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how play craps

How to play Craps For Beginners, Basic Rules For Craps

How To Play Craps

If you have been to the casino before, you have seen so many crowds around a table. I mean, Craps table. The game of dice or Craps is a fairly easy game to learn. But it gets intimidating when you want to wager on it. Why? Because there are so many betting options available for craps. Long story short! Its easy to understand but tricky to play! So, join me to learn how to play craps and win.


In this article:

  • How do you play craps for beginners?
  • What are the basic rules of craps?
  • What are the odds payouts?
  • What is the best strategy for craps?
  • And a lot more!


What Is Craps? Some History

This is a dice game in which players bet on the outcomes of a pair of dice. You can wager money against each other (street craps) or against a bank (casino craps). Because it requires little equipment, “street craps” can be played in informal settings. Craps is one of the only games in the casino where you are in charge of your own hand. Meaning, instead of you being dealt cards, you select and roll your own dice. The goal in craps is to predict how the dice will land.

Craps developed in the United States from a simplification of the western European game of Hazard. The origins of this game are not clear and may date to the Crusades. Around 1805 Bernard Xavier Philippe de Marigny de Mandeville, the young gambler and scion of a family of wealthy landowners in colonial Louisiana brought Hazard from London to New Orleans. Later, Craps exploded in popularity during World War II. Because during the war most young American men of every social class joined the military. The street version of craps was popular among service members. They often played it using a blanket as a shooting surface. Hence, their military memories made craps the dominant casino game in postwar Las Vegas and the Caribbean. A few casinos in Europe, Australia, and Macau began offering craps After 1960. After 2004, online casinos spread the game globally.


Getting Started; What Are The Basic Rules Of Craps?

As I mentioned earlier, the goal of the game is to successfully predict how the dice will land. The table is played in rounds. There are two phases in a round; the come out and point. Each player’s turn to roll the dice moves clockwise around the table at the end of each round. Up to 20 players can play at a craps table and everyone will get a chance to throw the dice. But, if you don’t want to throw the dice, you can still play, but you bet on the person throwing or the dice shooter.

Basic Rules Of Craps

How To Play Craps For Beginners

Since this is for beginners, I like to start and keep it simple.

Betting round in Craps starts with a come-out roll. This is the first term you need to learn and add to your vocabulary. The next vocab is SHOOTER, the player who throws the dice.


The come-out roll: the first roll of the dice or the first one after the previous betting round has finished.


The game plays as follows: When the black sign says OFF, this means you can start the game.

If it is ON, that means the game is in progress and you should wait until they are finished.

Now, you, ‘shooter’, take two dice and throw them on the craps table – or press the ‘roll’ button if you are in online craps.

Once the number rolled is on your screen or on the table, there are three possible outcomes:

  1. Natural

This is when things get really good. A ‘Natural’ means the result of your roll is a 7 or an 11. When this happens, you win and get to roll the dice again.

  1. Craps

This is when you roll a 2 (also known as the Snake Eyes), 3, or 12. In this case, you lose.

BUT you get to roll again because the round is not over.

  1. Point

This is when you roll a 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10.

In a land-based casino, a dealer marks your Point (the rolled number) on the table.

On the other hand, in online craps, Once the Point is established a small button appears. It is white and says ‘On’.

In this case, you need to roll the dice once more and hope you’ll hit the same number again. It should not be the same combination of dice as you had before. As long as it’s the same sum – YOU WIN.

You may be wondering why the sequence above misses a seven.

Well, because the number 7 is not a very lucky one in this case.  Because if you roll a 7, you seven out. Meaning, you lose and that is the end of the betting round.

All right, now that you learn this part by heart, let’s go betting!


What Are The Basic Rules of Craps; Betting

Craps can be as simple as betting on one number and either winning or losing on each roll. Or it can be as complex as making a bet, waiting until the shooter rolls a target, or “point” number, then hoping the shooter can roll the same number again. That procedure can go on for any number of rolls. So, remember these basic rules and betting:

