How to Play Craps. Craps is one of the games you should try often. It’s a fun-filled game that keeps the excitement high from the beginning to the end, that is if you know what to do in order to enjoy the game.
This is the reason you need to read this article to the end.
With this guide, you will find reasons to love the game of craps, if you haven’t been considering it as one of the best table games so far.
Craps, as you must have noticed, is a game of dice. It is played on a table with a special and unique layout.
Hence, craps are one of the table games. You must have also seen some players rolling dice and calling out bets while the others drop coloured chips at different parts of the table.
You must have also noticed that some staff exchange cash for chips as well as moved some of the chips kept by players to the rectangular boxes on the table.
What is more? You must have noticed that a stick is used to move the dice and some chips by a staff of the casino.
All these would have made you wonder what is actually happening on that table. Well, all those activities you see, and more, make craps a unique and exciting game.
This article will help you to pick up the basic information concerning craps game.
It will give you the tips that will help you to play the game whenever you walk towards a craps table to join the excited crowd of players to have fun too.
Here, you will find out the crew members on every craps table and their duties. You will understand who rolls those dice and when they do it.
You will also discover what those chips are for and the reasons they are placed on different areas of the table.
This guide will help you to demystify craps game so you can start playing yours too. From here, you can take it to the next level.
Why You Should Play Craps
A lot of people wonder why they should bother playing craps, especially since they have to learn all about it, including how to play it. But people like this don’t know what they are missing.
In case you are wondering why you should play that game when walking into a casino to play live games, or pick up your phone or turn on your computer for fun-filled online casino games, you need to take a little break reandad through this section.
Here, you will find out why craps players keep coming back for more.
a. Craps is a thriller: The game gives you the same level of pleasure and excitement thrilling experiences give you. Craps players can tell you of the excitement they feel when they throw the dice and watch them roll over and over again until they (the dice) stop.
The suspense has no equal because no one can tell what the outcome will be until the dice stop rolling.
The feelings that come with waiting for the dice to stop and seeing the outcome are indescribable. You only need to experience them to understand. So, take that chance.
b. Some people feel uncomfortable in the midst of the large crowd that is always around the craps table but they didn’t realise that the crowd adds to the excitement.
Imagine the claps, loud cheers, and several pats on the back you will receive when you win. Even if you lose, you will still be encouraged by the people around the table.
c. The crews and other bettors will be there to help and guide you if you don’t know what you are supposed to do. You can also observe other bettors see how they bet and when they do so. You can never be lost on that table.
d. You can make some money by betting on the outcome of other players’ dice rolling. This is to say that you mustn’t be the one rolling the dice to win. In the game of craps, you may be a shooter (the player rolling the dice) or a bettor (to bet for or against the shooter). You can both too.
e. You don’t need to develop special skills to play craps. Of course, you have to practice how to roll the dice properly but there are no special dice-rolling skills that will make you win all the time.
This is to say that you should be wary of people that claim they can teach you how to roll your dice to win. But, you should watch other players and learn the best bets to go for and the ones to avoid.
ALSO READ: Top 18 Legitimate Online Casinos USA Review
Things to Bear in Mind Play Crap
I believe you have decided to try out your luck at craps table when next you visit a casino, be it at an online casino or in a live one.
This is a good idea. Now, there are some things about this game you have to bear in mind.
1. Remember, craps requires no special skills before bets can be placed and won. Hence, you don’t need to go for special craps-winning training to be able to play the game.
2. Craps is a game of chance. It all depends on luck. There is no fixed way of determining the outcome of the game.
In the case of an online craps game, the outcome of the rolled dice depends on the outcome of the random number generator, an online casino gaming software that generates millions of number combinations within seconds.
As a result, the combination created by the random number generator the moment you clicked on the button to roll the dice is what will be the result of the game.
The same way you have no control over the result of the online casino craps games is also the way you can’t control the outcome of the dice in motion in live casinos. So, don’t be too hard on yourself if the outcome is not what you expected.
3. You need to study about craps games before you play it. This will help you to understand what is going on at that table when you get there.
By so doing, you will not be intimidated by the game again. Hence, read and digest this article and any other one you can lay your hands on before playing the game.
