Roullete, which translates to ‘little wheel’ in French, is one of the most popular casino games on the planet. It has been a favorite among gamblers for centuries and is enjoyed by both casual players and serious betters. While it might seem simple, the game actually has a surprising depth of strategy for those who want to make the most of their bets.
Roulette is a game of chance played on a circular table with a numbered wheel and betting area. Prior to the wheel spinning, players place their chips on a betting mat, with the precise placement of each chip indicating the type of bet being made. Once the ball has landed, the dealer will clear off losing bets and pay the winners before beginning a new round. Players do not use normal casino chips but rather special ones that are different in color and size to help distinguish each player.
The roulette wheel consists of a solid wooden disk slightly convex in shape. Around the rim are 36 metal compartments, or pockets, painted alternately red and black and numbered 1 through 36 in a non-consecutive pattern. A separate green compartment, labelled 0 on European wheels and 00 on American ones, is located on the outer edge of the wheel.
Depending on the specific wheel and table setup, the house edge can vary from 5.26% (European) to 7.9% (American). There are also several variations in the way that the game is played, including the racetrack, which adds an extra pocket and increases the house edge to 8.35%.
While there are many fanciful stories about the origin of the game, it is generally accepted that it was developed in the 17th century from older games such as hoca and portique. Several modifications were required before the current wheel and table layout was finally established in the early 1800s.
In the early days, roulette was popular in the city of Paris where it was first played in a public gaming room. It gained great popularity throughout Europe, and by the 19th century it had reached its current state of perfection in most major casinos.