Craps is possibly the most exciting game on the casino floor. High emotions and loud chatter are contributing factors along with the great diversity of types of bets that you can place. Another thing that makes it exciting is the fact that bets can be placed and/or removed after each roll of the dice. The action is non-stop.
The house edge varies greatly depending on the type of bet being placed. It varies from about 1.4 percent on “pass” and “come” bets to a whopping 16.67 percent on some single roll bets. Pass and come bets are generally good for beginners because the rules are pretty straightforward and the payout is generous.
One of the most basic, useful tools when playing craps is to know the likelihood of any given combination of numbers to appear:
For instance, if the point is set at three, the odds are very much not in favor of the point being rolled before a seven comes up. On the other hand, a point of six or eight has a much better chance of being hit before the seven comes up.
One of the best strategies for playing craps is to utilize the option for “free bets.” Free bets are paid out at a rate strictly based on statistics, and the house has no edge on these. This way, the overall house edge drops significantly, increasing your chances of coming out a winner. Additionally, you usually have the right to remove your free bet between rolls at any time if you change your mind, while your initial bet must remain on the table until a shooter’s turn is over.
Another strategy that some people work on is “controlled” or “rhythmic” shooting. Some shooters practice holding the dice in a certain way, trying to toss them with the same force, spin and angle each time in order for them to fall the same way more often than otherwise. It’s like a bowler perfecting his form to be able to toss that perfect strike every time. There is much debate as to whether this really can affect a shooter’s chances of repeatability, and it should be noted that the shooter cannot only bet on his own rolls.
Another thing to keep in mind is to remember to tip, or “toke”, the dealers. Sometimes you can manage to place higher odds this way, decreasing the house edge and increasing your take.
The real strategy here is to observe the other shooters at a table and try to determine if any of them show consistency in their results, either good or bad, and either betting for or against them as the situation warrants. This may be due to practiced controlled shooting, or plain, simple luck. Even a blind squirrel can find a nut once in a while, and if you happen upon a lucky blind squirrel you may be able to enjoy his profits, too. As with the roulette wheel, watching for trends is very important, and using this information to your advantage can substantially increase your potential for winning.