While many will know how roulette works, a lesser known fact is that there are different versions of the game. The three most popular games are American roulette, French roulette and the focus of this page, European roulette. The differences come in both the lay out of the wheel and the payouts that are offered.
In live casinos, you need to play for high stakes to access the European wheel version of roulette. If you are playing at an online casino in a regulated state such as New Jersey, you’ll be able to enjoy better odds at smaller stakes.
This page on the European game starts with an explanation of how this game differs from the other versions, before going on to look at some of the most popular bets you can enjoy.
Next up, the free European Roulette game from NetEnt is reviewed, before finishing with roulette strategy.
How European roulette differs from other versions
The main differences between various versions of roulette are the number of zeros on the wheel.
The more zeros there are, the worse it is for the player, as the house edge increases. The worst wheels for this are those with three zeros, which offer an edge of 7.89%.
A standard game in American roulette features two zeros, which reduces the house edge to 5.26%. However, a standard European roulette wheel features just a single zero, which sees a further reduction of the house edge to 2.7%.
For this reason, many will choose the European game over the American game, due to the simple fact that you are more likely to win.
There is also French roulette, which features a single zero, and a rule that can halve the house edge again on particular bets.
Popular bets and odds in European roulette
There are many different betting options you can enjoy in roulette. Here’s a look at the most popular of those options:
- Single Number Bets: Pick a single number and put your chips down. If it wins, you’ll be paid out at odds of 35:1, the highest paying wager in roulette.
- Split Bet: Place your chips between two numbers. If either of the two numbers lands, you’ll win at odds of 17:1.
- Corner Bet: Placing your chips in the corner between 4 numbers will see you win if any of these numbers come in. Get paid out at odds of 8:1.
- Red/Black: Possibly the most famous bet in roulette. Pick your color and if you get it right, you’ll double your stake.
- Odd/Even: Betting on whether the number will be odd or even sees you paid out at the same 1:1 odds.
- High/Low: Put your chips down on whether the number will be in the 1-18 range or the 19-36 range. Once again, you’ll double your money with this bet.
- Other popular wagers: Includes betting on individual columns (1, 4, 7, 10, 13… etc.) at odds of 2:1 or dozens (1-12, 13-24 or 25-36) at the same odds.
European roulette from NetEnt
Currently you can enjoy NetEnt’s European roulette online.
On entering the game you’re presented with a screen showing the roulette wheel at the top and the large betting layout below. The black roulette wheel looks impressive as it slowly spins anti-clockwise throughout the game – the animation is smooth and is detailed enough to easily be mistaken for a real roulette wheel.
The betting layout dominates the lower portion of the screen. Each individual number has either a black or red background (based on its color on the wheel), while all of the usual betting options are there.
Your first step is to select one of the coin denominations at the bottom of the screen. By default, these are set at $1, with the option to increase to $2, $5, $10 or $25. You can also scroll to the left and right to decrease and increase these amounts. To place a bet, you click on one of the chip denominations and drag it into place.
Having placed your bet there are four handy options to the right-hand side:
- Double all bets: Hit the x2 button to double up all your placed bets.
- Undo last bet: This will remove the very last bet you placed.
- Clear all Bets: This option will remove every bet you placed.
- Rebet: Place the same bet/s you placed for the previous spin of the wheel.
To the left-hand side there are further buttons to open the pay table, open the racetrack (for further betting options), open the statistics display and open your ‘favorite’ bets. At the top of the screen to the right you’ll find an instant display of hot and cold numbers, which might help you in your decision making.
When you’re ready to go, you’ll hit the spin option. This will see the wheel now change to a clockwise spin and the ball will now appear in play. Eventually the ball will land, and you’ll know whether you’ve won or lost.
European roulette strategy
Roulette is essentially a game of fun and there are no set strategies that will allow you to beat the game (despite what you might read from people selling ‘systems’ online). The house edge will ensure that the casino will win in the long run.
As a player you do get to control the house edge by choosing the best wheel. Keeping the edge low will give you more opportunities for those wins and could be the difference between you having a winning or a losing session.
If you are going to play roulette online, you’ll certainly want to choose the European version of the game. With that smaller house edge, you’re giving yourself the best opportunity to win.
NetEnt’s virtual online game has a mark of quality around it, the impressive and smooth visuals making you feel like you are playing in a high-class casino. You can enjoy this version of the game at online casinos in Pennsylvania and New Jersey today.