A first and very simple form of roulette (fr. the little wheel) was first introduced in 18th century France; some sources claim that it was actually Blaise Pascal, a French thinker, writer, and inventor, who devised the primitive form of the game we know today.
What we are sure of, though, is that it’s a hybrid of the Italian Biribi and a gaming wheel, and in its present form, it was already played in 1796, as a roulette wheel in Palais Royal in Paris was described by Jacques Lablee. However, Quebec game regulations from the mid-18th century suggest that roulette might have been played even earlier.
As of now, roulette is a highly popular and well-known casino game; you don’t have to be an avid gambler to know of it or even be familiar with its general rules. As such, it was only logical that, along with the advent of online gambling, different forms of online roulette would appear as well.
Roulette is incredibly easy to understand, fun to play, and its online versions offer great versatility, too. It’s no wonder that it continues to gain fans among players all around the world despite providing quite low mathematical chances of winning. And now it’s also conquering the hearts of gamblers playing with bitcoins.
For those who are new to the game of roulette, or even the world of gambling, we have prepared the guide below; read on to learn all you need to know to start playing!
Roulette in a Nutshell
Roulette is a casino game of chance, which means that the player doesn’t have much influence on the outcome – but it also makes it a great place for beginners to start, as there aren’t any complicated rules you need to get a grip of first.
The game’s main goal is to predict where the ball will fall once the wheel stops. To place a bet, you need to choose a betting range. Depending on the roulette version you are playing, it might be:
- a single number;
- groupings of numbers;
- whether the number is odd or even;
- whether the number is high (19-36) or low (1-18);
- the color of the pocket.
Roulette is played on a wheel divided into 37, 38, or 39 numbered pockets. The pockets alternate between red and black plus green (for 0). The numbers are placed in a clockwise direction (in most casinos), starting from 0. The wheel’s layout is symmetrical, so the pockets on the opposite sides are equal distances from each other.
After the bet is placed, the croupier spins the wheel and then spins the ball in the opposite direction in the track around the outer edge of the wheel. The ball will eventually decelerate and fall into one of the pockets.
The French and European roulette games are played on a wheel with 37 pockets numbered 0-37; however, the American Style adds a double-zero pocket (making it 38 pockets in total), and the lesser-known Sands Roulette style – a triple-zero pocket (making it 39 pockets in total).
Types of Roulette
The French, European, and American are the three main types of roulette game.
As we have already mentioned, both French and European styles feature only one zero pocket, while the American – two. The double-zero pocket reduces your chances of winning, so the American version is the least favorable to a player.
The European roulette is very similar to the French version, but the latter is more favorable to its players – which probably interests you most. The wheel and rules are all the same, but the French roulette includes the mysterious la partage and en prison rules. Don’t let yourself be frightened by the weird-sounding French terms – these two are what makes the game more beneficial to you!
La partage (‘sharing’) allows the player to get half of their money back if they placed it on an even bet and the ball fell into the 0 pocket.
En prison (‘in prison) is a variation of la partage; in a situation described above, you are allowed to leave half of the placed money on the table to use for the next bet.
As you can see, despite some differences, all roulette variations are similar enough for you to learn once and enjoy any of them without extensive research and study.
Of course, due to the growing popularity of online casinos, and roulette itself, digital game providers are constantly designing new features and variations to keep the players excited and entertained.
Roulette House Edge
The house edges for the three main roulette variations are as follows:
- The American Roulette: 5.26%
- The European Roulette: 2.7%
- The French Roulette: 1.35%
The house edge, sometimes referred to as the house take or the house advantage, is literally the advantage the casino has over its players.
It means that the casino is always more likely to win than you; the house edge is its main source of profit. The number refers to the gross profit the casino can expect from the bet.
So, if you place a bet for $100, and the house edge is 1%, the casino is certain to make at least $1.
However, it’s important to bear in mind that the house edge applies to the sum of all your wagers, not the initial amount of money you bet with.
How to Play Roulette Online
The first and most important thing is to choose a trustworthy and reliable online casino. Yes, there are plenty of online casinos that offer roulette games, but not all of them are safe and legitimate. If you want to ensure the safety of your money and personal data, make sure to find a casino with a valid trusted certificate issued by one of the accredited certification authorities. It doesn’t matter which roulette game you want to play – you should only bet real money on websites that have a solid track record and are regulated by a respected and trustworthy gaming authority.
