Main Page | See live article | Alphabetical index

Roulette is a casino game. A croupier turns a round roulette wheel which has 37 or 38 separately numbered pockets in which a ball must land. The main pockets are numbered from 1 to 36 and change between red and black, with number 1 being red. In addition there is a pocket numbered 0 of green color. In most roulette wheels in the United States but not in Europe, there is a second zero compartment marked 00, also colored green.

If a player bets on a single number and wins, he is paid 35 to 1. This means that he is paid 35 times his bet, while also his bet is returned, in total he gets 36 times his bet. (In a lottery one would say 'the prize is 36 times the cost of the ticket', because in a lottery the cost of the ticket is not returned additionally.)

A player can bet on numbers, combinations and even colors.

### Board depiction

 0 ↔ 00 1-18 1st12 1 2 3 ← 4 5 6 ← odd 7 8 9 ← 10 11 12 ← red 2nd12 13 14 15 ← 16 17 18 ← blk 19 20 21 ← 22 23 24 ← even 3rd12 25 26 27 ← 28 29 30 ← 19-36 31 32 33 ← 34 35 36 ← ↑ ↑ ↑

### Bet odds table

(in addition to the mentioned payout the bet is returned)

Bet nameWinning spacesPayout
0035 to 1
000035 to 1
1135 to 1
2235 to 1
...
363635 to 1
Row 000, 0017 to 1
Row 31, 2, 311 to 1
Row 64, 5, 611 to 1
Row 97, 8, 911 to 1
...
Row 3634, 35, 3611 to 1
Column 11, 4, 7, ..., 342 to 1
Column 22, 5, 8, ..., 352 to 1
Column 33, 6, 9, ..., 362 to 1
First 121, 2, 3, ..., 122 to 1
Middle 1213, 14, 15, ..., 242 to 1
Last 1225, 26, 27, ..., 362 to 1
Odd1, 3, 5, ..., 351 to 1
Even2, 4, 6, ..., 361 to 1
Red1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 12, 14, 16, 18, 19, 21, 23, 25, 27, 30, 32, 34, 361 to 1
Black2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 11, 13, 15, 17, 20, 22, 24, 26, 28, 29, 31, 33, 351 to 1
1 to 181, 2, 3, ..., 181 to 1
19 to 3619, 20, 21, ..., 361 to 1
five number bet0, 00, 1, 2, 36 to 1

The house average or house edge is what is lost on average relative to the bet. If a player bets on a single number in the American game there is a probability of 1/38 that he gets 36 times his bet (including the return of his bet), so he ends up having on average 36/38=0.9474 times his bet. Thus the house average for American roulette is 1/19 (5.26%); the same applies for the other kinds of bets, except for the five number bet where it a greater than 7%. The house average is appoximately halved in the European game.

Various attempts have been made by engineers to overcome the house edge through predicting the mechanical performance of the wheel, most notably by Joseph Jaggers, the man who broke the bank at Monte Carlo in 1873. More recently Thomas Bass, in his book The Newtonian Casino 1991, has claimed to be able to predict wheel performance.

Note also that 0 and 00 are neither odd nor even in this game.

Also see: Russian roulette.