The Risks in Roulette

Many casino games like poker and baccarat are closely studied, particularly with regards to the probabilities at play in each game. Now, you'd think that a game of luck like roulette wouldn't undergo the same kind of scrutiny, but roulette has quite a bit to offer in the math and probabilities department too. Though you won't be able to affect a roulette game in the same way you could in poker, it's still a good practice to stock up on necessary knowledge like the probabilities of certain events happening on the roulette wheel.

In a nutshell, playing roulette puts you in a numerical disadvantage. American roulette with its 38 numbers, in particular, has a comparatively high house edge, or the casino's advantage over you, at 5.3%. Try comparing that to other popular casino games like blackjack which gives the casino a mere 2% edge. Although considerably lower, European roulette doesn't fare much better with a 2.7% house edge.

However, don't let all that naysay about roulette get to you. It gives a pretty good consolation prize in the form of its numerous winning combinations and options for betting. Statistically, that gives you a slightly better chance because you then consider more possibilities and situations. That little advantage can change between the variants of roulette. Although there are only two general classifications for roulette games - American and European - there are many, many more variants underneath either, each with its own rules and advantages. If you take your time exploring some of those, you might stumble upon certain kinds which bring the house edge down quite a bit, to as low as under 1.3%.

The consolation prize mentioned above gives you more or less 66 unique winning combinations, each with a payout of at least 1:1. You can even say that it's easier to win in roulette because, with so many combinations, the one with your bet on it is bound to win eventually. The word 'eventually' is used because you can't really tell when your bet will win, or if it will even win at all during the entirety of your session. Even if all the other possible situations had already come up, that's still no guarantee that you'll win the next one. As with other games of chance, that's a statistical misconception with roulette, and it could turn out to be a very costly one.

While it's true that you're somewhat at a disadvantage to the house when playing roulette, its rules and mechanics compensate by giving you, in a way, more options and opportunities. Just don't rely too heavily on a certain combination's occurrence at one time or another, because you very well may be bankrupt when that time comes.