which registers multiple dealer count values
indicating the number of consecutive bust hands dealt to the dealer;
dealing a card hand to each player and to the dealer;
identifying all players who have been dealt natural hands in the current hand being
played;
manually operating a player key corresponding to each player identified in the prior
step as having been dealt a natural hand;
manually operating a dealer key if the dealer has been dealt a bust hand in the
current hand being played;
incrementing said at least one electronic player counter to count player count values
in response to operating the player keys corresponding to said individual players;



26

incrementing said electronic dealer counter to count the dealer count value in
response to operating the dealer key;
zeroing said at least one electronic player counter to a zero value for all players not
identified as having been dealt natural hands in the current hand being played;
zeroing said dealer counter to zero the dealer count value if the dealer has not been
dealt a bust hand in the current hand being played;
displaying the dealer count value and the player count values of all the players;
awarding a first natural bonus to any player whose player count value meets a first
player jackpot threshold;
awarding a first bust bonus to said players when the dealer count value meets a first
dealer jackpot threshold.
13. A method as recited in claim 12 and further comprising operating an
end-of-hand device at the end of each hand, the zeroing steps being performed in response to
operating the end-of-hand device.
14. A method as recited in claim 12 and further comprising awarding a second
natural bonus to any player whose player count value meets a second player jackpot
threshold; wherein the second player jackpot threshold is greater than the first player jackpot
threshold and the second natural bonus is greater than the first natural bonus.
15. A method as recited in claim 12 and further comprising awarding a second
bust bonus to all the players when the dealer count value meets a second dealer jackpot
threshold; wherein the second predefined dealer count value is greater than the first
predefined dealer count value and the second bust bonus is greater than the first bust bonus.
16. A method as recited in claim 12 and further comprising;
awarding a second natural bonus to any player whose player count value which meets
a second player jackpot threshold;
wherein the second player jackpot threshold is greater than the first player jackpot
threshold and the second natural bonus is greater than the first natural bonus;
awarding a second bust bonus to all the players when the dealer count value exceeds
a second dealer jackpot threshold;
wherein the second dealer jackpot threshold is greater than the first dealer jackpot
threshold and the second bust bonus is greater than the first bust bonus.
17. A game system for playing the card game blackjack or casino twenty-one,
comprising:
a plurality of electronic player counters capable of registering multiple player count
values for players, the player count values indicating the number of player jackpot tally
events attributable to a particular player;



27

means for selectively incrementing the player counters to change player count values
for players who have qualified for a player jackpot tally event;
means for zeroing the player count values of players who should have their player
count values changed to zero;
at least one display for displaying at least one player count value.
18. A game system as recited in claim 17 and further comprising a player key foreach player, each player key being operable to indicate that the player qualifies for a player
jackpot tally event;
and wherein said means for selectively incrementing the player count values is
responsive to the player keys to increment the player count values.
19. A game system as recited in claim 17 and further comprising a player key foreach player, each player key being operable to indicate that the player qualifies for a player
jackpot tally event;
and wherein:
said means for selectively incrementing the player count values is responsive to the
player keys to increment the player count values;
the display includes a numeric indicator for each player, each player key being
positioned adjacent a corresponding numeric indicator.
20. A game system as recited in claim 17 and further comprising a controller
connected to said plurality of electronic player counters and to said at least one display; said
controller being operable to analyze the player count values held by said player counters and
to control said at least one display to indicate a first player jackpot bonus for any player
whose player count value meets or exceeds a first player jackpot threshold.
21. A game system as recited in claim 17 wherein there are at least two displays,
one of the displays being positioned for viewing by the dealer, and another of the displays
being positioned for viewing by the players.
22. A game system as recited in claim 17 wherein the game system includes a
table-top unit which is sufficiently small to allow a dealer to deal cards about the table-top
unit.
23. A game system as recited in claim 17 wherein the game system includes a
table-top unit having an array of display lights along side edges thereof.
24. A game system as recited in claim 17 wherein the game system includes a
tabletop unit having an array of display lights along side edges thereof;
and further comprising a tabletop markings which associate different portions of said
array of display lights with associated player table positions.




28


25. A game system as recited in claim 17 wherein the game system includes a
video display which displays the cards being played and at least one player count value.
26. A game system as recited in claim 17 and further comprising:
an electronic dealer counter for registering a dealer count value indicating thenumber of consecutive dealer jackpot tally events attributable to the dealer;
means for selectively incrementing the dealer counter to change the dealer countvalue if the dealer has qualified for a dealer jackpot tally event in the previous hand;
means for zeroing the dealer counter to a zero dealer count value if the dealer has
not qualified for a dealer jackpot tally event in the previous hand;
said display being responsive to the dealer counter to display the dealer count value.
27. A game system as recited in claim 26 and further comprising:
a dealer key which is operable to indicate that the dealer has qualified for a dealer
jackpot tally event;
said means for selectively incrementing the dealer counter being responsive to the
dealer key to increment the dealer count value.
28. A game system as recited in claim 26 wherein the means for zeroing includes
an end-of-hand device which is manually operable to signal the end of each hand.29. An electronic retrofit tabletop game system for mounting upon a blackjack
table to allow playing an enhanced blackjack or casino twenty-one card gambling game,
comprising:
a central module which rests upon an upper surface of the blackjack table;
a plurality of electronic player counters capable of registering multiple player count
values for each player, the player count values indicating the number of consecutive player
jackpot tally events attributable to a particular player;
a plurality of player keys mounted upon the central module for selectively
incrementing the player counters to change player count values for players who have
qualified for a player jackpot tally event;
means for zeroing the player count values of players who have not qualified for a
player jackpot tally event;
an electronic dealer counter for registering a dealer count value indicating thenumber of consecutive dealer jackpot tally events attributable to the dealer;
means for selectively incrementing the dealer counter to change the dealer countvalue if the dealer has qualified for a dealer jackpot tally event;
means for zeroing the dealer counter to a zero dealer count value if the dealer has
not qualified for a dealer jackpot tally event;



29

a plurality of player status displays which are connected to receive information from
the plurality of electronic player counters to display the player count values;
at least one dealer status display which is connected to receive information from the
electronic dealer counter to display the dealer count value.
30. A game system as recited in claim 29 wherein the game system includes a
table-top unit having an array of display lights along side edges thereof.
31. A game system as recited in claim 29 wherein the game system includes a
tabletop unit having an array of display lights along side edges thereof;
and further comprising a tabletop markings which associate different portions of said
array of display lights with associated player table positions.
32. A game system as recited in claim 29 wherein the game system includes a
video display which displays the cards being played and at least one player count value.
33. A game system according to claim 29 and further comprising an embankment
wall forming part of the central module which is arranged partially around the dealer
position; said status displays being positioned at least partially upon said embankment wall.
34. A game system according to claim 29 wherein said player keys are mounted
upon the central module in positions adjacent to player seating locations.
35. A game system according to claim 29 and further comprising at least one sidemodule having displayed information thereon.
36. A game system according to claim 29 and further comprising at least one sidemodule having an electronic display along a front surface thereof.
37. A game system according to claim 29 and further comprising port and
starboard side modules connected to the central module and having displayed information
thereon.
38. A game system according to claim 29 and further comprising port and
starboard side modules connected to the central module; said port and starboard side
modules having electronic displays along front surfaces thereof.
39. A method for playing a series of hands of a card game involving a dealer andat least one player, comprising the following steps:
providing at least one player counter which is capable of registering at least one
player count value for each player, said at least one player count value being a variable
quantity, the player counters serving to register player count values indicating the number
of player jackpot tally events which are countable for each player;
dealing a card hand to each player;
identifying all players who qualify for a player jackpot tally event;





incrementing the at least one player counter to selectively increase the player count
values for players identified in the prior step as qualifying for a player jackpot tally event;
displaying the player count values of all players;
awarding a first player jackpot bonus lo any player whose player count value which
meets or exceeds a first player jackpot threshold.
40. A method as recited in claim 39 further comprising zeroing the at least one
player counter to zero for all players not identified as qualifying for a player jackpot tally
event after the current hand being played.
41. A method as recited in claim 39 wherein the player jackpot tally events
include winning hands dealt to the player.
42. A method as recited in claim 39 wherein the player jackpot tally events
include winning hands dealt to a dealer.
43. A method as recited in claim 39 wherein the player jackpot tally events
include losing hands dealt to a dealer.
44. A method as recited in claim 39 and further comprising awarding a second
player jackpot bonus to any player whose player count value which meets or exceeds a
second player jackpot threshold; wherein the second player jackpot threshold is greater than
the first player jackpot threshold and the second player jackpot bonus is greater than the first
player jackpot bonus.
45. A method as recited in claim 39 wherein the step of incrementing the player
count values includes manually operating a player key corresponding to each player identified
as qualifying for a player jackpot tally event in the current hand being played.46. A method for playing a series of hands of a card game involving a dealer andat least one player, comprising the following steps:
providing at least one player counter which is capable of registering at least one
player count value for each player, the player counters serving to register player count values
indicating the number of player jackpot tally events which are attributable to each player;
dealing a card hand to the at least one player;
identifying all players who qualify for a player jackpot tally event;
incrementing the at least one player counter to selectively increase the player count
values for players identified in the prior step as qualifying for a player jackpot tally event;
determining whether any player whose player count value meets or exceeds a special
round threshold amount in which case such player becomes a special player;
providing at least one special round at which the special player whose player count
value met or exceeded the special round player threshold is allowed to play under special
rules in an effort to achieve a special round jackpot.




