What is the Pass Line Bet in Craps?
You have probably heard that pass-line is the best bet in craps and one of the best in all casino games, and you probably want to know what this pass-line bet is about and what is so good about it. So let's see!
Pass-line bets are not based on a single roll, like some other craps bets, but on a sequence of rolls. A new sequence begins once the pass-line bettors win or lose or if there were no pass-line bettors (which is quite rare), once anyone wants to bet on the pass-line.
The first roll of the pass-line sequence is called come-out roll. If 7 or 11 comes out on the come-out roll, pass-line bettors win. If it is 2, 3 or 12, they lose and the only one who wins is the house. If any other number is rolled (4, 5, 6, 8, 9 or 10) this number is called the Point.
Whether pass-line bettors win or lose after the Point is determined depends on whether the Point or 7 will be rolled first. If the Point is rolled for the second time before 7, pass line bettors win, otherwise they lose. So, 7 is the key number in Craps, desired on the come-out roll and feared on other rolls.
Pass-line bet is paid even money, so if you calculate the odds of pass-line bet, you will see that its odds are not so high to be considered one of the best bets in the casino. What makes pass-line bet really profitable is that when people win it, they not only win money, but also are given an option to place a so called Free Odds bet, which is one of common craps bet, but is paid at the true odds, which means that casino does not profit from this bet in the long run. Placing more money on the Free Odds bet than on the pass-line bet decreases the overall house advantage of these two bets. The larger is the difference between these two bets, the smaller is the overall house advantage. To not let players eliminate the house advantage completely, casinos determine limits for this difference. If such limit is 10x, a player who bets 1 dollar on the pass-line and wins it can not bet more then 10 dollars on Free Odds. Some Las Vegas casinos, during their promotional periods can offer 100x free odds bets. A game with such limits can be considered an even odds game, because its house edge is so small that it may not be taken into the account.