Much loved by millions of casino goers the world over, Roulette is one of those casino games which is largely dependent on luck. To find out more tips about how to make your luck go further, read our Roulette Rules below.
Our Favorite Roulette Casinos
The only thing one can control how to play Roulette is by deciding where to place their bets. This is done by players laying down their chips on the numbers, colors, or sections. Usually, chips are placed where they think they will have the greatest chance of getting a return. In addition to this, odds are also increased or decreased depending on whether one is playing European or American Roulette. Traditional Roulette wheels, like the one present in our Free Roulette game at CasinoTop10, are numbered from 1 to 36 in a seemingly random pattern and are alternately red and black. European Roulette wheels have a single green pocket which is numbered 0.
Meanwhile, American tables, which, as the name suggests, are more common at US online casinos, have a second extra green pocket marked 00. It is this extra green pocket that gives American Roulette a greater house edge. Withal it is for this reason that the American version of Roulette is harder on your pocket than its European counterpart. Understanding how to play Roulette is in part down to understanding subtle differences like this. Due to the fact that Roulette is a game of French origin, many of the French terms are still used to describe the Roulette rules and strategies that one can employ to further his chances of winning. These frenchified Roulette rules will guide you on how to play Roulette at an optimum level. The rules will be discussed further on this page and you can also find short explanations of them on our Roulette terms page.
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Roulette Rules: How to Play Roulette
If Roulette is your game, you’re in luck. The game is featured at most, if not all casinos online. If you THINK Roulette could be your game, but you don’t know how to play it or aren’t sure how it would work online, here are the basics: When you approach an online Roulette table, you will see a layout with the numbers 1 through to 36 plus a 0 pocket if you’re going to be playing European Roulette (as aforementioned, if you choose to play American Roulette your wheel will also have a double zero pocket as well as the standard single zero one). The object of Roulette is to guess where the ball will end up on the next spin of the wheel and players can bet on red or black, a single number, or a group of numbers, with the odds becoming greater or lesser accordingly. A simple rule of thumb to trying to understand how to play Roulette and how the odds work is this: the greater the chance of you scoring a win, the lower the payout will be.
Roulette Odds: The Truth
A Roulette layout is numbered 1 to 36 which should imply that each number should show up on average once every 36 times. For every time any specific number comes up, that number should supposedly not come up another 35 other times. Therefore, the odds on a number should be 35-to-1, which is exactly the payoff for hitting one number. Similarly, hitting one of a two-number spread is 17-to-1, and a four-number spread is 8-to-1. Hitting a number in one of the three columns pays 2-to-1. Hitting red or black pays even money for a 50-50 shot. So far, so golden. However, the problem with this scenario is the fact that this isn’t an accurate picture of everything as we’ve failed to account for the presence of the green zero (and double zero) spaces on the wheel which is ultimately where the casino house edge is found. It’s the green zero pocket that makes the difference because it’s where the casinos will actually make money. It is because of these spaces that the odds of hitting an individual number are actually 37-to-1, not 35-to-1 (and so on throughout the layout).
Betting Options in Roulette: The Only Game where you’re spoilt for choice!
In many online casino games, different bets have different returns and these are usually based on how much the player is willing to invest. In online craps, for instance, a certain bet can offer a house edge of around 2%, whereas other bets have a house advantage of over 10% – the trick is always to read the rules well so that you will be able to plan your course of action accordingly and decide whether the particular game that you have your eye on is actually worth your time and energy. Unlike many other casino games, in Roulette, the house advantage is always the same whatever bet you make, however, just because that is the case, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the odds of winning are the same for all the bets you can make and when learning how to play Roulette it’s important that you keep this in mind. If you bet black, you will almost certainly win almost half of the time (the zeros stop you from having a fifty percent chance of winning), but if you bet on a single number you will only win one time in 37 or 38 depending on which wheel is used. Bets with higher odds pay off better, but in the long run, the result is the same wherever you put your chips. Below you have all the betting options for roulette which include the payout and the odds for both American Roulette and European Roulette.
|Bet||Number Combo||Payout||European Roulette Player Odds||American Roulette Player Odds|
|Straight Up||1||35 to 1||2.7%||2.6%|
|Split||2||17 to 1||5.4%||5.3%|
|Street||3||11 to 1||8.1%||7.9%|
|Square / Corner||4||8 to 1||10.8%||10.5%|
|Fiver-Number||5||6 to 1||13.5%||13.2%|
|Six Line||6||5 to 1||16.2%||15.8%|
|Column||12||2 to 1||32.4%||31.6%|
|Dozen||12||2 to 1||32.4%||31.6%|
|Even / Odd||18||1 to 1||48.6%||47.4%|
|Black / Red||18||1 to 1||48.6%||47.4%|
|High / Low||18||1 to 1||48.6%||47.4%|
European Roulette Rules: Always go European if you can!
