The variety of betting options in craps is huge and one of the most common tips that could be found in craps literature and game theory is to avoid the so-called proposition bets at all costs. The reason is very simple – because they offer a very high house edge, which means that the odds are definitely against you. At the same time, many experienced casino players love the occasional risk and would make prop bets on a regular basis.
So, what are the proposition bets and why are they not recommended for novices? These are single-roll bets, which means that the outcome from them is determined in the next roll of the dice – you either win or lose. Unlike some multi-roll bets where you can decrease or remove your bet, there is no chance of saving your money with the prop bets if you have bad luck on the craps table. This “all or nothing” style of play is not suitable for novices but at the same time, it is what makes the game of craps fun and exciting.
What Are Proposition Bets in Craps?
1Cannot be Placed Directly by the Players
Proposition bets, also called single-roll or Prop bets, are service bets and cannot be placed directly by the players. Located in the center of the craps table, the betting section for these wagers is managed by the stickman. When players put their chips in the middle of the table, they call out their preferred bet and the stickman positions the chips on the respective betting field. Of course, this applies only to live games – those who play RNG craps online can easily make single-roll bets anytime they want to.
2Higher House Edge
As mentioned above, Prop bets are resolved within a single roll of the dice, hence the name “single-roll” wagers. Due to their extremely high house edge of over 11%, Props are known among experienced players as “sucker bets” since the chances of losing your entire bankroll when making these bets are significant. In comparison, the Pass/Don’t Pass and Come/Don’t Come bets have a house edge of around 1.40%, which makes them less risky in the long run.
3Payouts of up to 30 Times the Bet
Experienced players tend to avoid them as part of their regular betting strategy and instead, they sometimes incorporate them into more complex betting patterns that include traditional wagers such as the Pass Line. Recreational players, however, often make these single-roll bets, falling for the appeal of the huge payouts of up to 30 times the original stake. Despite the attractive payouts, however, Props are not recommended for those who are still making their first steps into the world of craps.
4Extremely Easy to Make and to Track
One great advantage of these wagers is that they are extremely easy to make and to track since they immediately win or lose. There is also no need to wait for a specific time during the game to make them – unlike most bets, which are allowed only on either the come-out or subsequent rolls, proposition bets are completely independent of the main Pass Line, so they can be placed at any time.
Another important thing to note is the way their payouts are sometimes displayed on the craps table – rather than the typical 7 to 1 payout for a winning Any Craps bet, for example, you may encounter a payout of 8 for 1. While this seems like a better alternative, it is actually the exact same payout – phrased like this, the payout simply includes the $1 original bet on top of the $7 profit.
Bets on Single Numbers
There are various single-roll bets and a large portion of them include wagers on single numbers. As one could probably imagine, the odds when making such bets are against the player. The probabilities of the dice rolling on any particular number are quite low. However, this depends solely on the possible dice combinations for the different numbers – as we all know, the number 7 is more likely to be rolled than any other number in the game. It can be formed by combining the two dice in 6 different ways, which is the most possible combinations in this game.
By looking at the possible combinations for each number, we can clearly determine which bets are good and which ones are bad to the long-term performance. Below, players can find all Props on single numbers, along with their possible combinations and house edge percentages.
One of the wagers with the worst possible odds in craps is called Snake Eyes and it is a single-roll bet on 2. Players can make it before the come-out roll or after the point has been established. This bet wins only if a 2 is tossed in the next roll of the dice. The name of the wager comes from the resemblance of the two single dots on the pair of dice to eyes.
Since there is only one possible combination for this outcome, namely each dice showing 1, the probability for winning is 1 to 36. This translates to odds of 35 to 1 against the bet and a house edge of 13.89%. The payout for a winning Snake Eyes wager is 30 to 1.
This bet with a poker-inspired name is a single-roll bet on 3. It can be placed at any time during the game and it wins only if the next roll is a 3. Of course, players who make the Ace-Deuce bet lose on all other rolls. The payout is 15 to 1 but the odds against winning stand at 17 to 1. Unfortunately for players, this results in a house edge of 11.11%.
Any Seven is a well-known betting option and is certainly the worst bet that can be made. It is an independent, single-roll bet that is resolved with the next roll of the dice. As mentioned above, there are six possible ways to roll a 7 – the combinations are 1-6, 6-1, 2-5, 5-2, 3-4, and 4-3. The odds against winning are then 30 to 6, which is equal to 5:1. This does not sound too bad.
