Roulette is probably the simplest casino game available. This page explains the basic rules, and is designed for people that have never played roulette before.
The Two Types Of Roulette Wheels
The two types of roulette wheels are the American 00 wheel, and the European Single 0 wheel. All that’s different about them is the order of the numbers on the wheel, and the American version has an extra pocket (00). The casinos advantage is higher with the American roulette wheel, so it is preferable to play on European wheels, which have a single green zero.
Many casinos offer betting terminals where you sit at a computer screen, and the winning number is determined by a computer, instead of a real roulette wheel. This is called RNG roulette, and RNG stands for “random number generator”. It is important to understand that this is not roulette at all – it is a slot machine with computer animations of a roulette wheel. It is exactly the same thing as playing a slot machine. While the convenience of RNG may be appealing, you cannot beat it long-term. The only roulette you can beat is real roulette, and that involves a real physical roulette wheel.
The Betting Table
The betting table is where you place all bets. It is fairly self-explanatory. There are many different types of bets, with the simplest being a flat number. Also see the section that explains types of bets.
Joining a Table
Firstly you must convert cash to casino chips. To do this, usually you place your money flat on the table after the dealer calls “place your bets”. They’ll then ask you what value chips you wish to buy. For example, $1, $5, $25 etc.
You can usually choose either coloured chips, all the common the casino chips. The common chips have a dollar amount specified on them, and you can use them at any game in the casino. The colour chips can be assigned virtually any value you want. They are specially coloured to help you track which chips are yours on the betting table. If you become a professional roulette player, you will later learn it is best to avoid the colour chips because they also help casinos track your winnings.
Procedure For Betting
Basically when the dealer announces “place your bets”, you place your chips on whatever numbers you want. Every betting table has minimum and maximum bets, and they are different for each type of bet. The betting limits are displayed at every table. If you bet outside the limits, the dealer will physically move your bets and tell you the bet was rejected.
Next, the dealer picks up the ball and spins the wheel. In most casinos, the dealer waits for the ball to slow down towards the end of the spin before calling “no more bets”. At this point, the dealer ways their hands over the table to signify no more bets are permitted for that particular spin.
When the ball lands, the dealer places a marker to identify the winning number on the betting table. The dealer then pays out winning players. When they are complete, the dealer calls “place your bets” at which point you can collect your winnings, and the process repeats.
Dealers and Pit Bosses
The dealers are also known as croupiers, and they spin the wheel. But it is not uncommon for the wheel to spun automatically by a robot. The pit boss is the supervisor that overseas operations of usually 2 to 4 wheels. It is their responsibility to ensure procedures are followed. They also have a direct link to the casino surveillance staff, who may instruct the pit boss to take particular action, or keep an eye on specific players.
Contrary to what you may think, most dealers and pit bosses want players to win. It is not their money at risk, they hate to see people lose a lot of money. If you are winning discretely, most casino staff are happy to let you continue to do so, provided you don’t make them look incompetent. We know this because many of our team members are ex-casino staff. However, of course every individual is different, and there are always staff members that do their job properly.
The procedures and rules are the same wherever you go in the world. The exceptions are if you play rapid roulette, or on automated roulette wheels. These usually have automated systems that collect your money. They also offer print out receipts for you to cash out at the cashier.