  • Although Craps has dozens of wagers available, the game is structured around the pass line bet.
  • Pass Line: The pass line bet is an automatic win or loss scenario. If the shooter rolls a 7 or 11 on the come-out roll, you automatically win. But, if the come-out roll is a 2, 3, or 12, you automatically lose. Any other rolled number becomes known as the point and the game moves to the next phase of play. Also, If the shooter rolls the point before rolling a 7, you win. But, if the shooter rolls a 7 before the point, you lose.
  • Come Bet: It is a variation of the pass line bet. Here, If the shooter rolls a 7 or 11 on the next roll, you automatically win. But, if the next roll is a 2, 3, or 12, you automatically lose. Any other number rolls becomes a point for your come bet. So, if you roll that number before a 7, you win. But, if you roll 7 before that number, you lose.
  • Don’t Pass Line: It is the exact opposite of the pass line bet. The don’t-pass line is a bet against the shooter’s ability to roll the point before rolling a 7. In the don’t pass line bet, 2 and 3 become automatic winners, while 7 and 11 become automatic losers on the come-out roll. Also, a roll of 12 pushes. If the shooter rolls a 7 before the point, you win. But, if the shooter rolls the point before a 7, you lose.
  • Don’t Come Bet: On the next roll, 2 and 3 become automatic winners. But 7 and 11 become automatic losers. Here, also a roll of 12 pushes. If the shooter rolls a 7 before the number, you win. But, if the shooter rolls the number before a 7, you lose.
  • Place Bets: You may bet on an individual number at any time in a shooter’s round. If the number you select is rolled before a 7, you are the winner. Besides, you can increase, decrease or remove a place bet at any point in a shooter’s round.
  • Field Bet: Similar to place bets, field bets allow you to wager on a range of numbers. If a 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, or 12 is rolled, you win. But, if any other number is rolled, you lose. The field is a one-roll, self-service bet.

Now, have a look at the table layout, and let’s review what I explained so far together:

craps table

Bet On Pass OR Don’t Pass

You can bet either on the ‘Pass Line’ or the ‘Don’t Pass Line. Here

Bet On Pass OR Don’t Pass

The Pass Line bet means you think that the shooter will pass (win) by rolling out a natural or by winning the point before seven-ing out.

On the other hand, the Don’t Pass Line is the opposite bet. Here, you bet that the shooter will not pass (lose). How? If before an ugly 7 shows up, the player gets a 2 or 3 or fails to roll the point again.

What about the 12? If it’s rolled, your bet is a Push. This means nothing happens! You don’t win or lose.

Remember, you are allowed to make these bets only before the point has been established on the table. When the point has been rolled out and the shooter needs to roll the sum again, you can make a come or don’t come bet.

come or don’t come bet

 Come OR Don’t Come Bet

These bets can only be made after the point has been determined. You place your bet here

Come OR Don’t Come Bet

Here, if a natural is rolled out, the Come Bet wins. But if the craps are rolled out, the come bet loses.

On the other hand, If the point is rolled out, it becomes the Come-Bet point.

It works just like the Pass line point: if the come-bet point rolls out again before 7 does, you win. If not, dude, it’s not your lucky round.

Meanwhile, Don’t come bet is just like the Don’t pass bet. You’re in luck if the shooter rolls a 2 or 3. But you are not so much in luck if it’s a 7 or 11. A 12 here is a push again.

If the point is made, before the shooter rolls out it again, you need 7 to show up.

Neither Pass nor Come bets can be turned off. This means you bet and wait until it plays itself out. But you can make additional bets on the come-bet point, too. Those are the bets you can withhold or increase at any time.


Proposition or Hop Bets

These bets are called one-roll bets because they take only one roll to resolve. Unlike the multi-roll bets in craps where bets may take more than one roll to resolve. Multi-roll Bets involve wagers which are settled after the dice have been rolled a couple times until the players who have placed the bets decide to remove their bets. Multi-roll bets will remain until either a 7 is rolled or until your number has rolled.

Multi-roll bets are wagered on Place numbers including 4,5,6,7,9 and 10. Some of the bets which make up Multi-roll Bets include Hard Way Bets, Big 6 or Big 8, Buy Bets, and Lay Bets.

You put proposition bet here

Proposition or Hop Bets

The following are one-roll bets you can place:

Any Seven The shooter rolls a 7
Any Craps The shooter rolls a 2, 3, or 12
Ace Deuce The shooter rolls a 3
Aces The shooter rolls a 2
Boxcars The shooter rolls a 12
Horn The shooter rolls a 2, 3, 11, or 12

 There is an exception here which is Hard ways. Rolling an even number with the same number of both dice is said to be the hard way. The easy way is rolling an even number with different numbers on the dice. For example, a hard 8 would be a 4-4, while an easy 8 would be 2-6 or 3-5. How do the hard ways work in craps? Simple! As you’ve seen, there are four numbers, 4, 6, 8, and 10. Each number has its own spot on the table. To win a hardway combination, you must roll the exact pair of doubles. Once you have made a hardway bet and a point is established, you are the winner if a hard number is rolled before an easy one or a 7.


Other Possible Bets In Craps

Other Possible Bets In Craps

Place Bets: Once you know the point, you can bet on any number on the table. If it’s rolled out before a 7, You win. But you lose if it isn’t.

Field Bets: This type of bet is only active for one dice roll. If a 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, or 12 is rolled, you win. But a 5, 6, 7, or 8 makes you lose.

Big 6 and Big 8 bets: In this case, if a 6 or 8 is rolled out before 7, you win.

Remember, these bets only pay 1:1!

