How Do Roulette Wheels Work?

Roulette is one of the most popular casino games. Why? Well for one, it’s simple to learn the rules and to figure out the ins and outs of the betting systems. Second, it’s a game with a great deal of variety for gamblers who like a dynamic element to the game.

The first thing to understand about the roulette wheel is simply that there are two kinds. The first is the American roulette wheel and the second is the European roulette wheel. These games each correspond with the different variations of the game of roulette (American and European). The different between the two roulette wheels is the simple matter of a zero slot. On the American wheel there is a double zero which on the European roulette there is just a single zero. While this might seem like a small difference, in reality translates to a more significant edge that the house has over the player. American Roulette has a house edge of 5.26% as opposed to European with a house edge of 2.63% (pretty substantial).

There are two parts of the actual roulette wheel. The outer part is called the outer bowl which is stationery, and the inner part is the actual wheel. The inner surface of the bowl is actually where the roulette ball spins along until it catches in one of the pockets that surround the roulette wheel. Along the American roulette wheel there are 38 slots as opposed to the 37 on the European wheel (one less because there isn’t the extra zero).

Each of the numbered slots have a different color which corresponds to the layout of the roulette table. This is one of the other great things about the game of roulette – it’s one of the most aesthetically pleasing casino games that exist. Simply put, it’s just a good looking game!

Back in the day, the physical roulette wheel had to be skillfully crafted in order to be perfectly balanced as a balanced wheel was the most functional and precise. That left room for a lot of tinkering because the physical mechanics were easily exploitable. Today, because now most roulette is played online, both players and casinos alike can rest assure that the wheel is fair and balanced (literally and figuratively)!

Rose Pratt

Rose Pratt is an experienced blogger specialized on everything and anything related to the entertainment industry. If you want to check the latest celebrity news or find an honest review about Las Vegas hottest spots, she is the one.


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