Crap Strategy Will Make You Tons Of Cash. Here’s How!

Craps is considered by many to be the most exciting game in any casino. Not surprisingly, Craps is the game that always seems to be featured whenever gambling is shown on the movies.

There are a number of betting options in craps, and as a result, it could be considered a complicated game. But there are some simple bets that you can make to start with, and the odds on these are quite favourable. The rest, you will learn as you play.

Craps is centred around the roll of a pair of dice. The player who rolls the dice is known as the ‘shooter’. When two dice are rolled, any number between 2 and 12 can come up, with 7 being the most likely outcome. The number 7 has a better than 16% chance of coming up on each roll, whereas there is less than 3% chance of rolling a 2 or 12. Probabilities for other numbers are as follows: 6s and 8s under 14%, 5s and 9s nearly 11%, 4s and 10s almost 8%, 3s and 11s slightly less than 6%.

The most basic bet in craps, and the bet placed most be craps players, is placed on the ‘Pass Line’ before the shooter rolls the dice. If the shooter rolls 7 or 11, you and the shooter win, and the shooter keeps the dice to roll again. If the shooter hits 2, 3, or 12, the bet is lost but he remains the shooter and continues to roll the dice until he either makes his point and you both win, or he rolls a 7 and the bet is lost. In the above case, you have bet with the shooter. If you want to bet against him you place your bet on the ‘Don’t Pass’ line and the rules are entirely reversed except that if, on his first roll, the shooter rolls 12, it is a stand off and you neither win nor lose.

After the roll has begun and the shooter has a point, you can make a bet by placing it on the ‘come’ line. The same rules apply to you as if the shooter were making a first roll. If the next roll is 7 you win. If it is a 2, 3, or 12, you lose. If it is any other number, that becomes your ‘come point’ and, for you to win, it must be rolled again before a 7. If a 7 comes first, the bet is lost.

If you are new to craps, start with a ‘pass’ line bet and then perhaps try a ‘come’ bet. The casino edge on a pass line is around 1% so it represents a very safe bet.

The Bets

  • pass line
    1 to 1 pay-out, if the first roll of the dice adds up to 7 or 11, you win. 2, 3, or 12 loses the bet. Any other number becomes the ‘point’ and if the point is rolled again, you win, if 7 is rolled first you lose.
  • don’t pass
    1 to 1 payout, if the first roll of the dice adds up to 7 or 11, you lose. 2, 3, you win. 12 is a stand off. Any other number becomes the ‘point’ and if the point is rolled again, you lose, if 7 is rolled first you win.
  • come bets
    1 to 1 pay-out, basically the same as the PASS LINE except that you must bet after the point.
  • don’t come
    1 to 1 pay-out, the reverse of the COME BET, except that a first roll of 2 or 3 wins, and 12 is a stand off.

Craps Strategy

Casinos almost always have their odds published on the table. An odds bet is a supplement to the original pass line bet and it can range anywhere from 1 to 100 times your original bet, depending on the house odds. A pass line bet with odds cannot be made on the “come out roll”, as it can only be made after the point is set. For example, if you were betting $5 on a pass line bet and the point got set to 4, you could place an equivalent or larger bet just below your original wager.

Place the chips half-on and half-off the bottom of the pass line. If on the next roll a 4 is hit you win your pass line bet back, and an additional sum of money derived from the odds bet. In this case, the payoff is 2 to1 on the odds bet. The actual number the point is set to determines the payout on odds bets. If the point is set to 4 or 10, odds bets are paid back at 2 to 1 odds. If the point is set to 5 or 9, odds bets are paid back at 3 to 2 odds. If the point is set to 6 or 8, odds bets are paid back at 6 to 5 odds.

The odds bet is usually explained as being an intelligent bet in the game of craps. This is because the more you wager (double, triple, quadruple odds bet) the lower the house edge drops. A standard pass line bet holds a house edge of 1.41% – respectable, and compared to many other casino games you have to choose from its downright excellent, but take into account the potential for odds betting and it’s a whole different story. The house edge on a pass line bet with ten times odds is an incredible 0.18%.

For quick reference here is a chart showing the advantage derived from each stage of odds bets.

