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The following craps strategy will give you the best odds of winning. Craps has the one of the lowest house edges against you of any casino game, but only if you make the right bets and play with the right craps strategy. In fact, with one type of bet (which you will soon learn) you play even with the house, meaning that the house has a zero edge. This is the only casino game where this is true and our craps strategy will show you how.
However don’t get tempted by all those fancy bets in the middle of the table, they have high payoffs but they have one of the worst odds of all casino games. Stick with our craps strategy, play only the bets with good odds, avoid the sucker bets and you’ll have the best chance of winning.
Here’s an example of the three types of outcomes that result when a new shooter plays and how you should bet.
Assume new shooter is getting ready to make the come out roll and you make a $10 bet (or whatever amount you want) on the pass line. The shooter rolls a 7 or 11 on the come out. You win $10, the amount of your bet.
You bet $10 again on the pass line and the shooter makes a come out roll again. This time a 3 is rolled (the player “craps out”). You lose your $10 pass line bet.
You bet another $10 and the shooter makes his third come out roll (remember, each shooter continues to roll until he sevens out after making a point). This time a 4 is rolled – one of the place numbers or “points”. You now want to take an odds bet, so you place $10 directly behind your pass line bet to indicate you are taking the odds. The shooter continues to roll the dice until a 4 is rolled (the point is made), at which time you win $10 on your pass line bet, and $20 on your odds bet (remember, a 4 is paid at 2 to 1 odds), for a total win of $30. Take your chips off the table and get ready to bet again.
However, if a 7 is rolled before the point number (in this case, before the 4), you lose both your $10 pass line bet and your $10 odds bet.
And that’s all there is to it! You simply make you pass line bet, take odds if a point is rolled on the come out, and then wait for either the point or a 7 to be rolled. Ignore all the other confusion and sucker bets. Your have the best bet in the casino and are playing wisely.
Odds bets can be made any time after a come out point is rolled. You don’t have to make them right away . However, you’d be foolish not to make an odds bet as soon as possible considering it’s the best bet on the table. However, you are permitted to make, withdraw, or reinstate an odds bet anytime after the come out and before a 7 is rolled.
When you win an odds bet, be sure to take your chips off the table. Otherwise, they are considered to be automatically “off” on the next come out and will not count as another odds bet unless you specifically tell the dealer that you want them to be “working”. But in a fast moving and loud game, your request may not be heard, so it’s better to simply take your winnings off the table and bet again with the next come out.
The Line Bets
To make a line bet, simply place your money on the area of the table that says “Pass Line”, or where it says “Don’t Pass”. These bets pay even money when they win, although it’s not true even odds because of the 1.4 percent house edge discussed earlier.
When you bet the pass line, it means you are betting that the shooter either makes a 7 or 11 on the come out roll, or that he will roll one of the place numbers and then roll that number again (“make the point”) before sevening out (rolling a 7).
When you bet on the don’t pass line, you are betting that the shooter will roll either a 2 or a 3 on the come out roll (or a 3 or 12 if in Reno and Tahoe), or will roll one of the place numbers and then seven out before rolling the place number again.
Odds on a Line Bet (or, simply called “odds bets”)
When a point has been established (a place number is rolled) on the come out, you are permitted to take true odds against a 7 appearing before the point number is rolled again. This means you can bet an additional amount up to the amount of your line bet. This called an “odds” bet.
Your odds bet can be any amount up to the amount of your line bet, although many casinos will now allow you to make odds bets of two, three or even more times the amount of your line bet. This odds bet is paid at a rate equal to the odds of that point number being made before a 7 is rolled.
You make an odds bet by placing your bet directly behind your pass line bet. You notice that there is nothing on the table to indicate that you can place an odds bet, while there are indications loudly printed all over that table for the other “sucker” bets. This is because the casino does not want to encourage odds bets. You have to know that you can make one.
Here’s how these odds are computed. Since there are 6 ways that a number 7 can be rolled and 5 ways that a 6 or 8 can be rolled, the odds of a 6 or 8 being rolled before a 7 is rolled again are 6 to 5 against you. This means that if the point number is a 6 or 8, your odds bet will be paid off at the rate of 6 to 5. For every $10 you bet, you will win $12 (bets smaller or larger than $10 are of course paid at the same 6 to 5 ratio). The odds of a 5 or 9 being rolled before a 7 is rolled are 3 to 2, so you get paid $15 for every $10 bet. The odds of 4 or 10 being rolled first are 2 to 1, so you get paid $20 for every $10 you bet.
Note that these are true odds – you are paid exactly proportional to your chance of winning. This is the only true odds bet you will find in a casino, so be sure to make it whenever you play craps.