Craps Betting Systems

Martingale System

Many people believe in “magical” systems that are meant to beat the odds in games like craps.

One of the most common systems players subscribe to is the Martingale System. In this system the player bets a given amount, for example $1. Whenever he loses he doubles his bet, and whenever he wins he starts over at the initial amount. By doing so, according to the theory, the player should break even (at worst) and never lose money.

The Martingale system fails, however, because the player will either run out of money after doubling the bet too many times in a row, or may not be able to bet the amount dictated by the system because it would exceed the maximum bet allowed. Furthermore, this system, based on the concept of cumulative odds, often results in an equal or very small payout with no major profit won by the player.

Gambler’s Fallacy

Many systems rely on the gambler’s fallacy, which is the belief that previous dice rolls influence the probabilities of any future rolls. For example, a player might bet on the number 11 if it hasn’t appeared yet, with the assumption that it has to come up sometime. Or, on the flip side, if the number has been rolled repeatedly, the player may see it as a lucky number and continue to bet on it. This of course is a baseless assumption as the odds of rolling the number 11 remain the same no matter how many times it’s been rolled. Even if eleven has not been rolled in the last 100 rolls, or it has been rolled 100 times in a row, the probability of rolling an 11 will always remain the same.

Parity Hedge System

The parity hedge system is a mathematical impossibility. Several gambling-related websites have retold the ‘parity hedge’ story without proof. If you see people advertising this theory, do not fall for it.

Dice Setting or Dice Control

Another strategy for winning at craps is to set the dice in a particular orientation, and then toss them in a more controlled manner (to prevent the randomness of the dice roll). The logic behind this theory is that if tossed from the same starting point, the dice should tumble the same way each time they are thrown,  resulting in similar values every time.
Unlike other systems, this one is mathematically supported. If it were possible to alter the probabilities of each outcome, then winning systems could be created.

Casinos try to prevent such dice control by making players throw the dice against the backboard, (thereby altering their orientation), and not allowing them to hold the dice for long periods of time.