Bet Casino Payoff Casino Advantage
Pass Line Bet Even Money 1.41%
With Single Odds (1x) Even Money Plus Odds 0.85%
With Double Odds (2x) 0.61%
With Triple Odds (3x) 0.47%
With Five-Times Odds (5x) 0.33%
With Ten-Times Odds(10x) 0.18%

Below are some other Bet strategies:


  • The Don’t Pass Bet
  • The Come Bet
  • The Don’t Come Bet
  • The Hardway Bet
  • The Buy Bet
  • The Proposition Bet
  • The Field Bet
  • The Place Bet
  • The Lay Bet

The Don’t Pass Bet
If you’re in a land based casino and having a good time at the craps table, maybe making a few new friends, then you probably shouldn’t bet on the don’t pass bet. Essentially its like betting against the shooter or against the dice, which means you win when everybody else loses. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but you want to keep those new friends don’t you? You want to be invited to the next party no? Craps is a party game in a casino, filled with good vibes, my well learned advice, don’t disrupt the vibes. They may have nothing at all to do with mathematics, but they are no less important.

On the don’t pass bet (to make this bet place your chips in the narrower section just beyond the pass line labeled don’t pass) made on the come out roll, you lose on a 7 or 11, and win on a 2 or a 3. A 12 on the come out roll is like a push in blackjack, it’s a standoff where nobody wins or loses. If anything else is rolled it becomes the point, and you win if a 7 is rolled before the point is repeated. Notice how this is the opposite of the pass line bet, and notice how you win when the shooter loses. Seems awfully nice of the casino to offer an opposite bet of the normal one, wouldn’t the house lose their statistical edge? Only if they kept the numbers straight. Sadly on a don’t pass bet with odds, the casino pays out pretty crappy amounts. The odds of a 7 coming out before a 10 are quite good so the casino has to hedge its bet in effect.

The Come Bet
You’ll quickly notice the large area of the craps board labeled with ‘COME’ smack dab in the middle of the playing area. Make sure you have read the section on the Pass bet in our craps rules section and earlier in this section, if you know all there is to know about the Pass line bet, then you wont have any trouble getting your head around the simple ‘COME’ bet. The easiest way to think about the COME bet is to think, it’s exactly the same as the Pass line bet, but can be made after the point is set. There is no such thing as a come bet on the come out roll, because it would be exactly the same as a Pass line bet.

Say I wanted to make a come bet, and the point had been set to 5. I would put my come bet down in the come section and wait for the next roll. If a 7 or 11 is hit you win (while the shooter looses), and you lose on a craps shot (2, 3 or 12). If it’s any one of the other numbers, this becomes your ‘come point’. If your ‘come point’ is rolled before a 7, you win. So say a 9 is rolled, at that time the stickman moves your come bet to the 9 on the board. Now if the shooter rolls a 9 before a 7 you win, if they roll a 7 before a 9 you lose. Also remember that on come bets you also have the ability to place “odds” bets just like pass line bets after your ‘come-point’ is established.

The Don’t Come Bet
The don’t come bet is the opposite of the come bet, much in the same way the don’t pass bet is the opposite of the pass bet. The don’t come bet must be made after a point is set by the shooter. If a 7 or 11 is rolled you lose, if a 2 or 3 is rolled you win, and a 12 is a standoff. Otherwise a come point is set and you win if a 7 is rolled before the come point is repeated, and lose if the come point is repeated before a 7 is rolled. The don’t come bar is highlighted in our graphic.

Once again the odds are in your favor that a seven would be rolled before a 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10 so the odds bets pay the opposite of a pass line odds bet.

The Hardway Bet
Named that way because it’s a hard way to win, just kidding, but the hardway bet has some pretty horrible odds, so I recommend you stick with pass line bets with odds for the most part. Actually the ‘hard’ bit derives from the doubles involved. To roll a ‘hard eight’ means to roll it with double 4’s, to roll a ‘hard 6’ means to roll it with double 3’s. So in craps the only hardway bets that exist are a hard 4, 6, 8, and 10. When you make a hardway bet your betting that the hard version of what your betting on will come up before the soft version, or a seven. The soft version is the opposite of the hard version. Two threes is a hard six, but a 4 and a 2 is a soft six.

Odds are not completely consistent from casino to casino on the hardway bets but generally they go like so: a hard 4 pays 7 or 8 to 1, a hard 6 pays 9 or 10 to 1, a hard 8 pays 9 or 10 to 1, and a hard 10 pays 7 or 8 to 1.

Hardway bets are usually placed to add a little spice to the game, not in any effort to win more money. This is emphasized by the fact that the house edge is something atrocious on these bets. For a 4 or 10 the hard way, there is an 11.1% house edge, for a 6 or 8, it’s around 9%.