However, the payout for this bet is only 4:1. Although the potential reward seems similar to the risk calculated at 5:1, this could not be farther from the truth. After a long period of play, the difference between the two becomes obvious and players actually face a very high house edge of 16.67%. Mentioning the word “seven” is considered bad luck on the craps table, which is why many players prefer to call this bet the Big Red.
Yo, also known as Eleven or Six-Five, is a proposition bet, which wins if the next roll shows an 11. Its name comes from Yo-leven, which is used instead of the word “eleven” in land-based casinos. The reason for introducing this strange rule was quite prosaic – to avoid confusion since “eleven” sounds too similar to the word “seven” in fast games and loud environments.
This wager loses with every roll that does not show an 11 and pays 15 to 1 if the dice land on 5-6 or 6-5. The house edge is very high at 11.11% which suggests that players are expected to lose $11.11 out of every $100 total bet they make.
This is a single roll on 12 and it has a lot of names, including Twelve, Boxcars, Midnight, or Cornrows. With it, players bet that the shooter will toss a 12 in the next roll of the dice. Just like Snake Eyes, there is only one winning combination and it is 6-6. This bet also has the same odds, payout and overall house edge of 13.89%.
Boxcars, along with Snake Eyes, can be described as a Hard Way bet – throwing a pair is called hard way. Totals such as 12 and 2 are always formed the hard way, while other totals such as 4, 6, 8, and 10 can be formed by both pairs and non-pairs. These four, however, are multi-roll bets, which is why they are not within this category.
Along with the props on single numbers, there are many single-roll wagers on a group of numbers. They are quite different from each other but they are all positioned in the central section of the betting field. Since they cover more than one outcome of the dice roll, they can be grouped together and described as composition bets.
With the Hi-Lo wager, players bet that the shooter will toll either the lowest or the highest possible total – either 2 or 12. It wins if the next roll is a 2 or a 12 and loses with all other numbers. There are two winning combinations here, namely 1-1 and 6-6, against 34 losing ones. Therefore, the true odds against winning are 34 to 2 (34:2) or 17:1. The payout is, of course, lower at 15:1 so, just like all prop bets, the Hi-Lo is quite a risky bet and should not be placed regularly by players.
This wager covers three numbers and its name describes them all – this is a bet on the craps numbers 2, 3 and 12. It can be made before the come-out roll or after a point has been established and it is instantly settled with the next roll of the dice. It wins if any of the craps numbers is rolled and loses in any other scenario.
The house edge remains the same as in the Hi-Lo bet although players bet on more numbers. There are 4 winning against 32 losing combinations – the dice must show 1-1, 6-6, 1-2, or 2-1 for the Any Craps to win. While the true odds are 8:1, casinos pay at lower odds of 7:1.
This is a combination of two separate bets and with it, players bet on the Yo and craps numbers – 2, 3, 11, or 12. The name of the wager comes from “craps and eleven”. To make this bet, players need to wager chips of the same amount on the Yo and Any Craps betting areas on the table – one of the bets will always lose, while the second one may win.
The true odds on this bet are fixed at 5:1 since there are 30 ways to lose and 6 ways to win (30:6 or 5:1). However, the payout varies, depending on the winning number. Note that the two bets within the C&E do not pay the same as the original Craps and Yo wagers – rather than 7:1 for craps and 15:1 for 11, the combined bet pays 3:1on the craps numbers and 7:1 on 11. The house edge, however, remains the same.
The Horn is also a combination of bets but unlike the C&E, it is a combination of four bets on four individual numbers. To make it, players need to wager the same amount of chips on the numbers 2, 3, 11, and 12. Of course, three of the bets will always lose – one of them, however, may win. The payouts are the same as the winnings for an individual number.
The combined payout, on the other hand, is 27:4 for dice showing 2 or 12 – it is, in fact, 30:1 for 2 and 12 minus the other three bets. If the shooter rolls 3 or 11, however, the payout will be 3:1 (15:1 for 3 and 11 minus the other three bets). There is an interesting variation of this wager, called Horn High bet. It is practically the same as the original wager but players double the chips wagered on one of the numbers. A Horn High 12, for instance, means the player bets 1 unit on 2, 3, and 11, as well as 2 units on 12.
