Online Craps

Craps table and diceOnline craps is a casino game in which gamblers bet on the outcome of a dice roll. Craps online uses two dice, providing for results between 2 and 12. Casinos offer a wide variety of betting options, which is intimidating to some beginners.

Most of the article describes those betting options. Online craps has a few strategy elements besides knowing which bets to make. Having a solid understanding of the good craps bets and the sucker bets is, therefore, the best preparation you can make.

Some gambling writers suggest that dice control techniques may give a dice shooter an edge. Dice control remains controversial, with some respected experts claiming dice control is real and others being more skeptical. Online craps preclude’s any advantages dice control might offer, so we do not discuss the validity of such techniques in this article. This is a basic guide to online craps, so let’s discuss the fundamentals.

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The Basic Bets

It’s common for beginners to assume the players making the exotic bets at the online craps table know something. Most of the time, it’s the opposite. The basic bets tend to have the best odds in online craps. You could spend a lifetime making these wagers and do fine. In fact, you’d be better off than the gamblers betting on the single bets and the multi-roll bets described later.Online Craps Table

For that reason, I’ll describe the pass line bet, the come bet, and taking the odds on their own. Learn how to place these wagers first, then proceed to the more advanced concepts. Or stay with the basics and make these wagers perpetually.

Come out bet

The “Come Out” Roll

The “come out” roll is the term given to the opening roll of the dice. After bets are made, the shooter takes the dice and makes the come out roll. Gamblers can win on this roll, but many times, the come out roll establishes the point.

If the shooter rolls a 7 or 11, then those who made the pass line bet win. If the shooter rolls a 2, 3, or 12, then the shooter crapped out and gamblers who made the pass line bet lose. In the same situation, the players who made the “don’t pass” bet win.

If a number besides 2, 3, 7, 11, or 12 is rolled, this establishes the point.

The Point

The Point

The point is established by adding up the two dice rolled. If it is a 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10, then this number must be rolled again before a 7 is rolled. If any of those numbers or the seven is rolled again, then the round of betting is over and bets are settled.

If the 2, 3, 11, or 12 are rolled, then another roll is made. The shooter keeps rolling the dice until a winner is determined.

Keep in mind that there are more potential winning combinations on the 7 than the other numbers. This works in your favor on the pass line roll but works against the shooter on the come roll.

Pass line

“Pass Line” Bet

The pass line bet is the basic wager in online craps. This is the wager made when the shooter rolls the dice to begin a new round of play. Its name derives from the requirement that the dice hit the back wall and rebound beyond a certain line.

It is a good bet to make because it has a house edge of 1.41%. Of every $100 you wager on the pass line bet, you can expect to win back $98.59. That represents the second-best expected return in online craps.

Don't Pass

“Don’t Pass” Bet

The “don’t pass” bet is the opposite of the pass line bet. It has slightly better odds, with a 1.35% house edge. The don’t pass bet is, therefore, the best bet you can make in online craps.

Many people choose not to make this wager because it requires them to bet against the shooter. Since most people make the pass line bet, it means those making the don’t pass bet are betting against the rest of the table. Since craps online is a game which encourages camaraderie, this is considered an unfriendly act by some gamblers.

In truth, it is fine to make the don’t pass bet, but it is bad etiquette to celebrate openly if you win the bet. The reason it is bad manners is because you’re celebrating most of the other gamblers’ misfortune.

The difference is $0.06 every $100 wagered, so those six cents are not worth betting against the shooter to many craps gamblers.

Come Bet

Come Bet

The come bet is similar to the pass line bet, except it is made at a different time. Once the point is set, if you bet on the shooter, then you are making the come bet. In other words, you are hoping to have the same outcome that the pass line bettors want.

Once again, the house edge on this wager is 1.41%. Simply put, this is the pass line bet, but it’s made after the point is set.

Don't Come Bet

Don’t Come Bet

The “don’t come” bet is similar to the don’t pass bet. As you might have guessed, it’s made after the point is established. If you want to bet the same as the don’t pass bettors, then you simply make the don’t come wager after the point is established.

Like the don’t pass bet, this betting option has a house edge of 1.35%. This makes the don’t come bet the best odds in online craps. Once again, it is considered rude to celebrate when you win this bet, because you are celebrating the ill fortune of the other gamblers at the table.

taking odds

Taking the Odds

One other betting option needs to be pointed out because it optimizes your expected return. This is like doubling-down on your bet in blackjack, except it’s much better than doubling the bet. An odds bet in online craps has a 0% house edge, but can only be made if you made the pass bet or don’t pass bet.