The Buy Bet
You may find some people who look like they know what they’re talking about around the craps table ‘buying’ instead of ‘placing’ numbers. What’s the difference, why do we care? A buy bet decreases the house edge and enables you to win more. The numbers 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10 can all be bought, but usually the 4 or 10 is picked because its pays off better. The buy bet is similar to the place bet in that the number you buy must come up before a 7 does. The odds are higher for a buy bet. 2:1 on a 4 or 10 buy, 3:2 for a 5 or 9, or 6:5 for a 6 or 8. The catch is, you have to pay a 5% commission on any bets you buy (often called a ‘vig’). Depending on how much you bet, buying a bet can make you more money in the end even after accounting for the ‘vig’. The odds are only in your favor on a buy bet for a 4 or 10, so stick with the place bet on any others.

The Proposition Bet
Proposition bets are the ones you can make in the middle of the table, and exist only on the ‘next roll’. As one roll bets they can be heart racing and exciting, an integral part of the craps experience.

    • These bets include:


  • “any seven” bet With the “any seven” bet you’re betting the shooter will hit a 7 on the next roll. Horrible house edge, never make this bet.
  • “snake eyes” bet With the “snake eyes” bet you’re betting the shooter will throw a two on the next roll.
  • “yo eleven” bet With the “yo eleven” bet you’re betting the shooter will hit an 11 on the next roll.
  • “any craps” bet With the “any craps” bet you’re betting the shooter will throw a 2, 3, or 12 on the next roll.
  • “any three” bet With the “any three” bet you’re betting the shooter will throw a 3 on the next roll.
  • “midnight” 12 bet With the “midnight” bet you’re betting the shooter will throw a 12 on the next roll.
  • “horn” bet With the “horn” bet you’re combining the snake eyes, 3, yo 11, and midnight bets.

Just to illustrate the horrible house edge on many of these proposition bets I have provided a table:

Bet Casino Payoff Casino Advantage
Any Seven 4:1 16.67%
2 or 12 30:1 13.89%
3 or 11 15:1 11.11%
Any Craps 7:1 11.11%
Horn Bet 2 or 12 – 27:4 3 or 11 – 3:1 12.50%

The Field Bet
The field bet is also among the smarter bets in craps, but not the great odds you get with odds on the pass line. The field holds approx a 5.5% house edge. As you’ll notice in our graphic, the field is an area on the craps table just beyond the don’t pass bar. The other handy bit about a field bet is that it can be played on any roll, so it’s a very non-threatening move.

The great aspect to the field bet is the simplicity. It’s a one-time bet which states simply: if the shooter throws a 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, or 12 (any of the numbers in the field area) then you win. If a 5, 6, 7, or 8 are thrown then you lose. There is no trick to placing your chips on one of the numbers in the field, its just anywhere you want and any of those number can be hit. If your betting on the field, most casinos also give you a bonus if a 2 or a 12 is thrown (notice the circles on those numbers). Many casinos pay 2x your bet when a 2 or “snake eyes” is thrown and some even pay 3x your bet if a 12 (commonly called a ‘midnight’) is thrown.

So look at that, even if you’re just a beginner you already know exactly how to make a pass bet, a pass bet with odds, and a field bet. Most of the wagering at a craps table revolves around just these betting techniques.

The Place Bet
The place bet is a variation of betting with a number. You can make a place bet anytime by handing the dealer your bet and saying ‘I want to place the 8’ or whatever number you want to place bet for. You can make a place bet at any time on any of 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 or 10. If the number you have ‘placed’ is hit before a 7, you win and you’re paid as follows: 4 or 10 placed – 9:5 odds, 5 or 9 placed – 7:5 odds, 6 or 8 placed – 7:6 odds.

Notice the pass line bet offers better odds, so basically you should stick with it over the long run. Although you can technically place a place bet at any time, it is impossible for it to come into effect until the shooters point is set, therefore it is more acceptable to ask for this bet after the come out roll is over.

The Lay Bet
An unusual and uncommon fellow, the lay bet resembles the don’t pass and don’t come bets in that you are playing against the dice. The lay bet can be made at any time. In essence it’s the opposite of the buy bet, and the same as the don’t come bet, but with different odds. The lay bets may be placed on 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10. The bet is on the fact that a seven will be rolled before your number. 7 is more likely to come up than any other number so the casino requires you to wager more than you could win. This bet also requires a commission of 5% on average. If the bet is on 4 or 10 you get 1:2 odds, on 5 or 9 2:3 odds, on six or 8 5:6 odds. Lay bets are usually only made by people who think they understand more about what’s going on that is probably possible. I would be surprised if anyone were ever in a position where a lay bet is the best option, I recommend sticking to the basic bets if your not an expert already.


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