Craps, although nowhere near as popular online as slots or roulette, is the casino game that hit the big screen several times over and has been an important element of popular film and theatre culture for decades. From Broadway shows to Blockbuster movies, Craps appeals to a wide variety of gamblers across the social spectrum.
Highly interactive and energetic, live Craps is the one where you see one super seductive lady throwing dice, and people around her shouting, for movie references check out the best scenes from “Casino” or “Indecent Proposal”. But apart from the sex appeal of Sharon Stone or Demi Moore, what is so interesting about throwing a dice and what can you win in Craps?
How the game is played
At a Craps table, there is a nominated shooter, the one who throws the dice. Players can take turns being the shooter or players can bet on the shooter, which menas if he/she wins so will the players betting on them.
Betting: The initial roll is named the ‘Come Out Roll’. The shooter rolls the two dice, giving 11 potential numbers and 36 potential combinations. If the total is 2, 3, or 12, the shooter ‘craps out’ and losses the Pass Line bets. Rolls totaling 7 or 11 are named Naturals, and they beat Pass Line bets. Any of the other numbers will become the Point, ( basically the marker) moving the game into the next round.
Following so far? Good, once a Point has been established, the shooter will throw dice, trying to gain the same amount as the Point number. If the Point number is hit, all Pass Line bets collect. The shooter can keep trying until he throws a 7 - this ends the round of Craps, and results in the loss for the Pass Line bets. If the shooter hits his Point, he remains the shooter for the new Come out roll.
There are a variety of bets you can make but the Pass Line is the essense of Craps. Once the shooter establishes Point, everyone places bets on the Pass Line, taking their odds depending on the point. (6:5 for 6 as an example.). If the shooter throws the Point before a 7, you win the bet.
With such a long history, in the slickest casinos across the world, the gangster slang around the table for dice combinations such as ‘snake eyes’ Craps is a game that catches the imagination. A game of odds ( not such great odds) where you can get deep into the statistics, Craps is for players who like to use their brain when they play.
How to play in an Online casino
To get started:
- Sign up with an online casino offering craps tables
- Make a deposit
- Join the craps table
How to play, Step by Step
The shooter throws the dice – this is known as the Come-Out Throw
- Options before the first throw - players can bet on the Pass Line or Don’t Pass Bar
- The Pass Line is when you bet on the shooter
- The Don’t Pass Bar is when you bet against the shooter
- Winning Shooter bets – either on numbers 7 and 11
- Winning Don’t Pass Bar numbers - 2, 3 and 12 (craps)
- Any other number that comes up ( rememebr there are 36 different options on two dice) is called the Point.
- From that ‘point’ on, on each throw , all Pass Line bets = the point
- The table is now open to other betting options marked on the table
- The shooter carries on throwing until the point number or a seven is rolled, if you bet on the Pass line and the point came up, you get paid.
- The shooter then begins again ( a new Come out roll) and repeats the process,
- UNLESS a 7 is thrown and then a new shooter starts a new new game
It is really as simple as that - from a technical standpoint at least. The major bets in the game get a little tricky, so here is a quick breakdown to help you get started.
Main Bets in Craps
As you probably know, craps is played using two dice thrown in the middle of the table. One player is a designated thrower, called the shooter, while everyone else bets on the outcome of the throw. Some of the main bet types players can bet on include:
- Pass Line bet – bet wins if the shooter roils 7 or 11 (often called Natural), and the bet pays even money. Players loose if the shooter rolls 2, 3, or 12, while all the other numbers will set what’s known as the Point, initiating an Extra round.
- Come Bet – Players can place this bet after the Point had been established. Players win if the shooter rolls 7 or 11 and lose on 2, 3, and 12. All other numbers set a new point and the players win if that new point is rolled before a 7. If a 7 is rolled first, players lose.
- Odds Bets – these are similar to side bets that become available once there is the Point. Players can bet on Pass / Don’t Pass Line Odds and Come / Don’t Come Line Odds. These bets are paid at true odds, so there is no house advantage.
- Place Win / Place Lose – betting that the Point number will / won’t be rolled before a 7, with odds varying depending on the chosen number.
- Buy – Similar to Place bets, but with better odds and a 5% commission paid to the house.
Craps is fairly complicated, with many betting opportunities, and these are just some of the main bets explained. If you’d like to know more, check out our detailed article covering craps betting types and the best strategies.
Odds and House Edge in Craps
The house edge in craps depends on the types of bets a player places. Some bets come with almost no house edge while others are very favorable for the casino. On average, however, the house edge with craps is around 1.41%, which makes the game much more favorable for the players than, say, roulette, blackjack, and many other table games. You can find out more about craps odds in our detailed article covering all important aspects of the topic.
Variations of Online Craps
Like with most popular games, such as roulette or blackjack, online craps also comes in several different variations. Although they are essentially the same game, they features some different bet types, somewhat different odds, etc. The main online craps variations include:
- Crapless Craps – reduced house edge, especially for come-out rolls
- High Point Craps
- Simplified Craps – as the name suggests, the game features simplified rules with a single roll
- Die Rich Craps – played with just one die
- New York craps – quite different from the classic variation, with no Come and Don’t Come bets
The Final Word on Craps
Online Craps is faster than the land-based version which means there are more throws. Apart from being faster you get the added extras of online bonuses that you wouldn’t have in a casino or local craps game.
Being a success at Craps boil down to your betting strategy and a bit of luck. Make sure you know your Pass lines from your Points before you dive in. Test out Craps at one of our suggested online casinos to get the online experience of being a ‘wise guy’.
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