31

47. A method according to claim 46 wherein the special round involves:
counting the number of special round player qualifying events which occur during the
at least one special round;
awarding a special round jackpot which is dependent upon the number of special
round player qualifying events which occur during the at least one special round.
48. A method according to claim 46 wherein the special round involves:
counting the number of special round player qualifying events which occur during the
at least one special round;
counting the number of special round dealer qualifying events which occur during the
at least one special round;
awarding a special round jackpot which is dependent upon the number of special
round player qualifying events and the number of special round dealer qualifying events
which occur during the at least one special round.
49. A method according to claim 46 wherein the special round involves allowing
the special player to play multiple hands simultaneously during at least one special round.
50. A method according to claim 46 wherein the special round involves
suspending play for all players except the dealer and special player.
51. A method according to claim 46 wherein the special round involves allowing
the special player to play multiple hands simultaneously during at least one special round of
play, said special player playing in opposition to the dealer.
52. A method according to claim 46 wherein the special round involves allowing
the special player to play multiple hands simultaneously during at least one special round of
play, said special player being the only player allowed to play.
53. A method according to claim 46 further comprising awarding a suspended
player award to players who have been suspended by play of the special round.
54. A method according to claim 46 further comprising awarding a suspended
player award to players who have been suspended by play of the special round, said
suspended player award being dependent upon an amout awarded to the special player as
a special round jackpot.

Note: Descriptions are shown in the official language in which they were submitted.

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DESCR~PTIO N
BLACKJACK GAME SYSTEM AND METHODS
TerhniA-al Field
This invention relates to game systems and methods for playing the casino card game
6 allclllalively called bl~rkj~rk, casino twenty-one, or simply twenty-one.
U ~d Art
The card game twenty-one or bl~rkj~rk is a very popular card game. It is particularly
popular as a casino card game involving betting. In casinos the house holds the dealer hand.
In cardrooms, the house often by law is prohibited from holding the dealer hand, and one
~o of the other players is dealer. The basic object of the game is to obtain a co~ .ed card
count which beats the count of the dealer without going over twenty-one. The game is
played with a Cull~lllùll card deck or multiple decks having fifty two cards in four suits. Each
suit has an ace, ll~l.elically indexed cards from two to ten, and the face cards. The face
cards are jacks, queens and kings. Multiple decks can be cullllJhled together.
In the play of bl~rkj~rk the dealer initially deals two cards to each player and the
dealer. The cards are dealt one at a time around the table. The initial two cards to the
players are either dealt both facedown or both faceup, .I~ g upon the rules of the
particular casino or c~dlùolll involved.
The dealer receives one card faceup and the other initial card facedown. The faceup
card is also called the "upcard". The face-down card is also called the "hole card". An initial
wager is placed before dealing the first two cards. After the first two cards are dealt to all
players, each player is offered a variety of options inrln~iing: sr~n~ling, hitting, splitting and
doubling down. The player directs the dealer to deal zero, one or more additional cards to
that particular player. Limits of betting, rules, and play vary between gaming establ i~l .,, ,.~. ,l ~ .
If the player's total hand count exceeds twenty-one, then the player loses and this is often
called a "bust". If the player stands with cards which count a total of twenty-one or less, then
he is still in and the next player makes similar ~eci~ionc about betting and ~ iitiQn~l cards.
The dealer plays last and is h~llu~;Led by the house to hold when a certain count is achieved,
typically 17 or higher.
3D The best possible hand occurs when a player or dealer has a ten-count card and an
ace after l~,.,C;vhlg the first two cards. This hand is referred to ~ ;vcly as a "bl~rkj~ck"
or "natural". A natural hand is a winning hand unless the opposing dealer or player also has
a natural, in which case the play is called a push and neither the player or dealer involved
lose their bet or collect from the other. A player who is dealt a natural hand is typically
36 entitled to a bonus, such as equal to one and a half times the player's bet. All players lose
if the dealer is initially dealt a natural hand, unless a player also has a natural. This is true

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except in the case when the player has taken what is called '~h~ul~lce~ (an amount usually
equal to half the player's original bet).
A hand rY~ee~ling twenty-one is referred to as a "bust"or "bust hand" for both players t
and dealers. Players who are still in play win the hand when a dealer goes bust. The dealer
swins when a player busts.
B1ArkjArk has become one of the most popular casino card games. However, in manycasinos it does not have the same popularity as gambling attractions which offer large
jackpots, for example slot ",Arl,i"~c. In b1ArkjAck winnings for each hand are limited to the
amount wagered or a small multiple of the players' bets. This is in contrast to slot m~rhint~s
0which can often be played for a chance of winning very large jackpots.
Some casinos have implemP-ntl-d jackpots in the game of blArkjAck For in~t~nre, one
blackjack variation awards a jackpot to players ~eceivillg four like value cards in the same
hand. Another variation offers a jackpot for players lcceivhlg, in a single hand, seven cards
which total twenty-one. These _l~plvacl1es have not been cull.lllcl.;ially ~ignifirAnt The lack
5of lt~"lse has ~palel,lly been due to the absence of any logical relationship between the
game of b1ArkjAt~k as it is normally played and the events which trigger such a jackpot. The
lack of response may also be due eo the infrequency of such jackpot events which is needed
by the casino to make it possible to offer the jackpot.
Jackpots for b1ArLj~rk have also been impeded by the difficulty in finding a jackpot
zoevent which is of s-lmri~nt interest to players and of a snffiritqnt1y low probability that the
casino can afford to pay a jackpot on that event.
A related problem is that prior art card games offering jackpots are limited in their
flexibility to offer dirr~,len~ types of jackpots. In order to attract players, it is desirable to
display large jackpot dollar amounts. However, these large jackpots are by neces~ily
25relatively infrequent events. Thus if a card game picks four seven cards as a jackpot hand,
they have used an infrequent event which does not hold player ~ttrnti()n Thus there is a
need for a card game system which can offer both large hlrlc~luelll jackpots and smaller more
frequent jackpots which willbetter hold the player's desire to ccntimlP playing the game.
The hlvc;lllive game system and m,othl~flc described below are revolutionary in
30providing a blArkjA~k or other card game which allows both large infrequent jackpots and
smaller more frequent jackpots to be offered. It further allows a casino to offer 1iherAli7Pd
b1~LjAfk rules. This is accomplished without sacrificing the desirable aspects of playing
b1ArkjAck which have made the game so popular.
Brief Des_. ;"lion of the D. ~ j,D
3s Fig. 1 is a top view of a game system in accoldance with a pler~ d embodimeM of
the invention.

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Fig. 2 is a front view of the game system shown in Fig. 1.
Fig. 3 is an enlarged view of a dealer console in acco~dallce with a preferred
embodiment of the invention.
Fig. 4 is an enlarged view of a player console in accoldallce with a preferred
embodiment of the invention.
Fig. S is a simplified block ~ gr~m of a preferred control sys~em for the game system
of Fig. 1.
Fig. 6 is a simplified block diagram of a player console control circuit in accol-ld,-ce
with a plcrculcd embodiment of the invention.
Fig. 7 is a block diagram of a plc~l~,d control unit in accolda,lce with the invention.
Fig. 8 is a block diagram of a plerellcd dealer console control circuit in accolddllce
with the invention.
Figs. 9 and 10 are block diagrams showing a plc~cllcd player console control circuit
in accolddllce with the invention.
1~i Fig. 11 is a top plan view of an ~ r~ ;Vc game system accordil,g to this invention.
Fig. 12 is a front elevational view of a bl~r~j~r~ table fitted with the alternative game
system shown in Fig. 11.
Fig. 13 is a top plan view of a further ~llr.~ ive cl~lI)odhllclll game system of this
invention moun~d upon a bl~r~j~r~ table.
2l1 Fig. 14 is a top plan view of a still further ~ vc cllll~odilllcllL game system
module according to this invention llloullLed upon a bl~Lj~l table.
Fig. 15 is a top plan view similar to Fig. 14 also showing cards, betting chips, and
colored tabletop m~rking~ which aid in player hlLcl~lcLdLion of the game system module in
co",bi"dlion with the table covering design.
2!i Fig. 16 is an enlarged top plan view of the game system module shown in Figs. 14
and 15 in isolation from other parts of the game system.
Fig. 17 is a side elevational view of the game system module shown in Fig. 16. The
ul~lJo~i~e side view is a mirror image of this view.
Fig. 18 is a rear elevational view of the game system module shown in Fig. 16.
3~l Fig. 19 is a front elevational view of the game system module shown in Fig. 17.
Fig. 20 is a scl~ lir block diagram ill~ l;.,g a p.~ d electronic construction
used in the Cil-;ui~ly inrillded as part of the game system module of Fig. 16.
Fig. 21 is a front elevational view of a plercllcd video card game d~)dld~U~
hlcullJold~ g a novel game system accol.lhlg to this invention.

