Casino Games Rules And Strategy Lessons

The Hardways Bets in Craps

To the new or uninitiated player in online craps the advice is straightforward. Stay away from that part of the craps layout that has the hardways bets and do not wager on these bets at any cost. However players who want to understand the game of craps more completely should be aware of what the hardways bets are and why they should be avoided.

A total of 6 can be obtained in several ways. These are 1 and 5, 2 and 4, 3 and 3, 4 and 2 and 5 and 1. Therefore a total of 6 can be obtained with a double in a one way and without doubles in four ways. Since it is more difficult to get a total of 6 with a double, therefore this way is called the hardways. The other ways of a rolling a 6 are called easy ways. Simply stated the hardways is when a total of 4, 6, 8 or 10 are obtained using doubles.

A hardways 4 bet is wagering that a 4 will be rolled the hard ways before it is rolled the easy ways or before a 7 is rolled. If any other number is rolled and then the bet is carried forward. Similarly a hardways 6 bet is wagering that a 6 will be rolled the hard ways before it is rolled the easy ways or before a 7 is rolled. The same applies to the hardways 8 and at the hardways 10 bets.

We are now in a position to understand why these hardways bets should be avoided. The case of hardways 4 is considered first. This bet loses if a 7 is a rolled or an easy ways 4 is rolled. There are six ways to roll a 7. These are 1 and 6, 2 and 5, 3 and 4, 4 and 3, 5 and 2 and 6 and 1. There are two ways to roll an easy ways 4. These are 1 and 3 and 3 and 1. Hence the hardways 4 bet can lose in eight ways. There is only one way to roll a hardways 4, which is 2 and 2. Hence the hardways 4 bet can win in one way. Since the bet can lose in eight ways and can win in one way the correct odds should be 8 to 1. However, online casinos pay out at only 7 to 1 for this bet. This leads to a house edge of 11.1%. The calculation for the hardways 10 bet is identical.

The case of hardways 6 can now be considered. This bet loses if a 7 is a rolled or an easy ways 6 is rolled. There are six ways to roll a 7. There are four ways to roll an easy ways 6. Hence the hardways 6 bet can lose in ten ways. There is only one way to roll a hardways 6. Hence the hardways 6 bet can win in one way. Since the bet can lose in ten ways and can win in one way the correct odds should be 10 to 1. However, online casinos pay out at only 9 to 1 for this bet. This leads to a house edge of 9.1%. The calculation for the hardways 8 bet is identical.


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