Playing the Game
When you first see a craps table in action, with a dozen or more
players all yelling, your first impression might be that it's
a wild and confusing game. That's partially because this game
seems to bring out players' emotions more than any other. Also,
as you look at the layout of the table, you might think you will
never learn this complex game. Craps can be wild and noisy, but
it really is a simple game to play. At first you might not agree,
but after I show you the correct and simple ways to bet and play
craps, you'll wonder why other players make so many bad and foolish
bets. To help convince you, I'll give you a brief description
of a craps betting and playing scenario that you can use in any
casino, at any time.
The Making of a Craps Player
When a new player is given the dice for the first time, I suggest
that you put a $5 bet on the pass line (the ribbon-like area that
runs around the table layout), directly in front of you. This
is known as a come-bet. (This first throw of dice is called a
"come-out roll.") When you do this, both you and the
shooter will be hoping for a 7 or 11 to roll; if it happens, you
win! On the other hand, if a 2, 3, or 12, also known as "craps"
comes out, you lose. If any other number such as 4, 5, 6, 7, 9,
or 10, comes out, a "pass-line point" is established
and the shooter hopes (as do you) that that number will be thrown
again before a 7 comes up. If it does, you win; but if the 7 comes
first, you lose, and the hand is over and the dice move to the
If the shooter does throw a point number, you should put $10
directly behind your original $5 bet. This additional wager is
called a free odds bet or an "odds bet." The casino
will pay you the true-odds money for that number bet when it wins,
as opposed to the even-money odds they pay for your original pass
line bet. So, even though you have to put up additional funds
to make this bet, it is an excellent wager because the house edge
is zero on this specific bet. The layout doesn't show this bet
because it is so good for the player and so bad for the house.
Review the chart below to see what the different numbers will
pay out for the free-odds bet.
You can play this way all day long in any casino with great success.
You can also be the shooter and throw the dice yourself. Whether
you throw the dice or not, you should still bet the pass line
and add odds bets the same way.
Craps Payout Odds
|The payout for a $10 free-odds bet will differ
according to the point number thrown. Remember, this is a
very good bet for you because the house advantage is zero.
4 or 10
2 to 1
5 or 9
3 or 2
6 or 8
6 or 5
Who's Who at the Craps Table
The craps table usually operates with a team of five employees:
the box man, two dealers, a stickman, and one relief dealer.
The boxman, who is a casino executive, sits opposite the players
at the center of the table. He or she oversees the entire game,
watches everything and resolves any disputes. The boxman is also
responsible for all currency that is accepted at the table, which
is counted before being dropped into the moneybox. During games
that have lots of action, or when a high roller is playing, a
second boxman will join the game.
The two dealers stand on either side of the boxman. They pay
off the winning wagers, collect the chips on all losses at their
end of the table and make change for players.
The stickman stands in the center of the players’ side
of the table. He or she is responsible for the handling of the
dice and all the proposition bets in the center of the table.
The stickman will call the game by announcing each roll of the
dice, advertise betting options that are available to players
and generally set the pace of the game itself.
The relief dealer is brought in to a rotate the entire crew,
except for the boxman.
Finally, there is the shooter, who is the player who rolls the
dice during each specific round.
about different bets at the craps table here!