4. Don’t feel ashamed to ask the crew for direction if you don’t know what to do. The dealers by the side of the table you found yourself are the best people to ask questions.
They will be willing and ready to supply you with any information you need before making a decision.
5. Different casinos have different bet limits. As a result, go for the casino that will accept the bets within your financial capabilities. Remember, you are playing for fun and not to make money.
Any money you make from the game is part of the fun. You can find the bet limit of a casino through their websites or customer service centres.
You can also see reviews about them from online posts made by other players. If you can, walk into the casino and observe them.
If you are playing an online casino, the instructions about their betting limits may be found in the account section of the bookie’s website.
6. Different craps tables within a live casino may have different bet limits. You can find this information written on a placard and kept strategically on the table.
Be sure to go for the table that offers the bet limits that are within your budget.
7. Don’t scramble for dice. Indicate your interest to roll dice by placing your Pass Line Bet or Don’t Pass Bet on the section of the table reserved for it (usually the “apron”).
The stickman will move the dice to you when it is your turn to play.
8. Observe the other players on the table and take note of those winning. Find out what they do differently, especially their betting, and learn from them.
9. Play a few free craps games before going for the ones that pay real money. You can find many free online craps games that can help you to obtain the rubrics of the game.
10. Never leave your chips or money on the craps table unless you want to place bets or buy chips, as the case may be. The simple reason for this is that the crew, especially the dealers, will assume you are betting if you do so.
11. The on/off puck should be your guide on the table. It will notify you when a game is on and when the round has ended.
It will also guide you on the points established by the shooter.
12. The outcome of the dice (which determines the result of the game) is determined by the numbers facing up after the two dice have stopped rolling and the total and/or combination of those numbers.
One die is not used to calculate the game’s outcome. Note that the part or parts of the table the dice landed is irrelevant.
13. While betting, it is advisable to wager the amount you can afford to lose.
Components of a Craps Table
You must have noticed the mysterious lines, shapes, numbers, and letters on the layout of a craps table.
After reading this section, you will be able to demystify this table and learn what each section stands for.
Since this is to give you the basics, you will not be burdened with any information you don’t need to know about that table.
What this means is that you will only learn the basics that will help you on your first craps game.
If you look at a craps table, you will notice it has three different sections: a side section, a centre section, and then another side section.
But, looking closely at the table again, you will realise that the two side sections look identical. Well, yes, they are actually identical.
That is why it is said that a craps table is divided into two major sections: the sides and the centre sections.
- The Side Section of a Craps Table
The two identical side sections of the table perform the same role except that they are used by the players on either side of the table.
Bettors have to place bets on the side of the table they stood; you don’t place bets across the table (always remember that). Furthermore, each side section has a standing dealer managing it.
Hence, that staff you see collecting cash and handing out chips as well as helping players to place bets doesn’t do anything on the other side of the table.
He minds his own side of the table and only attends to customers on that side.
The side section of the table is used to place every form of bets except the Propositional Bets. Hence, “Pass Line”, “Don’t Pass”, “Come”, “Don’t Come”, “Place”, “Lay”, and so on are placed on the either of the side sections. However, here is a brief description of the side section of the craps table.
i. Each side section contains two different areas. These are the dealer’s area (collectively known as “Point Boxes”) and the self-service or player’s area.
ii. The blank section on each side section is known as the “apron”. This is where the odds bets are placed (you will learn more about bets in the section titled “Types of Bets”).
iii. The areas on the table labelled “Pass Line”, “Don’t Pass Bar”, “Come”, “Don’t Come Bar”, and “Field” are reserved for customers to place their bets by themselves.
They are the player’s or self-service area. Some tables contain the “Big 6” and “Big 8” parts too.
iv. Customers can handle the bets they placed in the self-service areas. This means they can move their chips to the right boxes without the help of the dealer assigned to the side of the table.
But then, those boxes are only for the mentioned types of bets. Note that players are not allowed to handle bets on the Point Box (that is, the dealer’s area).
v. The part of the side section that contains numbers 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10 is the Point Box. When a shooter establishes a point (you will understand what this means soon), the dealer on his side of the table will move the on/off the puck to the number on the Point Box that aligns with the point and then turn the puck to “On”.
vi. If a player requests that the dealer place bets for them, the dealer moves his chips to the appropriate position on the Point Box.
