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Roulette Systems 




Roulette Systems
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Classic Roulette Systems
The “Martingale” and “Grand Martingale” Roulette Systems
The “D’Alembert” Roulette System
“Wells” System – the System of “The Man Who Broke the Bank at Monte Carlo”
The “Paroli” (Parlay) Roulette System
The "Philiberte" Roulette System
The “Garcia” Roulette System
The “Jaggers” Roulette System
The "Labouchere" Roulette System ("Labby")
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Since Roulette
established itself as a popular game at the end of the 18^{th}
century in France, the players tried to beat the House with all kinds of
systems. Literally hundreds of roulette systems have been created. Most of them are
the variations of the few basic classic systems that players played in Monte
Carlo and other European gambling resorts in the 18^{th}, 19^{th}
and the beginning of the 20^{th} century. Below are some of those
systems.
It is impossible
to beat roulette using a betting system, because any roulette bet has a
builtin percentage for the House. A Roulette system is just a combination
of the negative expectation
(producing a guaranteed loss over a period of
time) bets. It can’t produce a longterm positive outcome
in principle. Nevertheless, the players can get lucky during a short period
of time and come out a winner. Few players got lucky with the following
systems and won considerable amounts of money. Some of them were able to
break the Bank and not once but few times. It is important to know the basics of playing roulette. When you don't, you can check a site like the
onlinecasinoaustralia.com roulette guide to learn it.
The “Martingale” and “Grand Martingale” Roulette Systems
Martingale is
one of the
oldest betting roulette systems devised by Henry Martingale in the 18^{th}
century. He was a gambling house operator. Casanova played that system in
the gambling houses of Venice.
Martingale is a
simple “doublingup” progression, which wants a player to double up his bet
after a loss. The bets made are even money bets – Red or Black, Odd or Even
and 118 or 1936. Thus the sequence of bets will look like 1, 2, 4, 8, 16,
32, 64,128, 256, 512, 1024 etc. If for ex, after first 4 losses a player
wins a 5^{th} bet, his total profit will be one unit: 168421=1.
The purpose of the Martingale sequence is to get back all previous losses in
one win plus a profit of one unit at the end of the progression. The
weakness of this system is obvious. A player may be able to go on for a long
period of time winning one unit at a time, but sooner or later he’ll hit a
bad run, which will result in him reaching the maximum bet allowed by a
casino. In result he won’t be able to double up further to win his money
back. The progression will result in a tremendous loss probably wiping out
player’s whole bankroll. If a player has an unlimited bankroll, can play for
a very long period of time and there are no house limits, then simple
Martingale will beat Roulette and any other game of chance. Since Martingale
progression doublesup a bet after a loss, it is called a “negative
progression”.
The Grand
Martingale Roulette System
The Grand
Martingale is one of the most aggressive betting
roulette systems. It aims at getting all
the previous losses plus winning 1 unit per every previous bet played. The
sequence of bets is: 1, 3, 7, 15, 31, 63, 127, 255, 511, 1023 etc. For ex,
after 5^{th} winning bet which followed first 4 losses the end
result will be 3115731= +5 units or one unit profit per every bet made.
In Grand Martingale the increase of the bets happens a lot faster and the
total bankroll wipeout will happen sooner.
Some players don’t
run progression through the same type of bets. Instead, every time they
choose an arbitrary sequence of bet types – for ex, Red, Red, Black, Odd,
Red, Odd, Even…etc. That, of course, does not make Martingale any worse or
better and the problems of the system remain the same.
The “D’Alembert” (or
Montant D’Alembert) Roulette System
Jean de Rond
D’Alembert was the 18^{th} century mathematician who believed in the
“Law of Equilibrium”. He applied that law to the outcomes of the random
events, which have equal probabilities of happening – for ex, “Odd” and
“Even” in Roulette game. According to this law, D’Alembert insisted that if
“Odd” showed up few times, then it’s only the question of time before “Even”
will occur the same number of times. That line of thinking represents the
belief in the “maturity of chances”, which is the “Gamblers Fallacy”. It’s a
fallacy because roulette outcomes are independent from each other events.
