The Good, the Bad, and the Not So Ugly Casino Bets

When walking through a casino, you may scratch your head and contemplate, “which game should I play? Maybe the slot machines?” There’s thousands of them enticing you take little spin. “Perhaps a little blackjack?” This game is not your Father’s blackjack any more. It has since evolved into many variants. Considering craps? Those tempting props bets can deplete your bankroll quickly.

Here are some of the best, worst, and not so ugly bets of casino games:

Machines

· The Good – Video Poker.

Learn basic strategy on the Jacks or Better, Bonus and Double Bonus games offering a 5 coin maximum bet. Always check the machine pay tables for one that pays at least 9/1 for a full house, and 6/1 for a flush. These games have over a 98% return and your money may last longer. Do not play those with pay tables less than 9/6.

· The Bad – Penny Slots

Very popular with exciting themes, colorful graphics, and attractive bonus features. However, the return is in the 80% range. Casinos have to hold more because they make less money on them. The hit frequency is about one in three spins but many so called win returns are less than your original wager.

· The Not So Ugly – Traditional 3 Reel Slots

If you positively must play the slots, try the non-progressive 25 cents, 50 cents, or 1 dollar machines that accept a two or three coin maximum wager. (While they’re still around). Returns average about 95%, and when you score a hit, your smallest win will be at least the amount of your original wager.

Tables

· The Good – Traditional Blackjack

Stay with the tables that pay 3/2 for a blackjack, deal from shoes and offer liberal rules such as allowing re-splits, soft doubling, double after split and late surrender. Learn basic strategy first. Avoid the optional side bets.

· The Bad – 6/5 Blackjack

Many casinos have reduced their BJ payout from 3/2 to 6/5. A player can expect three to four BJ’s per hour. Receiving $12 instead of $15 at a $10 table will deplete your bankroll quicker. Another bad bet is playing at a table with a continuous shuffle machine. The hands played per hour jump from about 60 to 80.

· The Not So Ugly – Blackjack Switch

This game is catching on fast. You play two hands at once and are allowed the option of switching the top cards to create better hands. Blackjack only pays even money but the game has some advantages for the player. After the switch is made, basic Blackjack rules apply. You can split, double, etc.

· The Good – Craps: pass line with odds.

There is a reason why this bet is the most popular at the table. When you make an odds wager behind the pass line after a shooter’s point number is established, you will be paid in true odds if the point is made before a seven is rolled. For example, the true odds on numbers four and ten are 2/1. A $10 odds bet would pay $20.

· The Bad – Craps: one roll proposition bets

You have one chance to wager that a certain number will emerge on the next roll. For example, a bet on the two or twelve will pay 30/1 if it hits. Truth is you only have a 1 in 36 chance of winning.

· The Not So Ugly – Craps: wrong betting

A wrong or don’t bettor is a player that bets against the shooter. When a wager is made on the don’t pass bar, the player is hoping that the shooter will roll a seven before the point number. This is called a seven out; all bets lose to the house except the wrong bettor(s). Don’t bettors also have an odds bet option, but they have to lay odds instead of taking them. For example, an odds bet against a point four or ten would cost $20 to win $10.

Riverboat Roulette – New Spins on an Ancient Table Game

Before we delve into the alternate wagering options available on Riverboat Roulette, let’s first review how the traditional game is played.

In today’s casinos the basic version is played at a table with a house dealer and a wheel with 38 pockets. 18 red, 18 black and 2 green colors containing the numbers zero and double zero. A single zero wheel also exists and is popular in European casinos. The table has a felt betting layout with numbers and colors corresponding to the wheel.

There are two sets of wagers called Inside, and Outside. The inside bets are various ways to play the numbers only as follows:

Inside Bets

A bet on one number (straight up) pays 35/1. Two numbers (split) pays 17/1. Three numbers (street) pays 11/1. Four numbers (corner) pays 8/1. Five numbers (basket) pays 6/1. Six numbers (line) pays 5/1.

Outside Bets

A bet on Red or black, odd or even, pays even money at 1/1. First eighteen or second eighteen also pays 1/1. First twelve, second twelve or third twelve, pays 2/1. First, second, or third column, also pays 2/1.

Riverboat Roulette

Double Luck Gaming Co. launched its award-winning Riverboat Roulette exclusively at the Golden Gate casino in downtown Las Vegas. The game has been crowned “One of the Top New table Games” by Casino Journal, and it looks like a real winner for players. In addition to the traditional wagers players can make, seven additional colored sections have been added to the wheel pockets. There are five blue, four purple, and three teal. These are known as the cool sections. Also included are three hot sections, five orange, four pink, and three yellow along with one white section that has eight pockets. The sections are referred to as neighborhoods.

The seven colors are also positioned on the felt so players can make wager choices other than, or in addition to, the traditional bets. Winners will be paid the following odds if the ball lands on the selected color(s):

· Blue – 7 to 5

· Purple – 8 to 5

· Teal – 2 to 1

· Orange – 7 to 5

· Pink – 8 to 5

· Yellow – 2 to 1

· White – 7 to 2

The colored sections are multi-spin wagers in that the bet will not lose if it lands on a color other than your choice except for white. For example, if you wager $5 on pink and it lands on one of the yellow numbers, your $5 is still in play. This is known as a push. (No win, no loss.) However, if the ball lands on one of the white numbers, you lose. If you like white you can bet it. A push also occurs if the ball should land on one of the two green numbers, (0, 00) or one of the two remaining red (25, 36) or black (26, 35) numbers. The bet is player friendly in that a bettor has three options in a push result. He or she can let it ride, add to it, or take it down. The color selections are outside wagers so the table minimum is required per wager. In summary there are only eight ways to lose with a color bet on a thirty eight number wheel.

For those of you who are devoted roulette players, Riverboat roulette does not alter any wager or outcome of traditional roulette. The 5.26% house edge does not increase when playing the colors. It remains at 5.26% for white, teal, and yellow, 4.21% for purple and pink, and 2.63% for blue and orange.