Roullete, or roulette, has offered glamour, mystery and excitement to casino-goers since the 17th century. Although it is not as popular in America as slot machines, video poker and blackjack, it still draws big crowds in Europe and is one of the most recognizable games at Monte Carlo and other gambling destinations. While roulette is a game of chance, the right strategy can reap high rewards. Before you start betting it all on black, it is important to know the basics of the game.
The game of roulette is simple enough for a casual player to grasp, but its rules can be complex for serious betters. The game has different odds for winning bets and higher or lower payouts depending on the number of numbers wagered. Betting combinations are also divided into inside and outside bets based on the position of pockets on the wheel.
After players place their bets, the dealer spins the roulette wheel and drops a ball into one of the numbered compartments on the wheel. If the ball lands in a number on which a player has placed a bet, that player wins. All other bets lose. Each table carries a placard listing the minimum and maximum betting amounts, and players should choose a table that offers bets within their budget before beginning play.
While fanciful stories abound as to the origin of roulette, most agree that it was derived from older games like hoca and portique and first introduced in France in the early 18th century. Some believe the game was invented by 17th-century French physicist Blaise Pascal as part of his efforts to demonstrate perpetual motion, while others credit Chinese or Dominican monks.
While a lot of bets are placed on individual numbers, many are also placed on groups of numbers known as dozens or panels. The simplest of these is the Dozens Bet, or douzaine in French, which wagers that the winning number will be in either the first dozen (which contains 12), the second dozen or the third. This bet pays out 2-1, but does not include the 0 or 00 which give the house its edge in American roulette.