Roulette Facts, Figures, and Statistics - The Numbers Behind a Giant

Roulette Facts & Figures 2023

Roulette is one of the most widely known games on the face of Earth. People from all over the world, regardless of whether they gamble or not, are mostly aware of how the game works – even if not of all the mechanics and intricacies that pros are aware of. 

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As one of the most popular casino games in the world, it’s only natural for a lot of information to be floating around about it. Here, we’ll be covering everything there is to be known about roulette, ranging from interesting stats to facts about the game that you probably haven’t heard of before. If you truly want to find the most accurate information about roulette in 2020, you’ve come to the right place! If what you’re looking for is a guide on how to win at roulette, we have that as well.

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It’s up to you to decide how to make the best of all the information that we’re giving you. In this article, we will be talking about the two most popular types of roulette in the world: American Roulette and European Roulette. Most of the data that we’ve gathered actually applies to both types of roulette games, but if a statistic or fact only applies to one, we’ll be sure to make it clear for your understanding.

Roulette Odds, Facts & Statistics

Roulette is a game of chance where the randomness is more evident than in any other casino game. You get to see exactly what is happening and how the ball moves across the wheel as you spin it, which makes it a very popular game as the thrill is constant until the ball finally lands on one of the numbers. Roulette odds make this game one of the most popular on the planet, and here you’ll find some crazy odds and facts about the popular casino game!

What are the Odds in a Game of Roulette?

As you know, the game of roulette works by giving you different numbers in which you can bet the ball to land on, as well as different parts of the board that you can place your wagers on. As such, you always know what are the odds of your bet before placing it.

The game has a higher payout for any bet that has low odds of landing, whilst the payout is smaller for more probable bets. American roulette is played with two zeroes, whilst European roulette is played with a single zero. You always have fewer odds of winning money when playing American roulette, which is why we’ve always recommended our readers to play European roulette (unless you like the double-zero format, of course).

In any case, using one of the most popular types of roulette bets as an example, placing a bet on the black or red on American roulette yields winning odds of 47.36%, whilst placing the same bet on a European, single-zero table yields odds of 48.64%. As a rule of thumb, your chances of winning are always higher when you bet on tables without the double zero.


How Do Casinos Make Money with Roulette?

Understanding roulette is just a matter of understanding your chances of winning and how the payouts work. As you can see, you have a chance of winning of 48.64% by betting on black, but the casino won’t pay you a sum of money according to those odds. You’ll be paid as if your chances of winning were 50% - which means a 1:1 on your actual bet. That’s one of the main reasons why betting on the black and red is one of those strategies that doesn’t work. The casino always has the edge – even though you can use probabilities to try and sway them on your favor. Chances are that you’ll always end up losing money when playing roulette.

The Casino Always wins in Roulette – and Here’s Why

There is no single bet in a game of roulette that gives you a 50% chance of winning. You don’t need to be a statistics or probabilities expert to know that, should you play long enough, the casino will always keep your money. That’s because probabilities and math, in general, works in the same way all the time – whether you’re playing roulette or any other game. If your chances of winning were 50%, if you played long enough, you would always end up with the same amount of money that you start with. However, since the best odds of winning at roulette come at 48.64%, you should always expect to lose at least 2,7% of your money. Let’s look at the RTP of the game, for example. The RTP, or return to player rate, is the amount of cash that you can expect to lose.

  • In American Roulette, the house edge is 94.7%
  • In European Roulette, the house edge is 97.3%

By playing roulette for a period of 6 hours, you can expect to lose between 5.7% and 3.8% of your money every hour that you play. The odds are always against you.

How Roulette Odds Work

Another important reason to see why the casino always wins is by looking at both types of roulette and your actual chances of winning. The best way to illustrate the odds is with an example: Let’s say that you intend to put the odds of winning in your favor by placing $1 bets on a board of European Roulette (which has 37 numbers from 1 to 36 plus 0). In that case, you can place a bet of $1 in every number from 1 to 19 and your odds of winning that round would be 51,3%. Does this mean that you would be overcoming the house edge? Not at all. In fact, we’d say that it’s the contrary. You might have a higher chance at winning that round than the house, but your payout would be much lower than it would be if you bet on a single number because you’ve had to spread out the bet. Roulette odds are distributed in a way that makes it impossible for the player to truly turn around all events in their favor, although some bets might seem like they are favoring you over the house. It simply cannot happen.

Roulette Wheels and the True Odds of Winning Explained

One of the most common misconceptions of roulette is that all roulette games have the same odds, and that’s simply not true. Every type of roulette game comes with different odds and, even though there are many variants of the game across the world, American Roulette and European Roulette are by far the two most common types. As such, we want to take a look at the odds of winning in each of these games. In American Roulette, the odds of winning are 38 to 1 when you place bets on a single number.


The odds of the ball landing in the number that you’re betting are exactly that, because there are 38 numbers in total (from 1 to 36 plus 0 and 00). On the other hand, European Roulette is different. The reason why we often recommend people to play it over American Roulette is that European Roulette has one less number on its wheel, which increases the RTP by 2.4%. A bet in European Roulette has a chance of 37 in 1 on it happening. The wheel is made of the same numbers, from 1 to 36, but it only has one 0 on the board. That’s the main reason why it’s not smart to play American Roulette and why the house edge of American Roulette is much bigger than its European counterpart.


How People Fail to Manage Their Bankroll in Roulette

One of the most common reasons as to why people lose their money playing roulette, even though their initial bankroll is not as small, is because they don’t know how the RTP of roulette works. We’ve gone through numerous guides explaining the importance of managing your bankroll when playing online, but people don’t seem to understand that the RTP applies to the amount of money that you’re betting, not the total amount of money that you have. For example, you might be betting $3 per spin on roulette.

