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Craps Come Bet Another Option

30 December 2005

Congratulations. You've learned to make a pass line bet, and you've learned to back it up by taking the maximum odds allowed by the particular casino you're playing in. And you've learned how to behave at a craps table by respecting certain superstitions even though, hopefully, you don't believe in them.

Most craps players consider the pass bet as the basic craps bet, but remember, you don't have to make this bet if you don't want to. Only the shooter has to have made a pass line bet. Other players can bypass the pass bet and go to any other bet on the layout. I don't recommend doing that, however, because a pass bet with maximum allowed odds carries the smallest house edge.

From here on out, different craps bets become a little more complicated, not because the individual bets are any more complicated than a pass bet but only because you're adding more bets to your repertoire and having to keep up with them.

But to make it easy on you, the next bet I want to talk about is the one that's more like the pass bet than any other bet: the come bet. The come bet with odds carries the exact same edge for the house as the pass bet with odds. The procedures for placing, winning and losing come bets are almost identical to the pass bet, and you can make a come bet at any time after the point is established.

This is how it works.

Let's say we have a brand new shooter. His very first roll is the comeout roll. If he rolls a 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 or 10, then that number is the point number for pass bettors. That's the number he's trying to roll again before he rolls a 7. On the very next roll, you may put a wager down in the area of the layout marked "Come," but you're not required to make a come bet on the next roll. You can wait as long as you wish or not make it at all.

But if you do make the bet, then the same set of rules that apply to the pass bet also apply to that come bet. If a 7 or 11 is rolled while the wager is still in the Come area of the layout, then you win your come bet. If a 2, 3 or 12 is rolled, then you lose your come bet.

Of course, a 7 affects the main portion of the game differently. It will lose for pass bettors, but if you still have a bet in that area marked "Come," you have won that one bet even though you have lost your pass bet.

But let's imagine that on the shooter's second roll, he rolls a 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 or 10; the dealer will move your wager to that number on the top of the table layout. You are now "on" that number and pulling for the shooter to repeat that number before he rolls a 7.

Here's something else you need to know. Just like the pass bet, you can take odds on the come bet; the more in odds that you can afford and that the house will allow, the better. The odds bet attached to the come bet "dilutes" the house edge from 1.41 percent to .184 percent (10X) or .099 percent (20X), just like it does with the pass line bet.

And, like the pass bet, once your come bet's point number is established, you cannot pick up or cancel the bet. You've gotta' stick with it even though you can call off the odds portion of your come bet.

Because this bet is like a game within a game, I know it can be kind of confusing. So maybe we should walk through a few scenarios of what could happen.

Okay, imagine we have a brand new shooter. The puck is turned so that its black "OFF" side is showing and is not on any number. You have a $5 red chip on the felt as a pass bet. On the comeout roll, the shooter rolls a 12 and you lose your $5. No point number is established.

But the shooter gets another chance. You put another $5 red chip on the pass line. On his second comeout roll, the shooter rolls a 6. The dealer turns the puck over to its white "ON" side and puts it down on the 6 nearest him. That is now the point number, and the shooter is trying to roll a 6 again before he rolls a 7.

This particular craps table is at a casino that allows 10X odds, but you feel like you can afford only 2X odds, so you put two $5 chips behind the line. Those two chips comprise the odds portion of your bet.

But you want a little more action, so right before the shooter rolls again, you gently toss a red chip into the area marked "Come." Then the shooter rolls a 7. You lose your $5 pass bet and $10 odds bet for a total of $15.

But wait; you've won your come bet. Remember how a 7 wins on the comeout roll for a pass bet. A 7 also wins for a come bet if the bet is still sitting there in the "Come" part of the layout. Subtract the $5 win on the come from your $15 pass and odds loss, and you've lost only $10.

Just don't get disgusted and walk away, leaving your come win on the table.

Okay, so now we have a new shooter. This shooter rolls a 6 on the comeout, just like the previous shooter did. The point number is again 6, and everyone is hoping for a 6 before a 7. Again, you put $10 behind your $5 pass bet.

And you make another $5 come bet.

But unlike the first shooter, this one does not seven out. Instead, he rolls a 9. There is no win or loss on the pass bet, and your $5 come bet moves to the 9. You put down $10 more as an odds bet on your come bet. You now have $30 at risk: $5 pass line bet, $10 odds on the pass line, $5 come bet, and $10 odds on the come bet.

Okay, let's say you get lucky. The next number rolled is a 9. You win $5 on the come bet and $5 on the $10 odds portion of that bet. Remember, the odds portion on a 9 is paid off at true odds of 3-to-2.

Then you get lucky again, and the shooter rolls a 6. He has made his point, and you have won another $17, $5 for the pass bet and $12 for the $10 odds bet that is paid at 6-to-5.

May the dice always be this kind to you.

Linda Mabry

Low Roller Linda Mabry lives and gambles on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. She writes a weekly, general gambling advice column for the Biloxi Sun Herald, and may be contacted through her e-mail address, or her web site
Linda Mabry
Low Roller Linda Mabry lives and gambles on the Mississippi Gulf Coast. She writes a weekly, general gambling advice column for the Biloxi Sun Herald, and may be contacted through her e-mail address, or her web site