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Craps is a dice game very popular in today’s casinos.  In this game, players place wagers on the outcome of the roll of a dice, or on a series of rolls of two dice.  Players can wager money against each other, which is usually referred to as street craps, or against a bank which is the form of craps played in casinos.  This game requires very little equipment, and so street craps is often played in very informal settings.

Craps is a simplification of an Old English game called Hazard.  The origins of hazard are very complex and are thought to possibly date back to the Crusades.  There is also a definate later influence of French gamblers.  What became to modern American version of the game called craps was brough to New Orleans by Bernard Xavier Philippe de Marigny de Mandeville, who was a scion of wealthy Louisiana landowners, as well as a gambler and politician.  The game was first known as crapaud, which is a French word that means toad.  It reportedly owes its modern popularity to the fact that is was spread reapidly through the African American community.

Bank craps or casino craps is played by one or more players against a casino.  The casino covers all the bets made by the players at a table and also sets the odds on its payout.  Players take turns rolling two dice.  The player who is rolling the dice is called the shooter.  The other players at the table then make a bet on the shooter’s dice rolls.  The game is played in rounds, and the first roll of a new round is called the come out roll.  The second round is resolved with a point being rolled or a seven.

A player who wishes to play as the shooter must bet at least the table minimum on either the pass line or the don’t pass line (they are also sometimes called Win and Don’t in or Right and Wrong lines).  The right to roll the dice is passed clockwise around the craps table.  A player who is next in line to roll has the right to refuse the dice while continuing to pass to bet on the shooter’s rolls.

The different possible rolls are given nicknames that make the game more interesting.  In different regions where craps is played, the rolls are often given local names that are humurous to locals.  For example, a 1 – 1 roll is called snake eyes, a 6 – 6 roll is called boxcards, and a 5 – 6 roll is called yo.

There is also a great deal of casino etiquette when playing craps.  For example, players are not meant to handle the dice with more than one hand, like changing hands, and when they throw the dice, the players are expected to hit the farthest wall at the opposite end of the table.  Dice also must be tossed across the table and may not be slid.  Another rule is that players are typically asked to not throw the dice higher than the eye level of the dealer. Finally, it is commonly aceptable to tip the dealer or casino workers.

This article was written by Chloe Marine.

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