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Best Modes for Carrvin~ Out the Invention and Disclosure of Invention
The inventions described herein define novel card games and mrtho-lc. The card
game is most preferably bl~r~ rk The novel games can pay attractive jackpots based upon
seqnPnti~l occulle~lces of jackpot triggering events. These jackpo~ triggering or jackpot tally
5 events are counted to provide player and dealer count values which must achieve a threshold
value to result in a jackpot award. The jackpol tally events are most p~crcldbly required to
occur in a seq~lPnre of c~n~ecl~tive hands. The typical consecutive jackpot tally events are
dealer busts and conseculive non-dealer player natural hands (bl~r~ c~ hands). The natural
hands of the player are winning hands. The busts of the dealer are losing hands.The invention can further include having several bl~r~ rl~ tables which share a
common jackpot, thereby hlcreasi,lg the size of available jackpots.
As in conventional bl~r~j~rl~ a game played in accoldance with the invention
involves a dealer and at least one non-dealer player. A plurality of non-dealer players are
typically involved but only one non-dealer player is Il~CPss ~.y. One pl~,rcll~d embodiment
5 of the invention described herein ~ccommorl~tes up to seven players, in addition to the
dealer.
The game includes dealing a series of card hands to each player and to the dealer
in accorddnce with co,.. l.l bl~r~j~cl~ playing procedures. The hands are dealt by initially
dealing two rounds of single cards to the dealer and each non-dealer player, thus giving each
2~ player two cards.
The game includes cuulllillg and Ill~ g a player count value for the players.
The player count values indicate the current number of player jackpot tally events which the
player has to his credit. The jackpot tally events or jackpot hands are p,ef.,ldbly credited
in serially co,-~e.;~l~ ;ve runs, such as serially co..~e--ul ;ve oc-;u,~ ,ces of a natural or b! ~ rk
25 hand. Other events can all~,."dlively count toward a jackpot count sllffiri.ont to produce a
jackpot award. Two ten cards might be an ~It~rn~tive jackpot tally event hand, which when
obtained col-~e~ l;vcly lead to a jackpot award. Alltlllalivcly~ the non-dealer players may
be given a jackpot tally count when the dealer has a natural hand. This could be preceded
or followed by one or more player natural or naturals leading to a jackpot award. A further
30 possible player jackpot tally event might be al I ~ ul ~ble to a player's jackpot count when the
player obtains a total card count of twenty or twenty-one, even though more than the initial
two cards were required to produce the twenty-one hand count.
The game also inrh~ cv~ ;..g or u~ .wise ...~ .;..;.,g a dealer count value which
the number of co.-~ecul;ve bust or other dealer event jackpot hands dealt to the35 dealer. These dealer jackpot tally events can include a dealer bust hand or a dealer natural
hand. Other dealer jackpot tally events are also possible. All~ ely, dealer events such

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s



as busts can be credited to the coun~s of players or used to offer incre~ed jackpots for non-
dealer players during the next consec~llivc hand or other subsequ~Pnt play.
The counting steps are plcrclably accomplished by providing at least one player
counter and a dealer counter. The coulllel~ are plcrclably electronic c~ ..lr-., capable of
5 lc~ .hlg multiple jackpot count values for multiple players and the dealer.
After dealing the initial two cards to hirnself and each player, the dealer i~lPntifiPc
all players who have been dealt natural or other jackpot hands in the current hand being
played. The dealer then h~. .e,~cnl~ the player count values of all players i-lPntifiP~ as having
been dealt natural or other jackpot-count hands. In another embodiment the dealer
la hlcl.,.llcllL~ after all hands are fully played out. The hand is played out with the .~
players, and the dealer h.c.c...c..l~ the dealer count value if the dealer is dealt a bust hand
or other dealer tally jackpot hands.
The game also p.crc.al)ly includes zeroing the player count values of all players not
i-iPntifiPd as having been dealt natural or other player jackpot count hands in the current
hand. ~ ition~11y the game in~ rlPc zeroing the dealer count value if the dealer has not
been dealt a bust or other dealer jackpot count hand in the current hand. An end-of-hand
device is adv~nt~eoucly operated by the dealer at the end of each hand to ~ "~lir~lly
initiate the zeroing steps.
The plefe.l~,d mPthndc acco~.li--g to this invention further include dv~,aldillg a bonus
zo or jackpot, referred to as a player bonus, to any player whose player count value meets or
exceeds a pre~iPfinPd player count value threshold. For inCt~nre, a first natural bonus of
perhaps ~50 is awarded to any player whose player count value meets or exceeds a first
prerlPfinP~ player count value threshold of three. For example, this count ;".l;r~ that the
player has been dealt at least three coJ-~e~ ivc natural card hands. A second natural bonus
25 of perhaps $500 is awdlded to any player whose player count value meets or exceeds a
second pre~lPfinPd player count value threshold of four. This j"-lir,.l.~c that the player has
been dealt four cQIl~ec~ivc natural card hands. Plo~l~,.,;,ivcly i..~;leasi-.g player bonuses are
awarded for coll~ ,ol~i--gly hlclcd~illg player count values.
In a similar manner, the plef~,~lcd mPth~lc of the invention include awarding a bonus
30 or jackpot, referred to as a "bust" or dealer jackpot bonus, to all the players at a particular
table when the dealer jackpot tally event count exceeds a preAefinpd dealer jackpot count
value threshold. For in.ct~nre, a first bust bonus of $50 is awarded to all players when the
dealer jackpot count value meets or exceeds a first pred~PfinPd dealer count value of five.
This inr1ir~tPC that the dealer has been dealt five co..secu~ivc bust card hands. A second bus~
35 bonus of $100 is awarded to all active players when the dealer jackpot count value meets or
exceeds a second pre~PfinPd dealer count value of six. This in-lir~tPs that the dealer has

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been dealt six col-ce~ ive bust card hands. Progressively hlclcd~illg bust bonuses are
awarded for c.~llc.,~olldingly increasing dealer coum values.
Because of the st~ti.ctir~lly low probability of any player being dealt cr~ncecntive
natural hands, or of the dealer being dealt consecutive bust hands, relatively large bonuses
5 or jackpots can be provided. It is believed that jackpots of up to a million dollars could be
offered in col,jullclion with a game played in accordance with the invention. Furthermore,
it is believed that the plcscllce of large jackpols, in addition to the norrnal Will~lhlgS of
bl~rkj~(k, will be attractive enough to allow casino operators to collect a small per hand
~,ul~,hal~e or "ante" for each hand of bl~rkj~r'~ played in accol.lallce with the m~th~tlc of this
10 invention. Such an ante could be used to fund the jackpots and can also allow more
ihPr~li7Pd bl~kj~ck rules during each hand. Alternatively, the predr~ bonus count
~m~untc can be set to assure a suitable improved margin for the casino.
Figs. 1 and 2 show an improved bl~rkj~rk table in accoldd,lce with a plGrcllcd
embodiment of the invention, generally rlPcign~t.od by the lcr~cllce numeral 10. Table 10
includes a tabletop 12 having a conventional felt playing surface. Table top playing surface
12 can be provided with collvclllional ,.~ g~ colle~,~olldillg to seven player positions 14
arranged in an arc about a dealer position 16. Table 10 also includes a chip tray 18 for
storing gaming chips. The table is ~,u~olled by a pedestal 17.
Table 10 includes two status displays which are coll-le.;Lcd to display player jackpot
20 count values and the dealer jackpot count values. In a plèrcllcd version, the player count
values co~ olld to the number of c.-,-cec~ive natural hands dealt to the players. The
dealer count values corresponding to the number of con.cec~live bust hands dealt to the
dealer. One of the displays is positioned for viewing by the dealer, ~lcr~,ldbly in the form
of a dealer console 20. The other display is advantageously position~d for viewing by the
25 players, such as in the form of player console 22. Both of the status displays are
advantageously Ill..~lll.?d to playing surface 12. Dealer and player consoles 20 and 22 are
provided to monitor and display the current status of the game. Specffilr~lly~ the consoles
display the current number of consecutive natural hands which have been dealt to each
player and the current number of col-cec~ ve bust hands which have been dealt to the
30 dealer. Dealer console 20 ~Mition~lly provides input functions to allow the dealer or
o~ àlor to signal the oc~;ullcllce of natural or bust hands.
Fig. 3 shows dealer console 20 in detail. It is mounted flush with playing surface 12,
facing upwardly, plcr~ably at a position ~djar~ont to the dealer. It includes a lli~,."l"~-lir
l~l.~ ~,l ~I;on of a bl~Lj~ table, inrhltling a plurality of numeric indicators co.l~ ondillg
36 to the dealer and ~ xi...- ~. number of players. Seven i,~di.,alol, 24 are ~",~ cd in an arc
to collc.,~(Jnd to the seven player positions at the bl~rkj~rk table. An eighth intlir~ror 25,

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positioned at or near the ce~ oilll of the arc, col.e~onds to the dealer's position. The
in-iir~tors are positioned on the face of console 20 in a layout .cim~ ting the arrangement
of the actual dealer and players relative to table 10. Each numeric indicator isadvantageously a seven-segm.ont LED (light emitting diode), capable of displaying a single
5 digit in the range of zero through nine.
Dealer console 20 further comprises a player key 26 for each player. Each playerkey 26 is manually operable to indicate or signal that the player has been dealt a natural or
other jackpot hand. More specifir~lly, each player key 26 is a mc.l.b.ane-type switch which
is depressible by the dealer to increment an individual player's count value when said
10 individual player has been dealt a natural hand. Each player key is positioned ~ rent a
numeric indicator. A numeric indicator 24 and a player key 26 are thus position~d to
co..c~ond to each player. Dealer console 20 also includes a dealer key 28 which is
depressible or otl.c-wise manually operable to indicate or signal that the dealer has been
dealt a bust hand, and to ill~;lClllClll the dealer's count value when the dealer has been dealt
s a bust hand. Dealer key 28 is posili~ n~d ~ljac~ont numeric indicator 25. A~lu~liàLc
legends are printed on the keys. For inct~nre, the player keys are labelled "1"through "7
The dealer key is labelled "D". The player keys and, dealer key 28 are preferably ~-I~I-.I,.al.e-
type ~wi~chcs. Ca,uaC;iLivc or other types of keys or ~wil~;hes can also be used to allow the
dealer to signal the OC~,ur~cnCc of player jackpot and dealer jackpot hands.
Finally, dealer console 20 includes a pair of locking key~wiLcl~cs 30 and 32. The
functions of these kcy~wilclles will be explained in more detail below. In general,
key~wilches 30 and 32 are operable by a floor m~n~ger and by a pit boss, rc~c~;liv~:ly, to
reset the game control circuits or to implement other system control functions.
Fig.4 shows player console 22. Console 22 is adva..l~eou:,ly adapted for mounting
25 to table 10 by a pair of ~ U-I~;Ug struts 27. It is positioned to face away from the dealer
and, toward the players. Player console 22 includes a numeric i..dicalo. 34 for each player,
~rr~ng.od in an arc similarly to hldicàu~ 24 of dealer console 20. Player console 22 also
includes a ~-uln~,ic h~dicàlOl 35 for the dealer, positioned centrally within of the arc formed
by numeric indicators 34. Console 22 does not include player keys or a dealer key. The
30 numeric indicators of player console 22 are preferably similar or ;cl.onti~ to the in-lir~tor.c
used in dealer console 20. However, the dealer and player displays are oriented oppositely
with regard the arc direction to reflect the dirrcrcnl pc,~c~ res of the table as viewed by
players and the dealer. Because the hldica~.~ are allallged like the players about table 10,
players can i.----~ 1y ~csoei~t~ each of the indicators with a specific player or dealer
3~ position.

