Basic Rules of Craps
Rules of Play
Each casino may set which bets are offered and different payouts for them, though a core set of bets and payouts is typical. Players take turns rolling two dice and whoever is throwing the dice is called the "shooter". Players can bet on the various options by placing chips directly on the appropriately-marked sections of the layout, or asking the base dealer or stickman to do so, depending on which bet is being made.
While acting as the shooter, a player must have a bet on the "Pass" line and/or the "Don't Pass" line. "Pass" and "Don't Pass" are sometimes called "Win" and "Don't Win" or "Right" and "Wrong" bets. The game is played in rounds and these "Pass" and "Don't Pass" bets are betting on the outcome of a round. The shooter is presented with multiple dice (typically five) by the "stickman", and must choose two for the round. The remaining dice are returned to the stickman's bowl and are not used.
Each round has two phases: "come-out" and "point". Dice are passed to the left. To start a round, the shooter makes one or more "come-out" rolls. The shooter must shoot toward the farther back wall and is generally required to hit the farther back wall with both dice. Casinos may allow a few warnings before enforcing the dice to hit the back wall and is generally lenient if at least one die hits the back wall. Both dice must be tossed in one throw. If only one die is thrown the shot is invalid. A come-out roll of 2, 3 or 12 is called "craps" or "crapping out", and anyone betting the Pass line loses. Shooters may keep rolling after crapping out, the dice are only required to be passed if a shooter sevens out (rolls a seven after a point has been established). A come-out roll of 7 or 11 is a "natural", and the Pass line wins. The other possible numbers are the point numbers: 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, and 10. If the shooter rolls one of these numbers on the come-out roll, this establishes the "point" - to "pass" or "win", the point number must be rolled again before a seven.
The dealer flips a button to the "On" side and moves it to the point number signifying the second phase of the round. If the shooter "hits" the point value again (any value of the dice that sum to the point will do; the shooter doesn't have to exactly repeat the value combination of the come-out roll) before rolling a seven, the Pass line wins and a new round starts. If the shooter rolls any seven before repeating the point number (a "seven-out"), the Pass line loses and the dice pass clockwise to the next new shooter for the next round.
While the come-out roll may specifically refer to the first roll of a new shooter, any roll where no point is established may be referred to as a come-out. By this definition the start of any new round regardless if it is the shooter first toss can be referred to as a come-out roll.
Any player may make any bet on any number at any time. Players can places bets on the 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10, pass, don't pass, any field number, hard or easy ways, come or don't come (as long as a point is established), increase odds behind pass and don't pass lines or make any other bet the table offers. All bets besides the pass line and come bet may be removed or reduced anytime before the bet loses, this is known as "taking it down" in craps.
The maximum bet for Place, Buy, Lay, Pass and Come bets are generally equal to table maximum. Lay bet maximum are equal to the table maximum win, so if a player wishes to lay the 4 or 10, he or she may bet twice at amount of the table maximum for the win to be table maximum. Odds behind Pass, Come, Don't Pass and Don't Come may be however large the odds offered allows and can be greater than the table maximum in some casinos. Don't odds are capped on the maximum allowed win some casino allow the odds bet itself to be larger than the maximum bet allowed as long as the win is capped at maximum odds. Single rolls bets can be lower than the table minimum, but the maximum bet allowed is also lower than the table maximum. The maximum allowed single roll bet is based on the maximum allowed win from a single roll.
In all the above scenarios, whenever the Pass line wins, the Don't Pass line loses, and vice versa, with one exception: on the come-out roll, a roll of 12 will cause Pass Line bets to lose, but Don't Pass bets are pushed (or "barred"), neither winning nor losing. (The same applies to "Come" and "Don't Come" bets, discussed below.)
Joining a game
A player wishing to play craps without being the shooter should approach the craps table and first check to see if the dealer's "On" button is on any of the point numbers.
If the button has been turned to "Off", then the table is in the come-out round, and a point has not been established.
If the dealer's button is "On", the table is in the point round where casinos will allow odds behind an existing Pass line to be bet. Some casino do not allow new pass line bets while a point has been established. Some casinos will place the bet straddling the outer border of the pass line so as to indicate that it is to be paid the same odds as a place bet, instead of just even money. Other casinos will take the bet on the pass line after a point has been established, known as put betting, which is a disadvantage to the player (since the seven is the most common roll and likely to happen before the "point").
In either case, all single or multi roll proposition bets may be placed in either of the two rounds.
Between dice rolls there is a period for dealers to make payouts and collect losing bets, after which players can place new bets. The stickman monitors the action at a table and decides when to give the shooter the dice, after which no more betting is allowed.
When joining the game, one should place money on the table rather than passing it directly to a dealer, the dealer's exaggerated movements during the process of "making change" or "change only" (converting currency to an equivalent in casino chips) are required so that there is no disputes.