Roulette uses a special wheel, betting layout, and chips. The dealer (or croupier) manages the wheel and all of the bets. A small ball is thrown against the rim that surrounds the roulette wheel as it is spinning, and rolls or bounces until it finally comes to rest in on of the number sections (or pockets), which indicates the winning number. The object of the game is to guess which number the ball will land on when it finally stops.
The wood and metal bowl-shaped wheel is divided into 37 sections (or 38 in the US), where each sections has walls to hold the small ball where it lands after the wheel is spun. The sections are number 1 to 36 (half are red and half are black, half odd and half even) plus a green section marked 0. The European wheels have only one green section marked 0, while the American versions have an additional green section marked 00. This addition greatly increases the odds in favor of the house.
Roulette is a banking game, where all bets are made against the house. There is no limit to the number of players who can play. If you can reach the table, you can play. Roulette is the only table game that does not use regular casino chips. Since the bets are placed on a common layout, and not in front of the player, the dealer needs a different system where he will be able to keep track of the players bets. When you purchase your roulette chips, you can assign to them any denomination that you would like. These colored chips are only good at the roulette table and do not have any value anywhere else in the casino.
Players bet on the layout for a singe number, group of numbers, or color which they expect to win. After all of the bets are placed, the dealer (or croupier) tosses the ball along the rim of the wheel in the opposite direction that the wheel is spinning. After the ball comes to a rest in a winning number pocket, the bank pays or collects from each player. Once the financial transactions have been completed, bets can be placed for the next round.
You can place bets before each spin of the wheel, as long as you meet the minimum bet requirement. You can also place as many chips on the table as you like, up to the maximum limit. The minimum and maximum table limits are set and posted at each table.
Since each player is “assigned” different color chips, there can be multiple bets placed on each spot on the layout.
The dealer accepts bets in between spins and even after dropping the ball into the wheel- until the ball starts to slow down. The dealer will then wave his/her hand hover the betting layout and say “no more bets”. When the winning number is determined, the dealer places a marker on that number of the betting layout. The losing bets are cleared off of the table and the winning bets are paid. When the dealer is ready for the next spin, he will announce “place your bets”. One important thing to remember is that you must always wait until the dealer’s okay before placing a new bet.
Placing and paying bets make roulette take longer between rounds than other table games. The pace won’t be as fast as craps or blackjack, but the game is easy going, relaxed, and dignified.