Real Money Roulette Guide

Blaise Pascal is one of the most famous scientists of all-time. But did you know that Pascal was the man behind the invention of Roulette? This is still a matter of debate, but it’s said that Pascal’s failed attempts at building a perpetual motion machine in the mid-1600s led to the creation of the Roulette wheel. Pascal’s work was used to build a gaming wheel in 1720, then the French/Italian lottery game known as Biribi was adapted for use with the wheel, and voilà: Real money Roulette was born.






Sadly, Biribi was outlawed in 1837, but Roulette became a smash hit in the casinos of Paris, then spread throughout Europe and into the New World. You can play online Roulette anytime you like at; we’ll introduce you to all the games, take a look at the odds for the different bets you can make, and show you some of the strategies people have used at the wheel. Yes, there is such a thing as a Roulette strategy – and some of them even work.



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Online Roulette Games You Can Play

Online Roulette Games You Can Play

Roulette games are generally divided into two camps: American Roulette, and European Roulette. You’ll find both versions at, each with a “Classic” and a “New” layout. Here are the differences among the four Roulette games:


American Roulette

This is the updated, streamlined version of the game you’ll find at just about every casino in North America. The American Roulette wheel features 38 pockets: 18 black, 18 red, and two green. Each pocket has a number: odd numbers are Black, even numbers are Red, and the two Green spaces are the single-zero (0) and double-zero (00). After you place your bets, the wheel will spin counter-clockwise, then the Roulette ball will be placed on the wheel and given a push in the opposite direction. Eventually, the ball will land in one of the pockets. Did you pick the right one?


Classic American Roulette

The original version of online Roulette is still popular, featuring a similar layout to what you’ll find at the live casino. All the standard betting options are available; you’ll also see the results of recent spins at the top-right of the display, in case you want to use any of the popular Roulette betting systems people have come up with over the years – we’ll discuss that in further detail later on.


European Roulette

European Roulette is often thought of as the original form of the game, with only the single-zero included on the “French” wheel. Actually, the old Roulette wheels in Paris had the double-zero as well; the so-called French wheel got its start in Germany during the mid-1800s, as a promotion to bring in new customers. Now just about every wheel in Europe features just the single-zero. This game is available in the sleek “New” format at, with added player controls for sound and music.


Classic European Roulette

There is one thing the “New” version of European Roulette is missing: the call bets (aka “French” bets) If you’ve ever played European Roulette at a live casino, you’ve seen the added racetrack oval on the layout, divided into the same 37 numbered spaces; this is where you place your call bets, which you’ll learn more about in our next chapter.



Roulette Bets

The standard bets you can make in Roulette come in two flavors: inside and outside bets. The inside bets are made by placing chips on the appropriate spot on the numbered area of the layout (the inside area). The simplest of these inside bets to understand is the straight bet, aka the single bet. This is when you bet on a single number from 0 to 36. Put your chips directly on that number, then the wheel will spin; if the Roulette ball lands on that number, you win.


Other inside bets will ask you to place your chips somewhere on the border between two or more numbers on the layout. For example, the split bet covers two adjacent numbers, horizontal (like 26-27) or vertical (like 27-30). Place your bet on the border between those numbers; if the ball lands on either number, your bet wins. Here are the other inside bets available in Roulette, along with where you place your chips:


Street: Any three consecutive numbers in a horizontal line
     - Place chips on outer edge of number at either end of line.

Corner (aka Square): Any four numbers that meet at a corner
     - Place chips on the corner shared by all four numbers.

Six Line (aka Double Street): Any six consecutive numbers in two horizontal lines
     - Place chips on the shared outer corner of either end of the two lines.

Trio: Any three adjacent numbers including a single-zero or double-zero
     - Place chips on the corner shared by all three numbers.

Basket (aka First Four): 0-1-2-3
     - Place chips on the outer corner shared by 0-1 or 0-3; European Roulette only.

Top Line: 0-00-1-2-3
     - Place chips on the outer corner shared by 0-1 or 00-3; American Roulette only.

Row: 0-00
     - Place chips on the edge shared by 0-00; American Roulette only.


The outside bets in Roulette are the ones where you place your chips within the designated space on the outside area of the layout. The most familiar of these are the even-money bets on Red or Black, Even or Odd, and Low (1-18) or High (19-36). There’s also the Dozen bet, where you wager on the ball landing in the first (1-12), second (13-24) or third dozen (25-36), and the Column bet, covering either of the three columns on the layout. Some live casinos also offer the Snake bet, which covers the Red numbers 1-5-9-12-14-16-19-23-27-30-32-34 in a zigzag pattern on the layout.


Finally, we have those fancy call bets that you can make when you play Classic European Roulette at Take a closer look at that numbered oval, and you’ll see the following three areas marked inside:


Voisins du Zéro (“Neighbors of Zero”): Bet nine chips, or any multiple thereof, on the group of 17 numbers between 22 and 25 on the French wheel. Two chips will go on 0-2-3, two more on 25-26-28-29, and one each on 4-7, 12-15, 18-21 and 19-22.


Tiers du Cylindre (“Thirds of the Wheel”): Bet six chips, or any multiple thereof, on the group of 12 numbers between 27 and 33. One chip will be placed on each of 5-8, 10-11, 13-16, 23-24, 27-30 and 33-36.


