American roulette is a game played where a ball is released into a spinning American roulette wheel with slots or pockets. The ball rests on one of these numbered pockets once the American roulette wheel stops turning. The player or players who bet on that number in the roulette table wins the game.
American Roulette Wheel – The Structure
The American roulette wheel contains 38 numbers, including 0, 00, and 1 through 36. The American roulette wheel is different from its European cousin because of its double-zero format.
The arrangement of the numbers in the American roulette wheel is not done in increasing series or randomly. Manufacturers of the American roulette wheel have ordered the numbers in such a way that maximum mathematical balance is achieved between black and red, high and low, and even and odd.
American Roulette Wheel – The Arrangement
In the American roulette wheel, the red and black numbers are alternated so that all red numbers are facing the black numbers. The odd and even numbers are alternated as well, but usually with two odds followed by two evens. Every odd number in the wheel is placed opposite to the next higher even number. And lastly, the numbers in the roulette wheel come in pairs with one number between them. When you add up the pairs, you mostly get 37 or 39 and when you sum up all the 38 numbers, you get 666.
To avoid confusion, the zero and the double zero in the American roulette wheel are placed against green-colored pockets.
American Roulette Wheel: The Bets
When you play the game using the American roulette wheel, there are 11 types of bets you can make. The layout of the table follows the American roulette wheel layout and contains all the 38 numbers arranged in 3-numbered rows and 12-numbered columns. The bets you place inside the columns or rows are called inside bets. The last five types of bet you can make are termed as outside bets and may be a set of column numbers (Column), set of 12 numbers (Dozen), Red/Black, Even/Odd, or Low/High.
American Roulette Wheel – Payoffs and House Advantage
The house advantage of a game using the American roulette wheel is generally 5.26%, which is almost twice the percentage of the European game at 2.7%. The bets you make in American roulette favor the casino by 5.26%, all except one: the five-number bet. When you place a five-number bet, the house advantage goes up to 7.89%.
American Roulette Wheel – Rules
There is a special rule that apply in a game using the American roulette wheel. This rule is called “Surrender” or “La Partage.” With this rule, the house advantage is lowered down to nearly half from 5.26% to 2.63%.
The La Partage only works in even-money bets. In this rule, if the ball lands on the number zero in the American roulette wheel, the player may give up half of his bet, instead of losing all. There is also another kind of rule, called the En Prison. However, the En Prison is only practiced in European casinos. In this rule, the players have the additional option of leaving their bets in place for the next spin instead of giving up half of it.