Right, so now that we’ve taken a look at all the betting options and their odds, let’s take a closer look at Roulette’s rules which if you understand properly you can literally rule the day and the table with. Despite what you may have heard on the mean streets of Las Vegas, Roulette is essentially a trivially simple game to play which is why so many people have grown to love it. Not only can the player choose and change the direction he wants to go in with each spin of the wheel, but as soon as all bets have been put on the table using colored chips to distinguish each player, the croupier will halt the betting, spin the great wheel, and roll the ball. It is only when the ball comes to its final resting place in one of the pockets that the croupier will announce the result, collect all the losing bets, and give the winner his due.
Of course, the fun doesn’t end here at all. And in fact, there are additional Roulette rules which some casinos and houses allow such as the “La Partage” and “En Prison” which we will be tackling individually shortly and which make how to play Roulette a more interesting journey. Both the “La Partage” and the “En Prison” Roulette rules effectively halve the casino edge on even-money bets which means that they are handy things to have access to and if you ever have an online choice, or even if you’re just playing a quick game of Roulette at home, decide at the very beginning which of the following Roulette rules you would like to incorporate into your game and get playing!
“En Prison” Rule
When it comes to this particular Roulette rule, the player must keep in mind that it can only be applied to even-money bets, if and when a zero comes up, the player has two options:
- He can either reclaim half the bet and lose the other half OR
- Leave the bet “en prison” (in prison) for the next spin of the Roulette wheel for an all-or-nothing gamble. Unfortunately, if the next spin is another zero, or does not match the imprisoned bet, then the entire bet is lost. However, if the subsequent spin’s outcome matches the bet, the player will get his money back.
“La Partage” Rule
Reminiscent of the aforementioned “En Prison” rule, the player loses half their bet and doesn’t enjoy the option of leaving their bet “En Prison” for a later spin. “La Partage” is used for ‘outside’ even-money wagers: Red/Black, High/Low, Odd/Even, and can also apply when the result is zero.
American Roulette Rules: They’re not for everyone!
In both North America and the Caribbean, you will find that Roulette wheels have a double zero and that all bets (except direct bets on the selected zero) are lost when either zero turns up. Of course, this sadly results in significantly worse odds for you the player, and an increase in the casino’s edge. It is, for this reason, more than any other that Roulette is less popular here than it is in other parts of the world. On top of all this, some American casinos also allow an additional bet called a “Basket Bet” which is staked by placing chips in the same way as for a “Line Bet” on the outside of the dividing line between the zero row and the row featuring 1, 2 and 3. This bet normally pays out 6 to 1 which gives it odds worse than any other Roulette bet. Keeping all this in mind, I think most of you will conclude that it doesn’t really pay to play the American way!
American or European Roulette? Make Your Choice!
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Maximum and Minimum Stakes: What’s the Big Deal?
Some casinos post a maximum and a minimum stake for a Roulette table in order for players to know what they will have to wager. This can be particularly helpful for people who take money management seriously and want to budget accordingly (read more about Roulette money management here). Typically, the total amount of a player’s inside bets must exceed the minimum stake at each spin of the wheel, however, the maximum stake usually shows only the maximum allowed for a single number “Straight Up” bet. The maximum stakes change in accordance to the bet made proportionately – an example of this is the following: Let’s say the maximum bet allowed for a pair of numbers is double the maximum “Straight Up” bet, the maximum allowed for a “Corner Bet” is four times the “Straight Up” maximum and so on. Thus, this limitation is really on the amount that the casino can lose. For more information about the aforementioned terms, please read our page on Roulette terms.
Our Experts’ Tips on How to Win at Roulette
Roulette is purely a game of chance and any advice to the contrary is pure conjecture. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t work on giving yourself the best possible chance at winning or, at least, at minimizing your losses. Here’s what our experts suggest.
Tip #1 –Go European
The simplest and best roulette strategy to boost your chances of winning is to go for the European Roulette, rather than the American one. This is because the absence of the double-zero (OO) pocket in the European version slashes the house edge from 5.26% to 2.7%. In other words, you’re twice as likely to win. But, if you want to really boost your odds, then opt for French Roulette or French Roulette La Partage, both of which use the same wheel and betting options as the European one, but have extra rules that make the house edge super low.
