Roulette is arguably the most popular casino game and it is very easy to spot in a land-based casino thanks to the highly familiar wheel and large table. When it comes to online casinos, roulette is usually one of the featured games and there are various versions available on the internet as pretty much every game developer offers several roulette games.
Given its popularity, the game is also among the first options new players try out and this is why it is very important to know how roulette works and understand the different betting options made available before each spin of the wheel.
How does roulette work?
The roulette table has two sections: the betting table and the spinning wheel. The former presents the betting options which are represented by the numbers on the wheel, their color and their characteristics; with the option to bet on various combinations based on their location on the table.
The spinning wheel is where all the action is aimed at since this how the winning number is determined. In a brick and mortar casino, the dealer spins the wheel and then throws a small white ball in the opposite direction. The ball spins in a circular track towards the top of the wheel and as it slows down, it loses momentum and eventually drops in one of the pockets at the base. Each pocket corresponds to a certain number which is shown on the wheel and they are organized in a specific order so that all roulette games are similar.
There are two major variants to consider: European and American. While they have pretty much the same rules, the European version has 37 pockets, one of which is a green 0 pocket, and the American version has 38 pockets, with an additional green one for 00 which is located on the opposite side from the 0 pocket.
Placing a bet
Placing a bet on roulette is very easy as the player only has to put the amount of chips he wishes to wager on the corresponding location on the betting table. However, it is important to know the different betting options available before jumping in.
There are two big categories of bets. Inside bets refer to the numbers on the wheel and these are arranged in an ascending order. Their location on the table also allows for other bets since it is possible to place the chips on the line between numbers in order to include them all in the wager. Inside bets can range from a single number to six which are part of two adjoining streets.
Outside bets refer to the options available on the outskirts of the betting table and these are generally wagers on almost half of the numbers as it is possible to bet on 1-18 or 19-36, red or black, even or odd and more.
Once all the bets are made, the dealer spins the wheel and if the pocket in which the ball stops is covered by the wager, the player wins a payout with a predetermined rate.
Roulette tips and strategy
Since roulette is a casino game, it has a certain house edge which helps the casino win. However, it is fairly low and the chance to win a huge amount of money while betting on a single number or just to double the bet on outside bets makes roulette the perfect gambling game for every player. An important tip is to opt for European roulette as the house edge is determined by the green pockets. Having just one means an edge of 2.70% while the American version with two green pockets has a house edge of 5.26%.
For beginners, it is recommended to bet on outside options since they have better odds and also smaller payouts. This way it is more likely to win and thus make the game more enjoyable. Adding a bet on a specific number into the mix can also be exciting as there is always the chance to win the big prize.
Practice makes perfect and most online casino nowadays will allow you to practice for free, by using virtual coins, before playing with real money in order to get the hang of things, so get started right away!