Be smart, play smart, learn how to play casino craps the right way!A Hardway bet is a standing bet that you can make, remove, increase, or decrease at any time. You bet that a hardway number will show as a pair before any other combination of that number, and before a 7 shows. A Hardway bet can be made only on the numbers 4, 6, 8, and 10. For a Hardway bet, each roll can produce three possible outcomes: 1) The hardway number is rolled and the bet wins, 2) The “easyway” number or any 7 is rolled and the bet loses, 3) Any other number is rolled and the bet neither wins nor loses (i.e., it “stands” until it wins or loses, or until you remove it).What’s a “hardway” versus an “easyway?” As noted, Hardway bets are made on the 4, 6, 8, and 10. Let’s look at the 10. There are three possible dice combinations to make a 10, which are: 4-6, 6-4, and 5-5. Which of those three combinations of numbers do you think is considered the “hardway” for making a 10? You’re right! The 5-5 combination is considered the “Hard 10.” Therefore, your Hard 10 bet stands until a 5-5 is rolled (you win), any 7 is rolled (you lose), or an Easy 10 (i.e., 4-6 or 6-4) is rolled (you lose). Now, let’s quickly look at the 4, 6, and 8.There are three ways to make a 4, and the dice combinations are: 3-1, 1-3, and 2-2. The Hard 4 bet wins if a 2-2 shows before any 7, 1-3, or 3-1.There are five ways to make a 6, and the dice combinations are: 1-5, 5-1, 2-4, 4-2, and 3-3. The Hard 6 bet wins if a 3-3 shows before any 7, 1-5, 5-1, 2-4, or 4-2.There are five ways to make an 8, and the dice combinations are: 2-6, 6-2, 3-5, 5-3, and 4-4. The Hard 8 bet wins if a 4-4 shows before any 7, 2-6, 6-2, 3-5, or 5-3.Although the 2 and 12 are even numbers and both are made by quasi-hardway combinations (i.e., the 2 is made by 1-1, and the 12 is made by 6-6), there’s no Hardway bet for them because neither has an easyway combination.The table minimum bet doesn’t apply to Hardway bets. Instead, the minimum is whatever the lowest-denomination chip is in play for that table, which is usually $1. The payoff for the Hard 4 and Hard 10 is 7:1; whereas, the payoff for the Hard 6 and Hard 8 is 9:1. The Hard 6 and 8 each have four easyways to lose. The Hard 4 and 10 each have only two easyways to lose. Therefore, with more ways to lose, the Hard 6 and 8 have a higher payoff than the Hard 4 and 10.Some casinos try to trick the inexperienced player into thinking they have higher Hardway payoffs than their competition by offering odds written on the table layout as “8 for 1” and “10 for 1.” At first glance, this does appear to be a bit better than 7:1 and 9:1. However, look at it closely and you’ll see that it’s 8 “for” 1, instead of 8 “to” 1. “8 for 1” means they pay you $8 but they keep your $1 bet. 7:1 means they pay you $7 and you keep your $1 bet. Therefore, “8 for 1” is the same as 7:1, and “10 for 1” is the same as 9:1. If I’m somewhere with lots of casinos such as Vegas, and unless it’s a $3 table with high maximum free odds (e.g., at least 10x), I turn around, walk out, and go to the casino next door. It bugs me to see a casino try to trick players into thinking it offers better odds than its competition. So, to heck with them, I go somewhere else.You can call Hardway bets on or off at any time. This usually occurs after the shooter makes a point. Players typically play the Pass Line, so after a game ends, they make another Pass Line bet. They root for a 7 on the come-out roll, but although a 7 on the come-out is a winner for the Pass Line, it’s a loser for the working Hardway bets. Therefore, players tend to call their Hardways off for the come-out roll so they can root for a 7 without worrying about losing their Hardways. The dealer then puts an OFF button on their Hardways. After the shooter makes a point, players call their Hardways back on and working. The dealer then removes the OFF button.You must be aware of the casino’s policy for whether Hardway bets are on or off for the come-out roll. There doesn’t seem to be consistency among casinos. Ask the dealer, “Are the Hardways automatically off?” Or simply listen to the stickman before the come-out roll, who says something like, “Hardways work unless you call them off.” If you don’t want a conflict in what to root for (i.e., rooting for a 7 on the come-out conflicts with your working Hardways), then simply call your Hardways off on the come-out and then call