For this reason, it is best to make the pass bet or the don’t pass bet, instead of waiting to make the come or don’t come bet. What it does is increase the overall expected return on the original bet. If you can max out taking the odds, it is a good idea.

Betting the Max Odds

betting max oddsMany gamblers cannot max out this bet because it can get expensive. Odds bets have a limit in casinos, but these limits tend to be 10x, 20x, 50x, or even 100x. If you’re playing at an online craps table with a $10 bet minimum, taking odds at 100x the original bet gets really expensive. Even the 10x wager is expensive for low rollers.

At the same time, the casino sets a limit to assure high rollers don’t (virtually) eliminate the house edge. High-rollers, therefore, should look for casinos which offer the highest odds, because this is how their big bankroll can give the premium player bargains.

Service Bets – Single-Line Bets

Craps single-line bets graphSingle line bets are those resolved in one roll of the dice. A sizable number of these are called “service bets”. To make these wagers, you’ll find them at the center of the online craps table. These are placed by the stickman or boxman, which is why they’re called service bets.

Don’t make bets you don’t understand. Also, don’t make bets because you think it’s what the smart gamblers do. Most of the wagers below are sucker bets, pure and simple. For the sake of being thorough, let’s describe them.

Snake Eyes

Betting the shooter rolls a two. The odds on the snake eyes bet are 13.89%, making this a sucker bet.

Ace-Deuce Bet

Betting the shooter rolls a 3. The odds on this wager are 11.11%, making this a slightly better sucker bet.

Yo Bet

Betting that an 11 will be rolled. The odds are 11.11%, so this is a bad idea.

Boxcars

Betting that a 12 will be rolled. With similar 13.89% odds to the snake eyes wager, it is also a sucker bet. Boxcars are called midnight or cornrows.

C&E

This is a combined bet on whether a “craps or eleven” (yo) is rolled. Obviously, one of these bets will lose. The house edge is 11.11% on this wager.

Hi-Lo Bet

This is a combined bet on whether a 2 or a 12 is rolled. The house edge is 11.11% on this wager.

Any Craps

The gambler wins when the shooter rolls a 2-3-12. The odds are 11.11% on this wager, which also is called the three-way.

Big Red Bet

This is betting that any 7 appears. It’s called “Big Red” because the seven appears in red letters on the table. Also, it’s considered unlucky to say the word “seven” at the table, so this bet needs a nickname.

The house edge on the Big Red Bet is 16.67%, making it the worst bet you can make at an online craps table. Anyone making this bet is a sucker. No wonder the word “seven” is considered unlucky.

The Horn

Betting one unit apiece on the 2-3-11-12. It pays off depending on the number rolled, with 3 wagers losing. The house edge on this wager is 12.5%.

Hard and Horny

Betting all the hardway bets and the horn bet. This is a terrible wager. Its odds are in the 10% range, making it a bad proposition, like all the other service bets.

On the Hop

This is betting that any single combination is going to hit. If you bet the 6 hits with a “4 and 2”, this is 4-and-2 on the hop. It’s similar to the hardway bets, but without matching numbers.

Field Bet

This self-service field bet is a wager that one of the numbers 2-3-4-9-10-11-12 is going to hit. You place each of these wagers. It’s a bad bet, though.

Whirl or World

The whirl is 5-unit bet on the combination of the Big Red and any horn bet. It has a house edge of 13.13% and should never be attempted.

Multi-Roll Bets

These are wagers which might be resolved in one roll but might need subsequent rolls to determine them. Compared to the single bets, many of the multi-roll wagers are far superior. Gamblers should understand any of these options is going to have a higher house edge than the come/don’t come bet. Let’s start with the worst of the bunch: the hardway bets.

Hard Way

Betting that either a four, a six, an eight, or a ten will be rolled. Notice these are even numbers. To win, you have to have a double-two, double-three, and so one — which is called making the number “the hard way”.

For a Hard 4, you need a roll of 2-2. For a Hard 6, you need a 3-3. A Hard 8 is 4-4 and a Hard 10 is a 5-5. The payouts are greater on these wagers than if you bet on a single number, regardless of the dice combination, but it isn’t worth those higher payouts. Below is an indication of why.

  • Hard 4 – 11.11%
  • Hard 6 – 9.09%
  • Hard 8 – 9.09%
  • Hard 10 – 11.11%

These are terrible odds, so don’t make hardway bets under any circumstances. When you’re at the online craps table, the odds might look tempting, but the probabilities are stacked against you.

