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Online Craps Games

Online craps games are relatively new, but the popularity of craps can be traced back to the times of the Crusades. It originated from an Old English game known as Hazard, and the French originally dubbed it “crapaud” (which means “toad”).

In the modern craps game, one player tosses a pair of dice, while other players bet against the shooter or the bank. This version of the game was introduced to the United States (via New Orleans) by Bernard Xavier Philippe de Marigny de Mandeville.

Craps is popular largely because of the player participation and wide range of bets. It also requires very little equipment to play, and street games have helped the game grow in popularity.

Online craps games simulate the excitement of the real thing, and all casino software companies utilize a random number generator to ensure fairness. These games are available online in both downloadable and Flash formats.

How to Play Craps

Learning how to play craps isn’t particularly difficult, but it does take a bit of memorization to retain all the bets available to the players. Craps tables are traditionally run by four employees: two base dealers (who collect and pay bets), a boxman (who supervises the dealers and watches the chips) and a stickman (who stands opposite the boxman, announces winners, manages bets at the center of the table and collects the dice with a long stick).

Players take turns rolling a pair of dice. Players surrounding the craps table will make bets in an attempt to predict what the “shooter” will roll.

When a shooter receives the dice, a new round is started. The first roll of the new round is called the “come-out roll.” When the shooter completes his turn, the round is ended, and the dice are passed to a new shooter at the table. A player in line to be the shooter can choose to pass the dice along to the next player on his left.

Before a player makes a come-out roll, he must bet at least the table minimum on either the Pass or Don’t Pass line. The player is then offered five dice by the stickman, and he or she must select two.

The shooter then rolls the dice, making sure they are tossed hard enough to bounce off the wall surrounding the craps table. Another requirement is that the shooter rolls the dice with only one hand.

A come-out roll of 2, 3 or 12 is called “craps.” If this happens, the round ends and players betting on the Pass Line lose their wager.

A come-out roll of 7 or 11 is referred to as a “natural,” and this is considered a win for anyone who wagered on the Pass Line. The shooter can then choose to make a new come-out roll.

If the come-out roll results in a 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 or 10, then this number is now considered the “point.” The shooter will now try to roll this number again before a seven comes up on the dice. If they are successful, it will count as a win for all those who wagered on the Pass Line. If they roll a seven (which is known as a “seven-out”), then the round is over and the dice are passed along to the next craps player.

Craps Wagers

Each round, and each roll, players have a wide array of craps wagers to choose from. They include:

  • Pass Line Bet - Also known as the Win Line, this wager is won if the shooter gets a 7 or 11 on the come-out roll. The bet loses on a roll of 2, 3 or 12. Another way to win is to establish a point and then roll it again before a 7 comes up. House edge is 1.41%.
  • Don’t Pass Bet - If a 7 or 11 is made on the come-out roll, this bet loses. But if a 2 or 3 is rolled, then it is considered a win. A 12 is often considered a draw, although this may vary from casino to casino. If a point is established, the Don’t Pass Bet wins if a 7 is rolled first. In most cases, the Don’t Pass Bet is counting on the shooter to fail (which is sometimes considered poor manners). House edge is 1.36%.
  • Pass Odds - If a point is set, this additional wager can be made anywhere from one to one-hundred times the size of the initial Pass Line Bet. To win, the shooter must roll the point before rolling a 7.
  • Don’t Pass Odds - The opposite of the Pass Odds, this wager assumes the shooter will roll a 7 before making the point. The payout for this bet is determined by what number the point was.
  • Two Bet - Bet wins if the shooter rolls a two on his next roll. House edge is 13.89%.
  • Three Bet - Bet wins if the shooter rolls a three on their next try. House edge is 11.11%.
  • Yo Bet - Wins if the craps shooter gets an 11 on their next roll. House edge is 11.11%.
  • Twelve Bet - If the shooter next rolls a 12 (also known as “boxcars”), the bettor wins. House edge is 13.89%.
  • 2 or 12 Bet - If the shooter next rolls a 2 or 12, then the player wins.
  • Craps Bet - The player wins if the shooter gets a 2, 3 or 12 on the come-out roll. Expect to be unpopular at the table if you make this bet too often. House edge is 11.11%.
  • C & E Bet - Half the bet is wagering on a craps roll by the shooter, while the other half is wagering on a Yo. House edge is 11.11%.
  • Big Red - This wager wins if the shooter gets a 7 on their next roll. House edge is 16.67%.
  • Field Bet - The player is betting that a 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11 or 12 will come up on the next roll.
  • The Horn - This wager is four bets in one, and the player is wagering one unit each on 2, 3, 11 and 12. House edge is 12.5%.
  • Whirl Bet - A five-unit bet which combines a horn and any-seven bet. House edge is 13.33%.
  • Hard Way - The player is wagering that the shooter will throw a certain number the “hard way” before they get a 7. The hard way is when two dice have the same value and add up to a particular number (6 the hard way would be achieved by rolling a pair of threes).
  • Easy Way - An easy way is achieved by rolling two non-identical numbers which add up to another number. Six the easy way could be achieved by rolling a 5 and 1 or 2 and 4.
  • Place and Buy Bets - Players can wager than specific numbers will be rolled before a 7 comes up. Buy Bets are paid at true odds, while Place Bets are paid at odds worse than the true odds.
  • Lay Bets - The player bets on the shooter to roll a seven before the number which is wagered on. This bet pays true odds, but the casino charges a 5% commission.

Free Online Craps

Free online craps games can be found on the Internet, as well as big-money versions. Online casinos usually require a player to download software, while free versions often come in the form of Flash or Java-based games.

Most of the leading casino software developers offer online craps. Some of these include:

  • Chartwell Technology Craps - In their version, the Pass Line Bets pay out at even money, as do the Don’t Pass Bets, Come Bets and Don’t Come Bets. A Craps Bet pays 7 to 1.
  • Microgaming Vegas Craps - The house edge for Pass Bets is 0.471% and 0.455% for Don’t Pass Bets.
  • Playtech Craps - Their casino software offers 3 times odds on Pass and Come Bets. The overall house edge on their Craps game is 0.47%.

Craps Systems

When learning how to play craps, many players look for an extra edge against the house. For this reason, numerous craps systems are available on the market. These include:

  • The Martingale System - Players double their bets whenever they lose.
  • The Iron Cross System - This system allows a player to win on every roll which isn’t a 7.
  • Gambler’s Fallacy - The belief that past rolls influence future rolls. If a number hasn’t come up in the past 20 rolls, then this system would urge you to bet on that number.

Dice Control in Craps

Dice control in craps is achieved by placing the dice in a certain position in your hand and throwing them to reduce the randomizing effect. Respected books on the subject have been written by Stanford Wong, Frank Scoblete and Jerry L. Patterson.

While dice control might be possible, the casinos require dice to bounce off the back wall of the table, thus increasing the randomizing effect. Of course, this is impossible when playing online craps games, as players do not physically handle the dice.

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