The Roulette Wheel: Roulette is played on spinning wheel where the wheel has been split into thirty seven segments. There are all the numbers from 1-36, which are colored alternatively red and black. The 37th segment is the number zero, which is green. On an American Roulette table, as in the image below, there are two green zeros, namely 0 and 00. The croupier spins the wheel and then sets a ball spinning within it. When the ball finally comes to rest it will be in one of the 37 segments (38 segments on an American roulette table). This is the winning number and/or color, depending what you have bet on.
The Roulette Table: This is a baize flat table next to the wheel where the gamblers can place their bets in advance of the croupier setting the wheel on its way. You can cover one or some of the options on the table.
Roulette Types: You may hear reference to American Roulette tables and European Roulette tables. The European table and wheel is as we have been describing. The American wheel and table has two zeros making it 38 segments, as in the picture, not 37 slots. That is the only difference.
How You Win At Roulette: The way to win at roulette is to have chips on the number that comes up. If you placed a bet on 30 Red and 30 came up then your chips would be paid at odds of 35/1. So if you placed $10 of chips on the winning number you would be returned $350 plus your $10 stake, totaling $360 returned to you. This leads us to an explanation of all the roulette betting possibilities.
Roulette Wagering Options:
Betting on a number: This is the simplest option of putting a chip or chips directly on any single number, including the zero, from 0-36. If it wins you are paid 35/1. Obviously you have the choice to cover as many numbers as you like in order to maximize you chance of hitting the winner but remember only one number can win.
Betting on three roulette numbers at once: If you look at the image of an online table shown on this page you will see the table splits the roulette numbers into rows of three. You can bet on three numbers at a time by placing chips et the end of your chosen row. That pays odds of 11/1.
Betting on four numbers: To do this place your chips at the corner of the squares where four numbers meet. Again, look at the way the table is marked out and it becomes obvious. This is just a time-saving shortcut way of effectively placing a direct even stakes bet on each of those four numbers. This pays odds of 8/1.
Betting on six numbers: Place your chips between two rows to cover all six numbers ie: two rows of three numbers. This pays odds of 5/1.
Betting on twelve numbers: Take a look at the table again. the numbers are split into three columns and 12 rows. A column covers 12 numbers. At the base of each column is the option to bet on all twelve numbers in that column. Covering 12 numbers in this way would pay 2/1 odds ie: you have $10 on the first column (of 12 numbers) and you win $20 + $10 stake back ($30 total) if one of those twelve numbers comes up.
Odds or Evens: You can bet on whether the winning number is odds or evens. In this way you are taking half the numbers in one go and so this bet would pay even money betting odds. So a $50 bet will, if it wins, win you an extra $50 ($100 including your wager stake).
Red or Black: This is another even money (1/1) chance because whichever colour you bet on you have half the numbers, with the notable exception of zero. There are obvious boxes on the table for you to choose for this option.
High or Low: This is a third even money bet. If you go High then you are betting on numbers 19-36. If one those comes up you win. If you go Low you have numbers 1-18.
The Zero number: It must be remembered that any of the even money bets named above (betting on the colors, Odds or Evens, High or Low) will be a loser if the zero comes up. You would think zero will hardly ever come up but with 37 slots to choose from including the zero, the statistical odds are that it will come up once every 37 spins ie: a 36/1 chance. The zero gives the house its mathematical edge in roulette.
You also have options just to bet on the color that comes up, either red or black. This is an even bet. So if you bet $10 on red and red comes up you win $10 and are returned $20 including your wager stake. You can also bet on whether the number is even or odd. Similarly that will pay evens. That is because of the 36 number segments half are red and half black. Also half are even numbers and half are odd numbers. In these examples if the ball falls into the green zero slot then you would lose.