them back on after the shooter makes a point.Hardways are located in the center of the table and typically controlled by the stickman, so don’t try to put down or pick up any of these bets yourself. When you have the stickman’s attention, gently toss your chips to an open area near the center of the table and say, “Hard four, please.” Sometimes, the stickman catches your chips in mid-air. Sometimes, he lets them fall to the table and then picks them up. When you gently toss your chips, try not to hit other people’s chips on the table because they could fly everywhere and then the game is delayed while the stickman figures out where they all go. After a while, you become incredibly accurate with your toss. I can stand at the end of the table and toss a $1 chip to land in whichever Hardway box I want to bet. Oddly, other players are impressed with that worthless skill. The stickman then places your chips inside the Hardway box in a position that corresponds to your table position (in a manner similar to Place bets).Now you know! Remember, learn how to play casino craps the right way.
Blackjack by itself is a game of skill. And with common sense know-how and a familiar understanding of how the game play mechanics work together, one can win over 60% of all those hands very easily per trip. Some well know casinos have even more player interactive bonuses that help players more than hurt them. Especially if you’re not familiar with any of them, especially when we make just the “one” visit, it sure would be great to know what they are. Along with the chance to win money by getting those winning hands and beating the house, avid players can make an additional 10-15% more by utilizing these so called casino promotions. Here are the top three bonuses you just have to know before you make that next trip:Promo#1-Most good sized casinos offer what they call “player’s club” cards. What people don’t know is that these promotions offer and give away more money, free slot play, gifts, comped meals, and free rooms as general play dictates. What the blackjack player has going for him/her, is that they can use the player cards to get what casinos call a match bet. Depending on how much play you put on a card (stats are tallied depending on bet amounts and play time), players can get as much as four or five free matches up to $20 per hand in a day’s playing session. Place your initial bet of $15 dollars, and with the promotional match, you would have a total of $30 being bet. Win that hand, and you’ll win $30 dollars!! Just think how cool this is when your only initial bet was $15 to start, very cool!Promo#2-Most single deck blackjack tables have something called a royal match bet. It’s an extra side bet in addition to the main hand. Most of the time, royal match cannot exceed the initial bet. Place a royal match bet and if the two cards you get dealt are of matching suits (ie:heart-heart, spade-spade, diamond-diamond, or clubs-clubs), you win anywhere from a 3:1 or 5:1 payout depending on casino payout policies. These ratios are the most common. What’s cool is if you win the royal match but lost the hand, in most cases you will come out even or ahead. So the next time you see a royal match, throw a dollar on it and try. It would not hurt because you normally win the match one out of four times anyways!Promo#3-This last bonus is really cool. Some casinos have this extra bonus if you hit a certain combination of cards. Tables will normally have placards under the table limits to highlight these bonuses. I’ve seen plenty of twenty-one variations, but these are the big hits. Get dealt a 6-7-8 or 7-7-7 to total 21 and the house will pay you an additional $10-$25 dollars for achieving that. Also get a 7-card 21 or an ace-queen suited heart pair and the bonus is just as much. A nice little addition to the winnings and the wonderful thing is that it happens more often than you think!So the next time you decide to make that weekend trip to the casino, be on the lookout for some of these casino-exclusive deals to help you win more money. Just keep in mind, it’s just another opportunity for players to take more of the casino’s money. Why leave it to chance??If you enjoyed my article, please read the following and check out my site for more gaming and card table tips and tricks to advance your game and make more money, again please feel free to visit my site at: Blackjack For Big Money!