Betting The Don¬ít
By Jerry "Stickman"
The game of craps can be very exciting. It can also be very frustrating. One of the great draws to this game is the variety of bets available. One can bet with the shooter ¬Ė betting that he will make the point number before the 7 shows, or one can bet that the 7 will rear its ugly head before the shooter repeats the point number.
Two of the very best bets on the table are the pass line / come bets (with the shooter), and the don¬ít pass / don¬ít come bets (against the shooter). Both of these bets have about a 1.4 percent house edge (and can be much less if you add odds behind them).
My normal betting routine on random dice shooters is to wait for several rolls to avoid a quick 7-out. Waiting a few rolls without betting reduces the money at risk over time. Because every bet has a house edge and the more money on the table over time, the more money lost. Waiting a few rolls saves money. Once comfortable with the shooter, I place a come bet. At this point in time I am actually hoping for a 7 for two reasons ¬Ė my bet will win and I will be one person closer to shooting the dice.
If a 7 appears, I am very happy ¬Ė bet won and shooter done.
If an 11 appears, I am happy ¬Ė bet won.
If a 2, 3, or 12 appears, I frown and replace the come bet.
If a point number is thrown, I put another bet in the come area. I continue adding come bets until I have three bets working. It is quite amazing to see how many times I never place a bet on a shooter. It is also very impressive to see the number of times the shooter sevens-out before I have all three bets working. The real problem for me is after I get three bets working. Unless the shooter has a very long roll (and the odds are against that), a lot of money will be lost.
The problem with come betting is after you have all your bets moved to point numbers, you can only win them one at a time. However, you lose all of them at once when a 7 appears. This might be tolerable, if the shooter had a 7-out and the dice would move. But what about when the shooter has made a point and is now on come-out? A come-out 7 wins for everybody else and they are happy, but all three come bets are now wiped out ¬Ė and the same shooter is still rolling. It drives me absolute crazy.
After one particularly frustrating session, I decided to try something different. I still waited a few rolls, keeping precious money off the table until it was my turn to roll, but this time I went with don¬ít come bets. This is something I had never done. I can recall my anger with don¬ít players when I was shooting. A darkside (don¬ít) player is considered the lowest of low. The whole table can stare at them with daggers coming from their eyes, so this isn¬ít something one does lightly.
As was the case, there were plenty (two) other darkside betters at the table with no apparent animosity. The mood of the table was friendly.
"Nothing personal," I said, as I slid the first bet to the don¬ít come area.
"No problem," came the reply, "it¬ís your money to throw away."
I was very fortunate to get all three bets on numbers without losing a single bet to a 7 or 11. The shooter sevened-out a little while later and I collected on all three bets. This is so much more fun than losing all three bets at once.
This betting pattern continued for several shooters. Overall it worked very well. Some bets were won, some bets were lost. The bankroll went slowly up, the bankroll went slowly down. There were times when all the bets that were on numbers were wiped out, but it happened one number at a time ¬Ė not all at once. Losing numbers one at a time just doesn¬ít seem as bad as seeing multiple bets wiped out and the same random roller flinging the dice down the table.
I think I like don¬ít come betting and will most likely try it more in the future. The house edge is about the same as come betting and it just seems easier to take the loses when they come one at a time. I just hope I don¬ít aggravate the wrong person at the table. Losing bet one at a time instead of all at once is not worth an injury ¬Ė or worse.
May all wins be swift and large and your losses slow and tiny.
Jerry "Stickman" is an expert in craps, blackjack and video poker and advantage slot machine play. He is a regular contributor to top gaming magazines. The "Stickman" is also a certified instructor for Golden Touch Craps and Golden Touch Blackjack. For more information visit www.goldentouchcraps.com or www.goldentouchblackjack.com or call 1-886-738-3423. You can contact Jerry "Stickman" at stickmanGTC@aol.com