Craps is one of the more complex casino games and has a variety of possible wagers. The intricacy of the game means that there are many ways to play and a variety of strategies that players can utilize.
While no gambling strategy will ensure that you win all the time, since of course the game is designed to give the house an advantage, using the best craps strategies when you play can help you to increase your winnings.
Craps Strategies: Odds
The core of any craps strategy is an understanding of the odds of the game. The many possible craps bets have different odds; in other words, the casino has a different advantage for each of the different bets.
For example, when you place a pass bet, the house has a 1.41% advantage and when you place a no pass bet, the house has a 1.40% edge. Come and no come bets have the same odds as the pass and no pass; they are really the same bets except that a come bet is used when you join the table in the middle of a game.
However, if you bet the field you are playing with the house at a 5.6% advantage and if you bet any 7, the casino has a 16.7% advantage. Horn and craps 2/12 bets also lean heavily toward the house and should generally be avoided.
Therefore, any winning craps strategy must be based on making pass or no pass bets (or come/no come bets) and ignoring the riskier wagers that the craps table offers. This may seem simplistic, but it is the core strategy.
Craps Strategies: Odds Bets
At the craps table, you can make extra bets called odds bets. These can be made after the come out roll is completed. An odds bet, known as "buying odds" is used as a supplement for your pass bet.
If you want to place an odds bet on a don't pass bet, it is called "laying odds". These bets allow you to put more money on the table, but the good news is that these bets do not give any advantage to the house. The casino still has an advantage on your initial wager, but if you win with this supplementary bet you can increase your winnings dramatically.
Odds bets payouts are based on the chances of each number appearing. When you make an odds bet, you are wagering that the point will be rolled again before a seven. In most casinos, the payout table looks something like this:
Point 4 or 10: the odds bet pays 2:1
Point is 5 or 9: the odds bet pays 3:2
Point is 6 or 8: the odds bet pays 6:5.
Since these bets pay more than even money, and the casino has no advantage for these wagers, any smart craps strategy involves placing odds bets in order to maximize the player's advantage.