Craps Strategy: How To Win At Craps? We Got You, Bro!

craps strategy guide

Sup, fellow players? No time to beat around the bush, it’s time to teach you how to play craps!  

Normally, lots of people prefer to play casino games like roulette or poker but playing online craps has its perks. We compiled this craps strategy guide to show new players the ropes and explore some of the best betting strategies.  

Here’s a quick rundown of all the things we’ll cover:  

  • The basic rules 
  • Craps betting strategy (Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced craps bets) 
  • Overall best craps strategy 

If you have always wanted to learn how to play craps, this is the place to be. Let’s have at it, Bro! 

A couple of things before we start dishing out betting strategies… 

This guide will not make you magically win every game of craps.

Just like all gambling games, craps is a luck-based game and YOU JUST CAN’T ALWAYS WIN in every single game.  

This guide is based on online casino craps.

I’m saying this because while craps is fun when you play them by yourself, nothing beats going to a crowded craps table and watching everyone cheer after that winning number is rolled. This is also the reason why most online casinos have very few craps games (if at all). 

Don’t get us wrong, online casinos have their advantages. In fact, lots of players seem to prefer online casino games over regular brick-and-mortar casino games. Except for craps, that is.   

But considering the current global circumstances we find ourselves in these last couple of years, online casinos might be our only way to play craps. 

Basic Rules: What Craps Players Should Know?

craps basic rules

First of all, no, a game of craps isn’t one of those things you do in the toilet! Now that we got that obvious joke out of the way, let’s sum up the game in one sentence: 

Craps is a game where someone throws a pair of six-sided dice and bets on what he/she will get.

Craps is super simple to play but seems really difficult when you first look at it. Heck, even the craps table itself is more than enough to make some gamblers go “Uh-uh, that seems too hard for me, bro!”    

But that’s just the thing! Craps only looks difficult. So let your boy Derrick help you see how super easy it actually is. 

The Basic Rules

Craps are played in rounds. Each round has one shooter (the person who rolls the dice), a dealer (this will probably be an AI or an actual person if you are playing Live Craps) and other players (who will bet on or against the shooter). Each round has two phases:  

  • Phase 1 “The Come out bet” – The shooter rolls the dice until he gets a point number (4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10 or 11). For any other number, the dice are rolled again.
  • Phase 2 – “The point” – During this round the shooter tries to roll the point number again. 

If the shooter rolls the point number, he or she wins and continues to roll (again from Phase 1). If, however, a seven is rolled during Phase 2, the shooter loses, the round is over and a new shooter starts the next round.  

During all this, other players get to bet on or against the shooter (the shooter has to bet, if he or she doesn’t they can’t shoot).

This is how traditional craps are played. Unfortunately, unless you are playing Live Casino craps, you are going to end up being the only player and the only one who can shoot, so “rounds” won’t really mean much to you. 

Betting On Craps: The Bets You Can Make With Every Roll Of The Dice

That’s all fine and dandy, so how do we actually win? Well, that really depends on what we bet on, Bro. For your convenience, I’ve divided bets into three categories: 

  • Beginner
  • Intermediate
  • Advanced

I highly suggest that you focus mostly on beginner bets (and maybe intermediate bets) until you gain some experience. Only then would we advise moving to intermediate and advanced betting strategies. 

Beginner Bets 

So you just want to play craps but aren’t sure how things work yet? Start with the Pass Line Bet and the Don’t Pass Line Bet 

Line Bets 

When you make a pass line bet, you are betting that the shooter (you) will win. So, how do you win? 

You win by rolling either a 7 or an 11 on your first roll.  

So, say you bet $10 on the pass line and you grab those two dice, throw them (or click “roll”) and you get a nice lucky 7. This means that you will double your money – you will win $10. Simple as that. 

There are lots of ways how two dice can form a 7 so you will see this number quite often (both when you want it and when you don’t). After each 7 or 11, the shooter will just shoot again until they get something else and everyone gets to make another line bet if they want. 

Now, if we roll a 2, 3 or 12 on the first roll, that means that we lose those $10 – UNLESS when you place a bet on the Don’t Pass Line you are betting that the shooter WILL LOSE. So in a way, if you know you have terrible luck, you can bet on it and even make a profit.   

But wait! What if the dice roll something other than 2, 3, 7, 11 and 12? Let’s talk about the Point. 

The Point

craps betting strategies

Up until now, we’ve only been talking about the “Come out phase” or Phase 1 (where we don’t have a point). As soon as a point number is rolled, we move on to Phase 2.  