Unlike the majority of prop bets, the Field is a self-service bet, which means that players can make it on their own. To do that, they simply need to put their chips on the large Field area, which is located between the Pass Line and the Come bet. The Field covers multiple numbers – 2, 4, 5, 9, 10, 11, or 12.
This is an even-money bet, which means that it pays 1:1 but there is an exception. If the dice roll 2 or 12, the payout is doubled to 2:1. Some casinos also increase the payout to 3:1 for a winning Filed number with a 3. In this case, the house edge is only 2.78%.
This is also a combination of two bets – a Horn and Any Seven to be precise. Players need to bet 1 unit on each of the following numbers – 2, 3, 7, 11, and 12. The Whirl bet offers great odds at only 2:1 since there are 12 possible winning combinations against 24 combinations that will lose. Things get a little more complicated when it comes to the payouts, however.
Logically, four of the five numbers in total will always lose but the chances for one of them to appear in the next roll are great. The combined payout is 26:5 on 2 and 12, as well as 11:5 on 3 and 11. If the shooter tosses a 7, however, the bet is a push because the winnings (at a 4:1 payout rate) won on the 7 will be lost with the rest of the numbers.
This is an interesting way of betting on craps and it is mostly found in live casinos. Players who are “hopping” bet on a [articular combination of numbers that appear on the two dice. For instance, a player wants “a 6 and a 3 on the hop” – this means he bets that one of the dice will show a 5 and the other a 7. Of course, Hop bets can be either easy or hard way and the payouts are different. This bet pays 15:1 on easy ways, while hard-way Hop bets pay 30:1.
Prop Bets Odds and House Edge
1Prop Bets Offer Unfavorable Odds
Compared to more classic craps bets such as the Pass Line and the Don’t Pass wagers, prop bets offer unfavorable odds and very high house edge. Players who opt for the Any Seven bet, for example, face a house edge of 16.67%, which is among the highest percentages offered in all casino games. This is why players should proceed very carefully when using single-roll bets.
2Craps Players Should Stick to Multi-Roll Bets
Rather than betting on the props constantly throughout their game, craps players should stick to multi-roll bets with much lower house edge and make props only occasionally. This way they can structure their style of play, balancing between the classic, safe and quite bland Line bets and the risky, yet exciting prop bets.
3Odds and Payouts of All Proposition Bets
The table below shows all proposition bets, along with their odds and payouts, as well as the theoretical advantage casinos have over players.
|Bet Type||Winning Combos||True Odds||Payout||House Edge|
|Snake Eyes (2)||01/01/19||35:01:00||30:01:00||13.89%|
|Ace-Deuce (3)||1-2, 2-1||17:01:00||15:01:00||11.11%|
|Any 7||1-6, 6-1, 2-5, 5-2, 3-4, 4-3||05:01:00||04:01:00||16.67%|
|Yo (11)||5-6, 6-5||17:01:00||15:01:00||11.11%|
|Hi-Lo (2, 12)||1-1, 6-6||17:01:00||15:01:00||11.11%|
|Any Craps (2, 3, 12)||1-1, 1-2, 2-1, 6-6||08:01:00||07:01:00||11.11%|
|C&E (Yo + Craps)||5-6, 6-5, 1-1, 1-2, 2-1, 6-6||05:01:00||3:1 – Craps 7:1 – Yo||11.11%|
|Horn (2, 3, 11, 12)||1-1, 1-2, 2-1, 5-6, 6-5, 6-6||05:01:00||27:4 – 2,12 3:1 – 3,11||12.50%|
|Field||1-1, 1-2, 2-1, 1-3, 2-2, 3-1, 3-6, 6-3, 4-5, 5-4, 4-6, 6-4, 5-5, 5-6, 6-5, 6-6||05:04:00||2:1 on 2, 12 1:1 on all others||5.56% (2.78% for 3:1 payout on 12)|
|Whirl||1-1, 1-2, 2-1, 1-6, 6-1, 2-5, 5-2, 3-4, 4-3, 5-6, 6-5, 6-6||02:01:00||26:5 on 2,12 11:5 on 3,11 0:1 (push) on 7||13.33%|
|Hop||Specific combinations||17:1 on easy way 35:1 on hard way||15:1 easy way 30:1 hard way||11.11% for easy ways 13.89% for hard ways|