The Basics of Roulette


Roulette, named after a French word meaning little wheel, is a game of chance that has offered glamour and excitement to casino-goers since the 17th century. Though the rules are straightforward and simple, there is a surprising level of depth for serious bettors, who can use strategy to reap high rewards. The game is played on a numbered roulette wheel with red and black bets, odd and even bets, and first, second and third dozen bets. A player can place a bet on any of these groups and hope to win by correctly guessing the number where the ball will land.

The roulette wheel consists of a solid wooden disk slightly convex in shape with a metal partitions, called frets or compartments, around its perimeter. Thirty-six of these compartments are painted alternately red and black and numbered nonconsecutively from 1 to 36. The wheel also has two green compartments, labelled 0 and 00 on European-style wheels and the American-style wheels respectively. A croupier spins the wheel, and the ball is rolled into one of the pockets on the wheel that determines the winning number. If a player’s bet, whether on a number, section or color, is won, the croupier pays out the bet according to a payout table. The losing bets are removed from the table, and the process begins again with players betting and spinning the wheel.

Like other casino games, roulette can be highly addictive. It is important to play responsibly and set limits on time and money. If you are prone to compulsive gambling, seek help from a counselor or a family member.

Before you begin playing, decide how much money you are willing to invest and choose a table within your budget. Each roulette table carries a placard describing the minimum and maximum bets allowed. A typical minimum bet is $5, while the maximum is $1,000 for inside bets and $10,000 for outside bets.

When you are ready to place your bet, the croupier will ask you to deposit chips on the roulette table. Once you have placed your bets, the croupier will spin the wheel and then roll a ball into it. The ball will bounce around the wheel until it settles in one of the numbers on the table. If your bet is won, the croupier will pay you out according to the odds. The losing bets are removed from your account and the process starts again with players betting and spinning the wheel.