In French Roulette, the rule called ‘en prison’, which is French for ‘in prison’, brings the house edge down to the same levels as those of video poker and blackjack. Through this rule, when you are playing even-money bets and the ball lands in the zero pocket, your bet money can be kept aside (or ‘in prison’) until the next round. Then, if your original bet wins the next round, you get it back; if not, you lose it. In the second version, ‘la partage’ stands for ‘the sharing’ and has the lowest house edge of any type of roulette (and lower than most other casino games). Through la partage, when the ball lands on the zero pocket, any even-money bets are paid out in half (rather than being lost). For more terms, visit our Roulette Terms page.
Tip #2 – Know the Payouts and Odds for Each Bet
Roulette bets are an art form and a science, and without knowing the basics you will not be able to plan out your gameplay. That is why it’s so important to know the type of bets you can make, and what they payout. In essence, there are two types of bet categories in roulette.
- The first group is called Outside Bets, and includes all bets made on a large amount of numbers at one go. So an outside bet is an all-red or all-black bet, bets on even or odd numbers, bets on high or low numbers, the Dozen Bet, or the Column Cet.
- The second group is called Inside Bets, and this is for bets on one or a small group of numbers. These are the Straight-Up Bet (i.e. on one specific number), the Split Bet (on two numbers adjacent to each other); the Street Bet (three numbers), the Trio Bet (on 0, 1 & 2 or on 00, 2 & 3, only), the Square Bet (four numbers which together form a square on the wheel), or the Six Line Bet (two columns instead of one).
This may all seem confusing, but with a little bit of practice which you can get over on our Free Roulette page, you’ll get the hang of it. And it pays to do so because only like that can you truly decide whether your gameplay will be made up of high- or low-variance bets or a mix of the two. What is always important is that you know the Roulette Rules as well as you possibly can.
Tip #3 – High- or Low-Variance Bets – Which One to Choose?
The easiest way to understand variance is to think about a coin being flipped: the chances of getting heads or tails are exactly the same (50:50) and therefore this is a low variance game. High variance, obviously, is the opposite. In roulette, the majority of Outside Bets are considered to be low-variance bets; while Inside Bets are considered to be high-variance bets. This is because the chances of winning an all-black, all-red, even numbers or odd numbers bets are all 1:1, but winning a Straight-up Bet has odds of 37:1.
As one can imagine, low-variance bets tend to pay out a lot less than high-variance ones, but since you’re more likely to win more often, then it’s worth just following a roulette strategy black and red only, right? Well, no, because in reality, both types of bets offer the same expected value. See, although your chances of winning are higher with low-variance bets than they are with high-variance bets, the amount you will win each time is small. On the other hand, while you will lose more often when making high-variance bets when you do win, the payout will be bigger. So, in the end, the choice of which bets you want to make is down to you. Our advice is to mix it up.
Tip #4 – Don’t Believe Everything You Hear or Read
The world of roulette is plagued with conspiracy theories, and these do nothing to truly help you win or limit the damage. So, for the sake of the truth, remember that:
- The roulette ball and the roulette wheel are inanimate objects and do not have ‘memory’. The chances of the ball falling on a particular number or color are the same every time the wheel is freshly spun and has nothing to do with any previous spins.
- There is no such thing as a biased wheel: the roulette wheel is completely random and no person can determine what the next spin will bring based on its supposed tilt or the dealer’s strength.
- Betting systems, while helpful in planning out a strategy, cannot help you win more often.
Tip #5 – Set a Budget & Stick to It
One of the worst things you can do during a game of roulette is to play without having a set budget. Indeed, this is the roulette strategy that works safe every time: decide how much you are willing (and can afford) to lose, and only play until that amount has been depleted. It’s also important not to chase losses. Remember that roulette is a game of chance and the universe doesn’t owe you a win just because you’ve suffered 10 losses in a row.
Tip #6 – Don’t Play Your Winnings
The only way to stick to your budget is to only play the amount you have, which means that when you bag a win, you should place that money aside. This will ensure that you will very rarely walk away from the table empty-handed, and it also means that you will actually have some extra money left over from your budget.
Tip #7 – Practice Makes Perfect
While roulette is based purely on chance rather than skill, practicing can help you understand the different bets and just how far a set budget can take you. So even when you’re just playing for fun, learn to set a budget and to organize that budget to work for you. Use our free roulette game to do jus that!
Tip #8 – Have Fun!
Ultimately, online roulette is a game and playing it should be fun. It is for this reason that we always advocate for responsible gambling, because absolutely no one has fun losing more money than they can afford and ending up in debt or trouble. Even so, always remember that one bad game of roulette does not mean you aren’t able to play or that you are unlucky. The game is what it is, embrace it but cautiously.
Don’t be left out in the cold, play Roulette online TODAY!
