Online Craps Guide


A craps table may look complex and intimidating to an inexperienced player, but it’s really quite simple. The game is all about two little dice. Players bet on how those dice are rolled. In truth the game of craps can be as simple or complicated as the player desires. This course is intended to teach you the basic rules for craps. First we’ll discuss the basic rules of how to play craps and then we’ll go over the rules for what bets can be made.

Dice Rules

There are actually just a few simple rules for rolling the dice. Make sure you only handle the dice with one hand when throwing. This is so the casino can be assured you’re not trying to switch dice or any other funny business. When rolling the dice, the thrower, or shooter, tosses to dice across the table to the other side. The dice must hit the walls on the opposite side of the craps table for the roll to be valid.

Don’t worry if you don’t hit the other end or even if the dice fly off the table. This happens every now and then and no one is going to think any less of you if it happens to you. You don’t have to take a turning throwing if you don’t want to or aren’t feeling particularly lucky. Just pass and the dice will move on to the player to your left.

The first roll of a new thrower’s round is known as the “Come Out” roll.

The player (known as the shooter) rolls a pair of fair dice:

  1. If the total is 7 or 11 on the first throw, the shooter wins; this is called a natural.
  2. If the total is 2, 3, or 12 on the first throw, the shooter loses; this is called craps.
  3. If the total is 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10 on the first throw, this number becomes the shooter’s point. The shooter continues rolling the dice until either she rolls the point again (she wins) or rolls a 7 (she loses).

Craps Betting

Pass Line Bet

The pass line bet is the most common and simple bet in craps. You win if the first roll is a natural (7, 11) and lose if a craps is rolled (2, 3, 12). If a point is rolled (4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10) the point number must be rolled again before a 7 is thrown in order to win. If 7 is rolled before the point you lose.

If you forget what the point number is, just look at the place bet number on the craps table. The point will be marked with the “On” puck. This bet can only be made when a player begins rolling before the point is made. To make a pass line bet place your wager on the pass line in front of you. The bet cannot be removed until the point is won or lost.

Don’t Pass Line Bet

This is the opposite of the pass line bet. If the first roll of a dice is a natural (7, 11) you lose and if it is a 2 or a 3 you win. A dice roll of 12 means you have a tie or push with the casino. If the roll is a point (4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10) a 7 must come out before that point is repeated to make you a winner. If the point is rolled again before the 7 you lose. You make a don’t pass line bet by placing your wager on the don’t pass line. The bet cannot be removed until the point is won or lost.

Come Bet

A come bet has the same rules as the pass line bet. This bet is made by placing a wager on the come line after a point has been made. After you place your bet the first dice roll will set the come point. You win if it is a natural (7, 11) and lose if it is craps (2, 3, 12). Other rolls will make you a winner if the come point is repeated before a 7 is rolled. If a 7 is rolled first you lose. When 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10 is rolled the dealer will place your come bet on the number rolled. The come bet cannot be removed until the come point is won or lost.

Odds Bet on Pass Line Bet/Don’t Pass Line Bet/Come Bet

After a point is rolled you can make an additional bet by taking odds. An Odds bet is a backup bet on a Pass/Don’t Pass/Come bet already on the table. There are different payoffs for each point number. The odds bet is usually limited to two or three times the original bet. If your pass line bet wins your odds also win. Odds are placed by stacking your wager behind your pass line or don’t pass line bet. Odds can be removed at any time.

Craps Point Odds Payoffs

Point Number Payoff
10 2 to 1
9 3 to 2
8 8 to 6
6 8 to 6
5 3 to 2
4 2 to 1

 

Place Bets

A place bet can only be made after the point has been determined. You can bet on a dice roll of 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 and 10. You win if the number you placed your bet on is rolled before a 7. Otherwise you lose. The Place Bets payoffs are different depending on the number you bet on. You can cancel this bet anytime you want to. To make a place bet you must alert the dealer.

Craps Place Bet Payoffs

Place Number Payoff
10 9 to 5
9 7 to 5
8 7 to 6
6 7 to 6
5 7 to 5
4 9 to 5

 

Field Bets

Unlike the previous bets, field bets are for one dice roll only. If a 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, 12 is rolled you win. If a 5, 6, 7 or 8 is rolled you lose.

Big Six, Big Eight Bets

The big six and big 8 bets are located at the corners of the craps table. This bet can be placed at any roll of dice. A players wins if a 6 or 8 comes out before a 7 is rolled.

Proposition Bets

Proposition bets are located in the center of the craps table. These bets can be made at any time and, except for the hardways, they are all one roll bets. To place a proposition bet put your wager on the craps table and alert the dealer to the type of bet you wish to make. The proposition bets are listed below:

Any 7 Wins if a 7 is rolled.
Any Craps Wins if a 2, 3 or 12 is thrown.
Eleven Wins if a 11 is thrown.
Ace Deuce Wins if a 3 is rolled.
Aces or Boxcars Wins if a 2 or 12 is thrown.
Horn Bet Acts as the bets on 2, 3, 11 and 12 all at once. Wins if one of these numbers is rolled.
Hardways The bet on a hardway number wins if it’s thrown hard (2-2, 3-3, 4-4, 5-5) before it’s rolled easy and a 7 is thrown. The hardway bets are 4, 6, 8 and 10.

