Roulette is a popular game of chance played using a ball spun in a large wheel. The ball will eventually come to rest in one of many numbered pockets in order to determine each spin’s winning number. The player’s goal is to correctly predict which pocket the ball will fall into by placing bets before the ball comes to rest.
Players may bet on a single number at odds of 35-1, but they may also make bets that cover multiple numbers at lower odds. If the spin results in any of the numbers covered by a bet being hit, that bet wins. All bets are designed to pay out fairly based on a wheel of 36 numbers, with the house edge coming from the fact that there are actually 37 or 38 pockets on the wheel (the exact number depending on the style of roulette being played).
The two major forms of roulette – American and European – are very similar. The only real difference between the two games is the number of zeroes appearing on the wheel. In each game, there are numbers ranging from 1-36 on the wheel. However, while European roulette has a single zero (0), American roulette has both the zero and a double zero (00).
Both American and European roulette pay out the same odds on nearly all bets. However, since European roulette has one less space on the wheel, the house edge is significantly lower in this version of the game when compared to American roulette. This is why players are usually advised to play European roulette when given a choice between the two.
The house edge in roulette will depend on the type of roulette you choose to play, and is the same on most bets in both versions of the game. However, while it may seem insignificant, the inclusion of another zero in American roulette makes all bets have a house edge of 5.26%. Meanwhile, most bets in single-zero European roulette offer a house edge of 2.70%. As we said above, this makes European roulette a much better bet for most players.
Inside bets are those made on the interior of the roulette table layout, and cover fewer numbers. These include bets on single numbers, splits (two numbers), streets (three numbers) and corner bets (four numbers). Since these bets cover few numbers, they win less often, but pay out with higher odds.
Outside bets are made on the edges of the roulette table layout, and cover large sections of the wheel. These bets include even money bets such as red/black, odd/even or 1-18/19-36, as well as the “columns” and “dozens” bets that pay out at 2-1 odds. These bets are more likely to win, but pay out at lower odds than the inside bets.
Yes, it is legal to play online roulette in Australia. While Australian law does not allow Internet casinos to be opened in Australia, it does not prohibit Australians from playing on foreign casino websites. This means that there is a wide selection of casino sites willing to take bets from Australians interested in playing roulette and other real money games on the Web.
Online roulette can be played at virtually any Internet casino site. Most sites offer both European and American versions of the roulette game, with some even offering a third version (usually called “French Roulette”) which adds the traditional (and favourable) French bets, such as “En Prison” and “La Partage”, to the European roulette table.
If you’re looking for a site where you can play roulette online, we recommend opening an account at any of the online and mobile casinos listed in the table above – our top two choices are Royal Vegas Casino and Casino-Mate.
As roulette is a game about luck rather than strategy, many players have looked for ways to beat the game by combining different bets, or by changing their bets after wins or losses. Unfortunately, none of these roulette systems actually do anything to change the house edge on any of the bets made at the table, or on a player’s expectation in the long run. See our page about roulette myths for more about this.
What a roulette system can do is change the way in which you win or lose in a typical session. For instance, the Martingale system – which doubles your bet every time you lose – will allow you to nearly always register a small win at the cost of occasionally sticking you with a large loss. Other systems may do the opposite, giving you the chance to score a big win with the trade-off that you’ll usually lose a little.
In other words, the “best” roulette system will depend on the kind of results you want to see. Just remember that these systems won’t improve your overall odds, and that it’s never worth paying for a system that claims to be able to “beat” roulette with some unique series of bets.
As we’ve said before, most roulette bets in the same version of the game will offer players the same odds. However, there are exceptions that are worth remembering so that you can be sure to make the best bets possible. In American roulette, there is one bet to avoid: the “first five” or “top line” bet. This bet covers the numbers 0-00-1-2-3, and has a 7.89% house edge, rather than the 5.26% on most other bets.
European roulette is a little more complex. If you’re playing at a table that uses the “En Prison” rule, you’ll get the best odds by playing any of the even money bets. This is because if a spin results in a zero, you’ll either lose half of your bet or have you bet “imprisoned,” and can earn it back if that bet wins on the next spin. If either of these rules are used, the house edge on these even money bets is cut approximately in half to under 1.4%. If you are playing at a table without these rules, all bets in European roulette have the same house edge.