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Defining the House Edge in Craps More Clearly

By: Adam Richards, Thursday August 14th 2014
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The house advantage is something that all informed casino players need to know about in their games of choice. However, it's not always straight-forward in games like craps because of the way most bets are played in the practical sense. For example, a bet might have a house edge of 0.50 percent on a single roll, but if a lot of the possible outcomes for the bets are a push, then you'll almost always keep the bet out there for several rolls in a row. This can lead you to think that the bet itself has a 0.50 percent house advantage when it's really higher because the average bet has multiple rolls.

Take the place bet for example. This is a bet you can make on a four, five, six, eight, nine or ten. If your number comes up, then you win, and if a seven comes up, then you lose. All other results are a push, and that means that you're going to have a push much more than half the time no matter which number you'r betting on. Along those lines, the house advantage is 0.46 percent if you bet on a single roll on a six or an eight, and that's the place bet with the most favorable payout percentage. However, it comes to 1.52 percent for the entire bet if you let it go on until the bet is resolved.

Another good example of this is the opposite bet which is the place to lose bet. This works the same way except you win on a seven and lose on the number that you've placed the bet on. Place to lose on a six or eight has a 0.56 percent house edge on a single roll, but it jumps way up to 1.82 percent when you keep the bet in play until it wins or loses. The reason for this big jump is that so many of the possible results are a push.

Overall, you need to think about the house advantage in craps a little differently than you typically do in online casino games. Instead of thinking of the house advantage on the bet itself, you need to think about the overall house advantage until the bet is clarified. This gives you a much better idea of what's going on and makes things like bankroll management easier to handle.

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