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How to Play Craps / American Dice

Many casino players have been battling slot machines for years with varying success, not realizing that it is possible to easily reach a return of 99.2-99.6%. At the same time, you do not need to study the strategy beforehand and think about decisions in the process. We are talking about the game of Craps. Otherwise it is called «American dice». This casino discipline was considered exotic until 2020. Now it is offered on almost 100% of the gaming sites. This review will fill the lack of information and teach you how to play against the casino almost on equal terms.

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Basic principles of the game

The rules of the game Craps in the casino are not simple. It will be easier to understand them after finding out some of the points that are unfamiliar to online gamblers. There is no set of points on the dice and comparing combinations with the dealer.

There are two stages in the round. In the initial stage the player “orders” points. In the final stage, he tries to get them by rolling two dice.

The number of bet types is 30+. Four of them allow the player to return 99% or better. At the same time, they actually duplicate one another — it is possible for player to use only one of them.

Craps Game
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Odds of winning

It is useful to know the probabilities of winning both stages of the game of Craps. Also, which points order is the most favorable.

Event Probability
Winning the first stage – 7 or 11 22,23%
Losing in the first stage – 2, 3 or 12 11,12%
A seven in the second stage – loss 16,67%
In the second stage an order of 6 or 8 is fulfilled 13,89%
5 or 9 11,11%
4 or 10 8,83%

The return to the player depends on the allowed value of the additional Pass Odds bet. It is not profitable for the casino and is placed behind the main Pass Line bet.

When three new chips in addition to the initial one are allowed in the second stage of the stake, the player gets a return of 99.6% This is much better compared to slots with a high RTP.

The three added chips is a basic rule. Sometimes a land-based establishment or an e-craps provider (online casino) will change their number. Then the return to the player will be as follows:

  • Four extra chips – 99.75%.
  • Two – 99.4%.
  • One – 99.2%.
  • None – 98.6%.

In any casino in the world, the rules are standard. They differ only in the amount of delivery allowed. But it is possible to play and in a home format — with friends. This variety is called “street craps”. Usually use the casino rules, choosing a single pass-line bet. Delivery is prohibited because of the complex reciprocal calculations of the participants. Street craps are played with two people.

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History of Craps

The rules of the game of Craps were formed in the 1930s when gambling was legalized in Nevada. Earlier in the XVII century gambling entertainment with two dice hit Louisiana with French immigrants and spread throughout the states during the Civil War (1861-1865). Before that, it was played in England and northern France. The two-dice game came here from the Middle East during the Crusades.

Now in US establishments, the discipline shares the first place in popularity with Blackjack. On the Internet, Craps was an exotic discipline until 2020. Many gaming sites ignored it. The electronic version was created by about 10 software manufacturers — that’s not enough. Since 2020, the direction was taken up by the developer Evolution Gaming. As a result, Craps appeared in almost 100% of online operators.

The rules can be divided into two branches: recreational and professional. The former includes over 30 bets that are allowed to be placed at any time. For most of these bets, the casino advantage exceeds 4%.

Experienced players engage one of the following bets: Pass Line, Don’t Pass, Come and Don’t Come. These involve splitting the round into two stages. For all four, delivery is allowed, with no profit for the casino. Both recreational and understanding players operate at the table at the same time, choosing one of the ways of drawing: either with a single throw, bringing the result immediately, or with a long round of several attempts.

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Table and equipment

Average dimensions of the table in meters — 5 × 2. The height of the board from the floor is about 1 meter, and depth — 60-80 cm. The table is divided into two wings. Areas for bets (boxes) on them are duplicated so that 20-30 people can play at the same time. The bets are placed inside the table. Two dice are thrown there as well.

There are five dice in the Craps game set. Two are selected for rolling. The others are set aside. Only the players roll.

A stick is an essential accessory. It is a wooden “poker” about 1 meter long. It is needed to serve the dice to the player. Casino employees, leading the game, do not take the dice in their hands.

Also on the table are two plastic washers with “ON” and “OFF” written on the sides. They are used to show which stage of the game is in progress.

In Craps it is customary to play with chips. These are tokens without face value. They are exchanged for chips with a designated value, which the client receives at the cashier’s office of the institution. Each player has chips of a different color. Betting with chips is not prohibited.

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Participants

The main character is the stickman. His main duties are to serve the dice to the player and to name the combination. Traditionally, the stickman is obliged to entertain the guests: jokes and speeches for certain points.

Dealers are commonly referred to as boxman. Base is the wing of the table. There are a total of two bases. Boxmen are engaged in collecting chips and placing them on the boxes. Another participant on the casino side is the boxman. He exchanges chips for chips and monitors the correctness of the actions of the boxman.

One of the players is appointed “shooter” by agreement of all participants. He is to throw. The dice must necessarily hit the far side of the table. The shooter acts until he loses. Then the other player on the left begins to throw. It is not customary for the duty to be abandoned.