Easy Way

Betting the opposite of the hard way bets. You’re wagering that a certain number appears, but the dice won’t be identical. These bets are not always offered.

Big 6 and Big 8

The Big 6 and Big 8 wagers are sucker bets. A Big 6 pays when the shooter rolls a 6 before a 7. The Big 8 does the same when the shooter rolls an 8 before a 7. The house edge on this bet is 9.09%.

These are sucker bets, because you get 1:1 odds. You can make the same wager with a place bet and get 7:6 odds — you’re literally throwing money away on the Big 6 or Big 8 bet. Many casinos don’t offer this option.

Place Bets

Place bets are made on one of the numbers 4-5-6-8-9-10. These are considered “working bets”, meaning they stay in effect from one set of rolls to the next. They do not work on the come out roll unless you “turn on” the bet.

To make this wager, place your chips in the come area and call out your wager. For instance, to bet $20 every hand on a place 6 bet, say, “20 on the 6” and place your chips in the appropriate part of the come area.

House Edge on Place Bets
  • Place 4 – 6.67%
  • Place 5 – 4.00%
  • Place 6 – 1.52%
  • Place 8 – 1.52%
  • Place 9 – 4.00%
  • Place 10 – 6.67%

Buy Bets

The buy bet is similar to the place bet, except you get paid real odds on a win. To get these odds, you must pay a 5% commission when you win. Therefore, you could make a wager like the aforementioned place 6 bet, except it pays true odds and charges a 5% commission.

The buy bet has a 4.76% house edge if the 5% commission is charged on intended bets. If the casinos charges a 5% on winning rolls only, the house edge becomes 1.67%.

This is sometimes a better option than similar place bets. If you’re comfortable in the knowledge it is, buy bets should be made over certain place bets. Below is a guide for comparing buy bets to place bets.

  • Buy 4 – Better than the Place 4 in all instances.
  • Buy 5 – Worse than the Place 5 if the commission is paid on intended bets, better if on winning bets.
  • Buy 6 – Worse than the Place 6 in all instances.
  • Buy 8 – Worse than the Place 8 in all instances.
  • Buy 9 – Worse than the Place 9 if the commission is on intended bets, better if on winning bets.
  • Buy 10 – Better than the Place 10 in all instances.

Lay Bet

A lay bet is the opposite of the buy bet, except it’s paid when the 7 hits before a number. The lay bets have a smaller range of odds than the buy bets, but that means the best betting option is not quite as good as the best buy bet.

  • Lay 4 – 2.44%
  • Lay 5 – 3.23%
  • Lay 6 – 4.00%
  • Lay 8 – 4.00%
  • Lay 9 – 3.23%
  • Lay 10 – 2.44%

The lay bets are a much better option than the single bets and the hardway bets. If you get bored with making the same basic wagers, consider the place, buy, or lay bets. Understand the best options in each case, though.

Online Craps

Online craps is played using casino simulation software and a random number generator. In my opinion, craps online is the game that loses the most in translation to the Internet. Live craps is based on a crowd of people making the same bets and cheering each other. Online craps traditionally cannot mimic that game experience, though a casino with a real time live chat feature helps.

Learn to Play Craps Online

Players learning to play craps online should practice in different stages. Online craps is similar to brick-and-mortar dice shooting, but it has a couple of steps. The steps below provide a sequential guide to learning how to bet on craps online. It gives players advice on which bets to learn first, so you’ll learn the game as you play craps online.

#1

Sign Up and Find Craps Online

Sign up at an online casino. Make certain the site offers craps before registration. Make a deposit using a credit card, bank transfers, or bitcoin. Accept welcome bonuses and read the wagering requirements. Find craps on the Table Games page. Some sites place craps in the Specialty Games.

#2

Optional: Mobile Craps

Mobile craps is available in many casinos. Craps is better on a tablet, because the betting layout has a lot of details. Smartphone craps is available at most casinos with mobile-optimized gaming, though.

#3

Optional: Live Dealer Craps

Some casino websites offer live dealer craps. Live craps involves real life dealers rolling dice while cameras roll. This video streams in real time on your computer screen. While you can’t roll the dice yourself, live dealer craps is the most true-to-life version of dice shooting on the Internet.

#4

Load the Game

Once online craps appears on your screen, learn the interface on the games menu. This includes a list of bets, live chat, and your stack of virtual chips. Learn to drag and drop your chips to increase bets. Before playing craps online, check to see if the casino offers game-specific bonuses for craps.