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Player console 22 also preferably includes a pro~a.l.lll~hle signboard or textual
display 36. Programmable signboard 36 is of a type which can be controlled through a digital
co""",."ir~tion~ port. It is preferably a matrix-type display, having individual pixels which
are illlll,,i.,~lPd or activated to present selected messages across the top of player console 22.
5 Signboard 36 is capable of forming scrolling or flashing messages for added visual impact and
to serve as an attraction to draw players to the game system.
While h~ el~ive forms of dealer and player consoles are shown and described,
v,tri~tion~ are of course possible. For instance, it may be desirable in some situations to
utilize a single matrix or pixel-type display, such as cc,llllll- nly used in conjunction with
o personal culll~uLels, in place of the discrete numeric indicators of each status display. Such
a display would be controlled by sorLwalc to display individual count values in the desired
a~.d,~g~ .l A display such as this might also incolllo.a~ "touch" input features, so that
the dealer could signal natural or bust hands by simply touching a ~iPcigntrp~cl area of the
display rather than discrete keys. A l~ cu~;ular matrix display could also be pro~l~---lRd to
15 incorporate the textual display or signboard ~ ru~Pd above. Alternatively, some
CUIII~O~ of the consoles, such as the numeric indicators, might be physicallypositionpd
around the table, rather than grouped as described above.
In addition to the status displays, table 10 also advantageously includes an end-of-
hand device 38 (Fig. 1) which is positioned for manual operation by the dealer at the end
20 of each hand to signal the end of the hand. End-of-hand device 38 is p~er~lably a
co~v~--Lional poker slide into which the ante chips from the players deposited before each
hand. At the end of the hand, the dealer operates the poker slide to accept the deposited
chips. The poker slide includes a sensor or switch (not shown) which is cul-l~P~lPd to the
control unit 40 in order to zero the player count values of players who were not dealt natural
25 hands in the previous hand. It also serves to trigger zeroing of the dealer count value if the
dealer was not dealt a bust hand in the previous hand.
Fig. 5 shows a simplified block tli~gr~m of a p.~rt;lled control system for the game
system ~es~rihed above. It co...l,.ises three units: a progla l----able control unit or controller
40, a dealer console circuit 42, and a player console circuit 44. In actual practice, control
30 unit 40 is physicallyi~col~ laLed with dealer console circuit 42. For ~ oses of expl~n~ti--n,
however, control unit 40 and dealer console circuit 42 are described below as two separate
circuits. Either con~tguration is~cc~lul;hle~
Control unit 40 is c~ nnPcted to dealer console circuit 42 by a number of individual
parallel lines,collectivelyr.,rtl.,llced bythe numeral 46. Control unit40cu"""~ r~tps with
35 player console circuit 44 through first and second serial signals 48 and 50. As shown in

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Fig. 6, first serial signal 48 is c~,llllcclcd from control unit 40 to p~ lll able signboard 36
of player console 22. Second serial signal ~0 is connected from control unit 40 to a numeric
indicator control circuit 52. Pro~.d.. ~hle signboard 36 is a conventional cullllllclcially
available product which can be cnmm~n-led by control unit 40 to display various textual
!~ mPcs~gpc in a variety of formats. Numeric indicator control circuit 52 is a custom circuit,
described below, which allows control unit 40 to command player console 22 to display the
player count values and the dealer coum value. A third, optional serial signal 51 can be used
to co.. ..;r~t.o with a master or slave bl~ table as ~iccllcced below.
Control unit 40 is plcrclably a microprocessor-based logic circuit, prù~ lled to10 monitor the player and dealer keys and to control the indicators and displays of game table
10. It is co~ to c.~ i the nu-lc~ic indicators of dealer console 20 and player
console 22. as well as to c...l..,.~ l plog~ hle signboard 36 through first serial signal.
It is also conn~cted to be .sign~lle(~ by the player keys, the dealer key, and the end-of-hand
device. More specifir~lly~ control unit 40 is prog.~ll,.led to provide and ",~ ;.;" a plurality
~s of Cvulll~..S or counter IC~ . A player counter is Ill~ d for each player and a dealer
counter is ~ r~l for the dealer. Each player counter counts and ..,~iste.:, the player
count value for a particular player. The dealer counter counts and l~i;,L~ the dealer count
value.
As .l;.~ d above, the player count values indicate the number of consecllfive
20 natural hands dealt to individual players. The dealer count value i~ lPc the number of
cr~ e~-l;v-e bust hands dealt to the dealer. The cu..,.l. . are plerc.dbly ,..~;,.I;.;,.~d in one
or more lni~,~u~ucessor le~ cl~ or in read/write IllClllOly ~.oç~ d with a mic.u,urocessor.
Dealer console 20 and player console 22 are colllRcLcd to receive i-r.. ,~ n from the
player and dealer Cuu~ and to display such h~rull..dlion to the players and the dealer.
25Control unit 40 might ~ .--,-I;vcly be (1~osignPd with circuit cl~ other than
-liclu~locessol-related c(jlllpollcllls. For inct~n~e, control unit 40 could alv ~ u~ly be
nPnt~od with discrete logic gates or with plog,~ hle gate arrays. However, a
mi.;l.,~loce,,~or-based system allows a degree of flexibilitywhich is ~o5irahle as culll~alcd with
other types of circuits.
Regardless of the specific means of imple.. ~ on, control unit 40 forms means for
keeping a count and selectively i...,.~ ..l;..g individual players' player count values in
.,,..I,ollse to oper~ti~ the player keys collc~on~;lillg to said individual players. Control unit
40 also forms means for hl ;lc~ l;llg the dealer count value in l~,~,uollse to ope~alillg the
dealer key. ~ inn~11y, control unit 40 forms means for zeroing, at the end of each hand,
35 the count values of players which were not dealt a natural hand in the previous hand. It also
serves as a means for zeroing, at the end of each hand, the dealer COUM value if the dealer

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was not dealt a bust hand in the previous hand. Said zeroing filnrti~nc are advantageously
performed in Ic~onse to ulJtlalhlg end-of-hand device 38 al the end of each hand.
Furthermore, control unit 40 is pro~ llled and forms means for displaying the
dealer count value and the player coun~ values of all the players. In the plc~llcd
embodiment of the invention. control unit 40 is further p~u~ lPd to culllllland
~.lu~lalllllable signboard 36 of dealer console 22 to indicate the award of the natural and
bust bonuses tliccnc.sed above for consecutive natural or bust hands. Plo~lallunable
signboard 36 can also be used to display other lllessagcs, such as current jackpot amounts,
attractions messages, or other useful hlrul.lldlion.
o Fig. 7 shows control unit 40 in more detail. It comprises a pro~lalll-llable data
pfocessol or llliclu~ul'ocessor 60, asso..ialcd with pluglalll llltllwly 62 and data lllClllUly 64.
Program IIICIIIUl,~/ 62 typically culllpli~eS a read-only memory or erasable read-only memory.
Data IllClllOl.y 64 typically culll~ es read/write memory. Data lllCllloly 64 is ,ulerl ~ably non-
volatile memory such as battery-backed memory. The various c.,lll~o~ of control unit
40 c~ ir~te through a cullvclllional address/data bus 66.
Control unit 40 includes three cc,llvclllional serial port interface chips or intpgratlod
cireuits, tl~cign~tPd in Fig. 7 by the Icr~,c,lce numerals 67, 68, and 69. These ehips provide
three serial ports, coll~ onding to serial signals 48, 50, and 51 of Fig. 5. First and seeon
serial signals 48 and 50 are co.~.~fclrd to player console 22. Third serial signal 51 is intrn-~d
to be used for cu~ ir~tinnc with a host CGIIl~ulc~ or other bl~r~ c'~ tables as rl.occrihed
below.
Control unit 40 also includes three parallel I/O ehips, llesign~d in Fig. 7 by the
lcrcltncc mlm.oralc 70, 71, and 72. The first two I/O ehips 70 and 71 each accept eight
inputs. The third I/O chip 72 has eight output lines.
Fig. 8 shows dealer console circuit 42, whieh ineludes numeric in-lir~forc 24 and 25.
Eaeh numerie indieator culll~ es a coll~clllional LED hllicalOl in culllbillalion with a
diserete eontrol ehip or hlLe~lalcd eireuit. The numerie in(lir~tor.c are multiplexed to reeeive
a culllllloll four bit binary c~.l....~n~l signal, Culll~ illg the individual signals D01, D02, D04,
and D08. D01, D02, D04, and D08 are produced by I/O ehip 72 (Fig. 7), in ~c~ol)se to
30 c.. ~.~.. lC from lllicioplùccssor 60. Eaeh indieator also aeeepts one of a set of eight ehip
seleet signals~ (1 SELl-SEL8. SELl-SEL8 are ~ d byathree-to-eight deeoder78 whieh is driven by a set of dealer eonsole seleet lines DSELl-DSEL3. DSELl-DSEL3
are pl~duccd by I/O ehip 72 (Fig. 7), again in response to co...~ lC from miclo~loeessor
60. Miclv~uccssor 60 is plo~;lall-llled to co.. ~ numerie indieators, through I/O ehip 72.
35 to display the player eount values and the dealer eoum value.

