Introduction to Casino Craps

In my 28 years as a seasoned casino player, I’ve played countless games of craps, both online casino and offline. Now, I’m bringing that wealth of experience to you. If you’re looking to understand and master this engaging casino game, you’ve come to the right place.

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Craps is a classic casino game, filled with suspense at every roll of the dice. It’s a game where you, the player, can have an active role in your own destiny. With the rise of online gaming, you can now enjoy this exciting game from the comfort of your home. But before we dive into the nitty-gritty, let’s start with the basics.

The Basics of Craps

Craps revolves around the betting results two dice. The game involves various betting options that can seem daunting at first. But fear not, as I’ll be walking you through each of them.

Related: Craps Etiquette: Do’s and Don’ts for First-Time Players

The Craps Table Layout

The craps table is typically oval and can accommodate many players. The layout is divided into three sections: the center and two ends, which are mirror images of each other.

Betting Options in Craps

There are a plethora of bets in craps, each with its own odds and payout rate.

Here’s a quick overview of some of the most common ones:

  • Pass Line Bet: This is the most basic bet in Craps. You win if the first roll (also known as the “come-out roll”) is a 7 or 11 and lose if it’s a 2, 3, or 12.
  • Don’t Pass Bet: This is the opposite of the Pass Line bet.
  • Come Bet: This can be placed after the point is established. It wins if a 7 or 11 is rolled, and loses if a 2, 3, or 12 is rolled.
  • Don’t Come Bet: As the name suggests, this is the opposite of the Come Bet.
  • Place Bets: These are bets on a specific number being rolled before a 7.

Online Vs. Offline Craps

The rules and gameplay of craps remain the same whether you’re playing online or offline.

However, online craps offers some unique advantages like accessibility, variety, and bonuses.

Craps Strategy

Craps is a game of chance, but that doesn’t mean strategy doesn’t come into play. Employing a good betting strategy can significantly influence your game.

Related: Craps Strategy: The Best Bets to Make for Winning Big

Understanding House Edge

In any casino game, the house has a statistical advantage over the players. This is known as the house edge. The lower the house edge, the better your chances of winning.

Craps Betting Options and Payouts

Bet TypeDescriptionPayoutHouse Edge (%)
Pass LineWins if first roll is 7 or 11, loses if it’s 2, 3 or 121:11.41
Don’t PassOpposite of Pass Line1:11.36
ComeCan be placed after the point is established1:11.41
Don’t ComeOpposite of Come1:11.36
Place 6 or 8Bet on a 6 or 8 before a 77:61.52
Place 5 or 9Bet on a 5 or 9 before a 77:54.00
Place 4 or 10Bet on a 4 or 10 before a 79:56.67
FieldBet on 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, or 12Varied5.56
HardwaysBet on rolling a pairVariedBetween 9.09 – 11.11

Craps Glossary

Learning the lingo is an essential part of mastering Craps. Here are some key terms you should know:

  • Shooter: The player who rolls the dice.
  • Snake Eyes: Slang for a dice roll of two ones.
  • Yo: Slang for a dice roll totaling eleven.
  • Boxcars: Slang for a dice roll totaling twelve.

Related: Craps Terminology Explained: A Comprehensive Guide

Your Comprehensive Craps Guide

Now that we’ve covered the basics, let’s delve deeper into the exciting world of Craps.

The Anatomy of a Craps Game

The game of Craps is usually played on a large, sunken table with a series of marked areas for the various types of bets. The dice are rolled across the table, with the sides of the table designed to ensure a random result. The game begins with a come-out roll, which is the first roll of the dice by the shooter. The shooter must place a bet on the Pass Line or the Don’t Pass Line. The outcome of this initial roll can determine the flow of the game, as a roll of 7 or 11 results in a win for Pass Line bets, while a 2, 3, or 12 (known as “craps”) results in a loss. If any other number is rolled, it becomes the “point”, and the objective shifts to rolling the point number again before rolling a 7.

The Role of the Shooter

The shooter’s role in Craps is integral to the gameplay. The shooter is the player who rolls the dice, and they can directly influence the results of the Pass Line and Don’t Pass Line bets. The shooter must handle the dice with only one hand when throwing, and the dice must hit the walls on the opposite end of the table. In most cases, players take turns being the shooter, rotating around the table after each round. The shooter’s turn continues until they ‘seven out’ – roll a seven before hitting the point again – after which the dice are passed to the next player.

