Craps is not as well understood as other table games outside of America, where its popularity is similar to the global demand of Roulette. Its also quite difficult to get a grasp watching people play and understanding the different types of bets a player can make. The markings on the table alone look complex to anyone that’s not played craps before.
The big difference in craps compared to most games is the player isn’t betting against other players or the house, but betting on the outcome of different rolled or combinations of two numbered dice. For example, a player might be betting on rolling a seven or betting on an outcome that excludes particular numbers. One thing to remember is, the number that awards a win or loses the stake is always based on a combined number of two dice.
One of the advantages of this game is that the Shooter (the person rolling the dice) is not the only one who can bet. People watching the action can choose to become active participants, investing for or against whoever is rolling the dice at the time.
Although Craps is a community game found in some casinos around the world and almost all casinos in the US, there is another variant that can sometimes be seen in movies or on TV, which has served to popularize the game and that’s the street version. The main difference is players bet against other players, and there’s no bank.
The Craps Table. Who's Who
Unlike other table games, the Craps table operates with five casino representatives. Two dealers, a Boxman and a Stickman. The Craps table can accommodate up to 20 players at any one time so it can get quite busy and very exciting.
The Boxman. The Boxman is in charge of the table. He has the final decision in all disputes, should they arise. The Boxman is there to oversee each game.
The Stickman. The Stickman is the person that’s in charge of the dice. His job is to pass the dice to the players. No one other than the players are allowed to touch or hold the dice, which is where the Stickman’s name comes from based on the sick used to pass the dice to the players. The Stickman is also the person that announced the verdict of each dice roll.
The Dealers. In Craps, there are two dealers, each responsible for half of the table each. Their job is to convert cash for chips and make sure that all bets are as neat and tidy as they can be. As well as trying to keep the Craps table organized, the Dealers are responsible for paying the winnings to players.
The Shooter. The Shooter is one of the players whose turn it is to throw the dice. The player remains the Shooter until they lose their bet or stop playing.
How to play Craps
One of the players will bet on either the Pass Line or the Don’t Pass Line. The bet needs to amount to the table minimum. The player will then be presented with five dice by the Stickman from which the player selects to use two of the five dice. The three dice leftover are returned to the Stickman’s Bowl. Dice must be rolled or thrown against the table wall at the opposite end of the table. When the dice have landed, the numbers of each dice result in a win or a loss. Each wagering player has the opportunity to be the Shooter, or a player can continue to bet without opting to roll the dice.
There are two stages to each round. The first round is the Come Out, and the second round is called Point. The round starts with the first roll of the dice called the Come Out; if the dice roll ends on a 2,3 or 12, all Pass Line bets are lost; however, a Come Out roll of 7 or 11 is called a “Natural” all Pass Line bets win. The Shooter continues to roll the dice when the Shooter rolls 4,5,6,8,9 or 10; the value becomes what’s known as the Point. The dealer then turns the On button, which signifies the second stage of the round. If the Shooter rolls the point number, all bets on the pass line are paid. If the Shooter rolls a 7, the pass line bets lose, and the round is over.
Anyone that wants to join the table and start betting needs to approach the craps table to see if the dealer’s button is ‘ON’ if the dealer’s button is “‘ON,” it signifies that a round has reached the second stage (The Point) which means the new player needs to wait until the round finishes.
A Pass Line bet is the most basic and the most common bet on the craps table. It pays even money for each successful roll. A Pass Line bet wins if the dice value is 7 or 11, and it loses if the value of the two dice amounts to 2,3, or 12.
Don’t Pass bet is the opposite of a Pass Line bet. A Don’t Pass Bet wins if the Come Out roll is a two or a three. Bets are lost if the value of the dice from the Come Out roll totals seven or an 11. If the value f the dice shows a 12, the bet is pushed.
Come and Don’t Come Bets
Come and Don’t Come bets are made in the second stage of the round once the Point has been made and is very similar to a Pass Line bet in the first stage of the round.
Players can place a wager on the point number just rolled; if it’s rolled again, wagers made will receive even money. A Don’t Come bet is similar to the Don’t Pass bet but a further option once the Point number has been established. Wagers will be lost if the dice value is 7 or 11, wagers will win if 2 or 3 is rolled.
Bets will stay on the Don’t Come line until 7,11,2 or 3 is rolled. Additionally, the wager will win if a seven is rolled and lose if the dice roll results in the Point number.
Place Bets is a bet only available once the Point has been established. Once the point number is determined, players can bet on the dice roll of 4,5,6,8,9, and 10 bets placed on any one or more numbers will win as long as a seven isn’t rolled beforehand.
Field bets are merely placing a bet on the dice roll. This can happen at any time, 2,3,4,9,10,11 or 12 awards a win. 5, 6, 7, or 8, the house wins.
Big Six and Big Eight Bet.
Big Six and Big Eight Bets can be placed at any stage of a round. Needless to say, that if the Shooter rolls a six or an eight, the bet wins.
Proposition bets are also bets that can be placed at any stage.
Any 7. An Any seven bet is won if a seven is rolled. The payout is four times the stake.
Any 11. An Any 11 bet is won if 11 is rolled. The payout is 15 times the stake.
Any Craps. An Any Craps bet is won if a 2,3 or 12 is rolled. The payout is seven times the stake.
Ace Deuce. Ace Deuce bet is won if a three is rolled. The payout is 15 times the stake
Boxcar. Boxcar is a bet won if a 12 is rolled. The payout is 30 times the stake.