If you want to win at craps you at least have to have a basic craps strategy. The best craps strategy is one that employs the placing of bets that are more likely to be successful than not. The good thing about even the most basic craps strategy is that you can whittle away at what is already a fairly small house edge with ease.
Play It Smart-Craps Strategies
This is a series written exclusively for CrapsGambling.net by Nelson Paul, an expert craps player. Each part of the series gives readers an insight into not only how to play the game or craps, but how to effectively master it.
- Odds Bets: Cut the House Edge
- Understanding the Odds Bet Payout
- Play With the House
- Control the Pace of Play
- Laying Odds for Profit and Peril
- Playing the Field
Basic Craps Strategy
Despite what you may have heard, the most useful and yet basic craps strategy is to bet against the shooter. Many players second guess this strategy because it is not used often. This strategy has long been rumored to be ineffective or just the inaccurate way to play the game, but that is simply rumor or even myth, likely started by the casinos who did not want to lose any more money than they have to. If you bet against the shooter you may not be the most popular player at the craps table, but you will find that you can diminish the house edge.
So, if you were going to use the basic craps strategy of betting against the shooter you should consider what you would do when you bet on the Pass Line or Don’t Pass bet. When you war on the pass line you are betting with the shooter, which means you need him to roll a two, three, or 12. If you bet Don’t Pass you are betting against the shooter and you are hoping he rolls a two, three, or 12 but will only lose on seven or 11. What’s the difference? The difference is the house edge. When you bet with the shooter the house edge is 1.41% yet when you bet against the shooter the house edge is just 1.34%. It doesn’t seem like a huge difference, but it will help you increase your edge against the house, which is how you win!
Many people don’t like this basic craps strategy because they have been told that they are required to pay a commission fee, usually a fee of 5% of the wager. Don’t let this deter you, because you are still doing away with the house edge. In fact, the reason that there is a commission fee is because if they did not charge this the edge would actually be against the house.
Practice Makes Perfect
You have to be sure of yourself if you are going to use this basic craps strategy. You may have other players looking at you and wondering why you would bet against the shooter, but when you consider how much you are able to whittle away at that house edge and what this can mean for you long term, it simply is the best way to go. You won’t want to cheer too loudly when the player doesn’t roll what he wanted, as this will make you less than popular, but you can enjoy any winnings all the more when you have them as to others it seemed unlikely that you would win at all.