American, European or French? Roulette wheels and tables explained

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While we adore the daring bluffs, intricate strategies and thrilling stand offs in our many table games, there’s a certain satisfying simplicity to playing roulette games that’s unrivalled in the casino.

You choose your lucky number or pick out a colour, the dealer spins the wheel and the winners are revealed. No complicated rules to remember, no maths to calculate in your head, no fuss.

And yet, despite its easy-to-grasp rules, there are several variations of roulette table layouts, each with their subtle differences.

Continue reading, below, to find out all the variations between roulette boards, including American, European and French roulette.

How to play European roulette

Due to its slightly higher winning odds than its American counterpart, European roulette is the most popular form of roulette gambling. This includes both roulette wheels online and in-house casino roulette wheel games.

The reason for this minor player advantage is simple, too: European roulette table layouts contain 37 numbers, whereas American wheels contain 38 numbers to bet on. The more numbers on the wheel, the lower your chances of seeing your lucky number pop up.

As for the rules, you play European roulette games by predicting which number the ball will settle on, from 0 to 36. You can also place bets on what colour the ball will fall on, with numbers from 1 to 36 alternately marked black or red, while the 0 is coloured in green. Once the roulette betting is complete, the dealer will spin the wheel to reveal the victor.

European roulette

How to play American roulette

If you’ve ever watched a film or TV series set in Las Vegas, then you’re already quite familiar with the American roulette table layout.

It’s also very similar to the European rules, except that American roulette wheels contain 38 numbers instead of 37. This slight tweak was the result of American casinos believing European roulette games had too much of an edge over the house, so they added a green double zero to the table.

Otherwise, it’s business as usual in the American variation. Place your bets on where you think the ball will settle on the wheel, choosing either specific numbers (0-36 or 00) or colours (red, black or green).

american roulette

How to play French roulette

Where players usually compare the differences between American roulette and European roulette, French roulette is the oft-forgotten iteration – but that doesn’t mean it’s not fun to play!

Even though it has a unique roulette table layout, French roulette is most similar to the European version. Both wheels have 37 numbers (0-36) and three colours to choose from (red, black and green). The major difference lies in two rules that are unique to French roulette called En Prison and La Partage.

Occurring when the ball lands on green zero, En Prison is essentially a free spin that allows players another chance to win their original stake back. La Partage also becomes active when the ball lands on green zero, with players being able to choose to receive half their original stake back immediately, rather than risking another spin.


french roulette

Whichever type of roulette table layout you prefer, you can find the best live roulette games when you bet with Mr Green. Alternatively, you can try out some of our other Live Casino games, such as poker, blackjack or baccarat. Good luck and remember: when the fun stops, stop.

live roulette

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