Online Casino Scrutiny > Casino Strategy > October 2007

Craps Strategy - A Closer Look at the Don't Pass Bet and the Casinos Edge

If you are totally unfamiliar with the game of craps, you might want to read up on the rules of the game before trying to digest this article. While some of the strategy articles on Casino Scrutiny may be simple or amateurish to some players, for the most part, they cater to players who already know the rules or have a strong sense of playing. Perhaps you've played craps a few times but still need a brush up on the rules to familiarize yourself with the game once again? That's fine. I will do my best to keep things simple, while not reverting back to Gambling 101.

That being said, let's take a closer look at the wrong bettor, that is, when you the player bet against the shooter. Have you ever wondered how it is that the odds can be against both the wrong and right bettor who are betting on opposite bets? In other words, the Pass line bet has a Casinos Edge of 1.414%. Going by mathematical law, the opposite of this bet, the Don't Pass Line Bet, would then naturally have a -1.414% Casinos Edge, or rather, a 1.414% player advantage. Yes, this should be the case. But it's not. Here is where the casino slides in a little disclaimer. You've seen it on the craps table, but may not know what it means. It's the picture of the two box-car dice in the Don't Pass and Don't Come boxes.

I know this isn't craps strategy per say, but knowing all of your available bets on the craps table should be part of your overall strategy. What the picture of the two box-car (double six) dice mean is that if a double six is rolled - in other words, a craps 12 - the bet does not lose, but rather, stays on the board until a seven or point number is rolled by the shooter. The bet is barred from winning or losing, and remains on the board. On the pass line, a craps 12 makes a losing bet on the come out roll. On the Don't Pass, the opposite is true.  In theory, a twelve should be a winning bet if you are betting against the shooter. But it's not, and this is how the casino gets its Edge back.

The brilliant thing about this is that the casino doesn't even need to turn the bet into a loser, thus making some players believe the casino is actually doing them a special favor. If you recall your Gambling 101, the casino does not make its money from losses. It makes its money when you win a bet. If you find this statement hard to believe, then read the very next tip of this month's strategy archive (you non-believers have inspired my next article, thank you), Anyways, by not paying out the 6-6, the casino brilliantly brings the Casinos Edge back up to almost identically what it is for the Pass Line. The wrong bettor who finds his don't pass bet getting a 6-6, now faces a 1.402% Casinos Edge. So why do the majority of craps bettors say it is more advantageous to bet with the shooter than against, considering the don't pass bet has a lower Casinos Edge than the pass bet, albeit very slim. That's another article! Man, I'm on a roll.

A couple things to keep in mind when playing in Nevada folks. Some casinos in Northern Nevada will actually payout don't pass bets when a 6-6 is rolled. However, they Bar a don't pass bet when a 1-1 (snake eyes) is rolled. This makes absolutely no difference whatsoever for your odds, because a 1-1 is rolled just as frequently as a 6-6. Although you won't find this at Las Vegas casinos, beware of a craps table that says 1-2 on the don't pass bar. This means that a Craps 3 will get barred, but a 6-6 will payout. This actually gives you worse odds because a Craps 3 is twice as likely to be rolled than a Craps 12 or Craps 2.

Online Casino Strategy Archive

October '07 | November 2007



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