Roulette Guide


Roulette is one of the most popular casino games. It is the highlight of most casinos, professional players frequently try their hand at it and even beginner gamblers know how roulette is played.

What is more, the game seems quite simple. The dealer spins the wheel, drops the ball, and once the ball lands on some of the numbered fields of the wheel, that’s the winner.

In all honesty, this is a decent if oversimplified. description of the game. However, there’s also much more to roulette. This is because the game has several different variants and offers wagering on lots of inside and outside bets.

However, you shouldn’t worry about this. Stay with us and you will find out everything you need to know to bet on roulette like a pro.

Roulette Versions

There are several different roulette versions and the most popular of these are:

  • European Roulette,
  • French Roulette,
  • American Roulette.

European and French Roulette are quite similar. Both variants have only one zero and players can bet on numbers 1 through 36.

The only difference between these two is in the name of bets. In French Roulette, wagers are written in French which makes betting on this roulette variant slightly fancier, but not much different from European Roulette.

Additionally, some special bets and rules (more about them in a minute) are only applicable to French or European Roulette games respectively.

American Roulette, on the other hand, is slightly different. In it, players can still bet on numbers 1 through 36, but there are two zero fields. One of them is with a single zero and the other one is a double zero field.

This means that there are 37 numbered and coloured slots in European and French roulette. In contrast, there are 38 of these in American roulette.

As you will later find out, this also means that European and French roulette come with lower casino edges while American roulette games have an almost two-times higher casino margin. However, American roulette games usually balance this out with lower minimum bets. That’s why it is important to check each roulette table’s betting rules before you start playing.

Roulette Rules

Now that you know the main versions of roulette, we can move on to the rules. These are pretty easy to comprehend so it shouldn’t be a problem even if you are a roulette beginner.

Each roulette game is played on a roulette table. This is comprised of a wheel and a table where bets are placed. The wheel, as we already mentioned, can have either 37 or 38 coloured and numbered sections. The table shows the different bets and odds which each outcome has.

Basically, each game of roulette starts when the dealer asks the players on the table to place their bets. Players can do this until the dealer has spun the wheel and can sometimes even bet while the wheel is spinning. Before the wheel starts to slow down, the dealer closes betting and everyone waits for the ball to drop in a given section.

It is important to note here that players shouldn’t touch their chips at any time after placing their bets. After the ball has landed, the dealer first removes the losing bets and takes the chips. He then proceeds to pay off the winners. Once again, it is crucial that you don’t touch your chips even at this stage. After all bets have been paid off, players can collect their stakes which remained on the table.

Here are also some additional rules that might come in handy the next time you are in a casino. For example, when a player wants to leave the table, he must first ask the dealer to change his chips. The player then takes the chips that the dealer gave him and cashes them in. Another thing that you should know is that each player on a roulette table gets chips which are of a different colour. Usually, there are up to 6 players on a roulette table, so this means 6 sets of chips too.

It goes without saying, but if you are playing a game of roulette at an online casino, the rules about not touching or exchanging the chips are basically irrelevant. The dealer or software will do all of those things for you and you will only need to place your bets.

Roulette Bets and Payouts

There are lots of different bets in roulette and these come with different payouts. The payout in roulette reflects how likely an outcome is to happen. The more likely the outcome is, the lower the payout a player would get.

In roulette, there are three types of bets: inside, outside, and announced bets. Inside and outside bets are offered at every roulette table, while announced bets are considered as more exotic wagers and not all tables offer them. If you are a roulette beginner or even an aspiring pro, inside and outside bets are more than enough to know how to play the game properly.

Let’s look at all inside bets that a roulette player can bet on:

Bet Description Payout
Straight up Betting on the winning number – place chips on the number. 36x wager
Split Betting on two numbers – place chips on the line between them. 18x wager
Street Betting on three numbers – place chips on the horizontal line that contains the numbers. 12x wager
Six line Betting on six numbers – place chips on the line between the two horizontal lines you want to cover. 6x wager
Corner Betting on four numbers – place chips on the shared corner of the numbers. 9x wager
Trio Betting on three numbers (only in single zero roulette) – place chips on the line the two numbers share with 0. 12x wager
Basket Betting on four numbers (only in single zero roulette) – place chips on the line between 0 and the three numbers (1, 2, and 3). 9x wager
Top Line Betting on five numbers (only in double zero roulette) – place chips on the line between the zeros and 1, 2, and 3. 7x wager

As you can see, Straight up pays out the most. This is to be expected as it is the most difficult bet. Other bets come with lower payouts, but all have the same casino edges, except for one.

The Top Line bet, which is only available in American Roulette, should actually come with a 7.2x wager payout. However, this is not the case because the casino has a higher edge on this bet. This means that players should avoid this wager as it is the worst roulette bet of them all.

In addition to inside bets, there are also lots of outside bets in roulette. Here are all of those too:

Bet Description Payout
Red/Black Betting on red or black sections. 2x wager
Even/Odd Betting on even or odd numbers. 2x wager
High/Low Betting on numbers from (1-18) or (19-36). 2x wager
Dozen Betting on 12 numbers – (1-12), (13-24), (25-36). 3x wager
Column Betting on the three vertical columns as they are laid out on the roulette table (12 numbers each). 3x wager

As is evident from the inside bets table, three of these bets payout even money. They cover half of the numbers and sections on the wheel and that means that they come with a 50% probability, hence the even odds. This means that if you back a bet with $1, you would get $1 as profit if that bet wins.