- The Centre Section
This part is managed only by the stickman but it is shared by all the players on the table, irrespective of which side they are. The centre section is used only for propositional bets. Note that players are not allowed to drop their chips at the centre section, even if the stickman is too busy to attend to them. If such is the case, they can talk to their dealer, who will help them to place the bet, if the casino allows such, or notify the stickman when he is free.
Crews in the Game
Basically, craps has a five-man crew managing the game even though you may only see four of them throughout your stay at the casino. These crew members are:
a. The Floorman: This is the person that supervises and manages the events at the craps table. He or she can oversee the games taking place at different tables, so you may not see him even though he is around. As a result, this staff may not be there to help you with any help you needed with the game.
b.The Boxman: This person stays on an assigned table to monitor the events going on there. His duties include:
i. Changing chips to cash (for those that won).
ii. Watching over the dealers to ensure they acted appropriately.
iii. Settling disputes between dealers and players.
iv. Monitoring the betting taking place on the assigned table.
vi. Booking credit-bets for eligible players.
vi. Controlling the games taking place on the assigned table.
c. The Stickman: This is the crew member that handles the long stick used to move dices and chips around. It is the stickman that performs the following duties:
i. Moves dices to shooters at every round of the games (he moves five dice for shooters to select any two of their choices).
ii. Calls out the outcome of a dice roll
iii. Reminds players of the Propositional Bets placed at the centre section of the table.
iv. Organises the chips thrown for the propositional bet.
v. Instructs the payment of the winnings made through propositional bets.
d.The Two Standing Dealers: As you must have noticed, these dealers stand on either side of the table so they can communicate and answer the questions posed by the players on that side. There are other duties performed by the dealers, which include:
i. They call the bets made from their side of the table.
ii. They pay off the winnings made from their side of the table.
iii. They help players to place bets by moving their chips to the appropriate boxes.
iv. They collect the money paid by players for wagers.
v. They give players the chips that correspond to their wagers.
vi. They are the best crew members to answer customers’ questions concerning the game.
NB: The crew can switch positions at intervals. So, don’t be alarmed or surprised when the boxman becomes the stickman and the dealer on your side of the table moves to the other side. But this switch will not interrupt the game.
Types of Bet
Before you place bets at the table, you need to read through this section in order to understand the types of bets you can place.
a. Pass Line Bets: This is the bet made by the shooter or another player at the table before the “Come-Out Roll”, that is, the first time a shooter rolls the dice.
By betting a Pass Line, when you are not the shooter, you signal that you believe the shooter will win the come-out roll. So, if the shooter rolls a 7 or 11, you and the shooter will win.
But if he or she rolls a 2, 3, or 12, you will both lose. If the outcome of the roll is any other value apart from 2, 3, 7, 11 or 12, he will establish a point.
In that case, the Pass Line bet remains in place while the shooter continues to roll until he rolls the point again or a 7.
If the point is rolled before the 7, you both will win. But if a 7 comes first, you both will lose.
b. Don’t Pass Bet: This is also placed by a shooter and other bettors before the Come-out roll but it is the opposite of Pass Line bet. Here, you bet against the shooter, indicating that he or she will lose the game.
If the shooter, during the come-out roll, achieves a 7 or an 11, you will lose. But you will win when the outcome is a 2 or a 3. If it is a 12, it is a tie, no one won and so you take back your money.
If the shooter establishes a point, the bet remains in place while he or she continues to roll the dice. If the point is rolled before a 7, you will lose. And if a 7 is rolled before the point, you will win.
c. Come Bet: This bet is placed after the shooter has established a point. If you place a Come bet, the first roll that comes after you placed the bet determines whether you will win, lose, or get a Come Point.
If the roll is a 7 or an 11, you will win. If it is a 2, 3, or 12, you will lose. If it is any other number apart from 2, 3, 7, 11, or 12, you will establish a Come Point (also known as a Come Wager).
This means the number must be rolled again before a 7 is rolled for you to win. In that case, you will lose if 7 is rolled before the established come point.
You can see that this bet is almost like the Pass Line bet except that it is placed after the shooter has established a point, not before.
d. Don’t Come Bet: This is the opposite of a Come Bet. You also place it after the shooter has established a point.
