The Basics of Roulette


Roulette is a game of chance, but there are strategies you can use to improve your chances of winning. The Martingale system advises you to place only even chip bets and double your stake every time you lose. The Labouchere system, meanwhile, requires you to set your desired win amount and adjust the number of chips you bet according to your winning or losing streaks.

The wheel, a solid wooden disk slightly convex in shape, is painted alternately red and black and has thirty-six compartments numbered nonconsecutively from 1 to 36, with a green pocket, called a ‘zero’ or ’00’ on American wheels. On European wheels, there is also a green compartment on either side, called a ‘double zero’ or ’00’. The compartments are divided by metal dividers or separators, which are sometimes referred to as frets or canoes. During the 1840s, French brothers Louis and Francois Blanc introduced a single-zero wheel to roulette, which massively increased its popularity in gambling dens across the United States.

Currently, European roulette is the most popular form of the game, both in physical casinos and online platforms. It offers a higher winning probability than its American counterpart, and features a low house edge of 1.35% (vive le France!).

The rules of roulette can be a little confusing for new players. Here are the main ones to know: