Roulette is one of the world’s most popular casino games, bringing glamour and mystery to land-based casinos since the 17th century. Its rules are relatively simple, but there is a surprising depth of strategy for serious players.
Before the ball is spun, bets are placed on the possible outcomes of a spin by laying down chips on a betting mat, the precise location of which indicates the bet being made. A croupier then places the ball in its spinning direction and the game begins. Players may place bets on single numbers, various groupings of numbers, colors (red and black), odds or evens, whether the number is high (19-36) or low (1-18).
The Roulette wheel consists of a solid wooden disk, slightly convex in shape, with a series of metal partitions – known as frets or compartments by roulette croupiers – around its rim. Thirty-six of these are numbered alternately red and black, with a ‘zero’ division at the center on European-style wheels and two extra green ones on American wheels.
During a game, the dealer clears the table of the previous wagers and then announces “Players, please place your bets.” Bets are placed on either the inside or outside of the table. Inside bets are based on individual numbers and have the highest chances of winning, while outside bets are groups of numbers that are cheaper to place but have lower probabilities.
There are several roulette variations, but the best in terms of chances is French roulette. Don’t let the French terminology scare you, it is actually one of the most straightforward casino games in the world, with a minuscule house edge of only 1.35%. This is thanks to the fact that the French version of the game only has a single zero pocket, as opposed to the double-zero pockets on the US-style American Roulette wheel.
There are also a variety of betting systems for roulette, but the most common is the D’Alembert system. It is a negative progression betting system in which bets are increased after each loss and decreased after each win. This is done in an attempt to balance losses and wins over time. However, this system is not foolproof and it is recommended to always start with a minimum bet. This way, you can avoid over-betting and ruining your gaming experience. The James Bond strategy is another good option for beginners, as it combines different bets to maximize your winning potential. However, this strategy requires a substantial bankroll.