If the shooter rolls a 7 or an 11 after you placed this bet, you will lose. If it is a 2 or a 3, you will win. If it is a 12, it is a tie, so you take back you money.
If it is another number other than the five mentioned already (that is 2, 3, 7, 11, and 12), you will establish a Come Point or a Come Wager.
That means you will win if a 7 is rolled before the number and lose if the number comes first.
NB: Note that Pass Line, Don’t Pass, Come, and Don’t Come bets are even money bets. That means the payout is calculated as 1 is to 1. For instance, if you bet $5 in any of them, you will receive $5 if you win.
e. Odd Bets: This bet is placed after a point has been established. The point here can be the first roll point or the come point. Hence, you can place odd bets as “Pass Line Odds”, “Don’t Pass Odds”, “Come Odds”, and/or “Don’t Come Odds”.
Note that Pass Line Odds and Don’t Pass Odds are placed after the shooter has made a come-out roll and established a point while the Come Odds and Don’t Come Odds come after establishing a come point.
If you want to place any of these odds, you have to do so alongside the bets they complement. This means you can’t place any odd bets without first wagering.
As a result, Pass Line Odds complements Pass Line Bets, Don’t Pass Odds complements Don’t Pass Bets, and so on.
If you place a Pass Line Odds, you will win if the shooter rolls the point again before rolling 7 and lose if a 7 comes before the number is rolled again.
If it is a Don’t Pass Odds, you will win if your Don’t Pass bet wins, that is, when 7 is rolled before the point is repeated. This means you will lose if the point is repeated before the 7.
The same rules that apply to Come Bet and Don’t Come Bet also apply to Come Odds and Don’t Come Odds. So, if you win your Come bets or Don’t Come bets, you will also win Come Odds or Don’t Come Odds, respectively.
The essence of placing odds bet is to win the huge payout that accompanies their winnings. The amount to be wagered depends on the bookie, because some may have limits.
But, if there is no limit, you should remember your budget. The payout of these bets also varies, depending on the established point. In Pass Line Odds or Don’t Pass Odds, if the point is 4 or 10, the payout is 2 to 1 (that means double the amount you bet).
If it is 5 or 9, the payout is calculated at 3 to 2. And, if it is 6 or 8, your odds will be calculated at 6 to 5.
For Come Odds and Don’t Come Odds, the payout for 4 or 10 outcomes is 1 to 2; 5 or 9 roll is 2 to 3; 6 or 8 is 5 to 6.
f. Place Bet: This can be a “Place Win Bet” or a “Place Lose Bet”. These bets are placed after the shooter has rolled the come-out roll and made a point.
Here, you bet the outcome of the shooter’s roll by placing a bet on any of 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10. If you stake a Place Win Bet, you will win if the shooter rolls the number you betted before he rolled a 7 and lose if a 7 is rolled before the number.
For instance, if your place win bet is on 5, you will win if the shooter rolls a 5 before a 7, and vice versa.
On the same hand, if you place a “Place Lose Bet”, you will win if a 7 is rolled before the staked number and lose if the number showed up before 7.
The payout for the place bets depends on the type placed and the number chosen. In “Place Win Bet”, if you choose 6 or 8 as the outcome, your payout, if you win, will be 7 to 6.
If you choose 5 or 9, the payout is 7 to 5. If it is 4 or 10, you will receive 9 to 5 of the amount you staked.
On the other hand, if you opt for the “Place Lose Bet”, the payouts are 4 to 5 for number 6 or 8, 5 to 8 for number 5 or 9, and 5 to 11, for number 4 or 10.
g. Field Bets: This is a one-roll bet that is placed on the outcome of the upcoming roll. If the outcome of the roll is a 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, or 12, you will win.
If it is a 5, 6, 7, or 8, you will lose. Here, you will win even money if the outcome is a 3, 4, 9, 10 or 11 and a double (that is 2 to 1) if it is a 2 or 12.
h. Propositional Bet: This bet is also settled on the roll directly following the bet. There are different types of proposition bets and all of them are found or placed at the centre of the table.
Note that this bet is riskier than the others but pays higher than them, that is, if you win. So, if you know you can’t take the risk involved, avoid this bet.
