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European Roulette vs American Roulette

When entering a land-based casino or logging into your favourite Online Casino, alongside Pokies, Blackjack and Poker, the Roulette game remains one of the most popular and most played casino games of all time. Watching movies from Las Vegas casinos and seeing players following the ball go round and round on the wheel, and wish it will stop on the predicted number, creates great excitement. Should you never have experienced it before and are curious to learn more about playing Roulette in general, read our full Roulette Guide.

Playing online table games is very common nowadays and players have a good selection of roulette types to choose from. In this article, we are looking into the well-liked forms, European and American Roulette.

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European Roulette

For the majority of online roulette players, European Roulette is the preferred form of roulette games. One of the main reasons for that is the lower house edge, which is merely 2.63%.

When it comes to the layout of the European roulette wheel, it has 37 divisions, consisting of numbers from 1 to 36 and a zero. The numbers from 1 to 36 are alternately coloured red and black and the single zero roulette number is in a green pocket.

The main objective when playing at the European roulette table is to predict the correct number, the ball lands on the wheel. To get into the game, players need to place bets on chosen numbers on the roulette table. As soon as all bets are made, the dealer spins the ball clockwise and the roulette wheel in counter-clockwise order. At some point, the ball is landing in a pocket with a particular number and if you are the lucky player, who placed a bet on the winning number, you get paid.

Playing European Roulette

When it comes to placing bets in a land-based casino, one will figure out it is very easy. A player simply needs to place chips on the roulette table. The chips represent the value of money a player wants to bet. After each player placed their chips, the croupier spins the wheel. When playing online roulette, it is just as easy. The player places chips on the desired fields and numbers on the layout and presses the spin button. Once all bets are settled and the wheel comes to a stop, the betting process repeats. 

If you are joining a roulette table, you usually find a range of players ranges between one and eight. Every round is initiated by the dealer by saying “Please place your bets”. In Online Casinos you then find a timer on your screen. Once the time is up, the dealer informs everyone around the table “No more bets” and spins the European Roulette wheel. From this point, no further bets are accepted for this particular round. Should you miss placing your bet, you need to wait until a new round starts.

Betting on the European Roulette Wheel

Let’s have a look at the layout of a European table. Here you find two sections, which consists of bets on individual numbers and group bets.

European roulette offers its players two main betting categories, inside and outside bets. Inside bets are made on a single number, adjacent numbers, or small groups of numbers. In contrast, outside bets are made on larger groups of numbers.

Before choosing your bet, get familiar with the different odds of winning and different payouts. Payouts and winning odds are usually not listed on the table, so it’s crucial for players to become aware of the key differences.

Inside bets

  1. Straight-Up Bet: It’s placed on a single number, including “0“. The payout is 35 to 1.
  2. Split Bet: It features two adjacent numbers and is placed on the line between these numbers. The bet may also include 0 and 1, 0 and 2, 0, and 3. The payout is 17 to 1.
  3. Street Bet: It features all three numbers in a row and is placed on the line at the end of the row. There are other options for its placement as well – it can include 0, 1, 2; 0, 2, 3. The payout is 11.
  4. Corner Bet: It features a group of four numbers and is placed at the corner where these four numbers touch. The bet can also be placed on the corner of 0, 1, 2, and 3. The payout is 8 to 1.
  5. Line Bet: It features six numbers (or two rows of three numbers) and is placed at the end of two rows, on the border between them. The payout is 5 to 1.

Outside bets

  1. Column Bet: It features an entire column and is placed on the ”2-1” field at the end of a column. The payout is 2 to 1.
  2. Dozen Bet: It features a group of 12 numbers and can be placed on the ”1st 12” box (1 to 12), the ”2nd 12” box (13 to 24), or the ”3rd 12” box (25 to 36). The payout is 2 to 1.
  3. Bet on Color: It features all of the red numbers or all of the black numbers on the layout and is placed on the ”Red” field (all red numbers) or the ”Black” field (all black numbers). The payout is 1 to 1.
  4. Bet on Odd/Even: It features all even numbers or all odd numbers on the layout and is placed on the ”Even” field (all even numbers) or the ”Odd” field (all odd numbers). The payout is 1 to 1.
  5. Bet on Low/High: It features all low numbers or all high numbers and is placed on the ”Low” field (numbers 1 to 18) or the ”High” field (numbers 19 to 36). The payout is 1 to 1.

In case the winning number is 0, all of the above mentioned outside bets are halved and returned to the respective players.

When reading about the differences between American vs European Roulette, you also encounter French Roulette. Some might call it French Roulette but actually refer to European Roulette. There are a few differences and before having a closer look at American Roulette, let’s explore these first.

French Roulette

In French Roulette, you find the same roulette wheel, with a single zero, as well as the same betting options as European Roulette. However, you encounter slight differences when it comes to the layout and the outside bets.

There are a few added rules in French Roulette, which makes it unique and therefore different to the well-known European Roulette. For example, when placing an outside bet and the ball is landing on zero, the player gets half of the bet back. This particular rule is called ‘la partage’. This term is French and means ‘to share’. Players can benefit from ‘la partage’ as it makes the odds slightly better. In an overall comparison between French and European Roulette, the French version has more beneficial odds for its players.

Another difference you will encounter is the ‘en prison’ rule. Should you place an even-money outside bet and the ball lands on zero, you now are given an option. You can either take half of your bet back or place the same bet again. In the event you choose the second option, the dealer is marking your bet, which symbols the place as locked or “in prison”. Should you win this even money bet, you get paid, and if you lose, the bet forfeits. However, you find different rules in different casinos regarding the scenario the ball land son zero a second time in a row. Therefore, make sure to check this beforehand.

American Roulette

As the name already reveals, American Roulette enjoys its greatest popularity in the United States. It also becomes more popular in Asia and the United Kingdom, however, European players seem to avoid this version and focus mainly on European Roulette. A reason for this could be the higher house advantage, which is at 5.25%.

The major difference between the American and European wheel is the American Roulette wheel has 38 divisions, consisting of numbers from 1 to 36, a single zero and a double zero. The numbers from 1 to 36 are also alternately coloured red and black and both zero slots are held in green.

Playing American Roulette

When comparing the basic rules between American and European Roulette, the main objective remains the same. Players need to predict in which numbered pocket the ball will land by placing money bets on the American Roulette table. 

Betting on the American Roulette Wheel

When looking at the betting options in these two roulette variants, you will only notice a few differences. As listed earlier, the American version offers the exact same betting options, to place either inside or outside bets.

The only difference you find is an additional option available for inside bets, the Five Bet. This bet features 0, 00, 1, 2, and 3 and is placed at the corner by 0 and 1. The payout is 6 to 1.

And as mentioned earlier, the American Roulette wheel has two zero pockets, and should one of these be the winning number, all of the outside bets are halved and returned to the respective players. There is also a variation of an outside bet, which is called NewAR wager. Here the player has two options, either to bet that the winning number will be Black/Odd or 0 or to bet that the number will be Red/Even or 0. In the event, the winning number is Black/Odd or Red/Even, the payout will be 3 to 1. Should the winning number is 0, the payout will then be 2 to 1.

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