The Guide to American and European Roulette

Posted by Nick Niesen on October 26th, 2010

One of the most popular gambling games in casinos ?whether in online casinos or brick and mortar casinos ? is roulette; and free roulette! From the looks of it, a game of roulette is quite simple. Even a person who has never gambled his whole life will be able to determine the rules of the game by just watching the proceedings of a game for a few minutes. What could be simpler than a roulette wheel spinning and betting on a number (or numbers) or a color where you think the ball will land?

Of course, the center of the whole game of roulette revolves around the roulette wheel. The wheel measures about three feet in diameter and weighs almost 100 pounds.

Not very many people know this but there are actually two types of roulette ? American roulette and European roulette.

First of all, the wheels used in American and European roulette are quite different. Let?s look at the similarities first. The wheel is divided into numbered compartments or ?pockets?. These pockets are colored either red, black or green. Each pocket is numbered from 1 to 36 and is split among red and black.

There are also green pockets in the roulette wheel and this is where the first difference between American and European roulette is first seen. In American roulette, there are two green pockets that signify 0 and 00 (zero and double-zero). European roulette, on the other hand, only has one zero. The green pockets are considered the house advantage. American roulette has a house advantage of 5.3 per cent while European roulette has an advantage of 2.7 per cent.

The numbers in the wheel are not arranged randomly but in an order that tries to establish a good balance between black and red, the odds and evens and the highs and lows. If you will look closely at the wheel, you will immediately notice that every odd number is partnered with the next highest even number right opposite it. The black and red numbers also alternate, as well as pairs of even numbers alternating with pairs of odd numbers.

The two roulette types also use chips in different ways. In American roulette the player uses chips that have the same value determined when it is purchased. European roulette players are free to use standard casino chips that have different values, which makes it a bit more confusing to both the player and croupier. Of course, in online roulette, the online gambling site will indicate how the betting will be done.


Knowing the ?geography? of the roulette wheel may not be an important aspect of playing roulette but the more knowledge you have about the game the more you will feel a free kinship to the action that happens at the roulette table. This will make the game more fun to play. This knowledge is also something that you can use when you play online roulette or even free roulette.

Nick Niesen

About the Author

Nick Niesen
Joined: April 29th, 2015
Articles Posted: 33,847

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