How to Play Roulette: Introduction

It’s no coincidence that we tend to focus so much on the game of roulette. It’s one of the most famous casino games in the world; it’s actually so popular that it’s oftentimes featured in movies, music videos or even photo shoots. There’s definitely a certain something about playing roulette that just draws people in.

And because of its fame, you’re probably tempted to say “oh, I know how to play roulette, I throw the dice and win if it lands on a number that I initially chose”. If only casino games were that easy! There’s more to it than that!

In fact, roulette has a surprising level of depth that is usually understood by serious players of casino games. But don’t worry; That’s why we are here! The team of experts around Mad Casino Bonus has put together a comprehensive guide of how to play roulette. We’ll take a closer look at the roulette rules, best roulette strategies, and main roulette tips, so that you’ll be on your way to profitable roulette sessions. If you feel like you already know the basics, you can skip this roulette guide and you can head out directly to our list of top UK roulette bonuses Still, we recommend taking a second look at the strategies to roulette and general roulette rules we present here.

So, let’s start the ball rolling with a bit of a historic context for the game of roulette.

How to Play Roulette: The History

Well, we know how unsatisfying this might be, but we have to be honest with you; The actual origins of roulette are quite unclear. Still, there are a few different theories that have surfaced over the years.

The most popular of them credits the invention of roulette to French inventor and mathematician, Blaise Pascal, around 1655. Pascal wasn’t trying to invent a casino game. He was actually trying to invent a perpetual motion machine. That is a device that can keep running without energy source. Unfortunately for him, this type of machine was proved as being impossible, and his invention was a failure in that regard. However, Pascal was a huge gambler, so he took part of the machine, made some modifications, and gave the world the roulette wheel!

The original roulette wheel, apparently, had both a 0 Slot and a 00 Slot which gives the house a 5.26% Edge (but we will get more into that later).

Later on, around 1840, two brothers Francois and Louis Blanc redesigned the Roulette wheel numbers and took out the Double zero slot, dropping the house edge to just 2.7%. As you can imagine, this was a popular move amongst players that ran straight to Blanc’s gambling house in Hamburg Germany.

A few years later, Germany outlawed gambling. But much to Blanc brother’s fortune, they were invited to Monaco (by the king himself) to open a gambling house there. They eventually established the Monte Carlo Casino Resort, that attracted then, as much as now, Europe’s elite and ultrawealthy.

Eventually, Roulette made the move across the Atlantic Ocean, to the shores of the United States. Interestingly enough, the gambling establishment owners in the US didn’t like the new single 0 version, because of the lower house edge. They reintroduced the 00 version so they could get a bigger house edge. To this day, the single 0 wheel is known as the European Style Roulette Wheel, while the 00 one is known as the American Style Roulette Wheel. Still, the greatest change to the popularity of the roulette was brought by the wonders of the internet. Since 1994, when Microgaming created its first online casino, roulette has gained traction and quickly became one of the ‘’classics’’ of any online gambling.

Now, are you ready to learn more about the best roulette strategies? Here we go:

How to Play Roulette: The Setup

So, how is Roulette played?

When you will first start playing the game you will get to see the actual Roulette (which is the French word for little wheel). Roulette features 36 numbers and a zero, although you might encounter a 00 on American roulette tables. All these are in red or black.

Moreover, you will see the table, where all the bets are placed. The table contains numbers that correlate with the slots where the ball could possibly land in, on the Roulette wheel. Please note, that there is a difference in the layout of the numbers on the table and on the wheel!

Numbers on the Roulette wheel versus betting layout

The numbers on the layout are in numerical order, from 1 to 36 with the 0 or 00 staring demurely from the top of the layout. The numbers are not laid out the same on the wheel, but are staggered, usually on opposite or near opposite sides.