The Dozen and Column bets, on the other hand, payout 2 to 1 (3x your wager). This means that if you back the first Dozen with $1, and you win, you will get $2 as profit (total winnings of $3).

It is worth noting here that sometimes inside and outside bets may come with different betting limits. For example, you might be able to place a minimum bet of $1 on inside bets, but the minimum for outside bets might be $2. This means that players should always check the rules a table has about these.

Special Roulette Bets and Rules

Some roulette games offer additional perks for players. These are in the form of special roulette rules which lower the casino edge. Some of these rules which favour the player include: La Partage, En Prison, and Surrender.

La Partage

La Partage is a rule which applies to outside bets which come with even payouts. This means that you can benefit from La Partage if you are betting on High/Low, Red/Black, or Odd/Even.

The rule stipulates that if the ball lands on 0, the player gets half of his bet back. This is great for players as it reduces the edge that the casino is working with for these bets.

En Prison

En Prison is similar to La Partage. It stipulates that if you bet on an even payout bet and the ball lands on 0, you will not get your wager back, but will also not have a losing bet. Instead, your wager will be En Prison (In Prison).

This means that it will stay on the table for the next spin too. If that bet wins, when the next game is played out, then the wager is returned to the player.

En Prison achieves pretty much the same thing as La Partage, but over two rounds. This increases the excitement and adds a unique twist to all tables that have this rule. As with La Partage, En Prison reduces the casino edge too.


Surrender is La Partage, but in American Roulette. As with La Partage, Surrender says that if the ball lands on 0 or 00, half of the original wager is returned. This bet also applies to outside even payout wagers. Like the other two, it also reduces the casino’s edge over the player.

Roulette Odds and Probabilities

We’ve been talking a lot about odds and casino edges here and that’s because they are quite important. Knowing the odds of each outcome and the margin the casino places on it is crucial if you want to make money from roulette.

What is more, if you play casino games which come with high edges, you are handicapped when facing the house. In the long run, this means almost certain losses.

Let’s look at those inside and outside bets, but this time with their respective chances of coming to fruition and the respective casino edges:

Inside Bets
Bet Covered Numbers Chances to win European Chances to win American Casino edge European Casino edge American
Straight up 1 1/37 1/38 2.7% 5.26%
Split 2 2/37 2/38 2.7% 5.26%
Street 3 3/37 3/38 2.7% 5.26%
Six line 6 6/37 6/38 2.7% 5.26%
Corner 4 4/37 4/38 2.7% 5.26%
Trio 3 3/37 only European 2.7% /
Basket 4 4/37 only European 2.7% /
Top Line 5 only American 5/38 / 7.89%
Outside Bets
Bet Covered Numbers Chances to win European Chances to win American Casino edge European Casino edge American
Red/Black 18 18/37 18/38 2.7% 5.26%
Even/Odd 18 18/37 18/38 2.7% 5.26%
High/Low 18 18/37 18/38 2.7% 5.26%
Dozen 12 12/37 12/38 2.7% 5.26%
Column 12 12/37 12/38 2.7% 5.26%

As is evident from the table, American Roulette has an almost two times higher edge than European Roulette. This means that players should always have a very good reason to choose the American over the European version of the game. As we said, casinos often offer more flexible betting limits to make American Roulette more appealing.

Another interesting thing that you can see from the table is that all European bets come with the same 2.7% casino edge and almost all American bets come with identical 5.26% margin.

The only exception to this is the American Top Line bet which comes with a house edge of 7.89%. This means that the player can expect a 92.11% RTP (Return to Player) which makes it the worst bet in roulette and one of the worst in a casino. Only some slot games come with higher edges and lower RTP.

Winning Strategies

There are not many winning strategies that you can use in roulette, but the ones that you follow should be used as frequently as possible.

Roulette is first and foremost a game of chance. This means that the most important thing that you should have to win is luck. Luck is essential for most casino games, but it is crucial in roulette.

This is because it also plays a role in one of the most popular strategies that roulette players utilize – to know when to leave the table. The strategy stipulates that players should get up from a table while they are still on a winning run or only after a couple of losses.

Luck is important in this approach because for a player to be able to leave a table while in good financial standing, he has to win several games first.

After the player has won a decent amount of money, he should say “That’s it”, should stand up and should cash in his chips.

If a player stays for very long in a game of roulette, those high roulette edges and low RTPs would catch up to him sooner or later. That’s why it is very important for a player to know when luck might be leaving his side.

The other strategy that roulette players should adhere to is never to place bets on Top Line in American Roulette. This is the worst roulette bet by a country mile and should always be avoided.


Roulette is very interesting and easy to play. The only thing which might prove tricky for a beginner to understand is the number of bets and payouts. However, after playing several games this should no longer be a problem. Once players get to know the basics, even the newest among them will take to roulette like ducks take to water.

There are a couple of things that roulette players should know about though. The first one is that roulette games and American Roulette in particular, come with quite high house edges. This means that the player will find it hard to outdo the casino in the long run as the odds are stacked against him. These edges are slim, but with time can prove decisive.

Another thing that roulette players should remember is that roulette is a game of luck. There are a couple of strategies that players can use, but without luck they’ll find it hard to leave the table with lots of winnings.

All in all, roulette is an excellent game to kill some time on. It is fun, fast-paced, and offers lots more bets than other casino table games. However, those high edges shouldn’t be disregarded or taken lightly. Players should know when to leave the table if they are to have a profitable roulette experience.

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