Online Roulette

Roulette, French for "small wheel", the King of Casino Games, is a popular and highly esteemed gambling game, as its moniker teaches us. Roulette players bet on which slot of the wheel - a rotating disk - the small ball will land and rest on.

In This Game Overview

  • American, European and French Roulette 
  • Roulette Tips 
  • Roulette History 
  • Look Out for... 
  • Roulette Rules and Terms 
  • Roulette Basics 
  • Roulette Trivia 

Because it is simple to understand and easy to win, Roulette has great payouts. Its simplicity makes it especially fun for beginners too. Basics terms, rules, roulette strategy, roulette bonus and related information (including a tip from Albert Einstein himself) follow.

The basics of Roulette

The game begins with the croupier, the roulette game's dealer. The croupier spins a special wheel in one direction, and tosses a small ball into the tilted surface in the opposite direction. While the players watch for where the ball will eventually land and rest, bets are accepted over what color and number pocket it will land on. This is the outcome that determines winnings.

The possible pockets are red or black, numbering 1-36, with green slots for the 0 number, and in the American version a 00 as well. The numbers and colors are not in consecutive order, however. The results are entirely random and unpredictable, although some believe there is a way to monitor the outcome, using certain strategies and observations. 

Bets are placed against the house and are accepted until the ball begins to slow down. One can bet on a specific number and color, or on all numbers between 1-18 (manquébet) or 19-36 (passé). For varying odds, players can bet on a pair, which wins if the ball lands on even numbers, or impair, for odd numbers. Rouge and noir are additional betting options, for red and black slots, respectively. 

Bets are accepted on any combination of these options, for the same spin if the player so wishes, for varying roulette odds. 

Roulette Rules and Terms

Since the game is simple to comprehend and operate (as Blood, Sweat & Tears sang: "Let the spinning wheel spin"), the emphasis lies mainly on the betting aspect.

Bets in Roulette divide into two categories: inside bets and outside bets. The terms refer to the location on the wheel, as explained in the following. 

Inside bets involve selecting the number of the pocket the ball will land in, or range of pockets. Outside bets include bets on various positional groupings of pockets, pocket colors, or whether it is odd or even. Payout odds depend on the probability of the specific outcome. 

The various inside bets include: 

  • Straight: betting on a single number. The player places the chip (or chips) directly on the number.
  • Split: betting on two adjoining numbers, by placing the chips on the separating line between the two numbers.
  • Street: betting on three numbers, located along the same horizontal line. This is done by placing a chips on the edge of the line, depending on the table layout.
  • Corner: also known as a square bet, the player bets on four numbers.
  • Sixline: also known as sixaine, the player bets on two adjoining streets, a total of six numbers, with the chips placed at the corresponding intersection.

Outside bets include:

  • Even money bets: betting on (almost) half the options, a total of 18 numbers. Special boxes that represent the various options (black, red, low, high, even or odd) are available on the table.
  • Group Bets: betting on groups of 12 numbers, the first dozen, middle dozen or third group of 12 numbers.
  • Column: betting on 12 numbers as well, only these numbers are on one of the three vertical lines.

There are additional terms for different groups of numbers, including: 

  • Neighbors of Zero (Voisins du Zero), which includes the numbers which lie between 22 and 25 on the wheel including 22 and 25 themselves.
  • The Third (tiers), which includes the numbers on the opposite side of the wheel between 27 and 33 including 27 and 33 themselves.
  • Orphans (Orphelins), a total of eight numbers that lie outside both Neighbors and The Third.

Keep your eyes open for...

The 0 compartment and the 00 compartment in American roulette are the main elements that grant the house an edge in the gambling game. The house edge in roulette is a critical element that is worth getting to know a little more intimately.

The house edge is the average amount the player loses relative to any bet made. With 37 or 38 slots, the house edge is either 2.70% or 5.26%, respectively. 