At online casinos in the live section, you don’t have to take bets, collect chips and trade chips. Therefore, the game is led by a single person. He only calls the dropped combinations. The throw is made by a special device — a mechanical arm.

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Game play and betting

The “correct” play on electronic Craps with pass-line betting and delivery will be discussed. About recreational betting we’ll talk at the end of the article.

  • STEP 1 — getting started. After starting the craps machine, you need to find the Pass Line area. It is located closer to the sides of the table. The chip is placed there and the button for throwing is pressed.
  • STEP 2 — preliminary stage. If 7 or 11 points fell out, the bet is paid 1 to 1. At this point the con is finalized. At 2, 3 or 12 the bet loses. There is also no continuation.
  • STEP 3 — Final Stage. When other points happen in the first stage of the draw, there is an order. The con moves to the second stage. Here it is necessary to fulfill the order before the seven falls out. If you play “correctly”, it is obligatory to place the delivery. It is called Pass Odds. A separate box for it is not provided. Chips are placed behind the main bet Pass Line.

The “correct” play on electronic Craps with pass-line betting and delivery will be discussed. About recreational betting we’ll talk at the end of the article.

  • STEP 4 — determining the winner. If a seven falls in the second stage of the stake, both bets lose. If the order is fulfilled, the payout is 1-to-1 on the pass-odds, and the payout is 1-to-1 on the pass-odds, with increased odds. Other discarded amounts, including 11s, do not affect the result — the throwing continues.

Other bets

The Pass Line bet is duplicated by three other bets: Don’t Pass, Come and Don’t Come. They have their own complicated mechanics and delivery is also allowed. The return to the player is the same as on the Pass Line, or lower by 0.1%.

The three named wagers are needed in a land-based establishment. In an online casino, you can forget about them and use only the Pass Line.

For reference, information on recreational bets. They do not need to be used, as the return in them is many times worse than for Pass Line with delivery.

Bet Event Casino Advantage
Any 7 Any 7 points 16,67%
Horn Will roll a 2, 3, 11 or 12 regardless of the seven 13,33% or 11,11%
Craps Will roll 2, 3 or 12 regardless of the seven 11,11%
Hardaways Take 4, 6, 8 or 10 will fall before the seven 11,11% or 9,09%
Big 6 / Big 8 6 or 8 will fall before the seven 9,09%
Field Will fall 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11 or 12 at any time 5,56%
Place Win 4 or 10 4 or 10 will happen before 7 6,67%
Place Win 5 or 9 5 or 9 will happen sooner than 7 4%
Place Win 6 or 8 6 or 8 will happen sooner than 7 1,52%
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Tips for beginners

When raising a bet, you need to consider the table’s maximum. It is usually only 200 times higher than the minimum. The limit applies not only to the initial bet. Delivery chips are taken into account. For this reason, raising after every failure is a bad way, as it is possible to exceed the table maximum. An increase is made after receiving a loss of a certain amount.

In a land-based institution it is possible to start with the Come bet without waiting. The new participant will be assigned an individual point — the entrance to the game will be immediately.

Recreational bets with high odds can be used in lottery format — once or twice per session. The only acceptable bet accepted at any time is Place 6 or 8. The payoff on it is 1.52%.

We do not recommend you play on the tables of the provider Evolution. Here the return to the player is 99.2%. It is better to look for craps machines from other providers. On them the return is higher, and the process is much faster.

Craps Game
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Frequently Asked Questions

Not everywhere due to the small casino advantage. If allowed, no more than 20% of the wagered amount is counted for bonuses.
In online casinos where there are a lot of Americans. In popular online casinos tables on general grounds can participate in tournaments held in the “Live” section.
In Craps, unlike other table disciplines, the spread is small. In both land-based and online casinos — 50, 100 or 200 times.
Up to 2 minutes in a land-based establishment when crowded. On craps machines, the game is completed 4-5 times faster.
On average, four or five. Sometimes up to 20.
Despite the fact that the Pass Odds payout is higher for the rare points 4 and 9, the more frequent combinations of 6 and 8 are preferred.
Yes, but this should not be done, as electronic models of Craps inscriptions on the boxes for betting from a phone are difficult to read.
Exclude the first stage of the round and immediately compete, who will throw out a seven or an eight faster.
Dennis Stets

Dennis Stets

Gambling expert

Hello, I’m Dennis. With almost 10 years of experience in the online gambling industry (since 2014), I bring a wealth of expertise to the table. My specialization lies in casinos and crypto casinos, where I have honed my skills and knowledge. Throughout my career, I have written extensively on topics ranging from online poker to sports betting, contributing valuable insights to the field. Explore the dynamic world of the gambling industry through my expert materials and stay informed on the latest trends and developments of gambling world.

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