I love craps.
A couple of good points were made upthread, including the fact that the ODDS bet is the best bet in the house (except for expert card counters playing blackjack). So the key is to bet the MAX on the odds bet. The maximum bet is usually 3/4/5 x the original pass bet that they’ll let you bet on odds (3/4/5 means: 3x for 4 or 10, 4x for 5 or 9, 5x for 6 or 8).
The casino’s “take” on the Pass line is only about 1.4% to begin with, but if you bet $5 on PASS and then put $25 behind it (on the odds), the casino’s take is reduced to less than 0.25%, because the $25 bet, if it wins, will be paid off at the proper odds (i.e., no “take” for the casino), in this case $30 paid off on your $25 bet. A couple of the smaller places on the Vegas strip have 10x odds and even 100x odds, which if a player actually takes advantage of (and avoids other bets), reduces the house take to very very close to 0.
The field bet is a sucker bet, with a really high take, as are all of the “one roll” bets (such as 2, 12, “ANY CRAPS” bets, and those “HORN” bets, which in 25 years of playing Craps I still don’t really know exactly what they mean. These should definitely be ignored.
If just betting Pass line (and Odds behind it) does not provide enough action (and it usually doesn’t, because you’re just waiting for one number to be rolled and a lot of time may be wasted), you can also bet COME, which is the Exact same concept as PASS, except that it is made starting with any roll after the original roll. For example if you bet PASS and a 6 is rolled, they put a big “ON” Disk on the 6, and that is the Point to be made. If you bet COME on roll #2, and an 8 comes in, your chip will be moved to the 8. And you can then take ODDS on the 8, which works just like your ODDS on the 6 would work. I’m probably making it sound more complicated than it really is. Some people are very intimidated at the Craps table, but it’s really not rocket science. Thes couple of rules really comprise “The Whole Game.”
You can also make “Place bets” on the numbers, especially 6 or 8 to come in before a 7 (the unmentionable word, which I will never utter at a craps table). The take on these bets is not as low as the PASS bet, but at about 2.8% it’s worth tolerating for the exciting action it generates. When I’m shooting, I will also bet 5 and 9, even though the take on these bets is about twice as much as on the 6 and 8 bets. My hope is that I will hit a bunch of #s multiple times, without rolling the “unmentionable #.”
Someone earlier said that a hot craps table is the most exciting place in the casino. I say it’s the most exciting place on EARTH!