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Introduction to Roulette

S. Stoynova (editor) |

Roulette – One of the Most Iconic Casino Games

Introduction to RouletteRoulette is played since ancient times and it is still one of the greatest games in every casino around the world. As proof, you can check out that a substantial portion of casinos’ revenue is generated namely from this game. With a number of betting options available, roulette offers a game style that is unbeatable by other popular titles. The thrill, excitement, and complexity of the game make it not only fascinating but strategic as well. For these reasons, roulette has grown to become one of the preferred choices in the online gaming industry. It also provides variations, catering to the tastes of different players.

The game itself was developed by two French brothers, who spread it throughout Europe. It was a real sensation among the gambling communities and that is the reason why roulette is still alive even nowadays. Roulette is played by the original rules with some slight changes. Thus, the game evolved in three main variations – European, French and American. Of course, every casino has the right to offer all three versions or the one that is preferred. Every gambler should be aware of the specific rules of every table before starting to play.

The rules are easy to understand and the essence is all the same for the three variations. The main purpose of every player is to make the right prediction on the numbered pocket the ball will land on. To determine the winning number, the ball is tossed by the croupier in the opposite direction to that of the spinning wheel. There are different speculations, though, on the way the ball is tossed. Of course, every croupier has their own way, which is called dealer’s signature. To avoid any speculation, the dealers are changing in certain time limits. The material out of which the ball is made also matters for the liveliness of the ball.

Misleadingly simple and yet hard to master, roulette uncovers added levels of intricacy the more you study it. Therefore, we have compiled this general guide on roulette, covering the most popular variations of the game, the types of bets in all variations, as well as the additional wagering options of the French table.

Variations of Roulette

Variations of RouletteThe main difference between the three variants of the game stems namely from the wheel. In the French and European variants of roulette, there are 37 numbered pockets, which contain the numbers from 1 to 36, including one zero-pocket. The color pattern of the game is well-known by everyone – the pockets alternate between black and red, with the single-zero pocket colored in green. This, on the other hand, influences the low house edge, which is only 2.70%. Historically, American casino managers were not happy with the low house profit. That is why they modified the game by adding a double-zero pocket. This led to the boost of the house edge to 5.26%.

European Roulette Table Layout

What is more, the French and European wheels are the same – they present the same order of numbers, placed in the same way. Except for the additional zero pocket, the American wheel provides another order of the numbers. Amateur gamblers even consider the American version to be more systematic, since two consecutive numbers are placed diametrically. On the other hand, the European wheel seems to be random, but if you look closely at it, you will notice a pattern – a high number (19 to 36) is placed next to a low one (1 to 18) with the only exception of 5 next to 10.

Many people consider that the European and French roulette is the same. Even though they are managed by the same rules, there are some differences. The layout on the French table is entirely in French. But even if you are not fluent in French, this does not mean that you cannot play at the French table. The bets are the same. It even provides one more type of bet, which is placed on a particular section of the wheel. Moreover, there are two additional rules, which govern the French table and are of great advantage to every player. Many people consider that the French variant of the game is more advantageous to the player namely because of the La Partage and En Prison rules. These are applicable when the ball lands on the zero pocket and decreases the house edge to 1.35%. It should be mentioned that these are in effect even on some European tables.

American Roulette Table Layout

The two zero-pockets on the American wheel reduce the chances of the gambler to win against the house and also provides higher house edge. That is the reason why this variation is not among the most preferred ones. As one should notice, American roulette is actually more difficult since it has an additional zero pocket, which increases the chances for the gambler to lose.

Due to the presence of the second zero pocket, the casino’s profit, known as house edge, is almost double than in the European and French variations of the game.

Variety of Bets

Variety of BetsThe game starts the moment when all gamblers place their bets on the table. For that purpose, the layout of the table is used. The inside part is made out of small squares, which correspond to all the numbers on every pocket of the wheel. Here, you can bet on a particular number or group of numbers. Consequently, the bet itself is called “inside” bet. Depending on how you combine the numbers, there are different types.

Inside Bets in All Variations of Roulette

Roulette Straight Up Bet

The straight up bets are placed on one particular number and the gambler needs to make the exact prediction of the numbered pocket, which the ball will land on. The chance is not very high, therefore the payout is 35:1

Roulette Split Bet

As we already mentioned, every player can place the bet on more than one number. Thus, the other variant is the so-called split bet. Here, you bet on two neighboring numbers. The ball should settle in one of the numbered pockets, which contains one of the two numbers. Then, the gambler wins. The payout is 17:1.

