Most Interesting Mega Millions History and Facts

People play Mega Millions all around the country because of its amazing billion dollar jackpots, but how much do you really know about this amazing draw game? Mega Millions has actually been through many changes over the years, from different rules to different prize amounts and even entirely different names! Dive into the fascinating history of one of the biggest lottery games in the entire world and learn all about what makes Mega Millions tick.

What you need to know about Mega Millions

Mega Millions actually started life with a completely different name.

It was launched as the Big Game back in 31 August 1996. The first draw for the Big Game took place on 6 September 1996. In that first draw, only six states competed; a far cry from the 45 that currently do.

The Big Game was only renamed to Mega Millions in 2002, as changes were made to the format and more states were added. By 2005, Mega Millions was the most widely played jackpot game in the United States.

As you can probably already expect about Mega Millions, the lottery kept on growing, hitting 47 jurisdictions in 2010 as its jackpots got bigger and bigger.

In 2011, Mega Millions introduced the optional Megaplier add-on which meant that non-jackpot prizes also grew.

what you need to know about mega millions

What was the highest Mega Millions jackpot ever?

As the game grew in popularity, so did its jackpots.

In 2012, Mega Millions made history with a jackpot of $656 million; the world's largest jackpot prize up until that point. While Mega Millions no longer holds that record, the game did storm into the billion dollar club with the highest Mega Millions jackpot ever, an amazing $1.602 billion jackpot in 2023. Amazingly, that giant jackpot was won by a single lottery ticket.

Mega Millions's Mega Ball history

Over the course of its history, Mega Millions has undergone many changes.

The additional ball you need to match in order to win the jackpot was originally called the "Big Money Ball," back when Mega Millions was still the Big Game.

When the Big Game was renamed to Mega Millions the additional ball became known as the "Mega Ball," a name that will be very familiar to those who play Mega Millions today. Currently, to match the Mega Ball players have to pick one number with a range of 1-25. Still, that little number makes a big difference, as it can turn $500 into $10,000 and $1 million into a jackpot!

Make history with Mega Millions

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