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11
Fig. 8 also shows player keys 26 dealer key 28 and k~y~wiL-;hes 30 and 32. Each of
these switches hac a first terminal co""e. led to ground, and a second tPnnin~l cu.,nr~-lpd to
an input of I/O chip 70 or 71. The player and dealer keys are connected to I/O chip 71
through signal lines DSWl through DSW8. Kt;y~wil~_hes 30 and 32 are co""c~led to I/O
5 chip 70 through signal lines KSWl and KSW2. End-of-hand deviee 38 (shown only in Fig.
1) is co""e.;led to an input of I/O chip 70 through an input signal EOH (Fig. 7).
K~y~wilches 30 and 32 are used to alter the O~aLillg mode of the system for
providing control filnrtionc. For in.ct~nre, one of the kc~y~wi~l_hes is operable by a floor
Illdllagel to allow the floor manager to adjust counter totals. When activated, this k~y~wiLel
o allows individual cou"Lt:~ to be selectively i"crr...- .IPCI by repeatedly d~le~shlg the
applo~lidlt: player or dealer keys. The other of the k~y~wiL~ hes is operable by a casino pit
boss to enable other control functions such as specifying jackpot ~...u....l~ and display modes.
The player and dealer swil~hes are used to input the ~r~/~lidl;: h~l"~alion.
In a~ hiûn tû the indieators and swiLcl~es ~ u~ ed above, eontrol unit 40 includes
fivemode switches, labelled 80,col~ lrd to inputs of I/O chip 70. These ~wil~ cs are used
to select O~.~alillg ehalacl~ Lics of the gaming system. It is cv,.lr .,~ t~d that mode
switches 80 will be used prirnarily to specify to ,,,icluplucessor 60 whether garne table 10
should operate in a stand-alone, master mode or as a slave to another table or to a master
c~.. l. ~~tr. When acting as a slave, jackpot .. -u-.l~ would be controlled by a master table
zo or CUIII~ ., and table 10 would report game status to the master table or CUIII1.~ . This
would allow a plurality of tables to share a en..~..,o-- jackpot, and would allow ",ol,ilolil,g of
game status ~rom a ceMral location. Mode ~wil~lles 80 are also used to specify the address
of game table 10 when it is ol)e.dlillg as a slave. Other functions might be ~ccoci~t-od with
mode ~wilcLes 80 in the future.
Figs. 9 and 10 show numeric in-lir~tor control circuit 52. Numeric ill~ or control
circuit 52 is nearly idPntir~l to the co",l,i"alion of control unit 40 and dealer console circuit
42, shown in Figs. 7 and 8, except that it inrl~ Pc only a single serial interface ehip and a
single parallel I/O chip, and it does not include any swilcl,es. Thus, mlrn~ric. in-lir~tor control
circuit 52 colll~lises a plO~ hle data ~iocessor or micluplucessor 90, ~CSo~ rd with
read-only prograrn lllellluly 92 and read/write data IllClllOl,y 94. The co~ one~ of nurneric
h~dic~lol control circuit 52 cu"..".~.,ir~l~ through a cu,,v~ .,lional address/data bus 96.
Nurnerie i~dicàlor eontrol eircuit 52 I-Ullllt:llllUle inrlrld.-5 a co"~"liol~l serial port intrrf~re
chip or i,,le~làl~d circuit 96, and a parallel I/O chip 98. I/O chip 98 has eight output lines.
As shown in Pig. 10 nurneric i"dicdlor control circuit 52 also includes nurneric35 indicators 34 and 35. Each numeric hlldicalor culll~liSeS a cull-v~.,lional LED i"-li~lor in
eu,~lbinà~ion with a diserete eontrol ehip or i"leglal~d cireuit. The nurneric indicators are

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12
multiplexed to receive a Cu~ llOll four bit binary cn.,....~ signal, cu",~ hlg the individual
signals P0l, P02, P04, and P08. POl,P02,P04, and P08 are produced by ItO chip 98 (Fig.
9), in response to co... ~ from microprocessor 90. Each indicator also accepts one of a
set of eight chip select signals design~t~d SELl through SEL8. SELl through SEL8 are
generated by a three-to-eight decoder 99 which is driven by a set of player select lines
PSELl through PSEL3. PSELl through PSEL3 are produced by ItO chip 98 (Fig. 9), again
in response to co........ ~ ls from microprocessor 90. MieluL~lucessor 90 is plo~ ed to
cu.. ,~ l numeric inrli~tors 34 and 35, through I/O chip 98, to display the player count
values and the dealer count value in response to serial comm~n.l~ from control unit 40
0 through serial signal 50.
The game system described retains all the features of collv~ ional casino bl~r~i~rk
In addition, it provides variety jackpot features or dir~.e.,. jackpot possibilities. The game
system, as a result, is more exciting to play than conventional bl~r~i~rk- When playing in
accû~ddllce with the methods of the invention, players have the hope not only of winning
individual hands, but of also winning jackpots based on con~ec.-tive hands or other seq--enti~l
jackpot tally events. The increase in potential whlllill~ is likely to make the game even
more popular than cullvellLional forms of bl~r~ c~ Furtherrnore, the added desirability of
potential jackpot winnings should make it possible to collect hand sulcllàlg~,s or antes and
to thus increase revenues of gaming establi.cl~.. - .~. .Atl-litinn~lly, the procedures may allow
20 more liber~li7Pd rules of play.
Figs. 1l and 12 show an ~lle~ ive gaming system 200 accoldillg to this invention.
Gaming system 200is an electronic retrofit tabletop game system constructed to be llluullLed
upon a ~liuldàld bl~r~j~rk table l0. Table 10 is as described above in connPction with the
embodiment shown in Fig. 1, inrlu~ing six player positions 14 and playing surface 12.
25 Gaming system 200 includes a first or central module 201 and two side m~llles202 and 203.
Central module 201 has a low profile and is positioned in a central location upon the
bl~rkj~r~ table ~ cPnt to the dealer's position 16. The port side module 202is at the
dealer's left and the sL~ll)oal.l side module 203is at the dealer's right. Central module 201
includes a chip tray 218 ~ Pnt the dealer position which has a plurality of leceivhlg
30 troughs for holding gaming chips (not shown).
The central module 201 preferably includes a central module housing 205. Housing205 has a top member with an upper surface 206. Housing 205 aiso has a lower or bottom
member 207 which rests upon the upper playing surface 12 of gaming table 10. The top and
bottom ...- ..l,. ~ are joined by a p.~ Pr emh~nbmPnt or curb wall 209. The leading or
35 front edge 208 of curb wall 209 rests upon the upper playing surface of gaming ~able l0.
The curb is plef.,.dbly constructed so as to provide a front wall which is sloped at a suitable

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angle, such as in the range of 30-60~ from horizontal. This inclined or sloped col~Llu~;Lion
provides improved utility for hqn~ling of cards by the dealer, reduced risk of injury to the
dealer's hands and arms when w(jlhhlg over the curb, and improved visibilityfor the displays
m~ unt~d thereon. As shown in Figs. 11 and 12, the top edge of the curb is plcrclabiy flush
5 with the upper surface of the central module top lll, lll~CI 206.
Housing 205 defines an interior cavity within which are mounted various electronic
CU~ JO1ICIIl~ and wiring associated with the control system 40 and displays,switches and other
components which are described more specifically elsewhere herein. The housing of central
module 205 is constructed so as to provide a mPrhqnirqlly inLcgl~Lled unit colll~illillg such
internal co~ onclll~. Such a central module can be easily moved to a gaming table and
placed in the position shown in Fig. 11.
A series of indica~or displays 210 are arranged along curb 209. Displays 210 include
six player displays 211-216. A dealer display 217 is located in the center. Displays 210
plcfcl~,bly include an array of individually controllable light bars. The light bars for displays
t.~ 210 ~Icrcl~bly extend along the front face of curb 209 and also along the upper surface 206
to thereby provide good visibilityfor the dealer from above and players from the front. As
shown, each display light bar can be individually lit to indicate from one to five cul.se.;uLiv~
jackpot hands. The display is unlit when there has not been a jackpot hand in the plccedillg
play for which the player still has credit. In the case of dealer display 217 the light bars can
za be lit to indicate one to five co~e~ ;ve dealer bust hands.
Central module 205 also plef~,~ably includes player keys 223 and dealer key 224.Keys 223 and 224 are similar in function to keys 26 and 28 described above. Keys 223 and
224 are conveniently positioned for a~;Liv~.Lion by the dealer just after h,qn-ilinE cards to and
from the players.
Central module 205 is also ~lcÇe.~bly provided with a deposit slot 242 which allows
the dealer to deposit cash used by players to l~urchasc gaming chips. Deposit slot 242
communicates through the central module to provide money pass through into a
cùllc~olldillg deposit slot (not shown) formed through the blq~L-j,qrL- table 10.
As shown, the plerell~d gaming system 200 further includes a port side module 202.
30 Port side module 202 is adapted to connect with a back wall 245 of the central module 205.
Side module 202 cu. l. l~ with the central module in a manner which places the side module
in an ~ l;"g oliel-L~lion. This is adv,qn~,qgeollsly ,q~ccomrli~h~l using r~ ..r..~ (not
shown). Side module 202 is also su~ulled upon the surface of ga-m-ing table 10. The
ouLl)o~d end of the side module can also be ,qt~,q~h~d to the table using a suitable clip (not
35 shown) which slides under the padded p. ;...~ of the bl~ Lja. L table.

