What is Roulette?
If you’re reading this post the chances are you’re familiar with roulette. It’s one of the simplest and most instantly recognisable casino games.
If you’re not familiar with roulette then check out this wikipedia article for more detail.
What is the Roulette House Edge
On Roulette it actually makes no difference what you bet on, if you played an infinite number of games you would end up with the same result whatever you bet on, this is due to a house edge which is built into all casino games. For European roulette this is 2.7% meaning for every £100 you spend on roulette you will statistically lose £2.70
For more information on why this happens check out the video below, which although based on US roulette provides an excellent overview of why it doesn’t matter what you bet on.
Just remember that European roulette has a 2.7% (1/37) house edge rather than the 5.26% (2/38) house edge on the US tables.
Why do I play roulette?
Playing roulette is rarely classed as advantage gambling but there are a few exceptions.
I only play roulette as a way of taking advantage of Bingo offers and typically talk about this in the form of a ‘treble up’. By playing my initial deposit on the roulette table I can massively reduce the ‘cost of bingo bonuses’.
Why did I analyse my roulette play?
The diary only covers play with a friend of mine where I support and guide him in his Advantage Gambling. Separate to the diary I also do my own ‘personal play’.
Following a terrible run of roulette results (sometimes variance can be a killer) I decided to analyse my roulette play to see just how fair below the expected value I was and the answers surprised me….
What was my roulette analyse based on?
I’ll start by highlighting the sample size, although this covers a decent number of Roulette spins (£26,355 spent over 1,127 hands to be precise) it’s by no means a large enough sample to offer any mathematical proof.
We;ve already discussed how on roulette EV is unaffected by bet size or the type of bet, for this reason ,y analysis is based on all my combined play, across all bet sizes and bet types (double up, treble ups and other bets all the way to betting on individual numbers).
What did the analysis show?
The graph below shows a comparison of expected value versus cumulative profit over every one of the 1100 hands.
Probably the most surprising thing is actually how close I’ve ended up to EV. After spending over £26,000 on roulette I’m down £711 which is remarkably close to the £685 loss that EV would suggest.
What do I conclude from this?
In short it’s reinforced my belief in expected value. I never serious doubted it but when you’ve had a run of results like I did emotion can overtake cold hard maths. Performing this analysis helped remind me that they maths works for a reason.
It’s interesting to see that even after the terrible roulette run where I lost £1,150 of £3,650 spent on 125 spins roulette (a 31% loss) all it’s done is put my cumulative result bang on EV. I had no idea prior to doing this how much luck I’d been having, just prior to this bad run I was over £1,000 up on the expected value.
As I stated above though this shouldn’t be taken as scientific proof, and we should be careful how much we read into it, if the analysis had been done after 1000 results it would have shown a very different story (See below)
I thought I’d share this as it’s a great example of both variance and how expected value works.
I should highlight that my personal play has changed as I’ve got more experienced, initially I played more double ups and treble ups before moving onto higher variance more aggressive play (which is also more profitable). On the graph you can see this clearly shown, after the first 300 offers I moved to a much more aggressive, higher variance approach.
Please comment below and let me know your thoughts on this, I’d especially appreciate feedback on whether this style of post is useful.