Once you’ve found a casino that suits your needs, make sure to read the terms and conditions carefully. You’ll find out if they accept players from your country, if there is any minimum deposit amount required, and under what conditions you can withdraw money.
The next step is to sign up and create an account. If you are a beginner, we recommend using a free virtual account as it will allow you to familiarize yourself with the rules and practice your skills before risking any money.
No matter the roulette type, you will always have to start by placing a bet. Depending on your chosen game, you might be able to choose more than one bet. If you play with a live dealer, which is an option with some online casinos, your time to place a bet will be limited; otherwise, you can take as much as you want, which is incredibly convenient if you like to entertain yourself on the go. Simply select an option from the table, and enter the amount you wish to bet.
Then, it’s time to spin the wheel. You can do this by clicking on the ‘spin’ button unless you’re playing live. As mentioned above, the wheel is divided into numbers in a counterclockwise direction, starting from 0. The ball will go through a track around the outer edge of the wheel and eventually fall into one of the pockets.
Once the wheel stops, the system or the dealer will announce the winning number or other combinations and you can collect your winnings in case you’re lucky. If you’re not, don’t worry as you can always try again!
Online Roulette Variations
Given over 200 years of the popularity of roulette, it comes as no surprise that it has been developed and re-developed over time to fit the needs and demands of modern players. Bonus roulette games are just one of the many ways that developers have created to spice up the game and add a twist for the players (pun intended).
While the traditional gameplay is still available at most online casinos, you can also look out for roulette versions that are designed with different crowds in mind.
This game variation features an entirely new 3D layout and environment, which looks stunning and makes for a great gaming experience. The 3D mechanism allows for more engaging gameplay, making you feel like you are at the table in real life.
As the game suggests, this version of roulette involves more than one wheel on the table. The number of wheels varies by casino software provider, with some having as few as 3 and others up to 8. The additional wheels offer fun, thrill, and diversity to the game.
This version of roulette is the more thrilling version of the game and uses several balls instead of just one. Players love the diversity it offers, and it’s also a great way to enjoy roulette for those who don’t like classic roulette.
The mini version of the game includes a smaller wheel, usually with 13 pockets (0-12). Apart from that, the rules are the same, most similar to European roulette.
The live version is available in certain online casinos only. It enables you to enjoy the game in real-time with a dealer and a live chat option, which makes playing online roulette more exciting than ever before. The croupier announces the winning number as it’s being pulled out, which makes for more thrill.
This version of roulette is the more thrilling version This roulette variation offers its players a progressive jackpot, making the potential winnings much higher than usual. It also allows for an additional jackpot side bet.
The mini version of the game includes a smaller wheel, usually with 13 pockets (0-12). Apart from that, the rules are the same, most similar to European roulette.
Different Roulette Bets
Roulette offers a wide variety of bets that you can place, and here’s where you can strategize a little, calculating and estimating your chances of winning, as the bets differ among each other by odds and payouts.
Odds are pretty self-explanatory – they refer to how likely you are to win – while payouts to how much you will get if you win; for instance, if the payout for a bet is 2 to 1, you will get double what you betted if you were to win.
What’s great about roulette is that you’re not limited when it comes to the number of bets you can place, so you can experiment as much as you like in this area without spending a fortune to try out different combinations one after another.
All the roulette bets can be more or less divided into two categories: inside bets and outside bets.
As their name suggests, inside bets are placed directly in the inner section of the wheel. These are the basic bets with lower chances of winning but higher payouts.
The most popular inside bets are:
- Straight-up bet, which is placed on a single number, with the payout of 35 to 1;
- Split bet, which is placed on two adjacent numbers (for example, 1-2, 2-3, 3-4…), with the payout of 17 to 1;
- Street bet, or a trio bet, which is placed on three numbers in a row (for example, 1-2-3 or 6-7-8), with the payout of 11 to 1;
- Line bet is placed on two neighboring streets, with the payout of 5 to 1;
- Basket bet is a ‘first four bet’ on 0-1-2-3;
- Corner bet, which is placed on four numbers making a square on the table (for example, 10-11-12-13), with the payout of 8 to 1;
- Snake bet gets its name from the pattern you would create if you traced the numbers you choose with this bet – 1, 5, 9, 12, 14, 16, 19, 23, 27, 30, 32, 34.
Outside bets are located outside of the inner circle. While they don’t offer as high payouts as inside bets do, they have higher chances of winning.