Playing online roulette might look very easy; just pick a number or colour and go! That is, of course, the essential part of the game, but not the full extent of online roulette. So, our experts around Mad Casino Bonus divided the guide of how to play roulette in 4 essential steps:

Step 1. Now that you know the basics, you can place your bets. There are 15 types of bets you can place at the roulette table, divided into two major categories, as follows:

Roulette Inside Bets

  • Straight up betting
  • Split betting
  • Street betting
  • Three numbers on one chip betting
  • Corner betting
  • Four numbers on one chip betting
  • Six line betting
  • Two streets betting
  • Five numbers bet and Row 00 bet – exclusively for American roulette

Roulette Outside Bets

  • Color betting
  • Even or odd number betting
  • Column betting
  • Dozen betting
  • High or low betting

And this just barely scratches the surface of how complex the roulette is. Make sure you thoroughly read through the game rules before adventuring to the table. And this rule applies for absolutely all online games you intend on playing in the future!

Don’t worry, we will be detailing each of the betting options displayed above. Until then, let’s move on!

Step 2. The Dealer Spins the Wheel. Once you and all the other player have placed the bets, the dealer spins the wheel. Shortly after, the dealer will drop the ball into the roulette wheel.

Step 3. The result. The wheel will stop spinning and the ball will be resting on one of the 36 numbers.

Step 4. Gather your prize. If you have placed your bets on the correct number, you’re in luck! The dealer will hand you your winnings, that are paid out according to the payout rules of each type of bet.

How to Play Online Roulette: Pay-outs & Roulette Odds

As we have mentioned before, when playing online roulette real money , you are facing 15 types of bets you can actually make. Now, each and every one of those bets, has a different payout ratio. That is, the amount of £ you will get for each £ you stake out of your own money. For example, if the payout ratio is 35:1, for each pound you wager, you will get 35£. Well that is, of course, of you correctly predict the winning number.

So, let’s have a look over the roulette odds:

How to Play Online Roulette: Roulette Bets

As promised before, we will focus a bit on explaining the different types of betting option you have while playing online roulette.

First of all, when you touch the topic of bets in roulette , the main issue to clear is the difference between inside bets and outside bets.

Which are the inside bets?

The Roulette rules state that the inside bets are any bets on specific numbers chosen by the player randomly.

Which are the outside bets?

The Roulette rules state that an outside bet is any bet on any of the propositions that are placed around the layout.


Also known as “En Plein” in European casinos, your roulette bet on one or more numbers is made by placing your bet on the numbers you want. The Roulette rules indicate that if your number or one of your numbers should hit, you win 35 to 1 on that number. House odds: on the American double-zero-wheel, 5.26 percent; on the European single-zero wheel, 2.70 percent..


Known as “A cheval” in French, you can bet on more than one number by putting the chip on the dividing line. If you win, you get paid 17 times your bet.

Number Three Bet, or Street Betting (may also be known as a Trio)

Known as a Transversal in French, this bet is made by placing your roulette chips on the outside border of three numbers you plan to bet on. Winning will score you eleven times your bet. House edges: 5.26 across the pond, 2.70 over here..

The Six Line Bet

This bet strategy works by placing your bet on the outside borders of the six numbers you picked to play roulette with. The bet pays off at 5 to 1. The house edge on the American double-zero wheels is 5.26 percent and only 2.70 percent on the single-zero European wheels. I’m starting to see a pattern here.

The Column Bet Strategy, also known as Colonne

You are wagering that one of the columns of numbers on the layout will win. You place this number at the bottom of the column that you hope wins. If you win, you get twice the amount you bet.


The Roulette betting strategy in question is whether one of twelve numbers on the layout will hit. This strategy specifies that they cannot be consecutive numbers on the wheel. The bet can be placed on First Dozen, Second Dozen or Third Dozen. You can bet on two of the dozens. You stand to win twice the amount you bet and, as always, the odds in Europe are twice as good for you as across the pond.

Odd or Even, also known as Pair et Impair

For this online roulette strategy, you must select either odd or even numbers. There are 18 odd numbers and 18 even numbers on either side, since 0 or double zero don’t count. If one of these is hit, the house wins. In case of winning, your payout is 1 to 1.

High or Low?