Orphans (aka Orphelins): Bet five chips, or any multiple thereof, on the group of eight non-zero numbers not included in the above call bets. One chip will be placed on each of 1, 6-9, 14-17, 17-20 and 31-34.


There’s another call bet specifically for the single-zero, named Jeu Zéro (“Zero Game”) and designated by the large 0 on the oval. This covers the seven numbers closest to the zero on the wheel, plus the zero itself. One chip will be placed on each of 0-3, 12-15, 26, and 32-35; like the other call bets, higher multiples are allowed. Finally, you can make a “Neighbors” bet covering any non-zero number and the two adjacent numbers on either side of the wheel. This will be a combination of five single bets on each of the five numbers in question; you can select more than one starting number at a time with this wager, even if their neighbors overlap. Each of these call bets can be made at by tapping or clicking on the desired name/number within that magic oval.




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Roulette Odds

There are two ways to think about the odds in Roulette. One is to boil everything down to house edge. In European Roulette, every wager comes with a house edge of 2.70%; in American Roulette, because of the double-zero, the house edge nearly doubles to 5.26% – except for the Top Line bet, which has an edge of 7.89%. This obviously makes European Roulette a more favorable game for the player, although many people prefer to see the double-zero; some live casinos have even introduced triple-zero Roulette in recent years.


The second way to think about Roulette odds is to look at your chances of winning each bet. These odds will change slightly when you switch between American Roulette and European Roulette; for example, the odds of winning a straight bet on the American wheel are 37-to-1, compared to 36-to-1 on the French wheel. The more numbers you cover, the better your chances of winning – and the lower your payout. Any of the even-money bets (Red/Black, Odd/Even, High/Low) has a 10-to-9 chance of winning in American Roulette, and 19-to-18 in European Roulette.



How to Win at Roulette

How to Win at Roulette

They say every game at the casino can be beaten. With Roulette, there is no mathematical way around the numbers, but since the wheel (at live casinos) is mechanical, people have tried all sorts of devices over the years to help them spot unbalanced wheels, where the Roulette ball is more likely to fall in certain pockets, or to track the ball’s progress and narrow down its possible landing spots before placing a bet. This kind of advantage play requires a lot of technological savvy, and it’s illegal in many jurisdictions, so we don’t recommend taking this route.


Overview of Roulette Betting Systems

Any non-mechanical solution to beating Roulette is not, in fact, a solution. All sorts of progressive betting strategies have been tried at the Roulette wheel, but they all rely on the Gambler’s Fallacy (aka the Maturity of Chance), which suggests that your chances of winning go up after a loss – and vice versa. For example, the classic Martingale strategy is to always bet on Red, then double the bet after every loss, and halve the bet after every win, until you’re back at one unit. Sadly, this will only ensure that you go broke more quickly in the long run, when you no longer have the bankroll to double your bet after a loss.


Other Roulette betting systems try to put off the inevitable by slowing the progression down, like the Fibonacci strategy, where bets are increased (or decreased) based on the Fibonacci sequence: 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21 and so on. Again, this will eventually leave you high and dry if you play long enough, just not as quickly as the Martingale will. You might even find yourself ahead after any one Roulette session. Don’t let this trick you into thinking you can beat Roulette – always play for entertainment purposes only.


Beginner Roulette Strategy

Strategy is still an important consideration in Roulette, especially when it’s your first time at the wheel. If you want to get the most out of your maiden voyage, try out all four of the Roulette games available at, and try all the different bets we’ve mentioned to see which ones you like the most. You can even use the Practice Play mode to play free Roulette games at first. There won’t be any real money on the line with these free games, so you can learn what Roulette’s all about without risking your bankroll. The Practice Play mode at lets you play other free online casino games, like Blackjack and Baccarat, so give it a spin, then play Real Money games when you’re ready.




Roulette Bankroll Management

Roulette Bankroll Management

The other important piece of Roulette strategy to consider is how to manage your bankroll. As we said, progressive betting systems won’t help you beat the game; instead, think about how long you want your Roulette session to last, and bet small enough so that you can meet your time targets. Divide your bankroll into suitably small units, and bet one unit per wager. Don’t chase losses (or wins) by increasing your bet size. This strategy will ensure you get the most bang for your buck.


Roulette FAQ

Q: What are the minimum and maximum Roulette bets at
A: The minimum Roulette wager at is $1; the maximum bet is $500.


Q: How old do I have to be to play Roulette at
A: The minimum age for playing Real Money games at is 18, although anyone can play using the Practice mode.


Q: What is French Roulette?
A: French Roulette refers to the special en prison (“in prison”) rules at most live European casinos, where you only lose half your wager if you place an even-money bet and the ball lands on the single-zero.


Q: What is California Roulette?
A: Since California is only allowed to spread certain card games (their “casinos” are actually card rooms), a Roulette game was approved in 2004 that uses 38 numbered cards instead of a wheel.


Q: Where can I play European Roulette in Las Vegas?
A: At press time, known locations include the Bellagio, the MGM Grand, the Rio, and the Wynn.


Congratulations! You are now a bona fide Roulette expert. Now that you’ve read this guide, you know about the different Roulette games you can play at, all the different bets you can make, and how to properly manage your bankroll – as well as your expectations. Enjoy the Roulette games, and we’ll see you at the wheel.




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