However, if you want to enjoy the excitement that comes with it and also have the bet limit for it, here is how it works:
I. If you bet “Any Craps”, you will win if the outcome of the roll is 2, 3, or 12. In this case, the payout is 8 to 1.
ii. If you bet “Any 7”, you will win if the outcome of the next roll is 7. The payout here is 4 to 1.
iii. If you bet “Any 11”, you will win if the next roll lands 11. The payout is 15 to 1.
iv. If you bet “Ace Deuce”, you will receive a 15 to 1 payout if the next roll is a 3.
v. If you go for “Aces”, your payout will be 30 to 1 if a 2 is the outcome of the next roll.
vi. If you bet a “Boxcar”, you will receive a 30 to 1 payout if the upcoming roll is a 12.
i. Hardways Bet: This is placed when you want to bet that the outcome of any of the next rolls that will be made before a 7 is landed will be a hard double.
In case a double is realised, the shooter is said to have rolled the “hard way”; so you will win. If the result is not a double, the roll is referred to as the “easy way”, whereby you lose.
For instance, if you bet a hard 6, you will win when the shooter rolls 3, 3 before rolling a 7 but lose if he rolls 5, 1 or 4, 2, that is, the “easy way”, before landing a 7. Of course, if a 7 shows up first, you will lose.
In Hardways Bet, you can bet a hard 4 (2, 2), a hard 6 (3, 3), a hard 8 (4, 4), or a hard 10 (5, 5). The payout is 7 to 1 for a hard 4 or a hard 10, and 9 to 1 for a hard 6 or a hard 8.
j. Hop Bet: This is a one-roll bet, where you wager on the outcome of the next roll. But here, your wager predicts what the combination of the next roll will be.
For instance, you can bet that the next roll will be a 5 and 2, a 6 and 2, a 4 and 1, and so on.
This bet does not pay even money but the payout depends on the casino’s rules and the combinations you wagered.
k. Big 6 and Big 8 Bets: These are even money bets. Here, if you bet a Big 6, you will win if any combination of 6 is rolled before a 7 is realised.
This is the same thing if you roll a Big 8. Remember, you lose if the shooter rolls a 7 before the staked number.
Steps to Playing Craps Game
As you must have noticed, the game of craps has more to do with betting than rolling the dice.
Hence, once you learn as much as you can about the types of bets in craps games and observe how and when other players place them, you are good to go.
However, since you have accepted to play this exciting game, here are the steps you should take:
a. Determine the amount you will spend at the casino. This is where you set your budget and plan how to stick to it.
Remember, you are going there to have fun, not to waste money and, definitely, not to make money. The winnings should only be part of the fun and not the main objective for playing.
b. Choose a casino and then a table. Craps game is played with the same set of rules everywhere and the tables are the same in all casinos (except for minor inconsequential additions).
But the minimum and maximum betting limits are different. So, look for a casino as well as a table that accepts the size of your planned bet.
The betting limit of a table is usually indicated with a placard. Use it as a guide to choose your table.
You should also look for the casino and table that has the size and type of crowd you want to play with.
This will help you to play comfortably. If you can, at this stage, go for a quieter table because it will help you to follow what is happening on the table.
c. Purchase your chips. You can buy your chips right there at the table unless the casino does so differently.
If you are buying at the table, drop the cash on the table and draw the attention of the dealer on your side of the table to change your cash for chips.
Remember, the dealers usually don’t collect cash directly from players. When you receive your chips, keep them on a built-in rack along the table’s edge but in front of you. Never purchase your chips during a game so you don’t disrupt the game.
d. Place your bets. If you want to be a shooter, you first have to place the Pass Line Bet before you are handed over the dice, when it is your turn.
You can also place other bets. You can use the self-service area for the appropriate bets but call the attention of the dealer and/or the stickman for the bets they manage.
e. Enjoy the game!
The game of craps is a game of chance because you cannot control the rolls of the dice.
In the case of an online casino, dice rolling is pre-determined by a random number generator, which generates the combination of your dice the moment you clicked the play button.
In a live casino, there is no known workable strategy for rolling dice (so long as you don’t throw them off the table).
So, just read this guide, observe people playing craps, and be ready to try your luck.
Be sure to bet the amount you are ready to lose without feeling the pinch. But remember, the game is there for fun.