Take a good look at that badge in the picture (the one that says “OFF”). When you roll a 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 or 10, that number will become the point. Consequently, that badge will turn from OFF to ON and be placed on that number on the craps table. 

Here’s an example of how we get to phase 2:  

  • You bet $10 on the pass line. You roll a 7. You win.  
  • You bet another $10 roll again and you get another 7. You win another $10. 
  • Another $10 bet but this time, you roll a 4. That 4 is now the POINT! 

So, now that we have a point? What now? Now, the shooter tries to get that point AGAIN! That’s right, we don’t care about other numbers, we just want to roll that point again.

However, we really don’t want to roll a 7 (unless we bet against the person rolling). 

When the shooter rolls a 7, he or she is done rolling! The round is over and the next player becomes the new shooter! Again, this won’t matter if you are playing all by yourself. 

If you are playing alone, you might just be spamming that “roll” button until you either score the point or that 7. Of course, if we made a Don’t Pass bet, the process is backwards. In that case, we would want that glorious 7 so that the bro rolling the dice can fail miserably and we can win.

And that concludes our Beginner bets. If this was a lot to take in, go and play a few rounds where you just make line bets until you get the hang of it. When you are ready, we’ll move on to the intermediate bets. 

Intermediate Bets

Alright, Bro! So at this point, I’m going to assume that you played a few games of craps and are familiar with the line bets system. 

You may have noticed that the game gets a little slow when a point is made and you are just waiting for that seven or the point to appear. 

Luckily, craps are never not exciting. So we have COME, ODDS, PLACE and FIELD bets to spice things up until the point is made and the shooter sevens out. 

Come Bets And Don’t Come Bets

craps odds bet

So, the shooter made a point and now we wait for that point to be made or for a seven to end everything? Or do we? 

Why wait, when we can have some fun during all those rolls? Now, anytime the shooter is about to try and hit the point (or seven out) we can do a come bet. 

A Come bet is like we go back to the previous phase and wait for a 7 or an 11. If the shooter rolls one of those numbers, we win our Come bet.

Naturally, if we make a Don’t Come bet, we will profit if the shooter rolls a 2 or a 3 (a 12 will be a tie because of the house edge).  

Oh, but what if none of those things appear during the point roll? If none of the numbers appear, then the number that DID appear becomes OUR PERSONAL POINT. Yup, while the shooter is trying to hit his own point, we will try to have our point made as well.  

The whole thing works in reverse for the Don’t Come bet. This time, we make a Don’t Come point and we want to shooter to hit a 7 and miss his own point. I know, I know, It’s a bit confusing when you read it like this but it feels natural when you roll a few Come rounds.

Maybe an example will help further.

Let’s go back to that previous example where the point is a 4.

  • We already have $10 on the pass line but now we place another $10 on the come line 
  • The shooter rolls an 11 and we win.  
  • We place another Come bet but this time the shooter rolls an 8.  
  • 8 is neither the point nor a winning number so now that 8 is our own point. 
  • The shooter rolls again and gets another 8. 
  • We win our point but the shooter still hasn’t hit his/her point so they keep rolling. 

Pass Odds And Don’t Pass Odds 

Remember that very first Pass Line bet we made? The $10 bet we made in the first example. Sometimes, during intense point rolling, you might wish that you’ve made a higher bet on that first pass line roll. 

That’s where Pass Odds and Don’t Pass odds come in: 

  • Pass odds are only available if you made a Pass line bet 
  • Don’t Pass odds are only available if you made a Don’t Pass line bet 

So the shooter is in the point phase and you really wish that you had made a larger initial bet. Luckily, you can with odds. You place these chips on the line underneath your pass bets and this can potentially increase your pass line bet. 

Normally, casinos have a limit on how much you can place on odds bets but most will, at least, give you double odds. Also, depending on what the point is, the odds will be different:

  • 4 and 10 point has odds of 2 to 1 
  • 5 and 9 point has odds of  3 to 2 
  • 6 and 8 point has odds of 6 to 5 

Place Bets 

If you are a single-number kind of person, you can make a Place bet once the point has been established. Simply bet on one 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 or 10 and if the shooter rolls the number before he or she seven’s out – you will win.  

The odds are a bit different this time: 

  • 4 and 10 point has odds of 9 to 5 
  • 5 and 9 point has odds of  7 to 5 
  • 6 and 8 point has odds of 7 to 6 

There also used to be DON’T place bets but those are long gone since they are responsible for a low house edge. We can’t have that now, can we? 

