This article first appeared in the Nov/Dec 2011 issue of World Gaming magazine.
Everyone has a favourite or lucky casino they frequent, and I’m no different. When it comes to playing craps in Macau, I usually played at L’Arc, because they offered 10 times odds. This was by far the best odds in Macau. They also had very knowledgeable dealers who ensured the game flowed. L’Arc is conveniently located next to StarWorld, across the road from Wynn and MGM.
The impressive casino L’Arc reaches way up into the Macau skyline. It is not a huge mega resort but it is one of the tallest buildings in Macau. L’Arc has a French feel and would be considered one of the best casinos in Europe. From its impressive statues, marble finish and wide-open spaces it is both aesthetically pleasing and a comfortable place to get one’s gaming fix. L’Arc’s accommodation, food and entertainment are excellent. But today let’s focus on the sad news that craps is no longer part of their gaming landscape. Craps is one of the fastest growing games in Macau. It has a steady cult following and a great atmosphere with excellent camaraderie at the table, because generally if one player is winning then all the players are winning. So WGM was amazed to hear the news that L’Arc had removed their table.
There are some terms unique to craps in this article, so if they prove unfamiliar check out our six-part craps series available on our website wgm8.com. The game of craps has a set of universally accepted rules, with some minor differences found from casino to casino, usually relating to payouts and betting structures. A great bet in any casino is betting behind the pass line (also known as the win line) in the game of craps, because there is absolutely no house edge whatsoever on this bet. Casinos differ in the amount you can wager on this fantastic bet.
The “odds” bet is placed behind the pass line after a point has been established on the comeout roll (if you don’t understand this, refer to our earlier craps articles). Seasoned craps players almost always take advantage of this bet. Some casinos offer 2 times odds, some offer 5 times odds and some even offer 3, 4, 5 times odds (which means 3, 4 and 5 times odds on points of 6/8, 5/9 and 4/10 respectively). But L’Arc offered a massive 10 times odds on any point, which is why it was far and away the best in Macau.
To illustrate why 10 times odds is so much better, let’s compare two different bets, one in a casino with 2 times odds and the other with 10 times odds. Let’s say we win a pass line bet by hitting a point of 10. The “odds” bet behind the line is therefore paid at 2 to 1.
|Line bet $200||Win $200|
|Odds bet $400||Win $800|
|Total bet $600||Total win $1,000|
|Line bet $50||Win $50|
|Odds bet $500||Win $1,000|
|Total bet $550||Total win $1,050|
As the table illustrates, in the 10 times odds game you are only risking $550 to win $1,050, as opposed to the 2 times odds game where $600 is outlaid for a lower win of $1,000. If you are lucky enough to hit a few point numbers in a session this adds up to quite a bit of extra money in your pocket!
A great strategy is to constantly play the “come” bet and take the odds during the point cycle. If you keep playing this bet (and you keep hitting numbers and dodging the miserable number 7), you will be able to load up the bases and get paid true odds for the majority of your wagers on the table. There is nothing better than having a shooter roll number after number, with you collecting a juicy payout every time.
So here is our appeal to L’Arc. Please bring back the craps table. We loved it! If L’Arc doesn’t decide to dust off its table and return it to the gaming floor then one of the other casinos should offer 10 times odds to its players. If any casino operator out there wants to take up the challenge, contact us here at WGM and we will gladly spread the happy news.