Many casino games have classic bets that many gamblers know and understand. Numerous players know how to perform a slots spin, play a blackjack hand, or put chips down on a roulette table.
Familiarity is one reason why games like baccarat, blackjack, craps, slot machines, and roulette have remained so popular over the years. Many gamblers got started with these classics and continue to play them today.
But there also bets that aren’t so well known among casino visitors. One of the main reasons why certain wagers aren’t common knowledge is because they’re either not listed on tables (e.g. craps odds) or are located in a different table area (e.g. announced roulette bets).
A player must often have in-depth knowledge of a game before they learn about non-listed bets. Other reasons why some wagers remain obscure is because they’re lightly marketed and/or newer. You can’t make a bet or play a casino game if you don’t know about it.
Of course, there’s nothing wrong with sticking to traditional bets. But it’s also fun to expand your horizons by learning about little-known wagers. Keep reading as I discuss seven bets that many gamblers don’t even know exist.
1 – Called Roulette Bets (Voisins Du Zéro, Orphelins, etc)
Regular roulette wagers are featured on the table. You’ll see a wide range of available propositions listed on both the inside and outside of the board.
Here are the main bets that are available:
- High or low – Wager on numbers ranging between 1-18 (low) or 19-36 (high).
- Red or black – Bet on if the ball lands in a red or black pocket.
- Even or odd – Wager on whether the ball lands in an even or odd-numbered pocket.
- Dozen bet – Bet on numbers ranging between 1-12; 13-24; or 25-36.
- Column bet – Wager on the first, second, or third column of numbers.
- Straight-up (single) – Wager on a single number to win.
- Split – Bet on two vertically or horizontally adjacent numbers (e.g. 8& 11).
- Street – Bet on three numbers in a horizontal line (e.g. 4, 5&6).
- Corner (square) – Wager on four numbers that intersect at a corner (e.g. 31, 32, 34&35).
- 6 line (double street) – Bet on two adjacent lines (6 total numbers).
- Trio – Wager on three numbers, with at least one being zero.
- First four – Bet on 0-1-2-3.
Roulette also includes wagers that are featured on an oval grid (a.k.a. racetrack) away from the main bets. These are referred to as “announced bets,” because you announce to the dealer that you’re placing them.
You must also put your chips on the table when making an announced wager. This differs from “call bets,” where you can call the wager before putting chips down (a.k.a. betting on credit).
The announced roulette wagers, or “French bets,” all cover a different series of numbers. Each series is based on specific numbers that are located next to each other on the roulette wheel.
Keep in mind that not all casinos offer called bets. But you’ll still find the following wagers at some online and land-based casinos.
Voisins du Zéro (Neighbors of Zero)
- Covers 17 numbers between and including 22 and 25.
- Series on a European wheel is: 22-18-29-7-28-12-35-3-26-0-32-15-19-4-21-2-25.
- Chips are placed on: 0-2-3 trio (one chip); 4-7 split (one chip); 12-15 (one); 18-21 (one); 19-22 (one); 25-26-28-29 (two chips); and 32-35 (one).
Jeu Zéro (Zero Game)
- Covers 7 numbers between and including 12 and 15.
- Series on a European wheel is: 12-35-3-26-0-32-15.
- Chips are placed on: 0-3 split (one chip); 12-15 split (one); 32-35 split (one); and 26 straight-up (one).
- “Zero Spiel Naca” version also features one chip on 19 straight-up.
- Covers 8 numbers between and including 17 and 6, as well as 1 and 9.
- The two series are: 17-34-6, and 1-20-14-31-9.
- Chips are placed on: 1 straight-up (one chip); 6-9 split (one); 14-17 (one); 17-20 (one); and 31-34 (one).
Le Tiers du Cylindre (Third of the Wheel)
- Covers 12 numbers between and including 27 and 33.
- Series on a European wheel is: 27-13-36-11-30-8-23-10-5-24-16-33.
- Chips are placed on: 5-8 split (one chip); 10-11 split (one); 13-16 split (one); 23-24 split (one); 27-30 split (one); and 33-36 split (one).
Additional Instructions on Placing These Bets
As mentioned earlier, you place announced bets on the racetrack-shaped grid away from the main betting area.
The racetrack features numbers 0-36, just like the regular European roulette board. The only difference is that it’s in an oval shape rather than the rectangular main board.
These bets are considered too specific to put on the regular wagering section. Plus, they involve placing multiple chips across the board.
Announced bets might seem difficult to understand at first. But they’re easier to understand when you see how their number series are connected on the wheel.
You won’t have any problem placing announced bets at online casinos, because you only have to make a single click/tap. But land-based casinos require that you physically put all the chips on the board. Once you get used to the process of placing announced wagers, though, it becomes easier to make them in the future.
