Casino Odds

Some Casino Odds facts from Yuchun Lee, professional blackjack player and former member of the MIT card counting team.

Strategies and Odds:

  • In Baccarat, the game with the best odds for those without skills, you'll lose around 1.501.50-3 per 100thatyoubet.Forskilledplayers,Blackjackoffersthebestodds,potentiallyallowingprofessionalplayerstowin100 that you bet. For skilled players, Blackjack offers the best odds, potentially allowing professional players to win 1.50 to 3per3 per 100 from the casino.
  • Memorizing a basic strategy chart in Blackjack can minimize loss to around 60 cents per a hundred dollars.
  • Card counting in Blackjack involves tracking face cards and aces. More aces mean a higher chance of hitting blackjack, while more face cards increase the chance of the dealer busting.
  • The Martingale algorithm, which doubles your bet after every loss, is generally ineffective due to table limits.
  • In Craps, the follow-on bets offer even odds, allowing prolonged play without losing money.
  • In Poker, the best strategy is to be highly skilled and play against less skilled players with a lot of money to lose.
  • Roulette is generally impossible to win consistently due to the casino's edge, though some older casinos with unbalanced wheels could have exploitable biases.

Casino Policies and Technology:

  • Casinos tend not to kick players out for winning, banking on the law of large numbers for eventual profit. However, if a player is identified as a professional with an edge, the casino can eject them using trespassing laws.
  • In New Jersey, casinos can't kick players out but can ruin the game for them by putting the cut cards at the front, making card counting impossible.
  • Casinos may use RFID embedded chips to track player betting and identify anomalies, possibly flagging certain players for observation.

Psychology and Gambling:

  • The thrill of winning often outweighs the pain of losing for true gamblers, driving them to continue gambling.

Slot Machines:

  • Slot machines are labor-efficient and major revenue generators for the casino, with adjustable odds ranging from 80% to 99% payout.
  • Progressive slot machines increase the potential payout as players lose, with optimal play possible when the bank is above a certain level.

Monte Carlo Simulation and Statistical Concepts:

  • Each game has a different edge calculated through Monte Carlo simulations, where millions of hands are simulated to calculate expected wins or losses.
  • The concepts of expected value and the law of large numbers underpin casino games' outcomes, with every hand being independent, illustrating the "hot hand fallacy."
  • Splitting aces and eights in Blackjack provides higher winning odds according to Monte Carlo simulations.