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Gaming system 200 also preferably includes a ~L~lI,oald side module 203. Starboard
side module 203 is similar in cons~ruction to port side module 202 in several respects. It is
plcr~.ably fastened to the central module and is ~uL~polied upon the gaming table in similar
fashions. It ~tlflition~lly includes a dealer con~rol panel 251 having a series of dealer coMrols
5 252. Dealer controls 252 include the key switches, similar to switches 30 and 32 described
above. Additional coMrols are shown merely to suggest possible controls used to operate
the ~ led side panel displays described below.
Side mn~ P~ 202 and 203 also p~crc-~bly include side panel displays 254 mounted
upon the front faces 246 of the side m~ lles. Side panel displays can be printed material
o or electronic displays of fixed or alterable display capabilities. One embodiment includes
variable electronic displays which can be scrolled to present a moving message. Another
embodiment shows fixed hlru~ alion in(lir~ting betting ranges for the bl~k~ table. A still
further embodiment allows a cul~bi~alion of fixed h.~....~lion on table betting ranges
coupled with a scrolling or fl~hing display sign which presents an ~ aclillg ~l~cssàge
clçsignPd to bring players to the table. Other ~ItPrn~tive display modes are also possible.
The details of particular displays 254 willvary dc~endc~-l upon the particular co,l..llcl.;ially
available display chosen.
The front faces 246 of side mt ~lnlPs 202 and 203 are also advantageously provided
with printed material .li.~l,ç.. ~ 260 which hold printed rule p~mphletc 261. Rule p~mph
261 advantageously present hlrullllalion about the particular jackpot ~.. u.. l~; and seq -Pnti~l
event c~,llll,h alions which pay jackpots at the particular bl~r~j~rl~ table involved.
Gaming system 200 is particularly advantageous in providing a add-on or retrofitgaming system which can be brought to an existing bl~r~i~r~ table and be fitted thereon with
minimal expense. Once fitted, the blP~ rk table can then be used to perform the novel
25 gaming mPthn-lc accc..di..g to this inveMion.
Fig. 13 shows a further all~,...alive embodiment of gaming system 300 similar tosystem 200. In the embodiment of Fig. 13 the central module is con~l~lred as an annular
c~ ..l or curb 301 which extends partially around the dealer position. The central
module is co.~llucled as an annular curb band or ring. An infield area 302 is within the
30 curb, and is open to expose the bl~r~ tabletop surface 12. The light bar displays 210 are
mt)untPd upon the annular curb-shaped central module. This construction does not require
a slot 242 but instead allows a similar slot 343 already formed through the tabletop to
function without il..~cdallce. Otherwise system 300 is similar to system 200 and similar
~,f~ c .. l.- -.~ have been used in both c-.. ~o.~ for similar features.

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Fig. 14 shows a p-crcllGd garne sys~em 400 accol.li-lg to this invention. Game system
400 has llUIII~,I OUS CC III~OIlClll:j which are sirnilar to other syslems described above,
speçifir~lly game systems 10, 200, and 300.
Table 410 is similar to table 10 but is provided with a tabletop playing surface 412
5 whichhas a special design and .~,~rki"g ~ g~ l which works inconjunction withagame
system central module 405 which is centrally located upon the playing surface at a central
module rest location 415. Table 410 has sixnon-dealer player positions 421-426 and a dealer
position 427. Other IlUlll~Cl~i of players are possible. Tabletop 412 has player zones 431-436
which are ~ oci~t.-d with player positions 421426, rc~e~_lively. Each player zone is
0 dcl,la,~ ed by player zone boundary ~ lk;~ 413. The space 417 i.. f~ ly in front of
central module 405 is left open or can be used for p~ l pl~s~,.llalion of the game name
or other hlrul 1 l l~l ir~n
Adjacent to each player zone are visual leader designs or 1..~l k iug ~ 441446 which act
as a direct visual tabletop indicators between the player position and ~o~ lrd player zone,
5 and the corresponding player count displays 451~56 which are arranged along the sides of
module 405. As shown, the visual leader Ill~lkill~ 451456 COIII~ illg arcuate bands which
extend from the heads of each player zone toward the central module. The visual leader
Il.~.k;.,g!~ 451-456 are most prcr~,.ably colored in contrast to the other portions of the player
surface, and in l..~ i which are dirf~,~c~ll from the ~ rr.~l visual leader m~rking bands.
20 Fig. 15 shows the visual leader bands shaded for a specific color cc.lllbil~lion, but IlUlllcl~U~
~1lr~ll-l;vc color s~ llPs are possible. Visual leader ll'~lk;l~ 451-456 also ~lcfclably
include leader syrnbols 458 which as shown are star designs which help to direct the viewer's
~ntir~n along the leader bands toward the player count displays.
Each player zone 431-436 is plcrclably provided with a chip betting area 438.
2s Betting areas 438 are used to ~e~-;rir~lly provide an area of the playing surface upon which
chips being bet must be placed.
Table 410 also includes a chip rack 418 and bill deposit slot 442.
Fig. 15 is similar to Fig. 14 with the additional ~ ;on of betting chips 439within chip betting areas 438. Also shown are playing cards 449. The visual leader Ill~.k;l~gx
30 451 and 456 are shown shaded for the color red, I..~ ;l,g~ 452 and 455 are shown shaded
for the color purple, and Ill~lkillg.~ 453 and 454 are shown shaded for the color green. This
provides ~r1hir~n~1 visual contrast between the dirr~ players' Il.~.kil.g~.
Figs. 16-19 show the pr~;rtll~;d central game system module 405 in greater detail.
Game system module 405 has a front 401 which is oriented toward the player side of table
35 410 during normal use. Module 405 also has a rear 402 which is normally oriented toward
the dealer position 427. A first side 403 and second side 404 extend between the front and

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rear of the module. A top surface 406 is advantageously provided with player keys 471-476
which c.~llc;;,yond to player positions 421-426, res~el;Lively. Player keys 471-476 are used to
hlcl~lllelll the player count value stored in the associated player counter. As shown there
is one player key which is depressed to illclelllelll one player counter. AlLt:Llldlively, more
5 than one player counter may be used in particular ch~ res to count differing types of
player jackpot tally events. However, for purposes of operational simplicity, the single
counter, single player key construction is most preferred. Player jackpot tally events are
subject to various rules of play but will typically include a player bl~rki~rk or similar winning
hand; a dealer bl~r~j~rk hand may be used as an equivalent, as in-lir~rrd below; or a player
0 receiving a pair of ten-count cards may also result in a player jackpot tally event.
Module 405 also plcrt:ldLly includes a first dealer key 477. As shown, the first dealer
key 477 is used to hl~ llc;llL the player COUlll_~. This action causes the dealer playing
event, such as a dealer natural or bl~rkj~rk hand, to fi-nrti~n as a player jackpot tally event.
Thus each player in the hand receives a hlclelll~llLdl addition to his or her player count value
~5 due to the dealer having r~ceived a bi~rkj~rl~ hand or other Lligg,elillg event as d~lr~...;.-~d
by the rules of play. Alternatively, the dealer tally event can be used to hlc;~ lL a separate
dealer bl~r~j~rk counter (second dealer counter) which is distinct from the individual player
COUll~
Module 405 further ~l~,f~,~dl)ly includes a second dealer key 478. As shown, thezo second dealer key 478 is used to hl,l~ lll the dealer bust counter (first dealer counter)
which lCgi~lel:~ the dealer jackpot tally event count. The dealer receives a hlcl~ llldl
a~l-litinn to his or her dealer jackpot count value due to the dealer having received a bust
hand or other triggering dealer jackpot tally event as d~l~ ~...i..~d by the rules of play.
Module 405 still further includes a log key 479 which functions as an end-of-hand
25 device which is depressed or olll~ ,vi~e activated at the end of each hand. Under typical play
the activation of the end-of-hand log key 479 will result in the zeroing processes dcsclibed
above being effected to reset the COulllel~ which should be reset to zero under the
con-liti~ n~ present in that game and given the specifics of play. Log key 479 also tr~n~l~t~s
I~lll~Uldl.y events to cause the apploplidle player cu~ . to be hl.~ d in plc~ l;on
30 for the hand.
Module 405 also includes a control key switch 480 which is adapted to receive a
security key used by a dealer, pit boss or floor manager to reset or backup play of the
module.
Module 405 further includes the player count displays 451-456 along the sides of the
35 module. The player count displays shown are adv~nt~geo -cly discrete LED (light emitting
diode) clF~ 459 which light up as individually controlled. The player count displays

~ = - ~
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indicate player jackpot count values of 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5 as shown by turning on the same
number of elem~ntc. Each player count display is advantageously rendered more
recognizable by an optional player count display border 409. When module 405 is placed
on the table, the player count display borders 409 preferably are positioned to align with the
5 borders between the ~ rent visual leader bands 441~46 to further aid in the easy
alion of play by all viewers.
Fig. 20 shows an electronic srl~ ic block t~i~gr~m of a plcr~ d ele~ unics
~;h~,uilly 500 used in module 405. The pl~r~ ,d electronics include a main power supply 501
which is co~ d to a supply of ~ . "~ g current power, such as a typical 110 volt AC
o power source. AlLt~ ive~ly, the AC line electrical power source and power supply 501 can
be l~laced by a suitable battery power source.
The output from power supply 501 pl~r~lably produces a -12 volt direct curren~ (DC)
output. This output is used to power other portions of the circuit as inrlif ~ted at the symbol
A. The output of power supply 501 is advantageously coupled to a second power supply 502
which produces an output which is preferably a -5 volt direct current power source in-iir~tf-d
by the symbol B. The output of power supply 501 is also plertl~bly coupled to a third power
circuit 503 which provides iLIe~ldliull of a battery backup circuit powered by battery 504 to
pleS~../e data during periods of power hll~llul)lion. UnillL~,Ilu~l~ble S volt DC power is
supplied to a micro-controller 510 via circuit 503. Circuit 503 also provides a reset signal to
zo micro-controller 510 in lc~onse to a reset switch (not shown).
Micro-controller 510 is provided with a clock crystal 511 which allows the micro-
controller to ..~ i.. an internal clock. Micro-controller 510 has an audio output signal
which is electrically co..l-~ ed to an audio effects ~ul)cir~uil 520. Audio effects ~ub~ ;ui
520 provides audio output to a speaker 522 which provides chimes or other desired audio
25 effects to attracts patrons, signal a winning jackpot, or provide other sounds as desired.
Micro-controller 510 is co~ d to two serial-to-parallel LED driver circuits 531
and 532. The outputs from circuits 531 and 532 are CO....f ~ d to the player count i...li. ~lor.
459 for displays 451-456.
Micro-controller 510 receives signals from a key pad shift register 540. Key pad shift
30 register 540 is c~ u~t~d to the key ~wilclles 471-480. Signals from shift register 540 are
~roce:,~ed in micro-controller to provide the int1if~te-d c~ulllhlg and zeroing r.~ nc
i-..li~''.l-d htl~;-labuv~-
Micro-controller 510 isalso adv~ u~ y c~ le-d to aserial port 550whichcan
be used to int~ fe the central module 405 with an ancillary display sign (not shown) but
35 sirnilar in col~llu~;lion and function to displays 22, 202, and 203 e~rl~inf-~l above.

