Wherever you may go, the classic game of craps is bound to be a main feature of virtually any casino, whether it’s at a fancy establishment, or even online. It is a game that is easy to both learn and to play, however, when it comes to winning, is well known for its risk and excitement as a game of chance. This means that the game, and its mechanisms of play, such as rolling the dice, involves or requires no skill, and cannot, by design, give you any sort of advantage.
Therefore, any strategy involved must come from, and will be determined by, the players own knowledge of the rules and bets, and understanding of factors such as odds, probability, house edge, and responsible bankroll management.
The Importance Of Low House Edge
As its name implies, house edge, aka “house advantage”, is essentially a slight “edge” that every casino game is designed to have over players. It works by guaranteeing that a certain percentage, or margin, of a player’s bets over time will inevitably result in loss and be returned to the casino.
In most casino games like craps, the house edge is intended to be fixed and immutable. However, over the many eras of gambling history, various strategies and methods have been devised to lessen the disadvantage that it imposes, and allow players to curb their loss.
It is important to note that no method or strategy, mentioned here or elsewhere, will guaranteed wins, with a number of factors, including the players own blunders, being involved. Every casino game though, by law, is required to openly provide the house edge for players to analyse and determine their strategy.
The Standard “Low House Edge” Craps Bets
The “Pass Line” & “Come” Bets
These bets are usually the most frequent and popular bets in craps. They each have a low house edge of 1.41% and are wagered on the “shooter”, i.e., the dice-roller, to win, with 1:1 “even money” payout odds. They are also favourites for combination bets that can potentially lower the house edge even further.
The “Free Odds” Bets
Odds bets are special bets with no house edge, designed to bolster the odds and lower the house edge when used in combination with other bets. The most popular bet combined with free odds is the Pass line bet, which is the only bet in craps where the house advantage can be reduced to 0%.
The “Don’t Pass Line” & “Don’t Come” Bets
These are the exact opposite of the pass line and come bets, and are usually given an even lower house edge, sometimes as low as 1.36%. This is because they wager on the shooter and other players losing, and so are often regarded as impolite.
A vastly underappreciated factor in craps, and all gambling, is learning to set and maintain a strict budget, with a loss limit, and control over the frequency of betting and play. This is paramount to both keeping the house edge low, and in the end, to winning more.