2 – Craps Odds
Nearly every craps bet is listed on the table. The only wager that’s not featured on the board is odds.
An odds bet is aptly named for the fact that it pays at your true odds of winning. This wager doesn’t have a house edge, which is unheard of when considering that casinos have the advantage in every other proposition.
Unfortunately, many players don’t know about odds since they’re not listed on the table. You instead must place a pass line, don’t pass line, come, or don’t come bet before you can make an odds wager.
If you’re playing at a land-based casino, you also need to inform the dealer that you’re backing your original wager with odds. Online players can make an odds bet with a simple click.
Assuming you’re unfamiliar with how pass line and don’t pass line wagers work, here are the basics:
- Wins on come-out roll when 7 or 11 are rolled.
- Loses on come-out when 2, 3, or 12 are rolled.
- Point number is established when 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10 are tossed.
- Bet wins when shooter rolls the point number before a 7.
- Pays 1:1.
- 251:244 true odds.
Don’t Pass Line
- Wins on come-out roll when 2 or 3 are rolled.
- Loses on come-out when 7 or 11 are rolled.
- Pushes when 12 is tossed.
- Point number is established when 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10 are rolled.
- Wins when shooter rolls a 7 before the point number.
- Pays 1:1.
- 976:949 true odds.
You “take” odds when backing a pass line wager, and you “lay” odds when backing a don’t pass line bet.
The chances of winning with odds depend upon what point number has been rolled, which you can see below:
Pass Line Odds
- 2:1 payout on point numbers of 4 and 10.
- 3:2 on points of 5 and 9.
- 6:5 on points of 6 and 8.
Don’t Pass Line Odds
- 1:2 payout for point numbers of 4 and 10.
- 2:3 for points of 5 and 9.
- 5:6 for points of 6 and 8.
One more thing worth adding is that you can bet larger craps odds to improve your chances of winning.
Odds are expressed as a multiple of your original wager. For example, 5x odds would be five times the size of your main bet.
The advantage to taking bigger odds is that you lower the overall house edge. The drawback is that you need to risk more money and can still lose, even with a low house advantage.
Here’s how much the house edge drops based on the size of your odds:
|Odds||Pass Line & Come||Don’t Pass Line & Don’t Come|
|Full Double Odds||0.572%||0.431%|
Most casinos don’t offer 10x odds or higher. But you can find larger odds by doing some research on different land-based and online casinos.
For example, Betsoft and Playtech casinos feature 3x odds, which is the highest that I’ve seen online.
3 – Crazy Sports Prop Bets
Many casual gamblers are aware of common sports bets like point spreads, moneylines, and totals. But what makes sports gambling so fun is the large number of obscure prop bets you can find.
Sportsbooks are especially apt to feature crazy prop wagers during big events like the Super Bowl, FIFA World Cup, NBA Finals, and UEFA European Championship. Some fans don’t even realize the unique bets that are available during the most popular sporting events.
The Super Bowl especially presents a great time to bet on nearly everything you can think of regarding the NFL’s title game.
Here are a few examples of interesting Super Bowl prop bets that are offered each year:
- How long will it take a singer to finish the National Anthem?
- What type of outfit will the singer be wearing?
- Which player will be shown first on TV during the National Anthem (usually choice between two quarterbacks)?
- How many times will a specific player be mentioned during the TV broadcast?
- Who will be mentioned first during the broadcast (usually owners, players, or coaches)?
- What color of shoes will the halftime performer wear?
- What color of Gatorade will be poured on the game-winning coach?
- Will a backup quarterback take a snap during the game?
- Will an onside kick be attempted?
- Will a flea-flicker be attempted?
Keep in mind that you can find the most-obscure prop bets at larger online sportsbooks. But even if you’re dealing with smaller sites, you can still find a nice range of props during big games.
4 – Online Casino Board Games
Board games have been popular among families and friends for decades. But with all of the entertainment options available today, people are pulling out board games less and less.
Of course, some gamblers might still love this form of entertainment if they knew that board games are now available at certain online casinos.
This is part of a movement by gaming sites to diversify their offerings. Internet casino board games are totally unique, because they don’t involve spinning reels or handling cards.
One example is Rival Gaming’s Banana Jones, which follows a purple monkey’s quest to find the fabled Crystal Banana.
This colorful casino game is very similar to the board game Snakes & Ladders. You roll dice to advanced Jones across the board and pick up prizes along the way.
The dice value represents how many spaces you move across the board. Jones climbs up vinesto advance further, while he falls down snakes and goes backwards.
