Craps: Why isn't simply betting wrong the right thing to do?

See query. Prompted by recent flutters with Tesla and all those (too many, to Musk) shorting the company.

You know how it says in all prospectuses “blah blah not a guarantee of future results…?” Well, with dice there is that guarantee that the corporation (you) will crap out. Why not short yourself?

Clearly it must be in the vig on the right bets. Can someone 1-2-3 it for me? It’s no doubt in here somewhere: Wiki “Craps.”

I used to screw around with craps, no prop bets, hard ways, other nonsense except the occasionally fancier mid roll bets just for fun…anyway, I once knew it, and that you’d get this tiny advantage, I think, over the long run, than playing pass.

Wasn’t worth the bad vibes and looks of venom from the rest of the players. Let alone gambling is stupid…

Never mind - I think I misunderstood the question.

Moved to the Game Room.

General Questions Moderator

I don’t quite understand the question. If you’re referring to betting the don’t pass line, then yes, you will be unpopular at the table. You can play one of the craps machines and bet don’t pass all you want without the table ire.

  1. Wrong bettors still have house odds to contend with. Very narrow house odds, but the odds nonetheless.
  2. Wrong bettors are generally shunned at the table as the scum that they are.
  3. You will never get a big score betting “Don’t Pass.” All you can do is grind out 1:1 payouts. If a player goes on a heater you are toast.
  4. If all you are doing is grinding, you might as well stay at work. If you are taking the Pass Line and Odds, you could win a nice chunk of change. In any case, win or not, you are going to have a lot more fun than the poor, pathetic loser of a Wrong bettor.



Yes, I almost always played pass-line and odds, on- and off, and lays, etc. etc. Much more fun.

And on that, BTW, I most enjoy craps (it was the only Casino game I played) because of the camaraderie and social interaction.

Which became distressingly clear–and made me realize yet another happy thing about American culture–that on the few times when I played craps in Europe (let alone even finding a table)—the players were as damn serious as the table-gripping sweating players at a roulette wheel. My normal US intention and attempts for some happy talk went out the window.

I play “wrong” all the time. Best moment was the shooter hit 5 different numbers then 7ed out. The table gets cleared of all those “right” bets and they had to pause the game to pay me off. :smiley:

There is a slight advantage to playing wrong - 0.01% so technically it is the right way to play. So pragmatically why do people not play “wrong”? Because you need more money to play against the dice since you are laying odds.

Let’s say I’m at a 2X odds table and I’m making a pass and two come bets and for example sake the first three numbers are 4, 5, 6. Playing with the dice each bet is $30 (and does not vary) so I have $90 on the table with the potential to win
4 => $10 + $40 = $50
5 => $10 + $30 = $40
6 => $10 + $24 = $34
Total = $124 BUT I only win one bet at a time so I may win only $40 if the shooter rolls a 5 then a 7.
So the right player has $90 out to win a potential $124 but all 3 number must be hit before a 7 to do this or they win some or none of it.

Now look at playing against the dice. A little bit different since you are laying odds your bet will vary with each number and let’s be honest (speaking as a math teacher) how many people can quickly calculate the amount they would have to lay. Using the above example the “wrong” player has to BET:
4 => $50
5 => $40
6 => $34
Total = $124 to win $90 which means a wrong player needs a larger bankroll AND wins less than they bet (how many people think this is a good thing? Psychologically they are “losing” money even though mathematically they are not since odds bets are fair) BUT the big advantage is you win all your bets at once when a 7 comes up but only lose your bet one roll at a time.

When I was a student in Reno (70’s), Harrah’s would have a two bit crap table after midnight. The table was full of regulars. It was a hoot!

Because it was cheap to play, I learned the game.

With a buy in of $10, after three hours, the money was gone or I had $30. Either way it was fun.

With today’s $5 minimum bet or more, you need a bankroll to get the rhythm of the game. And when you lose, it is painful.

I miss those two bit tables.

No kidding. Even accounting for inflation and “The Strip,” you used to be able to find $1 craps tables everywhere during the daylight hours. Good luck finding that now. Even Casino Royale starts at $2, and that’s only one over-crowded table.

