How to Play Craps: The Ultimate Guide
If you’ve ever walked through a casino, there’s no doubt you’ve heard the high-energy cheering and high-fiving happening around a craps table. Maybe you’ve wanted to get in on the action, but you’ve never played craps before. For inexperienced gamblers, craps may seem a little confusing and even a bit intimidating, so we’ve put together a simple guide which shares everything you need to know about playing this exciting table game in Downtown Las Vegas!
Craps – Where to Start
The first thing we should mention is playing craps is a lot easier than you might think. Looking down at the betting table may seem like the opposite, but most players pick it up very quickly. Here are some basics you should know before walking up to the table:
- Dice – Two six-sided dice are used to play craps. The players bet on the total of the two numbers that land face up after rolling, not on each individual dice.
- Chips – Chips are used to place bets. To buy chips, just let the dealer know before placing your cash on the table between rolls.
- The Shooter – The player rolling the dice is referred to as the shooter. Once the shooter “sevens out,” the dice rotate to the next shooter. (Don’t worry – we’ll explain all this below.)
- Casino Personnel – At a live craps table in a casino, you will generally have two dealers, a stickman, and a boxman around the table.
The next thing you should familiarize yourself with is betting. We’ll go over the details of craps betting basics below.
Craps Betting Basics – The Pass Line Bet
To begin, find a spot along the long table, ask the dealer for change, and drop your cash on the table where there are no numbers. The dealer will then change your cash for chips and you can begin betting before the shooter’s next roll.
To place a bet, check the table minimum then place that amount on the pass line. On the come-out roll, or the new shooter’s first roll, the pass line wins on 7 or 11 and will lose if the shooter rolls a 2, 3 or 12. Any other roll total (4, 5, 6, 8, 9 or 10) becomes the shooter’s point. All the other players at the table will need the point to be rolled again before the shooter rolls a 7 in order to win on the pass line. Basically, the shooter must roll the point to win and loses after rolling a 7 when betting on the pass line. The dice then move on to the next player.
To recap, here’s what you can expect after a come-out roll with a pass line bet:
- The shooter rolls 7 or 11, pass line bets win
- The Shooter rolls 2, 3 or 12, pass line bets lose
- The shooter rolls 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 or 10, pass line bets wait and that number becomes the “point”
Once the point is established, the following rules apply to pass line bets:
- Pass line bets win if the shooter rolls the point again
- Pass line bets lose if the shooter rolls a 7
- Dice rotate to the next shooter after the current shooter rolls a 7
When You Are the Shooter
If you happen to be the next shooter, the stickman will offer you a number of dice to choose from. The first thing you do is pick two dice from the selection, then the stickman will take the remaining dice off the table. Do not remove the dice from the table or hide them from the dealer. Make sure your hands are empty and, if you have a drink, put it down while you are rolling.
Once bets are placed and you have the table, take the dice underhanded and throw them sideways onto the table. You want to make sure they strike the back wall of the table and bounce back. The dealer will announce the dice total and, depending on that number, the stickman will either collect the dice and deliver them back to you to roll again, or move on to the next shooter if you rolled a losing number.
The pass line betting basics apply to you as the shooter, so your goal with your come-out roll is to roll a 7 or 11 to win. If you roll a 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 or 10, that becomes your point and you want to try and roll that number again. If our come-out roll results in a 2, 3 or 12, you lose and the dice pass to the next player.
Every bet on the table is in action no matter which player is the shooter, but here are the basics to keep in mind when you’re shooting:
- If you roll a 7 or 11 on your come-out roll, you win
- If our come-out roll results in a 2, 3 or 12, you lose
- If you roll a 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 or 10, that becomes your point
- You continue to roll if you win the point
- You lose if you roll a 7 after the point is established
Other Betting Options
Some players will choose to bet against the shooter rather than with the shooter. This bet is placed on the don’t pass line rather than the pass line. When players place a don’t pass line bet, they are known as “wrong” players because they are betting against the shooter. The way to win is pretty much opposite of a pass line bet, so a 7 or 11 loses and a 2 or 3 wins. If the shooter rolls a 12, a don’t pass line bet is a push, or the initial bet is returned with no wins or losses.
Once you become more comfortable with the basics of craps betting, you may want to try different odds bets and multiple rolls bets. The casino has no edge at all with odds bets, but there are no boxes or instructions, so make sure you understand these different types of bets before trying it out.
With multiple rolls bets, including the Big 6 and 8, Hard Way Bets, Buy Bets, Come Bets and Put Bets. Single Rolls Bets include Horn Bets and Hopping Hard Ways, the edge of the casino is greater than the player.
The Best Craps in Downtown Las Vegas
The Downtown Grand offers a riveting and unique gambling experience right in the heart of Downtown Las Vegas with our high-energy craps tables, welcoming casino floor, and friendly dealers. You’ll find the ideal balance of modern sophistication and classic Las Vegas charm at Downtown Grand.
If you ever wanted to test your luck in Las Vegas, Downtown Grand is the place to be. The Downtown Grand Rewards Program offers both free and match bets for our table games, including craps, roulette, poker, and blackjack. Contact our team today to learn more about exclusive casino promotions and package deals.