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It's Really An Easy Game   
BY:  The Dice Coach

Craps: Getting Started --The Right Way!  
 
There are many games within the game of craps, but we are going to keep it simple and start at the beginning.  
 
When you approach the Craps Table, you will see four people that make up the Craps Crew. These are the people that will pay your wins, take your losses and keep the game moving. There are two dealers, one for each end of the table, a stick man who stands mid-table on the player’s side, and a box man who sits mid-table on the casino side.  
 
The table layout consists of a field of various numbers. The Left and Right layouts are mirror images of each other, and it is the responsibility of the dealers to take the losing bets or pay out on the winning bets for his/her particular end of the table.  
 
The stick man, standing at the center of the table on the player side, handles the dice and all of the proposition or “Prop” bets. The stick man will never take his/her eyes off of the dice. He/she will control the dice, giving them to the shooter at the appropriate time. He is also responsible for placing bets on the proposition bets, located in the middle of the table. These bets are the hard-way bets, horns and whorl bets and are considered “high vig” or high-risk bets. We will discuss these in a later article, but in the beginning, it is best to stay away from these bets.  
 
The box man sits in the middle of the table across from the stick man, and generally has the final word on any question of play. He oversees all of the dealers, to make sure they do all of the payouts correctly and the game flows smoothly.  
 
When you as a new player enter the game, make sure the dice are in the middle of the table before you buy-in. If the dice are out, this is when the shooter has the dice and is ready to shoot. Always wait until the shooter has thrown the dice and the stick man has the dice back in the middle of the table before you buy-in or ask the dealer to place any bets for you. This is the first rule of etiquette at the table and it is an important one. You do not want to interfere in any way with the shooters focus.  
 
NOTE: Be sure and read the Feature article on DiceCoach.Com by Michael Vernon, Table Manners. It is an excellent article on how to conduct yourself at the craps table and a MUST read for all who play the game of craps.  
 
On the table layout, you will see six numbers at the top of the table, the 4-5-6-8-9-10. These numbers are referred to as the “point numbers”. You will also notice a puck that says ‘OFF” on one side and “ON” on the other. If the puck says “off” and is not on a number, that means the shooter is coming out for a new point. If the puck is “on” one of those numbers, then the puck is marking the shooter’s point.  
 
The object in craps is for the shooter to roll or to “make” that particular point before rolling a 7!  
 
On the “come out roll”, no point has been established as yet. On this roll, the cone out, a 7 or 11 will win and the dealers will pay all Pass line bets. If a 2, 3 or 12 (also known as crap numbers) are rolled, the Pass line bet is lost and the dealers take all bets. But, although the Pass line bet is lost, the roll stays with the same shooter. At this point, another Pass line bet is placed and the shooter tries again for a “natural” (7 or 11) or a box number.  
 
Once the shooter establishes their point (one of the six numbers at the top of the table), all he has to do is hit that same number again before he rolls a 7. If the shooter hits his point, he gets to start a new hand all over again. This will continue until a 7 is rolled after a point is established. The last number on any hand is a 7, and that signals that the shooter’s roll is over.  
 
For a new player just starting out, keep it very simple. Bet the minimum bet on the Pass line with single or double odds. The odds are the bets placed behind the Pass line bet and these are the best bets on the table. The Pass line pays even money, but the payout on the odds behind the Pass line will very depending on which number you have established. These odds are called the true odds. The 4 and 10 pay 2 to 1 ($2 for every $1 bet), the 5 and 9 pay 3 to 2 ($3 for every $2 bet), and the 6 and 8 pay 6 to 5 ($6 for every $5 bet).  
 
There are many different betting strategies, and what you should do is find a strategy that works well for you, and is in keeping with your bankroll. We will be talking more about these other betting strategies and bankroll management in future articles. For now, take just one step at a time. Master that step before you go on to the next.  
 
We at DiceCoach.Com offer basic dice classes, as well as various advance classes. We can help you find the appropriate strategy and bankroll management plan that best fits your bankroll and your comfort level. We can also customize our classes to fit your particular needs.  
 
And, always remember that mathematically speaking, one cannot beat the game of craps. But with dice influence, you - as a shooter, will have an advantage at this game. You will be creating a “window of opportunity” to benefit both yourself and your fellow players.  
 
 
Remember to always keep the fun in the game!  

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