This online roulette strategy is placed on either the 1 to 18 or the 19 to 36 section of the layout. The house wins if the zeroes are hit, yet again. With the real money payoff being once again one to one, the house edge for Europeans also makes this strategy more favourable to the players.

Red or Black / Rouge et Noir

A fan favourite, this online roulette strategy asks you to pick the colour of the number that will hit.

How to Win: Roulette Strategies

Now that we have covered the essential parts of our guide on how to play roulette and its rules, it is high time we indulge in some of the more advanced information. Let us quickly go through some of the most effective strategies to roulette:

The Martingale Roulette Betting System

The Martingale system is perhaps one of the most widespread betting systems, throughout the whole gambling world. And that is mainly because of its simplicity and apparent infallibility. So, how does the Martingale System work in Roulette?

Well, its rules are quite simple. The system states that every time you make a bet and lose, for your next bet, you should double the initial bet. For example, you bet £10 on Black and you are out of luck. For your next bet you should place a bet of £20. This way, if you win your second bet, you will cover the losses with your first one as well. Straightforward, right?

The only problem with Martingale Roulette Betting System is that if you are out of luck for several bets, the amount that you are supposed to stake will be incredibly high. Taking the example above, if you start with a £10 bet and you lose 6 bets in a row, you are supposed to bet for your 7th no less than £640!!! So, always take care when indulging in the Martingale System while playing roulette.

The James Bond Roulette Strategy

Made famous by the nation’s favourite spy, this roulette betting system is essentially a combination of bets that offer you the best chances of winning at roulette.

In a gist, if you want to follow this roulette strategy, you will have to place your bets as follows:

  • £1 on the zero
  • £14 on the High 19-36 box
  • £5 on the Low 13-18 box

If you place your bets as we advised, the only way you could not win, is if the ball will land on a number between 1 and 12. In all the other instances, you win at roulette!

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Roulette Tips 101: Play smart, play to win

If you prefer going for even money bets, the best roulette games for you are the ones that utilize either surrender or en prison. We recommend straight-up players (pure punters) to seriously consider avoid betting on individual numbers and move their bets to odd-even, rouge-noir or high-low.

Why not take advantage of a good rule that reduces the house edge in half? If the casinos are giving you something useful, take advantage of it!

Online Roulette FAQ

What is the house edge on online roulette?

On a 37 to 1 wager for online roulette, the payback will not be 37 pounds for 1 pound wagered but 35 pounds to 1 pound. The house edge on that is 5.26%. On the European wheel, the payout will be 35 units to 1 unit instead of 36 units to 1 unit for an edge of 2.70%, unlike the American roulette previously mentioned.

Why is the number 5 bet named “the beast”?

The number ‘5’ bet is called “the beast” on the American Roulette wheel because the house advantage is 7.89% which is the highest house advantage in the game. If you’re just learning how to play roulette, we don’t recommend playing it just yet.

What happens when an online roulette casino allows surrender?

If a 0 or 00 hits, the roulette rules indicate that half of the even-money bets of red/black, high/low and odd/even can be returned to the player. This effectively slices the online roulette casino houses’ edge in half.

What happens when the casino allows en prison?

En prison will also cut the house edge in half. If the 0 hits, the even-money bet is locked up for the next round. If it hits as predicted on the next spin, the player will get his money back, otherwise the whole bet is lost. Another 0 and this will happen again.

On even-money bets, what are my chances of winning on the European wheel?

An even-money bet on the European wheel will get you real money 18 times out of 37.

How to play roulette: How do you know if you won at roulette?

When a number hits, the number (or numbers) will be displayed, whether through beautiful visual effects, stunning sounds or, in the case of some live roulette games, by the dealer’s own voice. Then, in a flourish, the wheel will be cleared of losing bets, and you are free to play again, if that is your wish.

Does that sound like a Roulette win? Well if it is, expect some real money coming your way!

Click here if you feel like you need to learn more about the different types of Online Casino Games or head back to the homepage to check all the offers and bonuses we have rounded up for you!

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