Perhaps the most iconic of all casino games is the game of craps. Most people will recognise this game from movies and land-based casinos, but not everyone knows how craps is actually played. Rolling some dice and hoping for a winning result is the basic idea behind the game, but how do you know whether the results are good or not? Or the order you need to get the “good” results? If you don’t know these things, you’re not alone. In this casino guide from GoodLuckMate, we’re going to take you through the game and explain all the rules of craps in each of the different parts of the game. In addition, we’ll tell you how to play craps online.
How to Play Craps
Craps is a very sociable game since it’s played with a lot of players at the same table. However, not everyone will be playing the same way. There will always be one person, known as the Shooter, rolling the dice. Everyone else will be betting on the outcome of the shooter’s roll. There are several different bets to place, and there’s a specific order they need to be in. But before we get into explaining the bets, let’s have a look at how the dice have to be rolled.
Rules of Craps – the Shooter
Players are assigned to turns at the shooter position according to where they’re sitting around the craps table. The player who is the designated shooter starts off by choosing two dice.
The two dice have to be thrown the full length of the table. According to the craps rules, this must be done using only one hand, and both of the dice must be thrown simultaneously. When playing online, this is just a video while the outcome is RNG-generated. Once the shooter throws the dice, and the throw is approved by the dealer, this part of the game is over.
Come Out Roll
Once it’s been decided which player will be the shooter, the other players can place their bets as well. The first thing a bet should be placed for is the Come Out roll, which is the dice throw that starts the game round. The bet will be either:
- Pass Line: the shooter rolls a 7 or 11
- Don’t Pass Line: the shooter rolls a 2, 3 or 12
If the shooter rolls a Natural, which is either a 7 or an 11, the players betting on Pass Line will win. If the shooter rolls a 2 or a 3, the players betting on Don’t Pass Line will win. If the shooter rolls a 12, the players betting on Don’t Pass Line will achieve a push, which means their bets will be returned to them.
Establishing a Point
Any result other than the Pass Line or Don’t Pass Line numbers on the Come Out roll will establish a Point. Now the shooter will have to get this same result again for the players betting on Pass Line to win. It’s the value of the point itself that matters and not the exact combination of the dice that make up the point.
However, if the shooter rolls a 7 before they roll the second point, this is called a Seven Out. The players who placed a bet on Don’t Pass Line will win. The shooter continues to roll the dice until they get either the point or a 7. Once this is achieved, the game round is over.
Pass and Don’t Pass are the two major bets players make when they play craps for real money, but there are also other possibilities.
- Come and Don't Come are bets you can place after the Point has been established.
- You can also bet on the shooter rolling a specific number.
- You can bet on a result of the dice throw, and bet on a specific combination of numbers.
How to Win at Craps
This is one of the few table and casino games where it’s been proven that there are no strategies that will tell you how to win at craps. This is simply a game of luck, and betting on your luck might be the best craps strategy. You could use a progressive strategy when you play craps. Since there’s a 50/50 chance that you’ll win with a Pass Line or a Don’t Pass Line bet, and the same goes for a Come or Don't Come bet, a strategy based on the martingale theory could be used.
The odds for winning at craps are good, at least compared to other casino games. Actually, for some bets, such as Pass Odds and Don’t Pass Odds, there’s no house edge. With these bets, you have a 50% chance of winning, and the payout is 1:1. Other bets will give the house an edge between 1.36% and 16.67%. However, the house edge is one thing, but what the casino takes is another. For some bets, the casino will get their cut by taking a commission. This is why you might end up losing in the long run, even if you play on 50/50 bets.
Playing Craps Online
Craps is a very physical game since there needs to be a shooter who’s actually rolling the dice. And, no matter how advanced live casinos get, it’s simply impossible to toss a pair of dice through a screen. If you want to play a more genuine craps game online, a digital machine is your best bet. There won’t be anyone rolling the dice for you since these are fully digital dice where the result is determined by a random number generator. You can learn more about playing craps online in our in-depth guide.
There is, however, a new craps game available to be played at live casinos. The game provider Evolution has launched a game based on craps, where you get to bet and play as if you’re at a real land-based casino. You can, of course, not physically be the shooter, but other than that you’ll get a genuine feel for the game.