Unlike many other countries, Germany does not have a single national lottery draw. Instead, separate lotteries are staged in the various regions of the country, namely: Baden-Württemberg, Bayern, Berlin, Brandenburg, Bremen, Hamburg, Hessen, Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Niedersachsen, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Rheinland-Pfalz, Saarland, Sachsen, Sachsen-Anhalt, Schleswig-Holstein, Thüringen.
If each regional lottery game was entirely different then playing the German Lotto could potentially be confusing. Fortunately, the main game in all of the regions named above is a 6 from 49 lottery (Lotto 6 aus 49).
Like many 6 from 49 lottery games, seven balls are actually drawn when the game is played, with the seventh ball being deemed a Bonus Ball, known in this lottery as Super Ball. In most 6 from 49 games, the Bonus Ball only comes into play when determining the winners of non-jackpot prizes, but in Germany players must match all six main numbers and the seventh Bonus Ball in order to land the jackpot. This interesting quirk means that players of these "6 from 49" games actually need to select seven numbers in order to participate.
Another notable difference between the German Lotto games and the 6 from 49 games played in other countries is that there are, in most cases, more prize levels. A typical game has eight prize levels (each one referred to as a Class), the prizes and odds are as follows:
|Class||Number Matched||Odds (Rounded)|
|I||Match 6 + Super Ball||1 in 139,838,160|
|II||Match 6||1 in 15,537,573|
|III||Match 5 + Super Ball||1 in 542,008|
|IV||Match 5||1 in 60,223|
|V||Match 4 + Super Ball||1 in 10,324|
|VI||Match 4||1 in 1,147|
|VII||Match 3 + Super Ball||1 in 567|
|VIII||Match 3||1 in 63|
|IX||Match 2 + Super Ball||1 in 76|
In most regions, German Lotto games are played twice weekly on Wednesdays and Saturdays. Players can buy their tickets online or, if they actually live in Germany, from an official retailer in the region hosting the game they want to play.