Craps can become an incredibly complex game as you learn the ins and outs of up to 40 different betting options. The following primer is intended to walk beginners through the basic game play.
When you take a place at the craps table the first thing to do is purchase chips from one of the dealers on hand. Most casino employees manning the craps table are accustomed to new players trying the game out, so don’t worry about interrupting the game or making a mistake. Just make eye contact with the dealer and have your cash in hand, and they’ll take care of the rest.
Once you’ve armed yourself with chips, you’ll need to wait for a new roll to begin before placing a wager. Again, just hang tight and wait for the dealer to announce the “come out roll.” When you hear this, it means the previous roll has ended and a new roll is about to begin.
When you start wagering on craps, the first basic bet to keep in mind while getting acquainted with the game is known as the “pass line.” This bet offers a 1.41% house edge, ranking it among the best bets from a player’s perspective in the entire casino. It’s also one of the most straightforward bets for beginners to understand. Remember though, a pass line bet can only be made on the “come out roll,” so make sure not to miss it.
When standing at a craps table you’ll see the felt is divided into several squares and areas for betting purposes. For now, ignore everything but the “pass line” square for simplicity’s sake, and once you’ve learned the game a little more, you can begin exploring the alternative wagers.
To place a pass line bet, all you need to do is move a chip (or chips) onto the corresponding square on the felt. This will be clearly marked pass line so you can’t miss it. If the shooter (the player currently rolling the dice) throws a 7 or 11 on the come out roll, you automatically win an even money return. When they roll a 2, 3, or 12, you automatically lose. Fortunately for you, 7s and 11s are the most likely numbers to be rolled, while 2s, 3s, and 12s are the most unlikely.
Should the shooter roll any other number but the winning and losing numbers listed above, that number is set as the point. This is where the action really begins. In order to win on a pass line bet, you need the shooter to roll the point number for a second time before rolling a 7. If they do roll a 7 before rolling the point, you lose the bet. When the shooter fails to roll either the point or a 7, they continue rolling until one of those scenarios occurs to end the roll.
The excited yells you’ve likely heard during a loud game of craps come from these in between rolls, because players can also make side wagers on the result of each roll.
Once a point is set you can slide a bet out behind your pass line wager and say you want the odds. The odds bet is the best wager in the casino because it’s paid as even money based on the odds of rolling the numbers.
The odds bet pays 2 to 1 on points of 10 or 4, 3 to 2 on points of 9 and 5, and 6 to 5 on points of 8 and 6. You should take the maximum odds bet if you can afford to.