Bigger jackpots and better odds in store for Mega Millions

The New York Gaming Commissionâ??s Division of the Lottery says there will now be bigger jackpots and better odds for the Mega Millions. The cost for Mega Millions will remain $1.

The new Mega Millions will also feature a quadrupled second prize from $250,000 to $1 million cash.

Overall odds will drop to 1:14.71 from 1:39.89, allowing more players to win more often, officials say. The odds of winning a jackpot prize will increase from 1:176 million to 1:259 million.

Beginning July 23, the Lottery must limit advance play for the Mega Millions in preparation for new cards.

The new Mega Millions cards will be available by October 19.

The Lottery says current Mega Millions subscribers will be able to select a new set of numbers. Subscribers who are playing a subscription with a Mega ball greater than 15 will have a new Mega ball randomly selected and offered to them by mail or email notice. The subscriber can change the number by responding, or keep the random number by not responding. Subscribers can change existing subscriptions beginning in mid-August and ending on September 20. New subscriptions will be available beginning September 1.

To play Mega Millions, players select five numbers from a set of 75, plus an additional number from a set of 15. Players matching all six numbers win or share the jackpot. Players matching only the first five digits automatically win $1 million, with the opportunity for $2 million if they selected the $1 Megaplier feature. Mega Millions drawings are Tuesdays and Fridays at 10:59 p.m.

Mega Millions holds the record for the largest jackpot in North American history: a $656 million prize.

Total sales for New Yorkâ??s Mega Millions game were $254.43 million for Fiscal Year 2012-13, generating a profit of $104.24 million for education statewide, officials say.