Buy Bets: These bets are pretty similar to place bets. But they pay true odds and of course, your chips have to go in a different position on the table. Also, this is not a self-service bet, so it should be carried out by a dealer.

You put your chips in the Come box located directly in front of you and explain to the dealer what number you want to Buy. Then, the dealer picks up your chips and puts them in the proper point box. Then the dealer places a special “Buy” button on top of the chips. Of course, this is done at land-based casinos only, because while playing online, the procedure is much quicker and easier to complete.

In addition, in the Buy bets, you are allowed to increase, decrease or remove your bet whenever you want. Just like in place bets. If you paid the vig commission upfront and later made a decision to remove your bet, the tax is also returned to you. Buy bets are also considered off on the come-out roll of a new game.

Buy bet could be considered one of the most favorable wagers in the game of craps. Because it pays true odds. In other words, there is no house edge.

Although there is no house advantage, this does not mean that the casino does not make money on this bet. To be more specific, the casino may not have an advantage, but it makes a profit from “vig” taxes.

In addition, Buy bets are better on 4 and 10 compared to the Buy bets on the 5 and 9. On the other hand, the Buy bets on 5 and 9 are better than the ones on 6 and 8. Because the house advantage of 6 and 8 increases. Compared to the Place bets, Buy bets could be both better or worse depending on the number you have chosen to bet on as well as on the bet amount.

You should also be aware that some casinos have set minimums for their Buy bets. For example, a certain Buy bet should be made at a minimum price. This is exactly why Place bets are sometimes more preferred than Buy bets.

Lay Bets: To make Lay bet you should pay a 5% commission, based on the end result of what you can win. Lay bets can be made at any time and on 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10.


What Are The Odds Bets In Craps?

The Odds are like a side bet in craps made after a point is thrown. These bets are made with no House Edge, which is one aspect that makes Craps unique. Odd bets are made by placing them behind your Pass line bet. You can make an additional side bet after the Point has been established in a pass line bet.

Understanding Craps Odds Payouts

Now that you know everything about craps rules and different types of betting, let’s go over the odds and payout for each bet:

  1. Pass Line Bet

Pass Line Bet

  1. Don’t Pass Line Bet

Don’t Pass Line Bet

  1. Come Bet

Come Bet

  1. Don’t Come Bet

Don’t Come Bet

  1. Field Bets

Field Bets

  1. Place Bets

Place Bets

  1. Buy Bets

Buy Bets

  1. Big Six, Big Eight

Big Six, Big Eight

  1. Hardways Bets

Hardways Bets

  1. 2 or 12 Bets

2 or 12 Bets

  1. 3 or 11 Bets

3 or 11 Bets

  1. Any 7 Bet

Any 7 Bet

  1. Any Craps Bets

Any Craps Bets

If you want to understand why some craps payouts are much higher than the others, have a look at this dice chart


Craps Betting Tips For Beginners

  • Practice on free games first before you play for real money.
  • Use online casinos to practice.
  • Avoid craps tables with minimum bets limits that are more than your bankroll.
  • Memorize possible dice combinations.
  • Take advantage of casino bonuses and promotions.
  • I always say this: NEVER CHASE YOUR LOSSES.
  • There are four best craps bets. Make sure to fully understand and practice them. They are Pass line bets, Come bets, Don’t pass bets, and Don’t come bets.
  • Do not make late bets! Know how much and when you want to place a bet.


What Is The Best Strategy For Craps?

In craps bets, all the action relies on the Roll of the dice. Although some players claim it’s possible to control how dice land, there’s a variety of outside factors that affect craps and make the game truly random.

So, focus on managing bankroll and minimizing the house edge. This is the best craps strategy for you. Combine this with the best bets I discussed earlier, and these strategies can help you enjoy craps games for longer and walk away with some winnings.


Practice Craps Online and Play For Real Money

The best way for you to learn craps is to practice online games.

Now that you know about the different bets and outcomes of a roll, it is time to move from asking how to shoot craps to playing craps online.

If you don’t want to risk your cash on real money games until you are 100% sure how to win at craps – Bravo! So smart.

The best online craps sites for beginners give you the chance to play and practice craps online for free for as long as you need.

Also, you can use the Casino bonuses you receive on most sites when you sign up but, given the house edge of this game, you should start for free. Slotomania is a good place to start.

Here are a couple of the best sites to play craps online:

WSOP sicial poker 1,000,000 free chips
Slotomania 1,000,000 coins
Caesar’s social casino 100,000 free coins

After you have practiced enough, you can start playing craps online for real money. Here are some of the best sites to try:

myjackpot 300,000 free coins
Vera Vegas 300,000 free coins
gambinoslot 100,000 free coins
worldwinner 25 free coins
bigfishgames 100,000 free coins

All right, this is all about the craps. Don’t forget to study well, practice enough, remember the tips, and bet responsibly. Remember the whole point is to have fun! Have fun and DFTBA!


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