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How to play craps

Casino craps is a game of chance in which players bet on the outcome of one or more rolls of a pair of dice. Of course, a pair of dice offers a total of 36 possible outcomes, of which six add up to seven; in other words, the probability of rolling a seven is 6/36 or, in percentage terms, 16.67% - higher than any other number - so is should come as no surprise that seven is the crux of the game of craps.

Many different bets are available in a game of craps, but most popular are ‘Pass Line’, ‘Don’t Pass Line’, ‘Come’ and ‘Don’t Come’ bets, all of which pay even money, or 1/1, and offer a house edge of 1.41%, in the case of ‘Pass Line’ and ‘Come’, and 1.36%, in the case of ‘Don’t Pass Line’ and ‘Don’t Come’.

Each betting round starts with a player, known as the ‘shooter’, rolling the dice. If the outcome of this so-called ‘come-out’ roll is seven or eleven - a.k.a. ‘a natural’ - Pass Line bets win, Don’t Pass Line bets lose and the betting round ends. Conversely, if the outcome of the come-out roll is two, three or twelve, the shooter is said to have ‘crapped out’; Pass Line bets lose and Don’t Pass Line bets win, except in the case of twelve, when Don’t Pass Line bets tie, or ‘push’.

Of course, the shooter may also roll four, five, six, eight, nine or ten, in which case the outcome establishes a ‘point’; if the shooter rolls the point again before rolling a seven, Pass Line bets win and Don’t Pass Line bets lose, and vice versa. Once a point has been established, players can place Come’ and Don’t Come bets, which are akin to Pass Line and Don’t Pass Line bets, in terms of winning or losing outcomes.

Other available bets include place win, place lose, buy, lay, big six, big eight, hardways and field bets, along with several, single roll proposition bets, including any seven (4/1), any eleven (15/1) and any craps (7/1). Proposition bets offer longer odds, but also significantly increase the house edge, up to 16.9% in the case of any seven.

Good Luck

Gareth The Gambler

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