The Basics of Roulette


Roulette is one of the most popular casino games in the world and a gambling den isn’t complete without at least a single roulette table. This game of chance may look simple on the surface, but it provides a surprising depth for serious players who are willing to invest the time and effort.

The game consists of a wheel, a betting table, and a small ivory ball that is spun around the outside of the bowl-shaped wheel to land in a particular pocket. The wheel is divided into 37 or 38 divisions, with red and black numbers alternately numbered as well as the green zero (or double-zero on American tables). The croupier spins the wheel and the ball, and when it slows to a stop, the deposited ball will rest in a pocket that reveals the winning number for the current round.

Before the wheel is spun, the player places bets on which number or type of bet the ball will end up in by putting chips down on a special betting mat that has the corresponding numbered fields. The chips must be placed in the designated wagering area before the croupier announces that no more bets can be changed or withdrawn.

In addition to the standard inside and outside bets, there are a variety of other options that can be made. These include bets on individual numbers, various groupings of numbers, the color red or black, and if the numbers are high (19-36) or low (1-18).

These additional wagers offer higher payouts but also come with a lower probability of winning than the standard bets. Outside bets are the simplest and most common, and are usually made by placing chips in the outer ring of the table. Other bets can be made by putting chips on the intersections of the table (the square-shaped sections in the middle of the board), or on a series of lines that run horizontally, vertically, or diagonally on the board.

A successful bet on a column will pay out 12 to 1; the payout for a winning basket bet is 8 to 1, and a successful straight-up bet will pay out 35 to 1.

In the 17th century, roulette began its rise in popularity at French illegal gambling dens, where it was played with a dual-zero wheel. Its popularity spread globally as people were attracted to its simplicity and potential for high rewards.

Today, it is played in casinos worldwide and has spawned numerous variations that have added to the excitement and profitability of this classic game. While European and American roulette are the two most popular versions, many online casinos feature unique variations for their players.