Are you the type of gambler who particularly enjoys stepping up to the roulette table whenever you are in a casino? If the answer to that question is yes, then we share something in common. I have always felt there is something about this game that seems to typify and embody the elements of risk and blind chance which are at the core of the gambling experience. No other game, with the possible exception of craps, seems to offer such a visceral representation of this phenomenon. Thus, I am a big fan of roulette.

However, I am often discouraged to see how many younger gamblers throw down huge amounts of money with no appreciation for the subtleties of the game. While pure chance is central to roulette, it is far from an anarchic or meaningless free-for-all. A tremendous amount of strategy must be brought to bear in terms of the betting. Let’s take a look at some elements which any solid roulette player will always include as part of an overall winning formula.

In particular, it would be wise to delineate the particular bets available to you when you play. They go as follows. Straight: a single number. The chip is placed entirely on this square and no other. Split: a bet on two adjoining numbers, either on the vertical or horizontal (as in 14-17 or 8-9.) The chip is placed on the edge between these numbers. Street: a bet on three numbers on a single horizontal line. The chip is placed on the edge of the number at the left or the right, depending on the layout. Corner (or square): a bet on four numbers in a square layout (as in 19-20-22-23.) The chip is placed at the horizontal and vertical intersection of these numbers.

Sixline (or ‘sixaine’): a bet on two adjoining streets, with the chip placed at the corresponding intersection (as in 25-30.)

Now let’s take a detailed look at the wheel itself, and the special series bets found on it. These are placed by betting a set amount per series, or multiples of that amount. They are determined by the way certain numbers lie next to each other on the wheel. Note that these series are all based on a European wheel, with a single zero.

Voisins (“Neighbors”)

This is a name for the numbers which lie between 22 and 25 on the wheel, including 22 and 25 themselves. The series is 22,18,29,7,28,12,35,3,26,0,32,15,19,4,21,2,25.

Tiers (“The Third”)

This is the name of the numbers on the opposite side of the wheel between 27 and 33, including 27 and 33 themselves. The series is 27,13,26,11,30,8,23,20,5,24,16,33.

rphelins (“Orphans”)

These numbers comprise two slices of the wheel outside the Tiers and Voisins. They contain a total of eight numbers. 5 chips or multiples thereof are bet.

As anyone can see, this is far from a simple game. So be sure to bring the proper strategy to the roulette table to enhance your success, but also don’t forget to have fun.