The Basics of Roulette

Roulette is a casino game that involves spinning a numbered wheel and placing bets on various groups of numbers, the color red or black, whether it’s odd or even, or if it’s high or low. The croupier then throws a small ball into the wheel while it’s in motion and the numbers and colors of the pockets that it settles in determine which players win and lose.

Despite its simplicity, the game has a certain allure that can be addictive for some. Its appeal stems in part from the fact that it is one of the few casino games based truly on chance. It also provides the thrill of watching a small ball spiral around and then finally come to rest in a pocket that marks a number.

The Roulette Wheel

A roulette wheel consists of a solid wooden disk slightly convex in shape and surrounded by metal partitions called frets or separators, each painted alternately in red and black and numbered nonconsecutively from 1 to 36. On European-style wheels, a 37th compartment, painted green, carries the numbers 0 and 00. Between the compartments are arranged two more alternating red and black numbers, forming what’s known as a Dozens bet.

Outside Bets

Outside bets are more conservative plays that place your chips on categories of numbers rather than individual ones. They’re less risky than inside bets but still offer a decent payout if you win. They include the High or Low Bet (passe et manque in French), which wagers that the winning number is either in the first 18 or last 18 on the layout, and the Odd or Even Bet (imparair et partage in French), which is like the Street bet but with three consecutive numbers instead of just two.

The house edge on all outside bets is about 1.35%, but the odds are better when you play with La Partage, which reduces this to 1.35%. You can find this version of the game at reputable online casinos.