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How to Play Online Casino Roulette: The Basics
In its essence, roulette is very simple. You have a roulette wheel with numbered pockets. When the wheel starts rotating, a ball is spun in the other direction. After a while, the ball loses momentum and falls into one of the slots.
Your task as a player is to predict where the ball is going to land. You do so by placing a wager on the roulette table, which has the same amount of numbers as the wheel plus additional betting zones. In general, you only need to see one or two sessions of roulette to notice how intuitive it is. However, there are some important details that we will discuss below.
The Roulette Wheel
Depending on the variant, a roulette wheel has 37 or 38 pockets. The vast majority of them are red or black, and adjacent slots always alternate in color. Either one or two sections will be green. These contain the "0" and "00" numbers.
The ordering of the numbers seems random to most players. But it's specifically designed to introduce a greater balance. No matter what type of roulette you're playing, the wheel will always have one or two layouts – European or American. The US version has the extra "00" zone, and the numerals are positioned differently.
Place your Bets at the Table
The most alluring trait of roulette is its all-inclusive nature. It offers something for the most calculated gamblers, the biggest risk-takers, and everyone in between. If you take a good look at the roulette table, you'll see why.
The inner area contains every figure from 0 to 36. You can take a chance and gamble on a single number for a big payout or cover multiple ones with a smaller amount for a higher probability of success. At the outer zone, you'll see spaces for blacks, reds, odds, evens, 1-18, 19-36, and several regions that cover a particular dozen of numbers. A breakdown of each bet and its payouts can be found further down the page.
American, European, French: Which Is the Best Online Roulette Variation?
Before we reveal the best type of roulette, we'll talk about the one we wouldn't so passionately recommend. Ideally, you would think twice before playing the American variant. The reason is simple – in the US version, there's a double zero. There will always be this one extra pocket where the ball can land. Most bets don't cover the 0's. Thus, you'll want to play with one instead of two of these zones if you have the choice.
Now, let's pick the winner between the European and French versions. Essentially, they are almost the same: 36 numbers, one 0 slot. There is one main difference between them. If you place a black/blue, odd/even, 1-18, or 19-36 wager on European roulette and the ball falls on the green, you'll lose your money. The French version has two special rules for such cases. You'll get half of your bet back (La Partage rule), or your bet will be "imprisoned" (En Prison). Imprisoned bets can be reclaimed if your next gamble is a winning one. There are also French bets that are there for added convenience.
Types of Bets in Online Roulette: Gambling Simplified
It's time to talk about bets! If you're new, carefully study the paragraphs below. We will discuss terminology, placement, payouts, and everything else needed to turn you into a pro. The information is valid for both online roulette and its real-life counterpart.
A word of advice – Most of the licensed operators will let you trial the game without putting any skin in it. Before you start playing online casino roulette for real money, try it in demo mode. Use this opportunity to get familiar with what we're discussing here.
To put it simply, any bet you place on the inner rectangle of the table (where the numbers are located) is an inside bet. If you have single or double digits that bring you luck, these are the wagers you want to go for. They are risky, but they also offer the largest payouts.
Here's a list of every inside bet:
- Straight up – When you bet on a single number. The payout rate is 35:1.
- Split – Place a bet on the line between two numbers. Win, and you'll get a 17:1 return.
- Street – The numbers on the table are divided into 3 columns of three numbers each. A street bet covers one row of 3 numbers. Put the chip on the top or bottom of a row for a payout of 11:1.
- Corner – You can cover four adjacent numbers on the roulette table by putting a chip on the intersection that connects them. 8:1 payout.
- Line – Basically, a double street bet. Covers 6 numbers for a return of 5:1.
These bets encompass big sections of the table, such as colors and larger groupings of numbers. You can find them at the outer edges of the betting zone, hence the name. They give you the highest probability of winning with the lowest payoffs. Let's outline each of them:
- Odd/Even – Gamble on whether the winning number will be odd or even. This is also called even money or 1:1 bet, as your wager is doubled if you're correct. The zeros don't count here, which is where the house profits.