#5

Learn the Game Layout

Learn the layout of the craps table. First, learn the basic bets: Passline, Don’t Pass, Come Bet, and Don’t Come. Next, learn how to take odds. These are the best bets in craps, so they should be your main focus when you play craps online. These wagers include the come-out roll, but might require additional rolls before a winner is determined. Learn what “the point” is, because it changes the terms of the basic bets.

#6

Place Your Bets

Players next should learn about the Lay Bets and Place Bets, which have the next-best odds. Buy Bets are similar to Lay Bets, but have a worse house edge. Place 6 and Place 8 have a 1.52% house edge, so they are almost as good as the basic bets. These mix up the action without costing you too much money.

Field Bets, Hardway Bets, and One-Way Bets comprise most of the remaining wagers. These have higher house edges and bigger payouts, but most are sucker bets. Try these out in practice mode to see how often they hit.

#7

Withdraw Your Winnings

Eventually, you’ll want to withdraw winnings from your online craps sessions. Don’t withdraw until you meet the playthrough requirements. On the best online craps casinos, the cashier page shows how much of your rollover is left. Check with the cashier before making a withdrawal request, if you don’t know. Withdrawals take anywhere between 24 hours and 3 weeks, depending on the payment method.

Live Dealer Craps

Live dealer craps iconLive dealer craps is the best way to shoot dice online, if any casino offered this game. Many online casinos use live streaming video to beam a real gaming experience to your computer screen. These dealers are located in a live dealer studio somewhere in the world. Top gaming software companies often place their live dealers in Riga, Latvia or Tallinn, Estonia. Panama or other Central American countries are common locations, too.

These dealers handle bets the way they would in a brick-and-mortar casino. Other players gamble from their home computers while the game transpires. The only real difference is one of the dealers has to roll the dice. No dice control techniques are used, of course. Cameras make sure everything is in your line of sight.

No online casino offers live online craps at the moment, but there are companies working on developing this version of the game. The leading online casinos do offer other games like, live blackjack, live baccarat, and live roulette.

Mobile Craps

Mobile crapsAll mobile casinos support mobile craps games. Increasingly, mobile casinos offer access to live mobile craps, too. This is not as common, but when the transition to HTML5 is complete, live mobile craps on your Android smartphone, iPhone, or iPad should be as quick and vivid as it is on your desktop PC or laptop notebook. The best mobile casinos already offer such support.

As gaming technology advances, most facets of the brick-and-mortar game we’ve enjoyed in land-based casinos will return to the Internet. Not everything will. If you play the interactive game online and visit a land-based casino, you’ll can learn traditional craps etiquette below.

Additional Craps Resources

These articles are here to help you better understand the game of online craps, whether you are reading books, learning the different terms used while playing, or even getting the answers to some of the frequently asked questions.

books about craps

Books about Craps

Find books that are great resources for learning how to play craps online, the different strategies that people have used, and even personal stories by professional players.

dice control

Craps Dice Control

Learn everything there is to know about using dice control to your advantage and use it the next time you are at a casino.

online craps faq

Online Craps Questions and Answers

Get the answers to common questions most players have about craps and start playing with more knowledge on your side.

online craps faq

Craps Terms

Learn some of the commonly used terms while playing craps and start using that language to play the game even better.

Dice Game Variants

When people think of casino dice games they usually think of Craps, however, there are plenty of other games that can be wagered on that use dice. Here are a few of these online craps variations:

Craps Etiquette

Craps is a social game. It has a set of unwritten rules which determine player behavior. Ignore these etiquette tips at the danger of being rude. Most are common sense, but beginners might not consider their manners when they first step up to the craps table.

Set personal items underneath the table, where a ledge is found. DO NOT put them on the table.
DO NOT hold your drink over the table. Dripping on the felt is a big offense.
DO NOT put money down when the shooter holds the dice. Wait until the next roll.
DO NOT stack chips of smaller denominations, if you can make the same bet with a single chip.
Those standing near the pass line should stack chips in an orderly fashion because the dice will roll near them.
DO NOT make late bets.
If you make a late bet, DO NOT place chips in the path of the dice. Call out the bet instead, but understand the dealer might rule “No Bet“.
When shooting the dice, DO NOT take a long time. You’re holding up the game.
If a bet isn’t paid properly, DO NOT touch the chips before bringing it to the dealer’s attention.
To get paid in the event of a mistake, make sure to bring this to the dealer’s attention before the dice are rolled again.
After the point is on, never say the word “Seven“. Players will think you’re trying to jinx them.
DO NOT smoke at the table. Players are crammed tight.
If you need to go to the restroom, but keep playing, ask a dealer to hold your spot for you and watch your chips.
Tip the dealers before leaving, even if you lost. They work hard for your enjoyment.

