If you asked anyone to name a classic casino game, it would be a fair bet that one of the first names they would come up would be roulette. Roulette has a history stretching back all the way to the 18th century in France, and today it is enjoyed by more people than it ever was.
In online roulette, there are several different versions, with the most popular being American, European and French roulette. You can find further variations with a modern twist, such as games with more than one ball, or even more than one wheel.
This page focuses on the American (double zero) roulette game. First up, the differences between American roulette and the other versions are detailed, before discussing the house edge.
Next the online version of the game available at real money casinos in NJ, PA and elsewhere is covered. This page ends with a look at roulette strategy and some of the myths surrounding it.
If you want to play American roulette for free online, check out the game above. If you run out of credits, simply refresh your browser.
How does American roulette work?
An American roulette wheel has 38 equal-sized divisions. First there are the numbers 1 through 36. These are joined by a pair of zeros – featuring the numbers ‘0’ and ‘00’. In other versions of the game, such as European and French roulette wheels, you’ll find just a single zero.
In roulette there are more than twenty different bets you can place. Here are some of the most popular you can place and the odds you’ll receive when successful:
- Red or Black: Choose which color the ball will land in and you’ll win at odds of 1:1
- Odd or Even: Land the same winning odds of 1:1 when choosing correct.
- High or Low: Predict whether the ball will land in 1-18 (low) or 19-36 (high) at odds of 1:1
- Columns: Place a bet on one of the three columns on the betting layout, at odds of 2:1
- Dozens: Place a bet on the ball landing on 1-12, 13-24 or 25-36 at odds of 2:1
- Straight Up: Bet on any number. Pick correctly and you win at odds of 35:1
- Split: Place your chips between two numbers. Land either and you’ll win at odds of 17:1
- Corner: Similar to the split bet, except you’ll place the chip between 4 numbers. Win at odds of 8:1
How do the house odds compare to other versions of roulette?
The size of the house edge plays a very important in roulette. In American roulette the house edge is 5.26%. This is high in comparison to other roulette variations where the house edge is 2.7% in European roulette and can go as low as 1.35% (bet dependent in the French version).
In some places you can find a wheel with three zeros which can push that house edge as high as 7.89%. Of course, there can be a feeling of patriotism in playing the American version, which might make you more likely to want to play this game.
Playing American roulette online
One of the most popular versions of American roulette is from NetEnt and can be played at online casinos in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. This is an eye-catching game where you’ll find an impressive-looking dark roulette wheel spinning slowly in the upper portion of the screen.
The wheel is large enough to make all of the numbers perfectly clear, while leaving a sizable amount of room for the large betting lay out below.
At the bottom of the screen you’ll find the betting denominations. To place a bet, you’ll simply drag one of the bet amounts across to the betting layout and then drop it wherever you’d like to.
Handily, when placing a bet such as 1-18 or Even, all of the selected numbers will be highlighted. This is especially good for players who are playing online roulette for the first time.
You can place as many bets as your bankroll allows, meaning there is nothing to stop you placing odd/even bets, straight bets, corner bets and splits on the same spin of the wheel.
Having placed all of your bets, there are a few options open to you. If you’re feeling lucky you can hit the x2 button to instantly double up all your bets. An ‘undo last bet’ option is there if you’ve made a mistake with your previous bet, while the ‘clear all bets’ option does exactly as it says.
The ‘Rebet’ option is a handy one if you like to place a particular bet again and again. The final option is the ‘Spin’ button which sets the white ball in motion – the most exciting part of the game!
Hot/Cold numbers and roulette systems
To the right of the wheel you can see the ‘hot’ and ‘cold’ numbers. Some people like to bet on the numbers considered ‘hot’, seeing them as the lucky ones for that session.
Others like to bet ‘cold’ numbers figuring they are now due to hit. The reality is that each spin is independent, so no number is more likely to be hit than any other, but if it works for you, then go ahead.
There are some who will talk about sure-fire systems that will help you beat roulette. You’ll see those online – often promising to aid you in beating the game.
The fact is, there is a house edge in roulette, and this ensures that the casino (whether online or live) will have the advantage. This doesn’t mean that in the short term you can’t make a profit, while if you’re real lucky you can also make a profit in the long term.
However, there is no way to beat the game of roulette. If there was, live and online casinos wouldn’t offer the game – they would all have gone bust.
Live dealer American roulette
Some casinos in regulated states offer live dealer roulette casinos. You can play American roulette online based on the spin of a real wheel.
Live dealer rooms work by streaming the games in real time and giving you a betting overlay that follows the standard roulette betting grid. The social interaction makes these games popular – though you need to place your bets before the dealer says ‘no more bets’ like in a brick and mortar setting.
American roulette is one of the most popular casino table games. You’ll find this online as well as in brick and mortar casinos. With the range of betting options available, this is a game that is high on variety. While there are more favorable games in terms of house edge, playing the ‘American’ game will certainly appeal to many.
You can enjoy American roulette at online casinos in both Pennsylvania and New Jersey right now. As long as you are within the state lines, you’ll be able to play, whichever state you’re from. Give American roulette a spin today.