Roulette is one of the most celebrated games both in land-based and online casinos. Devised by Blaise Pascal in the 1600’s, roulette is a game in which each player, seated around a game table, bets on a number, a colour or parity of the number they hope to hit. With numerous bets possible in Roulette, and a thrilling table atmosphere, the game is both captivating and challenging and retains its place as one of the most famous of all casino games, no matter which variant you choose to play.


How to play roulette

Roulette is a game of chance played on a cloth table layout with a 37 slot roulette wheel numbering 0 to 36 in a non-chronological order. Slots alternate red and black and the zero slot is usually a green colour to distinguish it from the rest. Players place their bets across numbered positions or special betting ‘blocks’ / combinations and then the dealer spins the wheel and drops a small ball into it as it spins. Once the wheel comes to a stop the ball will fall into one of the numbered slots and whoever bet on that number, combination of numbers, lines and columns or even colour, wins. The different betting options all have a different level of pay-out based on how difficult it is to land them with hitting a single number being the largest pay-out available in the game at 35 to 1.

Roulette strategies

Online roulette is a very popular game and like most casino games it’s always good to have a strategy for it when you play. Roulette is no different and there are a few systems which players use to try to get the most out of their table time. Quite a popular one is the Martingale betting system. Very easy to follow, the strategy simply requires you to bet double your previous bet every time you lose, the idea being that when you win you will also recoup your previous losses plus a small profit on top. Another popular strategy among roulette players is the ‘dopey experiment’. Devised by L.A times journalist Andres Martinez, this strategy works by splitting your bank roll into 35 separate wagers, each of which count as a single bet. Then you bet on the same number 35 times. This has odds to win of just over 60% and if you do win, the profit is substantially larger than those achieved by using the Martingale system.

The subtleties of American roulette

American roulette is one of the more popular variants of the classic casino game. It differs from its French and English siblings due to the inclusion of a double zero slot in addition to the single zero slot. This gives a total of 38 numbered slots as opposed to 37 or 36 found in other game variants. This double zero has a direct impact on the game, reducing your chance to win further and in some versions landing this double zero will actually cost you double your initial wager. In other ways it can enhance the game by opening up a few more different bet types ; American roulette also offers all the classic roulette bets we know and love.

The subtleties of French roulette

French roulette is the earliest form of roulette, with the roulette wheel being invented by Frenchman Blaise Pascal in the 1600’s. It differs from its nearest neighbours in some ways most notably in the table style and the inclusion of 2 types of after bet. These after bets come when the ball hits zero and you have placed an ‘evens-bet’ initially. They are known as ‘La Partage’ and ‘En Prison’ with La partage earning you back half your bet should the ball hit zero and En Prison effectively is a chance to go ‘double or quits’ bet under the same circumstances. La Partage is an interesting feature of this game because it reduces the house edge to 1.35% which makes the game very attractive to players when the casino offers this at its tables.

The subtleties of English roulette

Closer to its French cousin, English roulette uses 37 numbered slots and the roulette wheel is essentially the same as the French variant. The playing mat however is the same as its American counterpart and each player uses a specific chip colour to identify their bets on the table. The available bets are similar to the French variants but one notable difference is the exclusion of the ‘En Prison’ rule, with only ‘La Partage’ being included in English roulette. It can offer more profitable earnings than other variants as the house edge on this game type is only 1.35% and, because of the exclusion of ‘En Prison’, opens up more opportunities to use betting systems and strategies more effectively.

The ‘inside bets’ in roulette

This is a term that indicates the types of bets found inside the playing mat. Not to be confused with outside bets which are located around the exterior of the table, inside bets typically have lower odds but the best payouts. Bets of this nature include ‘straight up’ which is when you wager on just one number, its pay-out being 35 to 1 and ‘split’ which is a bet made on 2 numbers by placing the bet on the line that separates the two. There are different inside bets depending what game variant you play with the double zero slot found in American roulette opening up a whole host of new bets like ‘first five’ for example but the majority of inside bets are universal across all 3 of the major variants of roulette.

Roulette players

Roulette is played by all types of people, from famous stars to career gamblers and also mathematicians and ardent conmen. With a lot of casino goers preferring to sit at their poker or black jack tables, roulette still remains hugely popular with players preferring the adrenaline rush of a lively roulette table to solo casino game play. There are lots of legends surrounding the players of the game and you would be surprised to find that the best stories are often those about players who successfully cheated the system, and there were a lot throughout history such as Charles Wells, the man who famously broke the bank at Monte Carlo and was immortalised in song.

Bets to avoid when playing roulette

In roulette it’s not always possible to give advice on strategies or bets that should be played but what is possible is giving advice on what not to play. Depending on the game variant you are playing it’s important to select your bets and strategies wisely or else you’ll end up penniless in no time. Always remember no bet or system of betting is 100% guaranteed so it’s important to bring some luck when playing at the roulette table alongside your preferred system. Be mindful of the house edge at all times because some variants, for example American roulette, can have a house edges as high as 5.20%.


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