Field Bets 

Field bets may even be part of the basic rules because they are a piece of cake. You simply make a field bet at any time and if you score one of the numbers on the field, you win the bet. For numbers 3, 4, 9, 10, 11 you double your bet. For a 2 you have 2 to 1 odds and for a 12 you get 3 to 1 odds. 

If 5, 6, 7, 8 rolls, you lose. Whew, quite a lot to take in, ain’t it? Try making a few of these bets before you tackle the advanced bets. 

Advanced Bets

craps betting

With these bets, you will be either really bold or really naive, but that’s just what gambling is all about, ain’t it? 

You ever get that feeling when you just know what the next number(s) is going to be? That’s where advanced bets come in. High risk, high reward and everyone will look at you with interest whenever you make one of these bad boys. 

Proposition Bets

These guys are similar to basic line bets but the catch is that they only last for a single roll (regardless if there is a point or not). There are a few types of proposition bets: 

  • Any craps (bet on either 2, 3 or 12) – odds are 8:1 
  • Aces (bet on either 2 or 12) – odds are 31:1 
  • Ace-Deuce (bet on either 3 or 11) – odds are 16:1 
  • Seven (bet on 7) – Odds are 5:1 

Hardways 

That seven can be made so easily, can’t it? A seven can be a 1 and a 6, a 3 and a 4, a 5 and a 2 – you get the gist.

Don’t you like it when we get a nice equal pair such as two 4s or two 5s? These are called HARDWAYS. 

For those of us that have OCD or just like a nice equal pair, Hardways might be the way to go.  Bet on a pair of the same numbers (after the point number is made) and lose when the seven rolls. If the shooter makes a point, your bet is paused until the next round makes a point. 

Here are the hard ways you can make: 

  • Hard FOUR (two 2s) or Hard TEN (two 5s) – odds 8 to 1 
  • Hard SIX (two 3s) or Hard EIGHT (two 4s) – odds 10 to 1 

Hop Bets 

When none of the rules work for you, use a hop bet! Say you have a specific combination in your head but there simply isn’t a known bet for it. What do you do? 

You tell the dealer and he/she makes the odds for you (either 31 to 1 or 16 to 1). Hop bets are a one-roll only bet.

Hop bets may not even be available on the craps game you are playing because of how custom they are. Personally, I never need had a reason to make a hop bet but, hey, if you just know that the next two numbers are going to be a 1 and a 5, make a hop bet, Bro. 

And that’s about it! That covers the bets. How about we show you a few well-known craps strategies to boot? 

What Are The Best Craps Strategies? 

Because of the number of bets you can place, there are a TON of craps strategies out there. So which one is the best strategy?  

Well, some are safer, some are risky, but NONE OF THEM can beat the house edge. Please keep that in mind, Bro! 

We’ll only cover a few famous ones here. The good news is that most of these are relatively “safe” to use and you can go ahead and use them right away if you want. 

Classic Regression A.K.A. The 6 And 8 Craps Strategy 

Normally, we really wouldn’t recommend using the very basic strategies in any gambling game but we have a soft spot for the classic regression.  

So for this strategy, you will need two units. For this example, let’s say that one unit is $6. Here are the strategy tips: 

  1. Don’t do anything during the come-out phase. 
  2. When the point is made, place two units on 6 ($12) and another two units on 8 (again $12). So a $24 bet. 
  3. Wait for the shooter to hit either a 6 or an 8 (they come pretty often) and hope he/she doesn’t hit a 7 during this time. 
  4. When the shooter hits either 6 or 8, you win $14 (original $12 + $2) because of 6:5 odds. 
  5. THIS IS IMPORTANT, you remove one unit from each of those two bets – now you bet just $6 on 6 and another $6 on 8.  
  6. These two $6 bets are made entirely out of the $14 you won earlier (and you keep the extra $2). 
  7. If this was it, I wouldn’t recommend this strategy, but it gets more interesting from this point. 
  8. Now, you let these two 6$ bets “work” for you. 
  9. You should wait for the shooter to roll another 6 or 8 again (so you win $7) and you can keep doing this for as long as the shooter doesn’t get a 7. 
  10. It’s up to you to determine when to back out but even if the shooter rolls a 7 right away, you will only lose the $12 that you got from the first ($24) bet.

