How to Play Craps Game
Craps is an exciting dice game you can find at casinos which involves a mix of action and strategy, both with your money and the dice.
To get the hang of playing craps at a casino, it’s important to first familiarize yourself with the people and their roles at the craps table. You’ll typically encounter three key figures:
- Boxperson: This person is like the supervisor of the craps table, overseeing the entire game. They’re also responsible for managing the chips and stepping in to resolve any disputes between the dealers and players.
- 2nd Base Dealer: Imagine the craps table as a baseball field. The dealer to the right of the boxperson is often referred to as the 2nd base dealer. So, if you’re on that side of the table, you’re considered part of the 2nd base team. Think of it like baseball; number two on the field is farthest from the boxperson.
- 3rd Base Dealer: Now, shift your attention to the left of the boxperson. That dealer is called the 3rd base dealer. If you’re playing on this side, you’re part of the 3rd base team. The trick to remember this is again to glance at the field; number twelve on the field corresponds to the 3rd base (1+2=3rd base).
In the center of the table, opposite the boxperson, you’ll spot the stickperson. This individual wields a long-hooked stick to move the dice around.
Also Read: Poker Stakes Meaning
Lastly, if you hear someone mention a player being “straight out,” it means they’re positioned in the middle of the table on either side.
The supervisors often use the colour of a player’s clothing and their position at the table to keep track of players for various purposes.
So, that’s a brief overview of how craps is played and who’s who at the craps table.
How to Play Craps Game
Let us now begin with how to play the craps game:
- How to Win Money
- You can win money by making bets on the numbers that come up when two dice are rolled. Craps is not complicated once you understand that the main idea is to gamble on the total of the two dice. One player rolls the dice, usually trying to get either a 7 or an 11. If they don’t get one of these numbers on the first roll, they set a “point” number that they must roll again before getting a 7.
- Typically, you bet with the table, hoping the player rolls the number they need. There’s also an option to bet against the table, which means you’re betting that the player rolls a losing number.
- On the first roll, called the “come-out roll,” 7 and 11 are winners, while 2, 3, and 12 are called “craps numbers,” and you lose if they come up.
- The winning and losing numbers change depending on the stage of the game. If the player happens to establish a point, 7 becomes a losing number.
You Might Also Like: Trick Taking Card Games In India — Must Try!
- Starting the Game
- To play during the come-out roll, you place a bet on the pass line. The dealer places a disk on the table to keep track of the game. If you see the disk turned to the black side with the word “OFF,” it means a new round is beginning. During the come-out roll, 7 or 11 means that everyone who bet on the pass line wins, but a 2, 3, or 12 means everyone loses.
- The pass line is the simplest way to bet in craps and is a good starting point for learning the game. A new round can’t start until someone places a bet on the pass line.
- Numbers 4, 5 & 6 are neither wins nor are they losses. The rolled number would become known as the “point,” & the game would move to the next phase.
- Another option is to bet on the “don’t pass line.” If you choose this option, you’re betting against everyone else. You win if the shooter happens to roll a 2 or 3 but lose if they happen to roll a 7 or 11.
- Playing the Point
- If no one wins or loses on the come-out roll, a point is established. The point is the number rolled by the player if they didn’t win or lose initially. The possible point numbers are 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10. The dealer flips the disk to the white “ON” side, and the shooter continues rolling the dice, trying to roll the point number again. Rolling a 7 results in a loss.
- Pass line bets remain on the board until the round is over, and you win your pass bet if the player rolls their point number.
- For example, if the point number is 8, the shooter aims to roll an 8. If they roll a 7, all pass-line bets lose. Play will continue until the shooter happens to roll one of these numbers.
- If the shooter rolls the point number, the game restarts with new pass bets. If a 7 comes up, the same thing will happen, but someone will have to roll the dice.
- Making a Come Bet
- If you arrive at the craps table after a round has started, you can still join in by placing your chips on the “come” space, which is similar to the pass bet. If the shooter rolls a 7 or 11, you become the winner. If they roll a 2, 3, or 12, you will lose your bet.
- It’s important to note that the point doesn’t affect your bet. If the point is 6, you don’t win anything when the shooter rolls a 6.
- The come bet is separate from the pass line, and you might win the come bet with a 7 but lose the pass bet after the point is established. Play can also continue even after a 2, 3, or 12 comes up.
- Another option is the “don’t come bet,” where you win if the shooter rolls a 7 and lose if they roll their point number. It’s a relatively safe and straightforward bet, but it means betting against other players.
- Starting with Simple Bets
- When you’re just starting to play craps, it’s a good idea to begin with conservative, basic bets. The pass line and come bets are the most important ones to learn before trying more advanced bets. If you have some extra money, you can also place odds bets. However, avoid proposition bets until you’re more comfortable taking risks.
- Craps is a fast-paced game, so give yourself time to get used to it. If needed, watch others play for a while before placing your bets. These simple bets generally have better odds than riskier ones, but they may not pay out as much. Keep in mind that craps can be exciting and move quickly, so be careful with your money.
- Rolling the Dice
- If you play at the table for a while, you’ll get a chance to roll the dice. To become the shooter, you need to place a pass or come bet. Usually, the stickperson will give you five dice to choose from. Select two dice and toss them so they hit the rail on the opposite side of the table.