Maybe more than any other casino game out there, when it comes to Roulette, one must really pick which casino to play at with the utmost caution and ensure that he can actually sit down to a European wheel rather than an American one to increase his odds of making a good win. On top of all this, avid Roulette players must also ensure that their chose casino is Random Number Generator certified which means that the result they get on the spin of the wheel truly will be random. Since Roulette truly is all about Lady Luck, you do need to make sure that that luck isn’t actually being controlled by some bigwig hungry to make his already fat wallet even fatter. All the desktop and Mobile Casinos in our toplist have been specifically chosen for their fairness as well as their excellent casino promotions and frequent payouts so if cheating is a worry for you, we at CasinoTop10 can assure you that thanks to our meticulous planning and searching, you will have no such troubles and will be able to play with your mind completely at rest.
Of course, once you’ve read through the terms and conditions that each casino offers and picked the one which best suits your needs, the rest is plain sailing as Roulette truly is one of the simplest games to play on the net and in fact, all you need to do to play online Roulette is just click and drag the amount you want to bet onto the number or group where you want to place your bet and spin the wheel. After that, luck is all you can hope for. A final word of advice that we at CasinoTop10 love to give to all players is the following – always scout high and low for the best deals before you start on your Roulette champion journey as if you actually play towards a bonus (and nowadays many casinos are practically throwing welcome bonuses at their players willy-nilly), that bonus will both help you as well as decrease the house edge as you will be getting “extra” money which is not dependent on how well the game goes for you and how lucky you are. So sit back and start scrolling through our specially compiled toplist and don’t forget, playing Roulette is not just about winning but it’s about how you use your Roulette rules to play the game.
How to Play Roulette FAQ
What is the safest bet in roulette?
There are three bets in roulette that are considered equally safe. These are betting on odd/even, black/red & high/low – with the probability of any of these happening all being 48.6% if you play European Roulette and 47.4% if you are playing American Roulette. There are 18 chances for this to happen with each spin and so by placing these you can cover just less than half the wheel. However, the payout of these is, of course, the lowest available and you will get a 1 to 1 payout for these bets.
What is the secret to online roulette?
The answer to this question is simple, there isn’t one. However, there are ways by which you can hope to improve your results. There are some that are simpler than others – for example, choosing European Roulette gives you better odds from the get-go. While understanding the game you are playing to the best of your ability and understanding probabilities and different bets you can place will help you. Essentially, knowledge is power. Other factors like learning how to play roulette strategies and sticking to them are always going to help you have a measure for success. As will learning how to manage your bankroll in order to not go bust is going to be a huge help on your way to roulette success. As such, there is no need to search for a “secret” as the tools you need are already known, it is just taking them time to master them.
Is American or European Roulette Better?
Most would agree that European Roulette is better. This is because the odds are better due to the fact there is just one zero on the wheel as opposed to two. With the simplest benefit of this being shown in Even / Odds bets, Black / Red bets, and High / Low bets these are 50/50 bets with that only being hampered by the 0 itself. With the single 0 in European Roulette bringing it down to 48.6% probability, while in American Roulette, that extra 0 brings it down by another 1% to a probability of 47.4. However, the odds for every bet are lower in American Roulette than Europen Roulette so no matter what you place, you will be less likely to win in American Roulette than European Roulette.
If the odds are lower than in American Roulette, does it payout more?
Unfortunately, no. While often the odds are reflected in the payout, in roulette, both American and European Roulette will pay out the same amount irrespective of the different probabilities involved. Hence, you do not even benefit from the lower probability involved in American Roulette. Hence, there is no upside.
Should I Play French Roulette?
Sure, the French Roulette version of the roulette is a fun way to play roulette online and offers the same odds as European Roulette which we have established as being the preferred online roulette game over its American Counterpart. However, in French Roulette, there are two extra rules that you may also really enjoy, “En Prison” and “La Partage” – find out more about these further up this page!
What bet pays the most in online roulette?
The best bet for payout in roulette is the Straight Up bet, where you place your bet on a single number. With there being a payout of 35 to 1 on here. This is just under double the payout of the closest bet to it, Split, where you place a 2 number bet and this pays 17 to 1, Those interested in learning how to play roulette will be interested in winning as much money as possible and so many players start interested in the best payout but this is not the wisest move as the odds on Straight Up is just 2.7% and 5.4% for the Split. Hence, the best approach is to combine these bets will a variety of other bets that may have a lower payout but have better odds. If your straight-up does come in, happy days, but if it doesn’t, you are insured.
How to Play Roulette?
Roulette is a simple game but learning how to play roulette at the start can be tricky. The concept is as follows; place a bet on a number, area of numbers, or a type of number, spin the wheel, and hope your bet comes in. Sound easy, right? Well, there are quite a few factors more to consider before you start playing roulette online and this page will explain them all!