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Fig. 21 shows a further card gaming system 600 which functions in acco~.lance with
this invention. Gaming system 600 is adap~ed to perform the novel methods for playing card
games, such as bl~rLj~r~ as described herein Ga~ning system 600 includes a video card
game m~rhinP 601. Machine 601 includes a side unit 602 which includes a bill validator 603
5 and a player account and itlPntifir~tion card reader 604. Bill validator 603 reads Illollclaly
bills and upon validation accep~s the bills and posts credits to the player's accoun~ in the
gaming m~rhinP. Player account and identification card reader 604 is a card reading device,
such as an ~ .",~d m~gn~tir~lly coded credit or bus-ticket-type card reader, well known
in the art. Reader 604 is used to either provide an account balance to the gaming m~rhinr
10 against which a player can charge bets, and/or provide user irlrrltifir~tinn for ve~ifir~tirJn and
user tracking hlru~ alion used by the casino to monitor against gaming fraud and to better
",t~ olll~l behavior and desires. Video garning m~rhinr 600 also includes a coin
insert or feed 640 which is used to insert coins in lieu of the bill validator 603 or an account
card read by reader 604.
Gaming system 600 further plcr~,lably includes a main display 610 which is ~Icrtlably
a cathode ray tube, liquid crystal display, or similar elc~,l,u,u~ally controlled display. Display
610 is used to display various hlrc"~,aLion either to attract a player or for use during the play
of the game. In particular for the playing of bl~rL~j~rk the main display is used to show
dealer cards 611 and 612 and player cards 613 and 614. Card 611 is the dealer down card
20 and is shown bl~rl~nPd to indicate it is face-down. Card 612 is the dealer's up card and is
shown face-up. Both player cards 613 and 614 are shown face-up.
In the upper portion is a jackpot counter display section 620 forrning a part of the
main display 610. Jackpot counter displayhas three COullLtl:~ pictured. The upper line 621
;"~ r~ the number of player first jackpot tally events are credited. In this case the upper
25 line in~1ir~tr5 the nurnber of bl~rLj~L hands which the player has either received or been
credited due to bl~r~ L- by the player or the dealer. The second line 622 of the jackpot
display in-iir~t~ the number of twenty-count hands ~eceived by the player which qualify as
second jackpot tally events. The third line 623 i"~lir~-~rs the number of dealer busts which
are inrlnrl~cl in the dealer first jackpot tally events. In the preferred form the jackpot tally
30 events which led to the in~lir~t~d counts shown in lines 621-623 are due to qualifying events
occl~rring in a sequ~onti~l manner, most l)lcrtlably in con~e~ ;vcly seq~rnti~lly hands.
AlLtlllaLivcly, the rules of play may make various s~ 1 patterns qualifying events for
~ul~oses of being counted in one or more of the jackpot tally event cu~"l~ . For eY~nple,
co~ c~ ve seql~nres of any particular card hands may lead to events being tallied in the
35 jackpot tallycuu~.lr~.~. Conse~;ulive 20-count hands, con~ecntive l9-count hands, co,~ llivc
18-count hands, multi-card (more than 2 card) 21-count hands, bl~- Lj~L~ of a specific suit,

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19
red-suit bl~rl~ja~l~.c, black-suit bl~r~jarl~c, and many other culllbhldlions of cards which when
they occur in a defined sequPnti~l pattern over a series of played hands can lead to a jackpot
threshold being met and the player receiving a jackpo~ payout. The seq~uPnti~i occu~ ce
allows the gaming establichmpnt to adjust the payout schedule to include both extremely high
5 payouts for very infrequent events, and when desired or in the altP n~tive relatively smaller
jackpot payouts with greater frequency. This greatly enh~.,r.~s the appeal of the game to the
player.
Gaming m~rhin~ 600 also plert:lably includes a payûut schedule 628. Payout
schedule 628 is advantageously po~itionPd upon the front of gaming m~rhin.~: 600 above the
~o main display 610. Payout schedule 628 can either be a printed posting ûr can be hlr~llllaliûn
displayed upon a second electrûnic display, sirnilar to rnain display 610. It is al~ rely
possible for the payout schedule and other hlfc...llalion to be provided upon a portiûn of the
main display. The main display may be made larger to ~reo"""n~te the various hlru..l.dlion
~.ei.cnlcd thereon.
In the plc~l~cd video bl~rlj~cl~ "~r.h;"~. 600 there is typically a single non-dealer
playér. Machine 600 is eyui~ed with a series of option keys 630 which are advantageously
~..,...g~d beneath the main display. All.,lllalivcly, the option keys can be provided in the
form of a touch screen display having touch control options which are activated by bring a
person's finger into ~lo~ ily or contact at the ~.o~liàle location upon the display screen.
20 As shown, the card gaming l~arh;~,P 600 is provided with key ~wil~,hes 631-636 which have
specific functions. As shown, key 631 is used to hit the player so that another card is dealt
to the player. Key 632 is used to indicate the player's choice to stand and not receive
further cards. Key 633 is used to indicate the player's choice to double. Key 634 is used to
split the players initial two cards and play two hands ~imnlt~nPoll~ly. Key 635 is used to
25 instruct the ~ I;..P to payout any ~rcnm--l~t~d Wii~llillgS. Key 636 is used to start the deal
of another card hand.
Video card ...afh;~.P 600 also l!rcr.,.ably inr~ lPc a payout tray 650 into which is
dc~osiLed coins or other Willllillg~ in l.,~,~orlsc to the player's choice to payout, as in-lir~tPcl
by acli~ g key 635.
Video card gaming m~rhinP 600 also advantagc~ ly includes an attraction display
660. Display 660 is used to indicate a jackpot a-m--ount which can be m~hinP-specific and
~ie~-",;l,~l in part by rules of play which are also specific to the particular m~rhinP being
used.
Gaming ",~,1,;"~ 600 is co.~l..lclcd using previously known video card gaming
35 m~rhinP terhn-logy adapted as needed to achieve the features and fimrtion~ indicated
herein. Such gaming .,.a~l,;l,f s are Icnown from prior developmem and are collllllon1y used

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in connPcti(m with video poker. video blqr~jqrk, and other games. Such m~rhinPs are
suitably progra~ l,ed according to this invention so as ~o provide the features described
herein and to perform the novel mPthn-lc and related ploce~es used in this invention.
Current mqrhin~s have pro~lall~lli,lg capability which will allow the novel games of this
invention to be played thereon. Such play can be sch~ lPd either with an ante by the
player, or without an ante dt~clldillg upon the desires of the gaming çstq-hli.chmPnt It is also
possible to have the jackpot features of this invention apply during some games and not
during others depending upon the be~ placed by the player or by other optional choice.
In another plcrcllcd form of the invention the mPthnrlc of playing are mn~ifiPd to
0 provide another aspect of play which is herein temmed a special or showdown round. There
can be a singular special round or multiple special rounds. The special or showdown round
is initiated by first d~e~.,-i--;--g whether any player has a player count value which mee~s or
exceeds a special round player threshold amount, in which case such player becomes a special
player. The status as a special player allows the special player to play in a special round or
~s rounds of cards to be played. The particular count or other ~ uil~lllcllls for the special
round player threshold will depend upon the ante, special round payouts, and other
palO~llcLcl~ of the game needed to provide a profitable operation. If profit is not the only
conci~lP.nqti-n, then other factors may de~c ...;..P the exact special round threshold amount.
In the ~Icr.,.l~d mPth~ -lc, the count of a player's counter inr1irqting the number of
20 cu.~.~e~ ive jackpot tally events will be considered in d~ ...;..;..g whether the player has
reached the special round threshold. For example a player may obtain a player count value
on the player's qccociqtP~I player coun~er which equals or exceeds 5. In such an example the
player would be conci-lPred a special player. AlL~,~llalivcly~ the special round threshold could
be reached using other types of couMed events on a separate and distinct special round
z~ counter. However, such an altemative approach complicates the mPthl flc and they are not
inrhl-iPd in the most plercllcd mPtho~c used in table game versions. Video systems, such
~s system 600, easily can implement this type of complexity.
When a player meets or exceeds the special round threshold amount, the dealer
~,.Ç~Illls by ~lPcl-qring that a special round threshold has been attqinp~l In the p~efcll~d
30 ~ ,o~lC the special round or rounds willbe played illl~ rly after the dealer declares that
a player has reached the special round threshold amount. AlL~.l,aLively, the ~I;Iilllllrl,l of
the special round threshold amount could cullccival~ly result in a special round of play which
could be delayed in some ;Il~ cc. However, i.. P-l;,.l~ play of the special round or rounds
is plcrcllcd.
In the at least one special round, a variety of rules of play can be implPmPntPd
Most typically the rules nomlally considered r,~ ...P..~;.l to the ~-.,~...,d game being

