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Learn how to play craps in less than five minutes by following this GamblersPick guide.
Craps is one of the most popular casino games available but is often considered among the more complex. With a house edge of 1.41%, this appearingly daunting game really isn’t that difficult. If you’ve always wanted to learn how to play craps, you’ve come to the right place.
Our guide will walk you through the basic foundations of how to play craps. You’ll learn about common craps terminology essential to enhancing your understanding and how to place bets — both of which will teach you how to play the table game in less than five minutes.
Craps Table Basics
Craps is a dice game, and you’ll notice a couple of elements around the table. One of these elements is the “boxman,” a person who supervises the craps game and manages the money and chips. Another important feature is the “stickman,” a person who acts as a referee as they retrieve the dice after every throw, announce the outcome of the rolls, and control how swiftly each throw of the dice and bet are completed. The stickman is also typically known as the “dealer.” Whether playing online or in a casino, these roles are present in one way or another.
To play the game, you’ll throw two dice onto the table and hope for the best outcome on which you have placed your original bet. Because there are two dice, each with six sides, they can fall in many ways with each roll.
As a player, you are known as the “shooter,” and you can be joined by no more than seven other shooters at any time. Shooters take turns throwing the dice, and each one can place a different bet no matter whose turn it is to throw.
Craps is perceived as a complex game because every bet made by the next shooter is linked with very explicit one roll bet odds, which explains the diverse betting sections of the game. These possible odds bets make craps both challenging and exciting with every roll of the dice.
Potential Come-Out Dice Roll Outcomes
To understand craps, you should know several terms before looking for online games or trying your hand at a live craps game. For starters, the come-out dice rollrefers to the first dice throw that the shooter makes in a craps game, which comprises three potential results.
The winner occurs when the shooter throws or rolls the dice in the come-out role, achieving a total of 7 or 11. When this happens on the first roll, the shooter is said to have a “natural,” which is a winning throw. Throwing a total of 7 or 11 on the first roll of the dice entitles the shooter to a second roll. In terms of bets, those placed on the “pass line” are winners, and the opposite is true for those making their bets on the “don’t pass line" of the next roll.
The pass line bets on the shooter winning, while the don’t pass line is a bet placed on the shooter losing the dice roll. Essentially, the don’t pass line bet must be within table minimums and maximums and is referred to as “seven out, line away” or “7 out.”
If the shooter throws any come-out numbers of 2, 3, or 12 — also known as “craps” — they lose the bet but can go again. An exception is that the 2 or 12 may be pushed through as wins but, typically, all bets placed on the pass line will lose. Single-roll bets placed on the don’t pass line will be winners.
Point numbers are also known as box numbers because these points are marked on the table by the boxman in live games or by a white point button in online games. Point or box numbers consist of those from 4 through 10 but skip 7.
A come-out dice roll wins bets on the pass line if the same point numbers are thrown a second time regardless of the number combination. If a 7 dice roll follows a box number, however, all bets on the pass line lose (which is why the number 7 is taboo in craps). Rolling the number 7 after a point is also known as “7 out,” and the round ends.
Bets You Can Make While Playing Craps
Here are the following bets you can make during a game of craps:
Pass line bets are made with the confidence that the new shooter will win the dice roll and land a 7 or 11 for the come-out roll or achieve box number points. If the shooter rolls any of the craps numbers, your bet loses.
Don’t pass line bets contrast pass line bets, betting that the shooter will lose. These bets come after the point has been established.
Place bets are made on point numbers before a 7 is rolled. Select any one or more of these numbers to bet on a win without a pass line or don’t pass line bet required.
Come bets can be placed after a come point number has been marked on the table, following a come-out throw, and focuses on point numbers being hit again for a win to occur. Players lose their bets if a 7 is rolled in this scenario.
Don’t come bets only win if the shooter throws a deuce or three and lose if they roll a 7 or 11. A “push” may also occur if the shooter rolls a 12, in which no one wins or loses. When this happens, you’ll need a 7 once the point is marked before the shooter rolls out the point again.
Field bets are placed on numbers in the field comprising 2, 3, 4, 10, 11, or 12, which are riskier bets compared to statistically common numbers thrown, such as 5, 6, 7, or 8.
Proposition bets are positioned in the middle of the craps table and available for precise dice rolls by any player to make bets on doubles, also known as “hardway bets.” Relevant numbers for the proposition bets include 4 to 6, 8, and 10.
Big 6 and big 8 bets are associated with place bets on these numbers before the number 7 lands on the table. Together with the initial line bets, big 6 and big 8 bets are perceived as having a good chance of coming up compared to other place numbers.
The nice thing about playing craps is that you can place your bets and the dealer or stickman and boxman will manage the rest for every new round. As the shooter, all you have to do is place your bets and throw the dice hard so they bounce off the back wall for greater impact. Even after learning the basics of playing craps, always check the house rules to make sure you are on the right track.
Other Craps Terminology
A hi-lo bet is placed on the number 2 or 12 for one roll. A hi-lo-yo bet is placed on the number 2, 11, or 12 for one roll. Inside number bets are placed on 5 and 6 or 8 and 9 (being the numbers inside the point numbers). Similarly, outside bet numbers include 4 and 10 or 5 and 9.
A marker has an “on” and “off” side, which is used to mark points. The same terms are used when the stickman pays the come bet, where the number has been duplicated by another shooter. A “right bettor” refers to any craps player who makes pass line bets and a “wrong bettor” is the player who places a bet for the shooter to lose.
“Snake eyes” refers to a number 2 dice roll because the two dots on the dice look like two small eyes. This double throw is also referred to as “aces.”
Get Started With Craps
Whether you want to take your newfound knowledge and play craps or learn about another game, GamblersPick has the resources you need to up your online play. Take a look at our online casino guides for information about strategies, payouts, and more, or browse through real reviews by real players to help you make a better choice. GamblersPick offers a safe and responsible way to play so you can master the craps table as a well-informed player.
FAQs: How to Play Craps
What are the basic rules of craps?
Learning how to play craps includes learning some basic rules. First, you’ll throw a pair of dice onto the table. Players, also known as “shooters” take turns throwing the dice, and each one can place a bet no matter whose turn it is to throw.
How do you play craps for beginners?
For a beginner's approach to playing craps, try to learn at least a few different craps bets, including pass line bets, don't pass line bets, and place bets.
Is craps easy to learn?
While learning craps is not as easy as some card games, like blackjack, learning craps isn't too complicated for a beginner. The main hurdle will be remembering what types of winning bets can be made within the game. Try playing online craps without betting real money to get a handle on the game before trying out your skills in Vegas.
What is the object of the game of craps?
The objective of the game of craps is to correctly predict the outcome of the roll of the pair of dice by correctly betting on which combination it will be. The correct bet wins.