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There are so many different types of bets, odds and payouts in online casino roulette that it’s hard to keep everything straight. Roulette is a game of chance + strategy so it’s important to know how to optimize all of the different betting types.
As with any casino game, you need to know what your chances of winning actually involve, especially if you’re playing a game like roulette which is all about mathematical probabilities.
There are two different edges, depending on whether you’re playing American or European roulette. The odds are more favourable in the latter due to the second zero pocket (double zero) on the American wheel. The double zero tilts the odds more in the house’s favor.
There are also two groups of bets: inside and outside bets. Outside bets have a higher chances of winning but there’s a payoff -- the pay-outs are smaller. Inside bets win more infrequently but the payouts are bigger.
Inside bets are wagers that can be made on a number or on a series of numbers. You’ll see the inside bet options marked on the inside of the table. Outside bets cover all of the other types of bets. They include a larger section of colors or numbers and are marked on the outside of the table.
Some statistics about the different bets that can be placed and the probability and odds for each:
There are seven types of inside bet:
Straight Bets – bets that cover a single number
Split Bets – bets that cover two numbers -- the 2 numbers appear one next to the other on the table
Street Bets – bets that cover three consecutive numbers on the same line
Double Street Bets – also called “six line bets”, these are bets which cover three consecutive numbers on the same line and two lines
Corner Bets – or square bets, involving bets placed on the four numbers that make a square on the table
Basket Bets – bets on the 0 (or 00), 1, 2 and 3. Basket bets are only available in American roulette
Among inside bets, straight bets have the highest payout, at 35:1, and the lowest odds. In European roulette the odds are 2.70% and in American roulette the odds are 2.63%. In order of payout, the bet type with the next highest payout is the split bet where the payout is 17:1. Odds are a bit better than those of a straight bet – 5.26% in American roulette and 5.41% in European roulette.
If you place a corner bet you can expect a 8:1 payout with 10.81% odds for European roulette and 10.57% odds for American roulette. A basket bet gives you a 6:1 payout with 13.16% odds for both American and European roulette. The bet that offers the bet payout (but with the lowest odds) is the double street bet – a 5:1 payout but odds of 16.22% for European roulette and 15.79% for American roulette.
Most players make outside bets. They have the best odds even though the payouts are lower. There are five types of outside bets that include
Color Bets – wagers on the color of the winning number, black or red
Odds or Evens – betting on whether the winning number will be an odd number or an even number
Low or High – a bet on a group of numbers, be it low (1 to 18) or high (19 to 36)
Dozens Bets – similar to the low or high bet, a wager on a group of numbers, grouped into dozens (1 to 12, 13 to 24 or 25 to 36).
Columns Bets – a bet on whether the winning number will be from the first, second or third column as represented on the roulette table.
With outside bets, the payout on colors bets and odds and evens bets is 1:1 but the odds are 48:60% and 47.47%. Don’t forget, the 0 and 00 pockets prevent the odds from being 50 – 50, with the American roulette’s extra 00 pocket lowering the odds for even more.
If you’re playing European roulette you have a few additional bet options. They are known as “Called Bets” or “Announced Bets” and involve bets that relate to the position of the numbers on the roulette reel as opposed to the position of the numbers on the betting table.
Called bets can be fixed or variable.
Neighbors Bets are neighbors of zero, that is, a bet that covers 17 of the wheel’s numbers, all of which are those numbers that are the closest to the zero. You have a 45.9% chance of winning a Neighbors Bet but the pay-out isn’t fixed so it can be anything up to 24:1.
Zero Game – The Zero Game bet is similar to the neighbors bet but it only covers 7 numbers closest to zero, not 17 numbers. The payout is variable, anything up to 26:1 and the odds are 18.9%.
Thirds of the wheel bets cover the 12 numbers opposite the zero. The payout is fixed at 17:1 and the odds of winning this bet are 32.4%.
It’s clear that it’s hard to make a recommendation of which type of bet you should place when playing online roulette. Everything depends on your preference – do you want to play a riskier game of American roulette over a safer game of European roulette? Do you want to try the riskier inside bets or the safer outside bets?
Every player has his or her own playing style. If you’re looking for the surest possible win, pick an outside bet in a game of European Roulette. If, however, you like more of an element of risk in your gaming adventure, choose an inside bet in a game of American roulette.
Best of all, mix them up and see what works best for you!