- Always use one hand to handle the dice. There’s no need to blow on them or perform any other actions you might have seen in movies. Simply shake and toss!
- Since the craps table is long, you throw the dice rather than roll them. If the dice bounce off the table or don’t hit the back rail, you’ll need to toss them again.
The Rules of Craps
Now that you have familiarized yourself with how to play craps game, it’s time that we introduce you to its rules.
- Table Familiarization: Start by getting comfortable with the layout of the Craps table, the different betting options available, and the terminology used. This includes bets like the Pass Line, Don’t Pass Line, Come, and Don’t Come.
- Placing Your Bets: Before rolling the dice, you need to put your chips on the specific betting areas on the Craps table. Each bet offers different odds and payouts, so choose wisely.
- Rolling the Dice: A player is chosen as the “shooter” and takes the roll. The initial roll is called the “come-out roll.” If the total on the dice is 7 or 11, the Pass Line bets win. However, if the total is 2, 3, or 12, Pass Line bets lose.
- Setting the Point: If the come-out roll results in a 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10, that number becomes the “point.” The shooter’s goal is to roll the point number again before rolling a 7.
- Rolling On: The shooter keeps rolling the dice until they either roll the point number again (in which case Pass Line bets win) or roll a 7. If a 7 comes up, Pass Line bets lose, and the dice move to the next shooter.
- Exploring More Bets: For added variety and the chance to win more, you can explore additional betting options like the Field, Place, and Proposition bets. Make sure to understand the odds and payouts associated with each bet.
So that’s on how to play the Craps game, let’s move on!
Variants of Craps Game
When the question of how to play Craps game arises, we cannot miss out on mentioning the variations of the game. It’s worth mentioning that the game is not restricted to its original form and comes in many variants which are as under:
Bank Craps (Las Vegas Craps)
Bank craps is a version of the classic craps game, often referred to as Las Vegas Craps. You’ll find this variant quite popular in Nevada’s casinos, and nowadays, it’s played globally online. In Bank Craps, you’ll notice a unique table layout and all bets are placed against the house. When rolling the dice in Bank Craps, they’re thrown over a wire or string a few inches above the table’s surface. If you hear someone talk about “craps” without specifying a version, it’s likely this one. The Pass/Don’t Pass bets offer the lowest house edge in this variant, around 1.4%.
Crapless craps is a simplified version of the original game and is often played in private online settings. The key difference here is that the shooter, the person throwing the dice, has a significant disadvantage with a house edge of 5.38%. Another unique feature is that players can bet on rolling a 2, 3, 11, or 12 before a 7 is thrown. In crapless craps, the odds for 2 and 12 are 11:2 with a house edge of 7.143%, while 3 and 11 have odds of 11:4 with a house edge of 6.25%.
New York Craps
New York Craps is primarily played on the Eastern coast of the United States, as the name suggests. Interestingly, it was initially found and played in casinos in Yugoslavia, the UK, and the Bahamas. In this craps variation, the house edge is higher compared to Las Vegas Craps or Bank Craps. The table layout also differs and is known as a double-end-dealer table. One significant distinction from the original craps game is that New York Craps does not allow Come or Don’t Come bets. Instead, players bet on box numbers like 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10. The overall house edge in New York craps is 5%.
These variations add unique twists to the classic craps game, making them intriguing options for those looking for a different experience of the craps game.
Card Based Variation
Instead of using dice, Indian reservations have changed the game by using cards to comply with California laws that restrict payouts based on dice rolls. To replicate the exact odds of the original dice game without using dice or allowing card counting, a solution involves using two shuffle machines, each containing a single deck of cards with Ace through 6.
Each machine randomly selects one card, and that becomes the outcome. Afterwards, the selected cards go back into the decks, and they get shuffled again for the next round.
Tips and Strategies To Master The Craps Game
Now that we know How to play the Craps game Mastering the strategies for playing Craps can significantly boost your chances of success in this exciting casino game. Here are some strategies to consider to improve your odds of winning:
- Start with Pass Line and Come Bets: These are the basic bets in Craps and provide a solid foundation with a favourable edge.
- Utilize Free Odds Bets: Once you establish a point, make sure to take advantage of Free Odds bets. These bets come with no house edge, allowing you to maximize your potential winnings.
- Limit Proposition Bets: While the variety of proposition bets in Craps can be tempting, they typically come with higher house edges. It’s wise to keep these bets in check and focus more on bets with better odds.
- Understand the Odds and Payouts: Familiarize yourself with the odds and payouts for each bet so that you can make informed decisions and choose bets that offer better value.
- Bankroll Management: Set a budget for your Craps session and stick to it. Effective bankroll management ensures that you can play responsibly and enjoy the game for a longer period without risking too much.
- Practice Discipline and Emotional Control: Craps can be an exciting and fast-paced game. It’s essential to maintain discipline and avoid making impulsive bets based on emotions or superstitions.
- Learn from Experienced Players: Watch experienced players at the Craps table and learn from their strategies and decision-making. Feel free to ask questions or seek advice from players who have experience.