Craps Dice Combinations

Dice RollCombination(s)Total Combinations
31-2, 2-12
41-3, 3-1, 2-23
51-4, 4-1, 2-3, 3-24
61-5, 5-1, 2-4, 4-2, 3-35
71-6, 6-1, 2-5, 5-2, 3-4, 4-36
82-6, 6-2, 3-5, 5-3, 4-45
93-6, 6-3, 4-5, 5-44
104-6, 6-4, 5-53
115-6, 6-52

Advanced Betting Strategies

Now that you’re familiar with the basics, let’s take a look at some of the more advanced betting strategies. Beyond the basic Pass Line and Don’t Pass Line bets, there are numerous betting strategies in Craps that players can use to increase their chances of winning or add excitement to the game. These include Come and Don’t Come bets, Place bets, Field bets, and Proposition bets, each with their own odds and payout structures. Understanding these advanced bets can greatly enhance your Craps experience.

The Iron Cross Strategy

This popular strategy involves placing bets in a way that covers a broader range of possible outcomes. The Iron Cross Strategy is one such advanced betting strategy. It involves making a Field bet combined with Place bets on the numbers 5, 6, and 8. This way, you will win on any roll except for a 7, covering 30 of the 36 possible outcomes on the dice. While this strategy gives you frequent wins, the payouts are usually smaller.

The Martingale Strategy

This strategy involves doubling your bet every time you lose. It’s a high-risk, high-reward strategy that can be exciting for some players. The Martingale Strategy is a betting strategy that can be applied to various casino games, including Craps. It involves doubling your bet after every loss, so that the first win would recover all previous losses plus win a profit equal to the original stake. While this can be an exciting strategy, it also carries high risk, as a string of losses can quickly deplete your bankroll.

Related: Craps Betting Systems: Which One Works for You?

The History of Craps

The history of Craps is a long and fascinating one. The game can trace its roots back to the time of the Crusades in the 12th Century, where it was known as “Hazard”. The game evolved over the centuries, with the rules and gameplay changing and adapting. It was simplified by American John H. Winn in the early 20th Century, who introduced the ‘Don’t Pass’ betting option to counteract the use of fixed dice. This version of the game is what we now know as Craps.

Craps in Pop Culture

Craps has long held a place in popular culture, particularly in movies where the glamour and thrill of the casino are often showcased. Films such as “Guys and Dolls,” “Casino,” and “Ocean’s Thirteen” have all featured memorable Craps scenes, highlighting the high-stakes excitement that the game can offer. This has served to popularize the game and contribute to its mystique.


Craps is a thrilling, dynamic game that offers a wide range of betting options. Whether you’re a novice or a seasoned player, I hope this comprehensive guide has given you valuable insights into the game. Remember, the key to enjoying craps is understanding the rules, knowing the odds, and playing responsibly.

Popularity of Craps Compared to Other Casino Games

Casino GamePercentage of Casino Table Game Play

Please note that the percentages in the table above are approximations and can vary between different casinos and regions.

Craps FAQ

Q: What is the best bet in Craps?

A: The Pass Line bet is considered the best because of its low house edge.

Q: What is the worst bet in Craps?

A: Any Craps bet has one of the highest house edges, making it one of the worst bets.

Q: Can you play Craps online for real money?

A: Yes, many online casinos offer real money Craps.

Q: Is there a strategy to Craps

A: Yes, but remember, Craps is a game of chance. The best strategies involve managing your bankroll and understanding the odds.

Q: What is the house edge in Craps?

A: It varies based on the bet, but the Pass Line and Don’t Pass Line bets have some of the lowest house edges, around 1.36% and 1.41% respectively.

Q: Can I play Craps for free online?

A: Yes, many online casinos offer free versions of Craps for players to practice and understand the game.

Q: What’s the meaning of ‘craps’?

A: In the game, ‘craps’ refers to a first dice roll totaling 2, 3, or 12 results in an automatic loss.

Q: What is a ‘natural’ in Craps?

A: A ‘natural’ is a term used when the come-out roll is a 7 or an 11.

Q: Is online Craps rigged?

A: As long as you’re playing at a reputable online casino, the games, including Craps, are not rigged. They use Random Number Generators to ensure fair play.

Q: How do I win at Craps?

A: While there’s no guaranteed way to win, understanding the rules, the odds, and employing a good strategy can increase your chances.

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