European Roulette vs American Roulette

Are you interested in playing some good old fashioned Roulette online? You have two main choices here. You can decide to play the European Roulette or the American wheel.

If you are new to the game, you would probably assume that both are exactly the same, but that is not the case. There are 2 key differences between the two that changes everything about the game, the odds, and the payout. While it might seem small to those who have never played before, to regular players it is a massive difference. It is why some prefer one over the other, but we’re getting a little ahead here. Before we look at how the change impacts the game let’s look at the rules to play.

Rules Of Online Roulette

The good news is that regardless of whether you play the American or European version of online Roulette, the rules are the same. The only difference is the additional green pocket and we’ll discuss that a little further down. For the rule differences, you simply need to be aware that the extra green pocket is a double zero which is not present on the European wheel. America and the American roulette wheel is the only version of the game that has this change.

Now, let’s look at the rules. The game starts with the placing of a bet. You can make a bet by putting various chips or just a single chip on different sections of the roulette wheel. There are 37 sections in total or 38 on the American wheel. Once the bets are placed the little ball is released from the pocket and the wheel begins to spin. The ball will always spin the opposite way of the direction that the roulette wheel is spinning in. Eventually, the ball will land in a numbered pocket of a color. This will be either black, green or red.

American Roulette vs European Roulette

The pocket that the ball lands in is counted as the winning number. In online Roulette this number will pop up in a window on your display and this will also alert you as to whether or not you are a winner. At this time, lost bets will be cleared completely and you can claim any potential winnings. If you are playing online, any winnings will be automatically added to your balance.

Okay, now let’s explore some of the potential bets that you can place. There are two main types, inside and outside. Inside bets are placed on the number the ball will fall in. Outside bets can be placed on odd or even numbers, black or red, or groupings of a particular pocket.

There are quite a few bets to choose from. If you bet on a single number, this is a straight. For a split, you bet on two numbers or three line is a row of three numbers. Of course, these are just some of the options. There are plenty of other possibilities too depending on how you want to play.

European Roulette vs American Roulette

Never Tell Me The Odds

Actually, when you’re deciding between American and European Roulette you’ll find knowing the odds is quite useful and it’s easy to see why. Let’s say you bet on one number. If that’s the case then the odds of winning are 1 in 37 for European roulette and 1 in 38 for American. More pockets mean a lower chance of winning. You might think that the payout would change too but you would be mistaken.

Instead, the payout for both is 35 to 1. You will be paid 35 and then your original bet. So, the only true difference is that you’ll win less often on an American Roulette wheel. This, in a nutshell, is why most people will prefer the European version and why it is embraced worldwide. The mistake people make is thinking that one pocket is insignificant which of course, isn’t true.

Changes To The House Edge

There is a difference between the house edge you’ll gain from American Roulette and the one that you’ll experience when you play on the European wheel. If you haven’t heard this term before, the house edge is what you can expect to lose for each spin you make.

Regardless of what type of bet you make from lows to highs or 6 numbers to even and odds, the house edge stays constant. For the European table it remains at 2.7% and for the American, the house edge is 5.26%. The only exception is for a 5 numbers top line bet where the house edge rises on the American wheel to 7.89%.

Casino House Edge -  Roulette

Loosely translated, this means that for each bet you make you can expect to lose double after 37 spins on the American wheel. You could lose 1000 on an American wheel in half the time it would take on the European standard wheel.

Is An American Roulette Wheel Ever The Better Choice?

There’s is only one instance where you should favor the American roulette table and that is on certain professional Roulette systems. These predict the winning number and increases the odds that a player will win. Due to this, there is an increase in wins overall and the player’s edge and be more than 120%! So, if you were using a Roulette computer, it might be more preferable to select the American wheel if it has more predictable spins. In most cases, of course, the result isn’t predictable at all and will be completely random.

We hope this article helps you understand the difference between the two types of online Roulette. Typically, the odds will always be more in your favour on the European wheel. So, if you get the chance you should always select this option. Why then, has the American variation endured the test of time? Well, it could be because people often underestimate the significance of the extra pocket. It may also be because some like the unique design, challenge or just a change when playing the great game of Roulette online.

This post was written by
Jason L - who has written 113 articles
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