Roulette Street Bet

To increase your chances to win, you can place your bet on three numbers in a horizontal row. This type is also known as a street bet. The gambler needs to place the chips on the outside line of the first number in the line. The payout is 11:1.

Roulette Square Bet

To cover even a bigger portion of the layout, the corner bet might be a good decision for you. It covers four “neighboring” numbers, which form a square. In this case, the gambler needs to place the chips on the intersecting point between all four numbers. The payout is 8:1.

Roulette Line Bet

The line bet covers six numbers, which are placed in two neighboring lines on the layout. To make a line bet, the gambler needs to place the chips at the edge lines of both rows. The player wins if the ball falls into a numbered pocket, which contains one of the six numbers. The payout is 5:1.

American Roulette Five Number Bet

American roulette offers one more type of bets, which is not very advantageous to players, since the house edge is much higher than the usual one – 7.90%. It is called five-number bet and is placed only on the following numbers: 0, 00, 1, 2, 3. Its payout is 6:1.

Inside bets are much riskier and tend to have higher payouts. What is unique about roulette is that players can bet on either one number or a combination of numbers, thus affecting the overall risk of the bet. For instance, a roulette fan can decide to place a straight up bet. Since the odds of landing on an even number are greater than landing on one particular number, the payout for a straight-up bet is considerably higher.

Outside Bets in All Variations of Roulette

Roulette Red or Black Outside Bet

To enhance the chances to win, gamblers can place a bet on the outside part of the layout. It presents the numbers, but in big groups. For example, the pockets on a roulette wheel are either red or black, and the player can place a bet on colors. This means that if players bets on all red numbers, they win only if the ball lands on a red pocket. This bet is known as black/red bet. The payout is 1:1.

Roulette Odd or Even Outside Bet

Similarly, gamblers can bet on either odd or even numbers. The payout is again 1:1 or even money. To make such a bet, you need to place your chips on the particular section from the layout.

Roulette High or Low Outside Bet

There is one more type of bet, known as high/low
. Here, gamblers try to predict if the winning number will be from the group between 1 to 18 (low) or from 19 to 36 (high). It pays off even money again.

Roulette Dozen Outside Bet

The 36 numbers on the wheel are combined in three dozens on the layout. Every dozen contains 12 numbers and every gambler can bet also on a particular dozen. This means that players can place the bet on all 12 numbers and the payout is 2:1.

Roulette Column Outside Bet

The betting section is divided into three main columns, which also consist of 12 numbers. For example, gamblers can bet on the first column, which includes all of the following numbers 1, 4, 7, 10, 13, 16, 19, 22, 25, 28, 31, and 34. If the ball lands on a pocket, which contains one of these numbers, the gambler wins the bet. The payout is 2:1.

Additional Bets on the French Table

French Roulette Call BetsIn some cases, particularly at most French-style roulette tables, call bets are allowed. Generally speaking, call bets include the Voisins du Zero (neighbors of zero), the Tiers, and the Orphelins. Similar to inside and outside bets, call bets have different payouts based on the number of pockets associated with each bet. Many believe that call betting can increase the advantage to a player since they are able to add more variation to an overall betting strategy.

In a few words, the Voisins du Zero bets are placed on 17 numbers, which are lying next to the zero pocket on the wheel. These numbers form the first section of the wheel, which is between the numbers 22 and 25. The bet is a combination of split, trio and corner bets and it costs 9 chips.

Tiers du Cylindre is a bet, which costs 6 chips and covers the section of the wheel between 27 and 33. It is a split bet on all the numbers, which are placed exactly the opposite of the Voisins du Zero set.

So far, we have two opposing set of numbers. All the rest, which are placed from both sides of the wheel are called Orphelins. These are included in none of the opposing sets and that is why their name literally means orphans. The bet can be a combination of split bets, which costs 5 chips, or straight-up bets – it takes 9 chips.

As you can see, roulette offers several types of betting techniques and strategies for experienced players. However, simple probability demonstrates that it is hard to find a legitimate way to beat the roulette system. To figure out the likelihood of a bet coming out successful, one should take the number of pockets associated with a particular bet and divide that number by the total number of pockets on the wheel (either thirty-seven or thirty-eight).

A Game of Chance

A Game of ChanceNo matter what strategy you use, luck is the most important thing in this game. Basically, the rules are simple and that is the reason why roulette attracts so many people all over the world. Over the years, people have speculated on different theories focused on beating the wheel. But the truth is that you win, if you can manage your bankroll. Thus, the best strategy is to control your money, be disciplined and bet only amounts, which you can afford to lose.