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The game of craps/dice is a wonderful game with games within the game. It has the most bets and odds of any casino game and the truest odds.

A full size table is about seven to ten feet in length though I have seen half tables operated by one dealer/croupier. But back to the full-sized table operated by three dealer/croupier and a supervisor. In the picture below I have marked the position of the operators. I will start with the supervisor his role is to manage the table:he monitors win/loss usually hourly, if more chips are needed he orders them,checks the payouts made by the dealers and stick man are correct and resolves any minor disputes. The two base dealers/croupier either side of the supervisor take,place and payout winnings and draw in losing bets. The stick man has a very important role they controls the dice and pace of the game among other things. This is the person who calls the roll of the dice,receives and instructs the base dealer/croupier on the payout of “crap bets”http://wp.me/p1RuuH-2G and “hard ways bets” to which players. 

There are two what I call contract bets by which I mean no change can be made to these bets until the resolution of the roll. They are the win/pass line and don’t win/don’t pass bar/line.

The first game is the win or pass line. Any bet made here will win on the first roll of the dice if seven or eleven is rolled (hence the call “7-11 come out roll”) if 2,3 or 12 are rolled the bet loses. Any other combination of the dice 4,5,6,8,9,10 become the point. For the bet on the win/pass line to win the same number must be rolled again before a seven is rolled. If the player rolling the dice makes the point then the win/pass line bets will be paid even money.

If the player rolling the dice does not make the point and seven is rolled the bets lose. The two dice are gathered in added to the unused dice in the bowl in front of the stick man. All six dice are passed out to the next player on the left. The player can accept or decline to roll the dice if they accept they can pick any two die from the six offered. This player then becomes the next shooter and must place a minimum bet on either the win/pass line or the don’t win or don’t pass line/bar.

For now I will stay with our pass line player and for the sake of the picture above lets say on their first roll of the dice he had made a point of eight. The stick man invites all players to place more bets on other aspects of the game,but no more contract bets can be made or altered.                                                                                                                                                      Lets start with the bets nearest you in the picture above these are “the odds bets”.These are not contract bets and be called “not working” or “off” on any roll of the dice. The player with the white chips has taken the full odds his chips behind the line are equal to the chips on the line. The player with the blue chips has not taken any odds and the player with the red chips has taken half the odds they have  half the number of chips behind the line bet than they have on the line.

Now let’s say our shooter throws the dice again and rolls an eight the call would be “eight straight back winner”.The base dealers would clear the losing don’t win/don’t pass bets. They would then go and pay the win bets in turn starting with the player nearest them. In the picture this would be the starting with the red chips bets. Lets assume the minimum bet on this table is five units of your chosen currency. The dealer pays the odds bet first as the point is eight and the odds are 6 to 5 for that number. So the odds bet behind the line will be paid six units of currency. The bet on the line is  paid even money. Next they pay the blue chips even money. The white chips has full odds the bet behind the line will be paid twelve units of currency and the chips on the line even money. The odds for the other numbers are as follows;the 6 & 8 odds 6 to 5,the 5 & 9 odds 2 to 3  and the 4 & 10 odds 2 to 1. These odds for the four and ten are the truest odds in the casino, as there are only two ways of making those numbers with a pair of die.

The second contract bet the don’t win don’t pass bar/line. Unfortunately I was unable to find any pictures showing bets on the don’t bets without any people in them so will use the previous picture and scenario.

On the come out roll the first roll of the dice by a player the don’t win don’t pass bar/line bets win if two or twelve are the result of the first roll and are paid even money.  If three is the result the bet stands off and may be removed, the value changed or moved onto the win line.

However, if the result is eight as in the picture above these bets will win only if the player rolls a seven before rolling the point number eight. If you can imagine the win/pass line bets above moved onto the don’t win don’t pass bar/line. The players of these bets can still have odds but here they must lay or give rather than take the odds. So the player with the red chips must place a bet of six units of currency to win five units and his original bet be paid even  money. The player with the white chips would need to bet twelve units to receive ten units and his original bet be paid even money,and of course the player with the blue chips is neither taking or giving odds. If the player rolling the dice rolls a seven the base dealer/croupier collect the losing bets then payout the don’t win don’t pass bar/line bets. Again paying the odds bet first and even money to the original bet. When laying/giving the odds for the numbers the values are reversed 6 & 8 5 to 6, 5 & 9 2 to 3 and the 4 & 10 1 to 2.