Online casino board games sparsely populate the internet gaming scene. But considering how unique they are when compared to traditional casino options, we expect to see more of them in the future.
5 – Skill Based Slots Bonus Rounds
Slot machines are by far the most popular games in casinos. So why did they make it onto this list? A newer breed of slots now features skill-based bonus rounds, which give you a degree of control over the results.
Up until skill-based bonuses became available, slot machines have always been a totally random affair. You spin the reels and let fate/game odds decide if you win or lose.
But a skill-based bonus round gives you the ability to improve your winnings by being a better player. Marcus Prater, executive director of the Association of Gaming Equipment Manufacturers, said that some slots can give players up to a 98% chance of winning based on their skill level.
You must trigger a skill-based bonus just like with any other type of slots feature. But the key difference is that you have manual control over the bonus results.
Here’s an example using Scientific Games’ Space Invaders slot machine:
- You trigger the bonus with three or more bonus icons.
- You can either choose a random or skill-based bonus.
- The random bonus is 5 free spins.
- The skill-based bonus takes you to a second screen.
- You control spaceships at the bottom and attempt to shoot aliens before they reach your ships.
Aside from skilled slots bonuses, casinos are also experimenting with arcade gaming. This is exactly how sounds in that you’re gambling on your ability to beat an arcade machine.
Danger Arena is one of the earliest examples. Developed by GameCo, Danger Arena sees you blast robots an attempt to improve your score and winnings.
So far, the skill-based gambling movement is stuck in limbo between players who like traditional slots and millennials who don’t play slot machines at all.
But it’s important to realize that we’re still in the early stages of skill-based gambling. Therefore, these games still have a chance to experience future success.
6 – War
Many people remember playing War as a kid.Online and land-based casinos have captured this nostalgia and now give you the ability to gamble on War.
This is a nice option for beginners who want a game they know, rather than having to learn the rules of baccarat, blackjack, poker, or any other card game.
If you can’t remember the rules — or never learned them in the first place — then you can take comfort in knowing that War is very easy to learn.
I’ll start with the non-gambling rules first:
- Every round begins with each player dealing themselves a card.
- The highest number/suit wins, with the winner taking both cards.
- If there’s a tie, both players burn three cards and show their next card.
- The winner of a tie takes all the cards, including the burn pile.
- If there’s another tie, then the player and dealer repeat the same process.
- The object of the game is to win the entire deck.
Regular War takes forever to finish when considering that one player must win all of the cards. Therefore, casinos have modified this to feature one-hand rounds.
Here are the casino-based rules:
- You make your bet, and the casino gives you one card.
- You win if your card is higher than the dealer’s.
- You lose if your card is lower.
- When there’s a tie, you can either surrender half your original wager and quit, or go to war.
- You must double your original bet to go to war.
- If your second card is equal to or better than the dealer’s second card, you win even money on the raise (original bet pushes).
- Assuming the dealer’s card is better, you lose both wagers.
Casino War is essentially the same as the regular version. The only difference is that each card is treated as a different round, rather than a running game where one must win the deck.
7 – Online Multi-Wheel Roulette
Many people find it fun to gamble on a single roulette wheel. So imagine all the fun involved with eights wheels spinning at once.
This is the idea behind multi-wheel online roulette, which is available at a growing number of online casinos. You don’t have to use all of the wheels at once. Instead, you can choose to activate anywhere from 1-8 wheels.
The betting process is the same as a normal roulette game, where you place your chips on a single table. Therefore, each bet represents a wager on every active wheel.
Here’s an example on how this works:
- You place $10 on black in the red/black wager (1:1 payout).
- You activate all eight wheels, meaning you now have $80 worth of bets on the table.
- The ball lands on black on four wheels, meaning you win four wagers.
- You collect $80 total and break even.
Of course, many online players don’t like betting $80 in a single round. If you’re in this category, you can always bet a lower amount and/or activate fewer wheels.
But it’s definitely worth at least using two or more wheels, because this is where all the fun lies. Watching up to eight wheels spin while your bet hands in the balance creates more thrills than a normal roulette game.
You can find multi-wheel roulette at any internet casino that features Playtech Software.
Making lesser-known casino bets doesn’t guarantee that you’ll win any more money. But this is definitely a nice way to spice up your gambling entertainment.
Roulette offers several obscure bets, including voisins du zéro, jeu zéro, orphelins, and le tiers du cylinder. You can find all of these wagers on a racetrack away from the main betting board.
Craps odds is one of the casino’s best kept “secrets,” because it’s not listed on the table. You should bet odds whenever possible since this wager doesn’t carry a house edge.
If you’re looking for lots of interesting wagers, then start betting on sports. You’ll find a number of exotic prop bets surrounding big events.