The most popular outside bets are:
- Red or black bet, which is placed on whether a pocket will be red or black, with the payout of 1 to 1;
- Even or odd bet, which is placed on whether a number will be even or odd, with the payout of 1 to 1;
- High or low bet, which is placed on whether a pocket will be high (1-18) or low (19-36), with the payout of 1 to 1;
- Dozen bet, which is placed on a group of 12 numbers (the first segment (1-12), the second segment (13-24), or the third segment (25-26), with the payout of 2 to 1;
- Column bet, similar to the dozen bet, only this time you choose the group of numbers not by their position in a segment but by the column they are placed in, with the payout of 2 to 1.
These bets can only be placed on certain European tables and online casinos that use them in their software. They include:
- Voisins du zéro, which translates to ‘neighbors of zero,’ and refers to betting on numbers near the zero on the wheel;
- Jeu zéro, a zero game, is a bet placed on the seven numbers closest to zero;
- Le tiers du cylindre, thirds of the wheel, is a bet placed on 12 numbers on the opposite side from the zero pocket;
- Orphelins are the numbers outside of the Voisins and Tiers bets.
Playing the Bitcoin Roulette
As a newbie, you might not have heard of bitcoin, so here is a quick reminder: it’s a digital currency that can be used to make online payments. Bitcoin was invented in 2009 by Satoshi Nakamoto, an anonymous person or group, but it has gained popularity in recent years due to its advantages over traditional payment methods.
The main advantage of gambling with bitcoin instead of other types of payments is the security that the cryptocurrency offers. After all, when it comes to money, you don’t want to take any risks, right?
First of all, playing with bitcoin offers you anonymity. The only data you need to supply is the recipient’s bitcoin address, and it cannot be traced back to you. All you have to do is make a quick deposit, and off you go!
Bitcoin is also a convenient payment method. No need to wait for the transaction to be completed, no additional fees – everything is done fast, cheap, and efficiently, which makes them an ideal choice for online payments.
Finally, bitcoin is decentralized – there is no central authority that controls the network. As such, you don’t need to worry about your money being frozen due to some unexpected political turn of events or illegal activity of any third parties. Along with the unique encryption (cryptography), it makes bitcoin incredibly safe. The lack of government supervision also means that neither taxes nor fees are involved when it comes to payment.
To start playing roulette games with bitcoin, all you need to do is choose a game and follow the instructions on the website. You will be given a bitcoin address and payment instructions; just follow them carefully, and you will be able to deposit and withdraw your money effortlessly.
For all the necessary information, check out our bitcoin gambling guide. And for cryptocurrency newcomers, we have also prepared a short guide to investing in bitcoin.
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Stay Flexible and Don’t Lose Your Head
Although the roulette game is not too complicated, there are quite a few things to keep in mind. One of the most important things to remember is betting flexibility – you should never just stick with one bet.
The cunning players know that they have to play with variations and different bets in order to increase their chances of winning. For instance, if you place a bet on red and the wheel lands on it twice in a row, don’t repeat the same bet next time! Instead, try something new and switch to black or green – this will reset your luck and help you win more.
Remember that the odds are always in favor of the casino, so you have to be smart when it comes to placing your bets. You can’t win every time – but knowing how to adapt your strategy according to the current situation will help you win more often than you lose.
Speaking of strategies – once you’re familiar with the game, you can start experimenting with increasing your chances of winning. When you get to this, you may want to come back to our guide to the best roulette strategies.
However, the one crucial thing never to forget when gambling, be it online or at a land-based casino – never lose your head and manage your money sensibly. You shouldn’t be so attached to your gambling experience that you can’t pull yourself away when the time is right. If you are losing more than you can afford, or if you are starting to make bad decisions, then it’s time to leave the game. You wouldn’t want to lose everything you have won so far, or even worse – risk your financial security.
The Bottom Line
Roulette is a game that’s perfect for everyone – from the beginner to the most experienced gambler. It has simple rules and straightforward gameplay, so even if you’re not too familiar with gambling, you should get the hang of it quickly, but there are also many variations and bets that you can place to make it more interesting.
Roulette has been around for centuries, so it’s no wonder that many strategies have been developed over the years. We have only touched upon the basics in this article; once you’re familiar with the fundamentals, here is where a professional roulette strategy can come in handy.
Playing roulette online is quite different from visiting a land-based casino, but this doesn’t make it inferior; quite the opposite, as in most cases, online roulette sites offer more options and features, as well as more bonuses and promotions. It’s a great way to enjoy the game at your own pace and convenience.
So, are you ready to become the next roulette star?