If you adhere to these simple craps etiquette tips, it makes the game more enjoyable for everyone. Remember: most of you are on the same side in this game. If the other players and dealers at the table are happy, it makes for a better game.

Craps History

online craps historyCraps may have been played as far back as the Crusades, which took place some 700 to 900 years ago. The game’s name comes from the French word “crapaud”, meaning “frog”. It describes the crouched way dice shooters stood, which is no different than street craps of the 19th and 20th centuries.

Craps came to the United States through New Orleans. A French-Creole plantation owner named Bernard de Marigny brought the game to New Orleans. Early players learned how to gain an advantage through dice techniques, so John H. Winn included the “don’t pass” rule to eliminate that advantage. Winn’s rule introduced the game we know today.

In World War II, dice shooting became popular with U.S. soldiers. It was popular enough that the post-war generation wanted to shoot dice in casinos. Las Vegas was happy enough to accommodate. Today, craps is a favorite table game for Vegas gamblers. Online craps is offered at any online or mobile casino.

Glossary of Craps Terms

Now that you know the basic wagers, I want to discuss craps terminology. Dice shooters have a complicated set of slang terms they use to describe the people standing at the table and the wagers they make. Below is a basic guide to the online craps glossary, along with a short definition of each.

ACES

Rolling 2 ones, which is a loss on the pass bet.

BLACK

The term for $100 in craps. Black chips are usually the one-hundred dollar chips in craps.

BONES

The craps dice.

BOYS, THE

“The Boys” is a term for craps dealers.

BOXMAN

The boxman is the dealer who sits. He or she handles chips and money exchanges, and gives orders to the base dealers. The boxman holds the box of chips and money.

COLD DICE

When the shooter keeps losing.

COLORING UP

Exchanging chips of a smaller denomination for chips of a higher denomination. Usually, a sign you’ve been winning. This is handled by the boxman.

COMPS

Freebies. This includes free drinks, meals, hotel rooms, and show tickets offered as incentives to gamble. Some casinos offer cashback for high volume players.

CRAP NUMBER

The two (2), three (3), or twelve (12). Any number which causes you to lose on the come out roll.

CRAP OUT

To lose on the come out roll by rolling a 2, 3, or 12.

DICE CONTROL

Technique some writers believe can be used to control how the dice lands. Dice control is still a controversial topic with respected authors on both sides of the question. Dice control in street settings has existed, such as the “Army blanket roll” in World War II.

FRONT LINE

Term for a pass line bet.

GARDEN BET

Another term for a field bet.

HOT DICE

When the shooter is on a roll (keeps winning).

HOT TABLE

This has similar connotations to hot dice, except the good luck is imparted to the entire table, instead of one shooter alone.

LAY ODDS

Laying the odds is making the odds bet when a point is established. This is recommended.

MARKER

A button used to indicate what the point is. When a point is established, the marker is placed next to that number.

NATURAL

Rolling either a 7 or an 11 on the come out roll. This is a winner for the shooter and all right betters.

ON/OFF BUTTON

A button located on the online craps table to show whether odds are active or not at that moment.

ON

When the on/off button is turned to “On”, this means the odds are active on the next roll.

OFF

When the on/off button is turned to “Off”, this means the odds are not active on the next roll.

RACK

The rail which encircles the table. This is where people place their chips.

RIGHT BETTOR

The term used for all those who bet on the shooter.

SEVEN OUT

To roll seven after a point is established, thus losing the pass/come bets.

SHOOTER, THE

The shooter is the gambler who rolls the dice.

SNAKEYES

The same as “aces”.

STICKMAN

The dealer who holds the long stick used to retrieve dice. He takes bets from central players and calls out the results.

SUCKER BET

When the house edge on a wager is so high, no experienced gambler would make the bet. Craps online has several of these.

TOKE

Slang term for tipping the dealer. To toke the dealer is to tip him or her.

WORLD BET

Betting horn numbers (2, 3, 11, 12) and the 7 for a 5-number wager.

WRONG BETTOR

People who bet against the shooter.

YOLEVEN

“Yo” or Yo-leven is said by the stickman when 11 is rolled. The term is used to avoid confusion between the sound of “seven” and “eleven”.

Several of the concepts described above refer to the single bets and multi-roll bets I reference in the space below. Before I move on to that part of this guide, let’s make clear that most of the bets below are inferior.