It might seem complex, but it’s super easy once you get the hang of it. Once you win that first bet, you just watch the shooter and determine when it’s best to back off. Most people say that it’s best to back out after the second hit (when you win those extra $7).  

However, if you think the shooter is on a roll, leave those two bets on for as long as you want. Because of this, I highly recommend this one for beginners. 

The Three-Point Molly Craps Strategy

Do you know that scene from every cop movie where at one point there are a few cops and a few bad guys pointing guns at each other? If one of them shoots, the other guys will kill the rest? That’s how it kinda feels to employ a Three-Point Molly craps strategy. 

A three-point molly is when you make a bet, back up that bet and then back it up again (maybe even one more time).

  1. First, make a pass line bet. 
  2. When the point is made, back up the line bet with an odds bet (odd should be the same as your line bet) AND you make a come bet that’s equal to your line bet. 
  3. Now, if the shooter rolls a 7 your line and odds are lost but your come bet wins and (because they are the same amount) you break even. 
  4. If the shooter rolls a different point number, that will become your own point from then on. In this case, you make another Come bet. 
  5. The goal is to have 2 active place bets from the come bet and an active Line bet backed with odds. 
  6. Now you have three bets that cover a good chunk of the table.  
  7. Every time the shooter hits a point, you place another line bet and back it up and when the shooter hits your points, you make another come bet. 
  8. The only thing that will completely screw you here is a “seven out” which will remove all your chips except your come bet. 

Yeah, this is a pretty aggressive strategy but it works wonders with a pinch of luck. Players often walk away with a few extra bucks (other times they lose it all because the shooter keeps rolling that darn seven). 

“Anything But Seven” Craps Strategy

best craps strategies

Oh boy, we love this one! This one is super simple, super risky but when it works, it’s glorious! For this one, we ironically need 7 units ($3 per unit, so $39). 

  1. First, we wait for the point to be made.
  2. When the point is made, we place 2 units ($12) on 5, 6, and 8 (so $36 total). 
  3. Now, we take our last unit and make a field bet. 
  4. You may have noticed that this covers every single number combination, except 7.
  5. We really don’t want a 7 to roll this time. 
  6. Now, we wait and collect the awards and top up the field that needs topping up.
  7. You really shouldn’t use this craps strategy for more than 3 hits. 

We absolutely adore using this strategy. Only, we can’t tell you how many times we witnessed players place all their chips only to lose $39 by a 7.  

With that said, when you do get 3 hits, immediately back up and save yourself at least $20. We don’t really recommend anything but seven for beginners but we definitely suggest you try it out when you get some more experience, Bro! 

The Power Press And Regress Craps Strategy

Alright, this is one of those “get rich or die trying” craps strategy. It’s similar to the “Anything but seven” craps strategy but a lot riskier. As always, the riskier it gets, the more profitable the game becomes – if Lady Luck is on your side.

Let’s start with $20 on this one: 

  1. As always, wait for a point to be made. 
  2. When the point is made, make $5 place bets on 4 numbers (I like to do 5, 6, 8 and 9). 
  3. Wait for one of your numbers to hit. 
  4. When you get a hit, don’t collect the profits. Instead, put them on the same number that won (add even more if you want), basically back up that number. 
  5. Wait for the same number to hit again. 
  6. When it hits, the profits will be huge. BUT, you should collect your profit and go back to betting with just $5 – regress back to the original bet.

If you are feeling super lucky, definitely go with this craps strategy. You can easily win big money AS LONG AS THAT 7 DOESN’T SHOW UP. 

When the shooter rolls a 7 it will be a huge slap in the face, especially if you just placed the bets. 

Craps Strategy Summary

There you go, Bros! Now you know how the dice rolls and how to win. Go out there and use a craps strategy from this guide – we guarantee you will have a good time!

Unfortunately, we can’t guarantee that you will win because of the house advantage. Start slowly and work your way up from basic to more advanced craps strategies. Let you subconscious part of the brain do the learning. When you are ready, make your own craps strategy (because those are usually the best ones) and make it rain! 

Playing craps can be a ton of fun (especially when played with other people) and we highly recommend you give it a try. We got you, Bro! 

Author

John Brokowski

A groomed beard and mustache are not the only source of this dude’s sophistication. Good ol’ John is a seasoned casino player who had affairs with numerous online casinos and online sports betting sites. He’s lethal with cards, especially poker, and a go-to guy for anything casino-related. You might think this guy is obsessed with casinos, but he’s the only reason the Bro Collective boat is still sailing.

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