D'Alembert strategy

D’Alembert is a simple, but very popular strategy to use at the roulette tables. It’s a perfect choice for those who at first hand would like to have an entertaining roulette experience and don’t focus as much on making big profits. One could say that it’s a form of a low risk version of the Martingale strategy as it has a couple of similarities to it, even though also distinct differences. In the following article we’ll take a closer look at these differences, where D’Alembert has its origin from, how the strategy is used and what the pros and cons of using it are.

The background of D'Alembert

The D’Alembert strategy was created by a French mathematician and physician by the name Jean Le Rond D’Alembert. He based the strategy off on Martingale and developed it with the intentions of neutralizing the downsides that the Martingale strategy has.

Jean Le Rond lived in the 18th century and had a theory that an outcome with a 50% chance of occurring would always balance itself out in the end. He proposed that the chance of outcome A occurring would increase if outcome B had happened many times in a row. An example of this would be that if a red number had been hit many times in a row at the roulette table, the chance of a black number occurring would be increased so that they would balance themselves out in the end, resulting in both black and red having occurred equally many times.

Nowadays we know that this is incorrect as the chance for a certain outcome to happen in roulette is always the same no matter if red have occurred 20 times in a row.


How D'Alembert works

The D’Alembert strategy is easily applied at the roulette tables and can be used on bet alternatives that give double the stake back, such as red/black or even/uneven number.

When using D’Alembert you first of all need to decide a base stake that you would like to play with. On every loss you would then have to increase this stake by one unit, whereas you decrease it by one on every win. The exception to the rule is if you win on a bet placed with your base stake as you wouldn’t be able to decrease it. A unit is equal to your base stake, which means that you always make increases and decreases by your base stake.

If you for instance choose a base take of €1, place a bet on red and lose this, you would then have to increase the stake by one unit, which would be another €1 making your second bet at a total of €2. Should you lose again, you would have to increase it by another €1 making the total bet €3. Now if this €3 bet is won, you decrease the stake by one unit (€1) making your next bet at a total of €2.

how D'Alembert works

The selling point of D’Alembert is that whenever you reach a point where you have as many winning rounds as losing ones, a net profit that is equal to the base stake multiplied by the number of winning rounds will have been made. See the below example:

Round Stake Win Loss Change of stake Net result
1 €1 x Increase -€1
2 €2 x Increase -€3
3 €3 x Decrease €0
4 €2 x Increase -€2
5 €3 x Decrease +€1
6 €2 x Decrease +€3
7 €1 x Increase +€2
8 €2 x Decrease +€4

As you can see in the table above, a base take of €1 has after four losing and four winning rounds resulted in a net profit of €4, which is equal to the four winning rounds multiplied by the base stake.

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Pros and cons

D’Alembert is a very simple strategy to apply at the tables, which can turn the roulette experience to a much more interesteing and entertaining one. As with any strategy there are unfortunately no guaranteed winnings, but if we were to compare the strategy to Martingale, which it is based on, the risk when using D’Alembert is way lower. As the stake is only increased by one unit on a loss, this rarely reaches any high amounts and it’s therefore easy to keep losses under control. See the below example of how the stake increases on eight losses using Martingale compared to using D’Alembert:

Combination Martingale D’Alembert
1 €1 €1
2 €2 €2
3 €4 €3
4 €8 €4
5 €16 €5
6 €32 €6
7 €64 €7
8 €128 €8

As you can see you would have to bet €128 using Martingale, whereas the stake with D’Alembert is only at €8. Even though it’s to an advantage that the stakes never escalate with D’Alembert, it could also be considered as a downside as it’s not as easy making a profit. It is however fairly easy to win back some of the losses with D’Alembert, which makes it possible to enjoy the roulette experience longer.


D’Alembert is a strategy based off on Martingale, but which in opposite to Martingale offers a very low risk. As the stakes are always only increased by one unit, there’s never any risk of these escalating, which means that you’re always in control. Even though this is a postive thing, the downside to it is that winnings usually never reach any high amounts. Therefore the strategy is best fitting for those who are looking for entertainment, want to be able to enjoy long sessions of roulette and find it pleasing following a structured betting pattern.