Craps is the American casino game par excellence. Not only because of its low house edge but also because of the excitement and sociability that often surrounds the table. If you’ve read through the rules and are ready to take a gamble yourself, here are ten tips to help you win craps.
Wait for the come out roll
The game of craps is played in two parts: the come out roll and the point roll. In the land-based casino, a player begins a turn by rolling for the first time. This is called the “come out roll. If the outcome here is a 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 or 10, the ‘point’ is determined. Now the same player keeps rolling until he rolls the same score again (for a win) or rolls a 7 (for a loss). Although you can bet between every two throws, it is best to wait for the ‘come out roll’ as only then are you allowed to bet on the simple bets.
Keep it simple
There are four bets that form the basis of craps: Pass, Don’t Pass, Come and Don’t Come. With Pass, you play with the thrower; with Don’t Pass, you gamble that the thrower throws a 7 before the point is replayed. With the Come and Don’t Come, you gamble on the same thing, but you don’t play along with the regular point, but with the point from the time you make a bet. These four bets have a house edge of about 1.40%. All other bets increase the house edge to above 16.67%.
Bet on the Don’t Pass
In a land-based casino, it’s a bit of a “dirty” bet (after all, you’re betting on someone else losing), but certainly, in the online casino, the Don’t Pass is an excellent bet. There are even mathematicians who believe that the house edge here is even smaller than with the opposite Pass bet (1.36% versus 1.41%).
Stay away from the hardways
The hardways are throws where you throw double: thus, a hard 8 consists of two times a 4, a hard 6 of two times a 3 and so on. These are bets that give the advanced player nightmares: the house advantage here is greater than 17%.
Keep your head cool
At the craps table, everyone is friends, and you’re all going for the same result. This also means that players often follow each other in making bets – including the dumb bets. Don’t go along with this (or do, but do it for fun or because you can’t say no and not because you think you can win).
Remember that all the rolls are independent
Each roll in craps stands alone. The probability of each possible outcome is fixed for each roll. The highest probability is for a 7 (16.67%) and the lowest probability is for 2 or 12 (2.78%). No matter how many times in a row a 6 is rolled (or any number), on the next roll the probability of a 6 is exactly as high.
Stack your low stakes
One of the advantages of craps is that you can keep betting (as long as no 7 is rolled), allowing you to play along with many different numbers. This allows you to spread the bets and take small profits each time.
Use the odds
Casinos also offer an ‘odds’ option. This simply means that you can place additional bets behind your existing bet. The casino has favourable game rules – rule of thumb: 20x odds is super good, 10x is excellent, 5x is fine, and anything below that is standard. That number simply means that you may multiply your original bet by that number. The best thing about this is that the house edge is non-existent.
Craps is a game where you sit down for a while. Also, the game itself is a lot more fun if you stay seated for a while, as you get a better grasp of it and the tension builds higher and higher. You might even witness a Golden Arm, where a player keeps throwing for more than an hour without a 7.
Stick to your budget
As with all casino games, craps can make you think that the next round will be better, that you’ve “finally got the hang of the game,” or that you feel it’s about to happen. Maybe, but winning players are players who walk away at the right time. If you have a loss, make sure you don’t lose more than you planned in advance.