Roulette History

Roulette originates from France where, in the 17th century, the concept of perpetual movement fascinated the mathematician Blaise Pascal who invented the wheel. By the end of the century roulette was played in the form we are familiar with today. Major alterations in the classic game occurred in 1842, when François and Louis Blanc added the 0 to increase the house advantage.

Roulette crossed to the United States in the 1800s brought over by the French colonialists. Now in America, the American roulette version evolved, as the 00 was added for an even greater house advantage. 

Roulette Tips

  • The fact of the matter is that roulette games do not return a good chance of winning compared with other casino games.
  • The best bets on the roulette table are the even money bets, which pay out 1:1. These consist of the red/black, high/low and even/odd bets.
  • If you are new to the game of casino roulette, its best to first familiarize yourself with the roulette table layout, payouts and bets types.
  • Roulette is similar to the Wheel of Chance game in many ways.
  • There are several bets available in the game of roulette, which are characterized as "inside" and "outside" (inside meaning - Straight-up, Street, Corner, Line and Five-Number; outside meaning - Red/Black, High/Low, Odd/Even, Dozens and Columns). The payouts vary for each bet. Remember! and this is very important - your lowest House Edge will always come from the outside bets.
  • There are several different versions of the roulette game, all of which you are likely to find in most online casinos. These include mini roulette games, European Roulette, American Roulette and French Roulette. The differences between these versions of the game are very small, however the American version does return the highest Casinos Edge of the three.
  • If you play roulette in a real land-based casino, the chips are not marked with denominations, but instead are identified by their colors.
  • In online casinos chips are marked by denomination (usually set as low as $1).

American, European and French Roulette

European Roulette offers a lower House Edge than the American Roulette version, This is because there are 37 slots on the wheel opposed to 38 on the American roulette.

The American Roulette offers the numbers 1-36, 0 and 00 and the European roulette does not offer the 00. European Roulette also offers the "en prison" rule, which returns half of one's Red/Black, Odd/Even or High/Low bet if the ball lands on zero, or imprisons the bet on the table for another spin (that call is decided by the player). If it wins the second time around, the bet is returned without winnings at all.

A similar rule is "la partage", which does not give players the option of imprisoning their bet for a 2nd chance. It simply gives half the even money wager back if the ball lands on zero. Both of these rules help lower the Casino Edge and should be looked for when playing roulette online.

Roulette Trivia

  • Roulette is referred to as the King of Casino Games for its association with the original casinos in Monte Carlo.
  • Albert Einstein who has spoken his mind about issues involving time and space, war and peace, is quoted saying about roulette: "You cannot beat a roulette table game unless you steal money from it."
  • Adding the numbers on the roulette wheel, from 1 to 36, results in 666, the number of the beast. From this trivia tidbit emerges another legend, that 19th century Roulette innovator François Blanc sold his soul to the devil for the secrets of the game. Interestingly, Blanc, who added the 0, did not affect the total sum of the wheel's numbers by doing so...
  • A Roulette table was in the center of a memorable scene in the film Casablanca (1942). Humphrey Bogart, as Rick, urges a Bulgarian refugee to place his final three chips on 22 and signals the croupier to fix the table so that the number really comes up. Dramatically, it does, twice.
  • One of the three alternative narratives of the movie Run, Lola, Run (1998) has Lola buying a 100 German mark chip (although she is just short of the sum) and bets it on 20, twice, winning both times and making enough money to pay her boyfriend's debt of 100,000 marks and still keep some change.
  • In South Park too the characters bet for a good cause, in an attempt to save their town from destruction (the episode Red Man's Greed), but end up losing it all.
  • Roulette casino game is very popular game for leisure and entertainment.
  • Roulette is more popular in Europe than in the US, and that's true for online casinos too.
  • Roulette game has a strong following both online and in land-based real casinos.
  • Gamblers have been trying to win the roulette game with numerous roulette systems and secret strategies have shown up all around the internet - which no serious player should ever buy into.

See also

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