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18 April 2009

Hi Stickman,

Which are better bets or does it depend on the SRR? Assume \$10 table min. 5Xs odds.

Example 1. \$10 pass line with \$20 odds when the 5 and 9 are points place 6 & 8 for \$30 each and buy the 4 & 10 for \$20 each. (Are there different amounts to bet considering the point number specifically the odds amount?)

Example 2. \$10 pl with \$50 odds (max) place 6 & 8 for \$30 each and only buy the 4 or the 10 initially for \$20.

Are max odds always a better bet and placing the 6 & 8 before buying the 4 and/or 10?

Finally, if the 4 or 10 is bought for \$20 once it hits do you collect \$35 and press the bet to \$25 or what pressing/collecting method is suggested?

Thanks,
Bruce

Bruce,

These are very good questions.

Deciding which bets to make tends to be a fairly personal choice. Do you want to get the absolute best return from every dollar you bet at the table - even if it is at the expense of losing some control over your bets? Or would you rather have a reasonable chance of getting several hits on your bets but still keep the house edge low (or even have an edge if you are able to control your dice throw)? With pass/come bets, the base portion of the bet is where the house gets their edge as the payback is even money. Any odds placed have no house edge (or player edge for that matter). So if you bet \$10 on the line, the house edge is 14 cents. No matter how much you add in odds, the house will take 15 cents on average. Adding odds will reduce the house edge percentage but increase volatility as you will win or lose more on each decision. When betting a \$10 pass or come bet, any multiple of \$10 as odds will work regardless of the point. If the point is 6 or 8, each \$10 returns \$12 on a win. If the point is 5 or 9, each \$10 returns \$15 on a win. Each \$10 in odds for a point of 4 or 10 returns \$20.

From a purely mathematical standpoint pass/come bets with max odds is the best choice. A pass or come bet with 5 times odds has a house edge of a mere one-third of one-percent (.33%). Buying the 4 and/or 10 for \$25 or\$ 30 with a \$1 vig on wins only actually has a better house edge (for the player) than placing the 6 and/or 8 (1.33%/1.11% respectively vs. 1.52%). If you were to buy the 4 and 10 for \$30 each, the house edge would be about 80 cents. The house edge on \$60 placed on the 6/8 is about 91 cents - almost three times a \$10 pass/come with \$50 in odds. However, the 4 and 10 hit much less often than the 6 and 8.

To make all things equal, we can look at the house edge on a "per roll" basis. To calculate the per roll edge we need to know the "hit frequency" of each bet. By dividing the house edge by the hit frequency we have the per roll edge. The table below summarizes this information for the bets we are examining.

 Bet Frequency (Rolls/Hit) Edge Per Bet Edge Per Roll Pass/Come – No Odds 3.38 1.41% .42% Pass/Come – 5X Odds 3.38 0.33% .10% Place 6/8 3.27 1.52% .46% Buy 4/10 (\$30 each) 4.00 1.11% .28%

On a per-roll basis you are better off betting pass/come with five-times odds from a strictly math point of view. Next best is buying the 4 or 10 for \$30 with a \$1 vig collected on wins only. If you buy the 4 or 10 for \$20 with a \$1 vig only on wins (or \$100 with a \$5 vig on wins only) the house edge goes to 1.67% per bet and .42% per roll making it slightly better than placing the 6/8 and considerably worse than pass/come with 5 times odds.

Keep in mind that any of these bets have a relatively low house edge, so if you like to have the ability to change your bets or call them off and on, there is nothing wrong with any of the bets you mention. As long as you make only "good" bets, you should do well.

As you improve SRR, the edge will start to change in your favor. If all you know is your SRR, your betting patterns should not change. If you are happy betting just the pass line with five times odds, continue doing that. If you prefer buying the 4 and 10, continue doing that. Everything will be in the same proportion - you will just win more (or lose less).

All the best in your casino and life pursuits,
Jerry "Stickman"

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Jerry Stickman

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. He 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 stickmanjerryg@gmail.com.

#### Jerry Stickman Websites:

www.goldentouchcraps.com
www.goldentouchblackjack.com
Jerry Stickman
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. He 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 stickmanjerryg@gmail.com.

#### Jerry Stickman Websites:

www.goldentouchcraps.com
www.goldentouchblackjack.com