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21
played, e.g. bl~rLj~rlr, are contimlPd and special jackpot or Whlllillg:> rules will apply.
However, as the plcrellcd embodiment described below will in~lic~te7 the rules changes
associated with the special round can be r.,..~ and deviate outside normal rules.
In the preferred mpthod~ of this invention the special round involves ~u~endillg play
for one or more of the players other than the special player. Typically,all players except the
special player and dealer will be suspended until after the special round is completed.
Al~ alivcly, the dealer can also suspend play to the dealer; although this form is not the
most pleÇclled. It is also further ~ ivèly possible for two players to .cim--lt~n~ously
reach the special round threshold at the same time. In this case multiple special rounds can
10 be done se~ r..~;~lly, or other modified rules could apply to allow cim--lt~nRous playbytwo
special players.
After the dealer has declared a special round, the special player then engages in the
play of the special round or rounds. In a plefe~lcd form of this invention, the special round
involves playing a single round of b~ ki~rlr~ which prcrelal)ly involves playing a single round
15 of bl~r~j~rl~ with the special player cim~llt~n~oucly playing multiple hands. The ~lefellcd
special round can be a single round wherein the special player cimlllt~nroucly plays the entire
table (except for the dealer), for excu.,~lc 6 or 7 hands. All~.llalivcly, the equivalent number
of hands could be played consecutively in a series of special rounds. It is also collLelll~lated
that a series of special rounds could be dealt each providing the special player with one or
zo more hands which are played sim--l~n~ooucly.
The~hand or mnltirle hands played by the special player during the special round or
rounds, are typically played in a regular fashion with most regular rules of the casino game
applying. However, it is ple~.lèd that the jackpot ;.. ~u.. ~ are fixed for the special round
and it is ~n~irip~tec~ that no bet or ante is required for the special round. Rather, the player
Z5 receives the special round as a payoff or award for having reached the special round
threshold amount. In this regard the special round acts as part or all of the player jackpot
bonus for leachi"g a particular threshold player count value.
The mrtho-~c of this h,~,~,.,Lioll can further include paying or ~ll,e~wi~e c~waldhlg a
special round jackpot at the conclusion of the special round or rounds. The special round
30 jackpot is preferably dép~,ndcnL upon the number of special round qualifying events which
have occurred. For eY~mrle the methods can advantageously be pr~ctired with the player
jackpot tally events being a natural or hand count of either 20 or 21. Either of these can
for convenience be referred to as a "highhand". Similarly,the special round can be placliced
such that the player receives a special round player event count which is equal to the number
35 of special round qualifying events received by the player during the special round or rounds.
The special round jackpot award for a special round or rounds would thus be (lel~n~

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22

upon the special round player qualifying even~ COUM. For example, if the special player was
dealt sixhands during a special round, and the player had three hands which counted twenty
and three hands that counted seventeen, then the special player's qualifying event count
would be three.
Special round jackpot payouts could be 5~hp~ pd as follows: Zero high hands - $25;
one high hand - $25; two high hands - $25; three high hands -$125; four high hands - $200;
five high hands - $500; sixhigh hands - $12,500. Since the special player is only playing six
hands in the single special round, then only six high hands are possible.
To provide better play, and because of the pl~r._~led use of the special round as a
o jackpot bonus, it is also preferred that the special round carries with it some ~ ul~lic cash
or prize jackpot award. This award or special round alll~.",~l;c jackpot willbe awarded as
a result of playing the special round or rounds. For example, if the player count has reached
a value of five and a player is declared special and a special round is played, then a ",;";"",."
jackpot might be $25. Such a ",;";""",- special round jackpot amount would, for example,
5 apply if the special player did not receive a high hand for any of the multiple hands being
played by the special player during the special round or rounds.
Methods accoldi,.g to this invention can further advantageously include playing the
special round with both the special player and dealer being dealt hands. In such a ~.~,f~ ,d
form of the invention, the special round jackpot or payout schPrlnle can be ~Ir~. .IIIi~Pd in-
20 part by considering the hand or hands of the dealer which occur during the special round orrounds being played. This is advantageously done by dt:lelll.i..i..g a dealer special round
qualifying event count. For example, the dealer can have one or more dealer special round
qualifying events. Such dealer special round qualifying events can be ~soc;~d with a
particular hand or hands, such as a dealer bust hand. AlL.,~lld~ively, it may be possible to
z5 include other dealer special hand uuLCulll~.S in addition to or in lieu of a dealer bust, such
as dealer hl~r~ rl~ natural hands. The particular dealer special round qualifying events
allowed will affect the special jackpot payout srhpri~llp~ In the p~oposed payout srhpfillle
given above, the dealer bust hands are only considered in cuulll;l)g the number of dealer
special round qualifying events. The srhPdllle also is based upon a single special round with
30 multiple hands simlllt~nPously played by the special player. Acco~di..~sly, the dealer special
round qualifying event count is one if there is a bust and zero if the dealer does not bust.
The payout s~hP~ lP given above can be doubled for all player special round qualifying event
counts, should the dealer have a bust hand and have a dealer event count of one. Other
a~ Ja.,Les are ~ ;vely possible using a ~imrlifiPd or more complPY matrix of events,
35 either special round player events or special round dealer events.

CA 02220878 1997-11-12

W 096/35490 PCT/US9S/12908
23
In another preferred form of the invention, the ~u~l~el~cion of one or more players
during the special round can reduce interest on the part of the players who have been
suspended. To offset this effect, it is desirable for the methods to also include ~wc~ldillg a
suspended player or players a s-lcrPn.1Pd player award if the special player or players receive
an award. This secondaly or suspended player award can be variable dependent upon the
jackpot the special player wins. This ,..~;,..;.;".c imerest of the suspended players and places
them in the position of also being an effective winner along with the special player but the
awards will be ~i~nifir~ntly smaller.
The mtothndc accoldi~lg to this invention can be utilized in various parts by combining
10 one or more mPthndc with other aspects or mPthnrlc as taught herein. For example, the
special round or rounds can either not be added to other m--thntlc described above, or the
special round or rounds in various implemPntin~ forms can be added as an award for
reaching a particular player count value. Similarly,the special round mPthnflc can be utilized
on a video card game ."~hi,.~, such as ~ hh~P 600.

A single figure which represents the drawing illustrating the invention.

For a clearer understanding of the status of the application/patent presented on this page, the site Disclaimer , as well as the definitions for Patent , Administrative Status , Maintenance Fee  and Payment History  should be consulted.

Admin Status

Title Date
Forecasted Issue Date Unavailable
(86) PCT Filing Date 1995-10-13
(87) PCT Publication Date 1996-11-14
(85) National Entry 1997-11-12
Examination Requested 2000-12-07
Dead Application 2005-05-24

Abandonment History

Abandonment Date Reason Reinstatement Date
1998-10-13 FAILURE TO PAY APPLICATION MAINTENANCE FEE 1999-05-26
2002-10-15 FAILURE TO PAY APPLICATION MAINTENANCE FEE 2003-10-09
2004-05-21 R30(2) - Failure to Respond
2004-10-13 FAILURE TO PAY APPLICATION MAINTENANCE FEE

Payment History

Fee Type Anniversary Year Due Date Amount Paid Paid Date
Registration of a document - section 124 $100.00 1997-11-12
Application Fee $300.00 1997-11-12
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 2 1997-10-14 $100.00 1997-11-12
Registration of a document - section 124 $100.00 1998-05-12
Reinstatement: Failure to Pay Application Maintenance Fees $200.00 1999-05-26
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 3 1998-10-13 $50.00 1999-05-26
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 4 1999-10-13 $50.00 1999-08-19
Registration of a document - section 124 $50.00 2000-08-03
Registration of a document - section 124 $50.00 2000-08-03
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 5 2000-10-13 $75.00 2000-09-13
Request for Examination $200.00 2000-12-07
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 6 2001-10-15 $75.00 2001-10-12
Reinstatement: Failure to Pay Application Maintenance Fees $200.00 2003-10-09
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 7 2002-10-15 $75.00 2003-10-09
Maintenance Fee - Application - New Act 8 2003-10-14 $75.00 2003-10-09
Current owners on record shown in alphabetical order.
Current Owners on Record
DIGIDEAL CORPORATION
Past owners on record shown in alphabetical order.
Past Owners on Record
CASINOVATIONS, INC.
CVI TECHNOLOGY, INC.
FORTE, STEVEN L.
SINES & FORTE
SINES, RANDY D.
Past Owners that do not appear in the "Owners on Record" listing will appear in other documentation within the application.

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Document
Description
Date
(yyyy-mm-dd)
Number of pages Size of Image (KB)
Description 1997-11-12 23 1,373
Representative Drawing 1998-02-23 1 7
Abstract 1997-11-12 1 59
Claims 1997-11-12 8 416
Drawings 1997-11-12 17 390
Cover Page 1998-02-23 1 53
Correspondence 1998-10-13 2 74
Assignment 1997-11-12 4 119
PCT 1997-11-12 10 372
Correspondence 1998-02-10 1 32
Assignment 1998-05-12 8 342
Correspondence 1999-06-28 1 38
Correspondence 1999-08-13 1 1
Correspondence 1999-06-28 2 82
Assignment 2000-08-03 10 551
Prosecution-Amendment 2000-12-07 1 36
Fees 2003-10-09 1 46
Prosecution-Amendment 2003-11-21 3 81
Fees 2001-10-12 1 44
Fees 1999-08-19 1 40
Fees 2000-09-13 1 43
Fees 1999-05-26 2 68