On the roulette tips page, they already explained that there are no real tricks to win at roulette, since nothing can assure you such a thing… At most what you can achieve is to learn how to play better and improve your strategy, as well as choosing roulette wheels and types of plays that allow you to minimise the house edge (which is never going to be 0, because casinos are not charity houses).
From here we also explained it ourselves, in our famous article Tricks and Strategies to win at roulette, but in this article we are going to expand the information regarding whether these strategies work or not, and whether or not they are a totally counterproductive scam.
2.7% Fixed Losses
If there is one thing to be clear about, it is that the fact that the roulette wheel has at least one “0” square (the one corresponding to the banker), as it would be in the case of European roulette, implies that the house edge is never going to be 0%.
Thus, the odds of each of the roulette numbers coming up is 2.7% (including the “0”, which wins the house) and the odds of black, eye, or “0” coming up are also 2.7% each.
This means that you have a 2.7% chance of losing at roulette, and that, sooner or later, this will happen.
It is impossible to create a strategy where the fixed % of losses is less than 2.7%, as demonstrated in this article where it is explained in detail and with many examples why it is not possible.
The Gambler’s Fallacy
Or, in other words: the previous rolls have no relation with the subsequent rolls.
It is very common to think that it is a good idea to bet on a colour, for example, when the opposite colour has come up 5 times… But this is nothing more than a belief or superstition, because the next spin is like a reset: the spins are not cumulative, for roulette it is as if you always spin for the first time.
So, even if black comes up 5 times in a row, the next spin you will have a 48.65% chance of getting red, and exactly the same chance of getting black. The 2.7% is the chance that the “0” will come up, and the banker will win.
There is no external or internal force that will cause the opposite side (or the opposite colour) to come up just because “the same one has come up too many times, and it’s about time”.
In this sense, strategies such as “Waiting for certain events to happen before starting to bet”, for example: waiting for 4 reds to come out to start betting on black, does not change the odds; therefore, it is a strategy that does not work.
Let’s take a practical example, in which we assume that the casino in question does not have a limit of 7 consecutive bets doubling the stake:
We start by betting $2 on red and the black or the number zero comes up 10 times in a row. If we have to double the bet 10 times, bet number 10 will be equal to $1024. Taking into account the money lost on the previous bets, we will have lost a total of $2,047. If the ball lands again on black or zero, we would lose the $2,047 and if it finally lands on red, we would recover our losses and win $2.
In other words: the Martingale and other similar strategies (such as the d’Alembert Method), are only sustainable with a very large (infinite) capital to play with. And a lot of patience if you get into bad streaks… Which, sooner or later, is inevitable.
The Law of Large Numbers
“Improbable events, even if they are really very improbable, end up happening if one waits long enough for them to happen.”
This is, in a very simplified form, the law of large numbers.
And it is that long sequences of several negative outcomes end up appearing in the long run, and at that point the player, either for fear of continuing to lose or because he has really run out of money and cannot stand the gamble any longer, ends up finishing everything he has accumulated.
It is not possible to take advantage of good streaks and minimise bad ones.
There are people who say that, given their experience, they are able to guess when there will be a good streak, and bet at that time, and when not.
The reality is quite different: through statistics, we can know the percentage of times a certain event will happen. That is true. But what is impossible is to predict, scientifically, what is going to happen at any given time.
That is to say, we can know that each roulette number will come up 2.7% of the time (with a totally random programme and certified as such) but we will not know what will come up on the 2,000th spin, for example, and neither is it possible to predict any kind of trend when each spin is a completely new and random event, which has no relation to previous spins.
Unless you have paranormal powers and sensitivities outside of the rational…