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Roulette table layout explained: 3 different types of roulette

Profile Picture: Simon Young

September 24th, 2020

To the novice, a roulette table might look a little daunting. You know you have chips and should put them on the table to place a bet, but there are so many options.

Throw in the fact that there are three different roulette table layouts, and you might run into then all in the same casino: American, European, and French roulette. There is also triple zero roulette to consider.

In this guide, we’ll describe the differences between the roulette table layout of all three main types. However, let’s look at the basics first.

The Roulette table layout

You are faced with a table with 36 squares, numbered one to 36, with the addition of a single or also double zero square on top.

You can bet on any of these squares, or a combination of them, linked by the grid lines that form between them – rows, two neighboring squares, four squares, for example.

Further, 18 of the numbers are red, with the remainder are black. You can place 50/50 bets on the winning number being red or black, or odd or even. You can also bet on the number being 1-18 or 19-36, plus on the winning number being in a particular section of the table.

And how is this winning number determined? By spinning the white ball within the rotating roulette wheel. The wheel is made up of all the corresponding numbered segments, including the zero(s), and wherever the ball lands, that’s the winner.

While that’s all well and good, and relatively easy for a casino newcomer to understand, the variations of the roulette table layout need explaining.

European roulette wheel layout

European Roulette is perhaps the most popular version of roulette in land-based and online casinos. You have the 36 regular numbers, split into columns of 12, and sitting on top is a single, green zero. So while you can get 35/1 odds on hitting one of your numbers, the chances are actually 36/1 when you add the green zero segment because there are 37 segments in total. This is what gives the casino its house edge.

Of course, you can place a chip on the zero and back it at 35/1. But the key thing is if zero comes in, then everyone who bet on any other number, red or black, or odd or even, loses their money. Ouch.

American roulette wheel layout

The Europeans always claim Americans like to do things bigger and better. Well, in the case of roulette, America added a second green zero segment, with a double zero this time. But while it’s bigger, this table is not necessarily better.

From a player point of view, the odds in American roulette are worse. Now you still get 36 numbers to choose from, but you also have the two zero segments to get in the way. Your odds of hitting a number are now not 35/1 but 37/1, a significant disadvantage.

One other noticeable difference to European Roulette, although it does not alter the odds, is that the order of the numbers on the wheel is different in American roulette.

French roulette tables

The French actually do the players a favor. Like European roulette, there is only one green zero segment. But the players have an advantage on French roulette because if the green zero comes in, they do not necessarily lose their 50/50 bets (so red or black, or odd or even bets).

Instead, depending on the local rule played, these bets might count for La Partage, which means if zero comes in, the player receives half of his losing 50/50 bet chips back.

Alternatively, there may be the En Prison rule. Here, all the chips are locked in place on red or black, or odd or even for another spin. If you win that, then you get your chips back. Lose it and, well, there’s always another day.

Triple zero roulette wheel layout

You can probably guess where this one is heading. Yep, the triple zero roulette table layout adds yet another green zero segment, with a triple zero on it, to the table. Naturally, this makes your odds of winning in the long run even worse than the double zero option in American Roulette.

At first, triple zero tables were added, so the extra juice could go to some casino charity or other.

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