You make take some of your bets off the table and remove them from play while the craps game is underway. The following bets can be removed during play, Pass Line Odds, Come Bet Odds, Don’t Pass Bet, Don’t Come Bet, any Place Bet. The bets can only be removed before the dice are rolled.

There are a lot of things to remember in craps. At first it may seem overwhelming, so stick with a few simple bets, Place Bets, Pass Line, and Come Bets are good starters. Watch what other players are doing and feel free to ask they dealer if you have questions. The dealer with be happy to answer any questions you have. Happy rolling and good luck!

Craps Table

The average craps table is about the size of a billiards table and is usually designed to accommodate 12 to 24 happy players. The table has two identical sides separated by a center area where the Proposition Bets are located. Players on either side can make the same bets and are handled by whichever of two dealers they are closest to. A rail where bettors can keep their chips borders the craps table playing area.

A standard craps table will look something like this:

Dealer stands        Boxman sits          Dealer stands
here                 here                  here
#######################################################################
# __  ____________________    $$$$$$$$$$$$$    ____________________  __ #
# | d||DC| 4| 5| 6| 8| 9|10| +—————+ | 4| 5| 6| 8| 9|10|DC||d | #
# |Po||__|__|__|__|__|__|__| |any seven   4-1| |__|__|__|__|__|__|__||oP| #
# |An| ____________________  +===============+  ____________________ |nA| #
# |St||     C O M E        | |hard 4 | hard 6| |     C O M E        ||tS| #
# |Sp||____________________| |——-+——-| |____________________||pS| #
# |La| ____________________  |hard 10| hard 8|  ____________________ |aL| #
# |Is||2  3 4  9  10 11  12| +===============+ |2  3 4  9  10 11  12||sI| #
# |Ns||_______FIELD________| |two    |  three| |_______FIELD________||sN| #
# |E |_____________________  |—–HORN——|  _____________________| E| #
# |6     don’t pass bar 12 | |eleven | twelve| |    don’t pass bar 12  6| #
#  8_______PASS_LINE______| +===============+ |________PASS_LINE____ 8/  #
#                            |  any    craps |                            #
#                           +—————+                           #
#                               /dice                                #
#####################################################################
Stickman stands
here

The Pass Line swings all the way around the outside of the side betting areas. A Pass Line bet is very common. Basically, betting on the Pass Line means a player is betting that the dice will pass or that a point will be repeated before seven-out occurs.

The Don’t Pass Line is located directly behind the Pass Line and takes up less room on the craps table. The Don’t Pass Line will contain an additional box that states “barring the 12”. This signifies that a twelve thrown during the come-out roll will result in a push.

The Come Box is located in the upper portion on the middle of each side section. The come bet is the same as the Pass Line bet, except that it can only be placed after a come-out roll. If a seven or eleven is thrown while a player has a bet in the Come Box, the player wins.

If a two, three or twelve is thrown, the player loses. If a point is thrown the come bet goes on the number and the player wins if the number is repeated before a seven is rolled, but loses if a seven comes first.

The Don’t Come Box (DC) is a small box at the top of the craps table in the outer corner of each side. The Don’t Come Bet also bars 12 like the Don’t Pass Bet. If a two or a three is thrown while the player has a bet in the Don’t Come box, the player wins. If a 7 or 11 is thrown the player loses.

If a point is thrown, the bet goes behind the number on the layout and the player wins if a 7 is thrown before that point, but loses if that point repeats before a seven-out.

The Field is located on each side in the forward portion of the middle, directly in front of the Come Line. A Field bet only lasts for one roll of the dice. If a 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11 or 12 is thrown, the players wins in the Field Bet. If a 5, 6, 7 or 8 is thrown the players lose.

The Place Bets are the numbers located behind the Come Line. Place bets are working only after the come-out roll (otherwise they are off) and can be placed on the 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 and 10. Place bets win if the number they are placed on is thrown before a seven-out occurs.

The Big 6 Bet is a bet that 6 will be rolled before 7; the Big 8 Bet is a bet that 8 will be rolled before 7. The bet is placed in either the “Big 6” or “Big 8” box located in the left corner of the each side of the craps table (shown as “68” in the table above). This bet is the same as placing either the 6 or 8 in the Field, but the payoff ratio is slightly lower. It is a better wager to choose to place the 6 or 8 over the Big 6/Big 8 bet.

The Proposition Bets are located in the center of the craps table between the two sides. This area contains the following betting options:

Any 7 One-roll bet, wins if a seven is thrown
Any Craps One-roll bet, wins if a 2, 3 or 12 is thrown
2 or 12 One-roll bet, wins if a 2 or 12 is thrown
3 or 11 One-roll bet, wins if a 3 or 11 is thrown
Horn Bet One-roll bet that acts as four bets at once, if a 2, 3, 11 or 12 is thrown the player wins and is paid off according to the usual odds for that number
Hard 4 Multiple roll bet, betting on a hardway number wins if that number is rolled hard, in this case 2-2, before it is rolled easy and before a seven
Hard 6 Multiple roll bet, betting on a hardway number wins if that number is rolled hard, in this case 3-3, before it is rolled easy and before a seven
Hard 8 Multiple roll bet, betting on a hardway number wins if that number is rolled hard, in this case 4-4, before it is rolled easy and before a seven
Hard 10 Multiple roll bet, betting on a hardway number wins if that number is rolled hard, in this case 5-5, before it is rolled easy and before a seven

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