What Is Roulette?


Roulette is a casino game with a wheel and table. The roulette wheel contains thirty-six pockets – alternately red and black – numbered nonconsecutively from 1 to 36. There is also one green slot carrying the sign 0 on European roulette wheels and two on American ones (hence the higher house edge).

The players place bets until the croupier announces no more bets. Then the dealer spins the wheel and throws in a ball.


Fanciful stories about the origin of roulette abound. One story claims that 17th century French scientist Blaise Pascal invented the game while searching for a perpetual motion machine. Another theory says that roulette was derived in the 18th century from older games like Roly Poly and Even Odds, as well as an Italian game called Biribi. There is also evidence that Roman soldiers played a game similar to roulette. It involved spinning shields with symbols on them and betting on which symbol would stop in front of an arrow.


There are many different variations of roulette, each with its own unique twist. Some offer a different layout on the wheel, while others feature a specific number of pockets or payouts that differ from the standard ones. For instance, some variants allow players to place outside bets only if the ball comes up on two different rings on the wheel. This is a good option for inexperienced players who want to try their hand at the game without risking too much. Other variations, however, have fewer betting options and are not recommended for novices. They also have lower payouts for winning bets, compared to standard roulette games.