Let’s assume that, in that scenario, the house edge plays out to perfection and you get the expected 97.4% in return (assuming you’re playing European Roulette). If you start with $100 in your bankroll, you need to understand that the 97.4% doesn’t apply to the $100 itself but rather to the total amount of money that you’ve bet. That means that assuming you make 50 bets in an hour, you would actually be wagering $150 instead of $100.

Why Casinos Want You to Keep Playing

Have you ever wondered why casinos always encourage you to keep playing? In roulette, it is very likely for players to make some money in a short run of spins. In fact, some people might even get extremely lucky and make a large profit with just a few spins in a game of roulette.

However, the reasoning behind roulette statistics also applies to every other type of casino game: the longer you play, the higher your chances of losing money will become. It’s impossible to escape the odds. Land-based casinos don’t have windows or clocks as they attempt to keep you playing, which is the same reason why they can sometimes give you alcohol: they want you to keep going and spending as much cash as possible. Online casinos give you complimentary bonuses and encourage you to keep betting, as the result is the same. It doesn’t matter how much cash you spend on an online casino, your chances of losing all of your cash are high if you play for long enough.

Even if you’ve won a lot of times in the beginning, it will always even out. That’s how statistics work! Don’t let yourself get carried away by a solid run of wins. Things will eventually flatten for you.

There’s Only One Bet in Roulette with a Different House Edge

Have you ever heard of the 5-number bet? It consists of placing bets on five different numbers – be it all close to each other or spread across the table. If you’re playing American roulette, the 5-number bet is actually the worst bet that you can place in a game of roulette. It yields the worst odds of winning whenever there are two zeroes at the table. It will also pay basically the same as your other bets, so you should avoid making it at all costs – even if you’ve heard that it’s a sound strategy. It is, but not for American roulette!

Basic Roulette Facts

For the second part of this article, we’ll be talking about some of the most basic facts in the world of roulette and information that you probably didn’t know about the game. This might not be as mathematically relevant as statistics and odds, which shape the game and make it one of the most popular casino games in the history of gambling, but these are must-know facts about one of the world’s most renowned games.

What was the First Roulette Game?

The early days of roulette actually began in the 18th century. The first type of game that resembled roulette, which was recorded in history, is an Italian game by the name of Biribi. This game consisted of a board with numbers from 1 to 70 that worked pretty much in the same way as modern roulette, but it didn’t have the same mechanism as its modern counterpart.

When it comes to the mechanism of the spinning wheel, it is thought to have been introduced by historic French mathematician Blaise Pascal. Little is known about the actual origins of the device, though, but the studies of physics and mathematics of Pascal are said to have led to the creation of one of the most prominent devices in gambling history. Roulette, per se, is a French game. The first iteration of the game that we all play today is said to have been created as early as 1890, and quickly became a popular game in Paris.

Where Did the Color Green Come from in Roulette?

Curiously enough, the color green wasn’t there when the game of roulette first came to prominence. Red and black have always been two emblematic colors for the game and two colors that have always been there, but green was only added a decade after the game became popular in Paris, in the early 1800s.

The reason why green was introduced was to differentiate between the 0 and the 00. Modern-day French Roulette excludes the 00, but it was part of the game back then – even in France. Both zeros used to be black and it would create a lot of confusion among gamblers, so Paris gambling establishments introduced the color green for the zeros in the early 19th century.

Single Zero Roulette – Where Was It Created?

It took almost 50 years after roulette became popular in Europe before the double zero stopped being part of the game. In fact, the double zero was such a prominent part of roulette that players had already gotten used to betting with it on the board. In 1843, single-zero roulette was introduced as a method to compete against other casinos that offered the traditional game. It worked wonders, as it provided players with much better odds by removing the added chance of landing on an unwanted number when gambling.

The game had already been played for almost 100 years before it actually became popular among gambling establishments all over the world. Some form of roulette is said to have been played in Canada as early as 1750, but the current version of roulette became popular in the mid-19th century. When the game became popular all over the world, both versions of roulette were seen. From double zero roulette to single zero roulette, casinos from all over the world started offering the game.

Is Roulette Played Only with Numbers?

Even though roulette has always had numbers on its board by tradition, there was a popular variation of the game that had a single symbol. It was one of the first types of American Roulette, too. That old game introduced an “Eagle” symbol to the board, which supposedly represented “freedom” according to the casinos, but it was nothing but a ploy to bring an extra edge to the house and keep players from winning money. American casinos soon grew past this tradition and the eagle symbol was removed from the board.

However, there are still some modern-day roulette games that are played with symbols, even though they aren’t as popular as their numbered counterparts. Speaking about numbers, roulette has one more curious fact that you may appreciate: the sum of all numbers in a board of roulette equals the infamous number 666!

Why is Roulette Called “The Devil’s Wheel?

As we mentioned before, the sum of all numbers in a table of roulette equals 666. That number, otherwise known as the “Devil’s Number” or “The Number of the Beast”, is said to have some sort of satanic connotation according to what’s written in the Bible. Bear in mind that this applies to both American Roulette and European Roulette. Even though the American variant has one extra number, it is a double zero, which means that it doesn’t add anything to the total sum.

Last updated  March 15, 2023
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About the author



Chief Content Writer


Chief Content Writer

Marco holds the title as Chief Content Writer and has a Mass Communications Major with a Specialization in Digital Marketing. He's an experienced casino writer with more than half a decade of gambling-related work on his back. He took a keen interest in gambling as a young adult and started writing expert content for the casino and sports betting niche in 2015. Now, he specializes in online slots, table games, and sports betting – producing well-researched content on all fronts of the iGaming world. He's also a regular contributor to Quora, where you can ask him anything related to online gambling and he’ll happily answer!

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