- Red/Black – Try to predict if the ball will find its way to a red or black socket. The risk/reward ratio is the same as the odd/even bets.
- High/Low – Is the winning number going to be in the 1-18 or the 19-36 range? Try your luck. Same rules as the above two.
- Columns and Dozens – These are very similar. The former covers one of the three vertical rows, while the latter includes four horizontal columns of three numbers. 2 to 1 payout.
Also known as French bets. You won't find them on all tables, but they're not exactly game-changing. Call bets require multiple chips, but if you click on their respective section, the game will place them for you. Pull out the dictionary, and let's check them out:
- Voisins du Zero – A.K.A. Neighbors of zero. It includes all seventeen numbers between "25" and "22" on the roulette wheel on the side of the 0. You have to put in 9 chips at a minimum.
- Jeu Zero – Translated as the "Zero game." It's a smaller version of Voisins that includes seven numbers between "15" and "12". You need 4 chips for this bet.
- Tiers du Cylindre – "Thirds of the wheel." It requires 6 chips. Includes the twelve numbers between "33" and "27" on the opposite side of the wheel.
- Orphelins – The orphans. A collection of the eight numbers that sandwiched between Voisins and Tiers du Cylindre. They are on both sides of the wheel and require 5 chips.
- Neighbor bets – A five-piece wager that includes a number you choose and two "neighbors" on each of its sides.
Benefits of Playing Online Roulette
Until recently, some punters argued that virtual roulette doesn't have the same pizzazz as the real-life tables. However, the advent of live online casinos completely flipped the script. Right now, the best roulette sites can give you a taste of that magical experience.
In these streaming sessions, lovely croupiers are taking bets and spinning the wheel while they interact with you. All from the comfort of your own home or anywhere where mobile play is possible. Furthermore, live casinos are reimagining the game in new and creative ways.
You can play lots of special roulette variants that you won't find in brick and mortar outlets. Some of them include superb progressive jackpots or give fantastic multipliers on random numbers on every spin. Others are played with two balls. There are even sessions that are streamed directly from real casinos where you can wager alongside physical players.
Bonuses at the Best Online Roulette Casino Sites
Seasoned gamblers will tell you that online casinos don't offer generous bonuses for roulette players. There's a good reason for this injustice. Playing the game smartly lowers the house edge dramatically. Thus, you have a higher chance of fulfilling the bonus T&Cs and winning good money than playing slots, for example.
That being said, there are one or two gambling sites that are more generous than the rest. In our opinion, the best online casino for roulette is 888casino. It boasts a welcome bonus of 120% up to $500. Roulette bets contribute 10% of their value to fulfilling the wagering conditions. You can also get an instant no deposit bonus of $20 that should be wagered 30 times within 60 days from granting. Sadly, 888casino is restricted in some countries.
As a whole, the best online roulette site is the one that gives you the comfort of safe play and an excellent choice of your favorite roulettes.
Pro Tips for Playing at the Top Roulette Sites
Always look at the rules of a game
+ There should be a Help/Rules/question mark button on every game you play. Use it to scan for important information quickly. There are many "French Roulette" versions that only feature called bets and don't have the La Partage/En Prison rule.
Be careful with progressive/regressive strategies
+ Using systems like Martingale, Fibonacci, James Bond, etc. is fun, but it doesn't negate the house edge. It's best to use tables with wide betting limits, but even then, you could record serious losses if you're not careful.
Know your limits
+ We can't stress this enough. Play for entertainment and with money you can afford to part with. Chasing your losses is always a bad idea.
Go for live casinos
+ It is better to look for a casino with live tables. It's more fun, and there are often special versions of the game.
Check the RTP of special roulette variants
+ If you're going for an exotic version of roulette, don't forget to see your chances of winning. Some special features lower the RTP rate.
Play in demo mode
+ Use demo mode before playing online roulette for real money. Make sure to get familiar with the game, employ strategies, and learn about bets before putting your money at risk.
Limitations of mobile play
+ Some roulette versions will not play well on a small screen. The table has too many sections, and not every title is optimized. You can use a tablet, a computer, or switch games if you're having a hard time.