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Best of Jerry Stickman

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Can I win at craps with a betting system?

28 May 2016

Periodically, people ask me about craps betting systems. Almost all of them rely on the premise that certain numbers are due because they haven’t appeared for a while. I normally tell them that in a random game, you cannot beat the math of the game. The house edge is the house edge. In the long term, you will lose the amount of money played times the house edge.

For many that is enough, but every so often someone says they have won a lot of money on a particular system and want me to look further into it. So, periodically, I will devote some time to exploring these systems.

This article will look at a “Hopping 7’s” progression.

Here is the system as it was stated to me.

1. Start over with each new shooter.
2. Wait seven rolls without a 7 appearing before starting the progression.
3. When the bet wins, take the bet down along with collecting the win.
4. Start with a $3 bet - $1 on each of the three possible combinations that total 7 (1/6, 2/5, 3/4).

Starting with the first bet, the progression is: 3, 3, 6, 9, 15, 24, 39, etc. You add the previous two bets together to determine the next bet in the progression.

The following table shows the roll number, bet, amount invested, win amount (taking the bet down), and profit for the betting system outlined above.

Roll # Bet Invested Win Profit
8 $3 $3 $16 $13
9 $3 $6 $16 $10
10 $6 $12 $32 $20
11 $9 $21 $48 $27
12 $15 $36 $80 $44
13 $24 $60 $128 $68
14 $39 $99 $208 $109
15 $63 $162 $336 $174
16 $102 $264 $544 $280
17 $165 $429 $880 $451
18 $267 $696 $1,424 $728
19 $432 $1,128 $2,304 $1,176
20 $699 $1,827 $3,728 $1,901

This is an up as you lose betting system. The above is, in fact, a Fibonacci progression. This and the Martingale progression are well-known betting systems. A Martingale progression doubles the bet each time there is a losing bet. These types of progression are predicated on the idea that you will recoup your losses and garner a little profit when your number finally hits. The Fibonacci progression is the less aggressive of the two.

Either of these progressions works as long as two things are true.

First, you must have adequate bankroll to make it through the inevitable losing streaks you will encounter. The amount you require can be very substantial.

  • If the shooter goes 20 rolls without a 7 appearing, the bankroll required is almost $2,000.

  • If the shooter rolls just five more numbers without throwing a 7, the total invested is over $20,000. If the shooter is extremely lucky and throws just 5 more numbers without a 7, our hapless system player will have just over $225,000 invested.

  • If he should win on that 30th roll, he will win over $233,000, so maybe he thinks it is worth it.

  • If our lucky shooter goes five more rolls without a 7, however, the investment skyrockets to almost $2.5 million. I don’t know about you, but if I had that kind of money, I wouldn’t risk it on a craps game.

The second consideration is the table maximum. Every craps game has a maximum bet ranging from about $1,000 up to about $10,000. That means in the unusual but very possible event that a shooter goes 25 rolls without a 7, this player is out his entire investment of over $20,000 and he cannot continue thanks to the table limit. In fact, that is why a table limit exists.

The math of the hop bet says that a player will lose 11.11% of all money wagered on a random shooter. Let’s see what some simulations say. I ran several simulations using a software program called Smart Craps from DeepNet Technologies.

The first simulation did not put any limits on the maximum bet. It assumed an unlimited bankroll and no table limit.

As the simulation runs it constantly updates statistics on the computer screen. It was very interesting watching the player edge percentage as the simulation progressed.

For the first several seconds the expectation was a little over 103%. This means that if someone were playing this system and had the same results as the simulation, they would more than double the money they bet.

After about 96,000 rounds this came to an abrupt halt. At this point the simulation terminated because it couldn’t handle the size of the bet being placed – over 2.2 billion dollars. It may have taken a while, but the long term hit at about 96,000 player rounds in this particular simulation.

Next I put some limits on the maximum bet size. I ran three more simulations with limits of $10,000, $3,000 and $2,000. The results closely matched the mathematical expectations.

$ Limit House Edge Times Limit Reached
$10,000 11.10% 14,825
$3,000 10.74% 21,463
$2,000 10.95% 25,930

As you can see, the house edge of all three simulations fell very close to what the math predicted.

You may be lucky and win for a period of time. You may even win for a long period of time. You could also be very unlucky and lose in a huge way. Eventually the math will catch up with you.

In the long run, you cannot beat the math of the game with random shooters. You will lose just as the math predicts. Accept that fact and bet the low house edge bets. Your bankroll will thank you.

May all your wins be swift and large and all your losses slow and tiny.

Jerry “Stickman”

Jerry “Stickman” authored the video poker section of "Everything Casino Poker: Get the Edge at Video Poker, Texas Hold'em, Omaha Hi-Lo, and Pai Gow Poker!" You can contact Jerry “Stickman” at stickmanjerry@aol.com
Recent Articles
Best of Jerry Stickman
Jerry Stickman

Jerry "Stickman" is an expert in dice control at craps, blackjack, advantage slots and video poker. He is a regular contributor to top gaming magazines. The "Stickman" is also a certified instructor for Golden Touch Craps dice control classes and Golden Touch Blackjack's advantage classes. He also teaches a course in advantage-play slots and video poker. For more information visit www.goldentouchcraps.com or www.goldentouchblackjack.com or call 1-800-944-0406 for a free brochure. You can contact Jerry "Stickman" at stickmanGTC@aol.com.

Jerry Stickman Websites:

www.goldentouchcraps.com
www.goldentouchblackjack.com
Jerry Stickman
Jerry "Stickman" is an expert in dice control at craps, blackjack, advantage slots and video poker. He is a regular contributor to top gaming magazines. The "Stickman" is also a certified instructor for Golden Touch Craps dice control classes and Golden Touch Blackjack's advantage classes. He also teaches a course in advantage-play slots and video poker. For more information visit www.goldentouchcraps.com or www.goldentouchblackjack.com or call 1-800-944-0406 for a free brochure. You can contact Jerry "Stickman" at stickmanGTC@aol.com.

Jerry Stickman Websites:

www.goldentouchcraps.com
www.goldentouchblackjack.com