Find out more about roulette wheel and table design and the difference between European and American wheels.
Despite having so many varieties, the basic roulette table is pretty consistent. You will find differences, of course, to allow for the different types of play, but there are a lot of similarities. The basic wheel, for example, is going to look the same no matter what version you are playing. Of course there will be differences in the make, some are wooden, some are plastic, and of course, online you will find computer generated graphics, but there are only two wheels.
The American roulette wheel and the European roulette wheel, the differences will be discussed later. Following a strict numbering convention, the wheel is largely made up of black and red segments, and the numbers seem to have been randomly allocated, but this is not the case. They are always identically position and feature a careful distribution of odds and evens, highs and lows.
Again the numbering is different on the two types of wheel but, always consistent so, on a European wheel the numbers only ever appear in one order, and a different order applies consistently to the American wheel.
European Roulette Table
The European wheel is actually the second incarnation of the game after it was revised in the 1800s. It is largely considered the most balanced wheel as there is a much evener distribution of the numbers based on the criteria above.
There is one single green slot which is marked 0, and this wheel has the better odds when compared to the American roulette wheel. The European roulette table layout is used in many other games including French roulette where there may be differences in betting and other small nuances. In terms of sequence working around the wheel in a clockwise direction you will always see the numbers appearing as 0, 32, 15, 19, 4, 21, 2, 25, 17, 34, 6, 27, 13, 36, 11, 30, 8, 23, 10, 5, 24, 16, 33, 1, 20, 14, 31, 9, 22, 18, 29, 7, 28, 12, 35, 3, 26.
Clearly, this looks random but you will notice things like there are never more than two even or odd numbers next to each other, and the rigid formation of alternating red and black aside from the green zero. There will be a betting mat on the table which lays out the numbers in numerical order.
American Roulette Table
When you place an American roulette wheel next to the European wheel, you will immediately see some differences in the American roulette table. The most obvious difference is the fact that there are two green slots, one marked 0 and the other 00.
Many people assume that this was to lower the odds and bring the game back in favour of the house; however, history demonstrates that this was, in fact, the original design for the wheel and the European version is the newer one. Having two zeros does indeed change the odds as there is now one more slot on the wheel, but it still remains a popular version of the game.
It is normal to only see this wheel at an American table, and most newer versions of the game are developed with the European wheel. Looking clockwise on an American wheel you will see that the numbers always follow the same order, 0, 28, 9, 26, 30, 11, 7, 20, 32, 17, 5, 22, 34, 15, 3, 24, 36, 13, 1, 00, 27, 10, 25, 29, 12, 8, 19, 31, 18, 6, 21, 33, 16, 4, 23, 35, 14, 2. While this differs from the other wheel, it also does follow a distribution pattern, although slightly differently.
How to Bet on a Roulette Table
As mentioned above you will also find a betting mat on ever set up answering the question: How to bet on a roulette table? Before we get to the roulette winning strategy, we first need to cover the basics. You will notice that the numbers appear in a numerical order in lines of three.
Depending on the version of the game you are playing there will be other bet types marked. Again there will be similarities, all tables allow bets on red or black, and this will be marked either by a correspondingly coloured diamond or the word itself. The bets for 1st, 2nd and 3rd dozen will be shown, as well as odds and evens, high and low and of course the 0 or 0 and 00 on the American table.
Bets are made by placing your chip or chips on the bets you want to place. This can be on a single number or condition or a group of numbers, for bets like corners, or two numbers. Bets must be placed before the wheel is set in motion and then cannot be changed. If there are special bets on offer, these will be shown on the screen or explained by the croupier.
What is the Maximum Bet on a Roulette Table?
The question that comes up a lot at roulette games is ‘What is the maximum bet on a roulette table?’. This is actually not an easy question to answer, simply because it varies. Factors like the size of the casino and the version of the game can change the maximum bets, but it is normal to find that there will indeed be limits of some kind wherever you play.
There are two ways that a casino can impose limits at the table and this is either by setting limits on the bets themselves, usually the inside and outside bets, or by setting a maximum and in some cases minimum limited for each player. The second being much easier for the players to follow and not need to keep checking, however, any limits should be displayed and communicated to the players whether you are playing virtual roulette or live dealer roulette.
There will also be payout limits which mean even if you win £8000 when the house limit for payouts is £7000 the latter is what you will get. This protects the casino from losing a lot of money at once and also means you need to consider keeping bets to a winning amount you can receive.
Roulette Table FAQ
How many numbers are on an American Roulette table?
There are 38 numbers. Pockets 1 - 37, a single zero pocket and a double zero pocket.
How many numbers are on a European Roulette table?
There are 37 numbers. Pockets 1 - 36 and a single zero pocket.
What is the difference between European and American Roulette tables?
The main difference is the inclusion of the double zero pocket on the American table - which boosts the house edge to 5.40%.