Famous Progressions
Martingale
One of the first betting systems most people learn, it's intuitively appealing, easy to use, and can cause many very quick wins. Here's how it works:
Start off with a basic wager amount. Let's say $5, to start. If you lose, place a $10 bet on the next round. If you lose again place a $20 bet. Lose again, $40, and so on and so on. You double up every single time until you finally win, and then start off again at $5. Let's assume we happened to win the $40 hand. In the previous hands, we lost $35 ($5 + $10 + $20) dollars, on the $40 hand we won. Our total winnings are $40  $35 = $5. It turns out that no matter how many times you double, as long as you can keep on doubling, you will eventually win and get your starting wager amount back.
Pros
Very high chance of winning your basic betting amount ($5 in the example above) Easy and simple to use
Cons
Complications arise for games like blackjack, where you may need to double or split. Casinos have betting limits that prevent you from doubling indefinitely. Depends on the table, this limit can be $100, $200, $500 or even $10,000. But eventually you will reach that limit. When you do, you could find yourself losing a lot of money.
Overall
Before you decide to use this sytem, consider the following very carefully. On an American roulette wheel, by betting on a single color, you have about a 47% chance of winning and 53% chance of losing. If you start your bet at $5, and the table has a maximum of $500, that leaves you with roughly a 1 in 100 chance of losing $635, with no further opportunities to double up. Given that at most online casinos, you can easily play 200 or more rounds of roulette in an hour, this method becomes a big loser. Avoid it at all costs.
Grand Martingale
Like the Martingale above, except that after each bet you not only double your principal amount of money, but you add a base unit (original bet amount) to it each and every time. Considering that the Martingale is such a loser, this method, which requires even more money, can only be considered worse. Avoid it.
Mini Grand Martingale
Like the Martingale above, except that after each bet you not only double your principal amount of money, but you add $1 to it each and every time. Considering that the Martingale is such a loser, this method, which requires even more money, can only be considered worse. Avoid it.
Reverse Martingale or Parlay
Similar to the Martingale, but everything is reversed. Start with some basic amount (let's say $5), and then double up after each win, up to some fixed amount. If you lose, start all over again at your basic amount.
Pros
Each progression through the betting sequence will limit your loss to your initial bet. So every time you complete a "sequence" of bets, you will only lose your initial amount or win a very large amount. As easy and simple to use as the Martingale
Cons
It can be difficult to have enough wins in a row to make any money through this method, and by the time you do have enough wins to get ahead, you may have already lost more than you win.
Overall
This is reasonably safe betting system. It doesn't carry the same level of stress that the Martingale carries, and if you stick to the system, since each sequence of bets only costs you $5 initially, you can get a lot of satisfaction out of it.
Labouchere
One of the more complicated and insidious betting systems. In this system you pick a series of numbers. For example, 12345678. When placing your bet, select the first and last number in the series and add them together. In this series you would chose 1 and 8, for a total of 9. You then place a $9 bet. If you win, you cross out the 1 and 8. The system becomes 234567. On the other hand, if you lose youcross out the 1 and add the 9 to the back of the system. It then becomes 23456789. Repeat the betting process for the new system. If you manage to cross out all of the numbers, start at the very beginning with a new sequence of numbers.
Once again, this sytem is intuitively appealing. In order to end up ahead, you need to win half as many times as you lose. Given that on a standard roulette wheel you have around a 47:53 win:lose ratio, it becomes relatively easy to complete the sequence of numbers. However, a sequence can sometimes spiral out of control and you could end up losing a large amount of money.
