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Craps Game Explained

Craps is the most popular dice table game played in casinos

One can also play craps online or play street craps.
Of these craps games, casino craps, where the players bet against the casino (house) – is the most widely known.

Before you play casino craps, study up on our helpful tips to perfect your craps game:

Rules of Craps

The rules of craps are relatively simple; players bet or wager on the outcome of the combined number two dice will land on when rolled.

Each person has the option to throw the dice until they lose. The players’ turns move clockwise around the craps table. A player can decide to pass the dice if they do not want to throw (shoot).
When it is a new roll for the player (shooter), in order to throw, they must bet the craps table minimum
on the Pass or Don’t Pass Line.
A player can only use one hand to throw, and must hit the back wall with both dice.
The first roll is called the Come Out roll.

Rules For Winning On The Pass Line
If a player has money on the Pass Line during the come out roll, a 7 or 11 thrown will win.
A 2, 3, or 12 will lose. The numbers 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 or 10 will establish a “Point” and the game will continue.
Once the point number is established, a 7 thrown before hitting that point number will lose the Pass Line bet, and the player’s turn will be over. All bets will be cleared from the table.
If the player makes the point by throwing his point number, the Pass Line bet will win and a new come out roll will start over again for that same player.
(NOTE: 2,3, or 12 are referred to as craps.Rules and payouts can be asked of the dealers, who are more than happy to help.)

Rules For Winning On The Don’t Pass Line
If the player has money on the Don’t Pass Line during the come out roll, a 7 or 11 will lose, and a 2 or 3 will win.
A 12 will push. Once the point number is established, a 7 thrown before the point number is hit will win the Don’t Pass Line bet, and the player’s turn will be over.
If the player throws the point number before the 7, he will lose his Don’t Pass Line bet, and a new come out roll will start again for that same player.

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Craps Betting

View our craps simulator software to practice betting and throwing: How To Play Craps

The simplest craps betting method is betting the table minimum on the Pass or Don’t Pass Line.

Odds Betting
A common bet is to make an odds bet, which is often called “taking odds”.
Betting odds is one of your best advantages in craps.Odds are paid out according to true mathematical odds, which lowers their house advantage.
Casinos normally take a cut with other bets instead of paying the true statistical odds.

Another advantage of betting odds is your bet is not locked onto the craps table.
This means that if you are not confident that you will make your point, you can pick your bet back up.

How To Bet Odds
To place odds on a Pass Line bet, you put chips behind your bet behind the pass line.
To place odds on the Don’t Pass, you put chips next to your bet on the Don’t Pass Line.

You must have a Pass Line or Don’t Pass Line bet in order to take odds.
Most casinos will allow you to place a bet for odds that is a multiple of your Pass Line bet.
For instance, if a casino says it has 5X odds that means the max you can place for odds is 5X your bet on the Pass Line. So, if you are betting $5 on the Pass Line, you can place up to $25 in odds.

If you are betting odds on the Don’t Pass Line, you must place double the amount in odds money that your Don’t Pass Line bet contains.

Odds Payouts
  • If the point is 4 or 10, then your odds bet is paid true odds of 2:1
  • If the point is 5 or 9, then your odds bet is paid 3:2
  • If the point is 6 or 8, then your odds bet is paid 6:5
Place Betting
Place bets are located in boxes on the upper left side of the craps table.
There are 6 boxes which contain the numbers: 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 and 10.
Dealers control this area of the craps table. When a player makes a bet on one of these numbers, the bet is considered working. This means that the bet is left up during the entire craps game and will win money anytime that number is hit after the point is established (turned on).

Unless the player asks the dealer to take the bet down and get their money back, the bet will stay up the entire roll. Only a 7 will knock the bets down.

The odds for place bets are as follows:
  • Numbers 4 and 10 are paid 9:5
  • Numbers 5 and 9 are paid 7:5
  • Numbers 6 and 8 are paid 7:6
Example: Play $6 dollars on the number 8 to win $7

Betting The Field
The field is a betting section located on the left center and right center sides of the craps table.
The field is a one time bet on the numbers 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, and 12.
This means that if one of these numbers is not thrown on the next roll after you make the field bet –
the bet will be lost.

If one of the field numbers is rolled, then the field bet is paid as follows:
  • 1:1 (even money) for the numbers 3, 4, 9, 10, and 11
  • 2:1 for the number 2
  • 3:1 for the number 12 (or 2:1 in some casinos)
If a 5, 6, or 8 is rolled, then the player’s field bet is lost.
If the field bet is won, a player can choose to let their bets ride, or they can remove the bet.
Field bets are heavily biased toward the casino.Craps strategies incorporating this as a primary way of playing craps is usually bogus.

Betting The Hard Ways
The hardways betting section is located in the center of the craps table.
Hardways consist of the numbers: 4, 6, 8, and 10.
A hardway occurs when the dice are rolled and end up on the same numbers.
These 2 identical numbers must add up to: 4, 6, 8, or 10.
If the shooter rolls a 4, 6, 8, or 10, but the dice are not identical, the hardway bet is lost.

Example: A Hard 8 consists of two dice that each show the number 4

Betting The Horn
Horn bets are located in the center of the craps table.
There are 4 horn bets. Each betting square in the horn area of the craps table contains one of the numbers 2,3,11, and 12. The dealer will place the bet on the horn for the players.

Betting The Big 6 And Big 8
The Big 6 and Big 8 betting sections are located at the left and right corners of the craps table.
These bets are not recommended. These bets only pay 1:1 (even money), but the 6 and 8 place bets pays more (7:6), so it is recommended to place your 6 and 8 bets there.

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Craps Strategies And Tips

When you play craps, it is essential to have a proper betting and throwing craps strategy if you want to avoid substantial losses and increase your chances of winning at the game.

Here are some tips to help you perfect your craps strategies:
  • Of all the craps tables you can play, it’s easier to win craps if the dice aren’t bouncing off the table.
    So, stay away from bouncy craps tables. (Those dealing craps and running the pit find it annoying as well)
  • Only play craps table limits that you can afford. It is best to have a bank roll that is 50X greater than the table limit
  • Only bet the Pass Line, Don’t Pass Line, Odds, and Place Bets
  • Know the exact odds and payouts of the entire craps table layout, so you can get paid correct odds
  • Avoid playing craps online. You are at a disadvantage when you play craps online, because you cannot use every strategy you have.
    Casino craps is your best bet for winning.Craps strategies on this site are assuming a live casino environment
  • Learn Dice Control (How to Shoot Craps)
For better your playing,craps tips and tricks, and other craps betting strategies - see: How to win at craps

Win At Craps

Winning at craps is every player’s dream. Even though it is a lot of fun to play craps, most players approach the game with the intent to win. If you want to know how to win at craps, you must develop craps strategies that can help you win the game. If you follow these tips exactly, you will find yourself being able to hold onto the dice longer.

Learn Craps

Learning craps does not have to be difficult. We have several resources to help you learn the game.
Play craps with confidence by viewing our tips and tutorials.
Learn the techniques that even the most advanced craps players are not aware of.
Don’t let the casinos have the upper hand.
You can have fun and win at craps at the same time!

Interactive Craps Tutorial

Check out the Interactive craps tutorial game I created: How To Play Craps
Just follow along with the steps, and start playing craps like a pro.

Here's a craps tutorial I found online...
It should help you learn to play craps.
Warning: it's 40 minutes long and the quality is so-so...
Enjoy!
Craps Tutorial
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