This is the basic craps/dice game or seven/eleven as it was called in back street games of the 1920’s and 30’s.

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When I first started out in casino’s here in the UK there were four what we call table games, which the house operated and therefore had a built-in percentage for the house to make money. A quick look on Wikipedia came up with 28 games the majority of them card games. Firstly, back to basic’s the four games available when I first entered a casino.

American roulette. A wheel with 37 compartments numbered from 0-36 the zero coloured green the numbers 1-36 equally divided into red and black.

Blackjack. Played with four or six decks of 52 cards. Nowadays played mainly with six decks.

Baccarat. Played with six decks in the original version with no numbers in the corners just the number of that suits symbols.

Dice/Craps. Played with highly engineered die usually in sets of six from which a player selects two to throw.

Roulette is one of the most observed games going so much has been written about it. So many theories and systems for winning. All have a little substance to them but after 36 years in casino’s I know of none that have broken the bank legally. When I visit, casinos I will usually have a little play if only to see how they operate their game. To my mind, roulette is best played with small stakes on the numbers. I have seen the same column or dozen come up more than five times in as many spins, and the same coloured number many times. I never forgot spinning 17 consecutive black numbers. As a chap doubled his bet only to hit the maximum amount, the tables limit some five spins before I hit a red number. To me it is very much like a lottery.See the “How to Play Roulette” post http://wp.me/p1RuuH-22

Blackjack is nowadays usually dealt from an electro-mechanical shoe. These remove the risk of rare exceptionally talented dealers rigging a shoe. For the majority of dealers they are a pain as now they get no respite in days gone by you could have a bit of a breather whilst shuffling the decks. However, if you have the time, patience and bankroll card counting can still reduce the in-built casino percentage. I play a basic strategy never press if losing and stick if the dealer has 4-6. Never split pairs more than three times. However, I find it a boring game so soon wander off to the bar or cabaret room for a break.

Baccarat this game is rarely seen these days. It has been superceded by a game I know as Punto Banco. In baccarat, the two sides of the table played against the house dealer. Therefore, there would be three hands of cards upon the table. Bets on sides one and two if they won got even money and a good banker (house dealer), would look at the value of bets on each side of the table and judge whether he would draw another card, if in a position where he had an option to draw. Lets say the value of bets on side one was 1000 and on side two 500. If he judge the card he dealt to side one had not improved their hand, and his hand was strong enough he could stay expecting to beat side one. If he did beat, side one but not side two the money from side ones losing bets would pay the winners on side two and make a profit for the house. The game I see played today and know as Punto Banco has side one playing against side two so just two hands of cards. If the bank hand wins it is paid at 19-20 if the player hand wins it is paid even money. So again a boring game to my mind.

Dice/Craps this is my favourite casino game there is just so much to it. However, if we just take the basics for now the win line and do not win line. Logic computer simulations everything is telling you the do not win line is favourite. Yet I still play the win line when it is my turn to throw the dice. Perhaps appealing to the idea, we all love a winner. This bet will only pay on the first roll of the dice if you roll seven or eleven, you lose on 2, 3 and twelve straight away three losers to two winners. The don’t win will be paid on the 3 and the 12 but stand-off on the 2. If the first number is, 4,5,6,8,9,10 then this number must be rolled again before the win line bets are paid. If seven is rolled they will lose and the don’t win line is paid before, the dice pass to the next player around the table. 4,5,6,8,9,10 these numbers are known as the point if you have a bet on the win or don’t win line you can increase your wager by taking or giving the odds. By which I mean you place more money/chips down. If we use the four and ten as an example. These two numbers can only be made in two ways with a pair of dice. The four must be 2 and 2 or 3 and 1, the ten 5 and 5 or 6 and 4. Here are the truest odds in the casino if you take the odds you place an additional bet up to the amount you have on the win line this bet will be paid at odds of 2-1. If you are on the don’t win line you give the odds and the bet is paid at 1-2. These days there are many more bets introduced and I will return to these and strategies of playing another time. “How to play Craps/Dice” http://wp.me/p1RuuH-2m

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