The best thing to do is to not lay odds at all on the don’t pass. The original bet has better than even odds after the come out roll, and any odds layed just move the odds closer to even and away from your favor. This is why the house lets you pick up a don’t pass bet any time after the come out roll, because at that point the odds are in your favor.

Casinos in Primm (right on the border of CA/NV had $2 craps last time I was there…about 5ish yrs ago.

That’s sorta true, but you had to survive the come-out to get there. Laying on the don’t pass line or taking odds on the pass line are all zero house advantage. There’s no difference whether you make the bet or not in terms of expected value. You’re right the the expected percentage win when laying odds goes down when you make the decision to do so after the come out, but I could say that I have decided before the come out to lay odds regardless of what the point is, which brings down the house edge percentage of the don’t pass bet.

All the odds bets do is increase variance. If you’re at a casino and are not putting the money into the stock market, you probably are after the thrills of large variance swings, so you put your money on the odds regardless. People play the pass line more often because the odds mean they win more when they win, even though they do it less often. Same as why there’s terrible odds on all the hop bets and other prop bets - people are willing to pay a premium in expected value to get high payoffs. That you can instead make a higher variance bet at absolutely no premium at all means you should always take it, or else why are you even there?

I knew gamblers were irrational, but what the fuck? Where I place my chips doesn’t change whether your bets win or lose.

The beauty of the crap table is the fellowship. We are all together to beat the house. Yelling and screaming. Very exciting!

Then someone plays the don’t pass. And it puts out bad vibes.

No one likes bad vibes.

You have just as much chance of beating the house as you ever did. I promise.

Understood, but again, not everyone (or probably even most people) play craps solely for the chance to win. The camaraderie is part of the experience and makes even losing hurt less since everyone else lost with you. Conversely the wins are ‘better’ because you also helped the people around you. There’s a reason craps tables are the noisiest in a casino.

Don’t Pass players fuck with the mood.

I’ve played on the Darkside and not only has no one ever given me a hard time about it, even if they did, I feel like I would be contributing to “the mood” by giving the suckers a piñata. At 6’3", 220 pounds I’m fairly confident some skinny, cancer stick smoking 60 year old wanna be wise-guy isn’t going to intimidate ME from playing Don’t Pass, and even if he could, casino security would take care of him, right quick.

Just handing over money to a casino because of peer pressure might be the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard!

I very seldom played craps, but I remember one wild night when I was only barely old enough to gamble legally when I played the Do_Not_Pass repeatedly in Carson City. I even placed “$5 on Any Craps for the stickmen” a couple of times — once it came out boxcars: stickmen got their tip but my line bet pushed. :rolleyes: At the end, all I had was a free breakfast which I was too tired and disheartened to eat.

The next day I sat down at a Blackjack table and a pit boss came over to tell me I was barred from playing Twenty-One but “welcome to play dice.” :eek: Oh, thanks! … I vowed revenge on Nevada!

It sounds like you bet “wrong” in part for the very reason most people don’t! I’m too timid to enjoy sadistic pleasures. :slight_smile:

I just ran my simulator with 2X(?) odds. With reasonablish assumptions and 100,0000 sessions, the wrong bettor did very slightly better; for example he ended with ten times his starting bank 1.14% compared with 1.04% for right-way man. (Only the right-better ever increased his bank 1000-fold — he did it twice in 300,000 sessions.)

Craps, Bet on every Pass/Come, maximum odds
100+x 0.025% 40+x 0.14% 10+x 1.04% 3+x 4.19% 1+x 11.98%

Craps, Bet on every Do Not, maximum odds
100+x 0.029% 40+x 0.15% 10+x 1.14% 3+x 4.74% 1+x 12.57%

(I’ll rerun the simulator if anyone wishes to specify a very exact set of parameters.)

A friend of mine dealt craps in Las Vegas.

He said people would toss chips on the table and say, “Place on eleven. For the boys”.

After a few of these bets, he would tactfully say, “Thank you. But we would prefer to play right next to you. On the Pass line.” His co-workers did not have the balls to say anything. In fact, I believe it was ilegal. But, they were happy he did.

Tips increased. At one time he told me that he had 15K buried in the backyard, in a coffee can. This was in the 70’s. So the money was unreported.