The previous results have no effects on the current or any future spin. On
every particular spin the “Odd” and “Even” have the same chances to appear
even if a 1000 of previous spins were all “Odd”. The Theory of Probability
only states that over a very long period of time the numbers of “Odd” and
“Even” results will be, in percentage terms, very close to each other.
However, how long this period might be is impossible to predict. It can take
as long as 100 spins or 100000 spins or even longer.
That’s how
D’Alembert system is supposed to work. After every loss a player has to add
one unit to his stake. After every win he has to deduct one unit from his
bet. When the “equilibrium” occurs, he is sure to be a winner. For ex,
suppose a player loses five times in a row. The total loss will be 1 + 2 + 3
+ 4 + 5 = 15 units. Then he wins five times with the total win of 6 + 5 + 4
+ 3 + 2 = 20 units. The net result is the win of 5 units or a half a unit
win per every bet played.
On the other hand,
if a player first wins 5 times for a win of 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 = 5 units and
then loses 5 times for a loss of 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 = 15 units, the net
result will be the loss of 10 units.
The main problem
of the system, of course, comes with the uncertainty about the time
necessary for D’Alembert equilibrium to materialize. If a player will be
losing more often than winning for an extended period of time, he’ll be
forced by the system to make huge bets due to a mandatory bet increase after
each loss. He’ll soon hit the house limits and exhaust his whole bankroll.
“Wells” System – the
System of “The Man Who Broke the Bank at Monte Carlo”
In 1892 Fred
Gilbert wrote a popular vaudeville song “The Man Who Broke the Bank at Monte
Carlo”. The song was inspired by the English gambler Charles Wells who
managed to break the bank at Monte Carlo not once but at least three times.
He first came to
Monte Carlo in the summer of 1891. During three days at the end of July he
won close to 1,000,000 francs. Every day he played continuously for 11 hours
without even taking a break to eat. On the way out with his win he stopped
for a while at trenteetquarante table and broke the Bank at that game also
winning $160,000 francs.
He came back to
Monte Carlo in November and broke the bank again taking from the casino
$250,000 francs.
He returned for
the third time in January 1892. This time Luck left him and he lost heavily.
That was the last time he player roulette.
There are
different reports on the system used by Wells. According to one source his
method of betting was based on Martingale. When he was running lucky Wells
doubled up his bet after every win all the way to the maximum bet allowed.
If he won three times in a row with a maximum bet, he decreased the bet and
tried to repeat the whole process again. When he was going through a rough
stretch in his play, he always kept his bets low.
Another source
contemporary to Wells claimed that Wells used a modified D’Alembert system.
Supposedly, Wells stated that if you play even money bets – for ex, Red or
Black – the results on those bets rarely exceed each other, let’s say, by 10
points. Wells modified D’Alembert on the basis of that belief.
Instead of
starting his progressions with 1 unit required by D’Alembert, Wells
preferred 10 units. If his bet during the game increased to 20 units or
decreased to 0, he would finish his playing session. He was increasing his bet
according to D'Alembert by 1 unit after a loss, and decreasing it by 1
after a win. If he won 10 times in a row, his progression would produce a
win of 10+9+8+7+6+5+4+3+2+1= +55 units. On the other hand, the succession of
10 losses would result in a loss of 1011121314151617181920= 165
units. That, of course, is an obvious weakness of his approach and Wells
understood it perfectly. However, he insisted that these two results are
extremes, which happen rarely. More often a regular session may look like a
next sequence producing a profit of +59 units:
+10+98+9+8+76+7+6+54+5+4+32+3+2+1= +59. Another similar but negative
sequence would produce a loss. If a player wins and then his wins and losses
alternate, then such choppy sequence will produce a positive result because
every loss followed by a win on a bet increased by one unit produces a net
profit of one unit.
Whatever
roulette system
Wells played it was eventually defeated (like all other
roulette systems would be) by the House percentage guaranteed
by a “0” in European roulette (More correct is to say that
it is guaranteed by the discrepancy between payoff ratios and the true odds
of the game). American roulette, which has “0” and “00”,
would defeat Wells system even faster and he would probably never break the
Bank.
The “Paroli” (Parlay) Roulette System
This
roulette system has
been known since 18^{th} century, when the players tried to use it
(among other roulette systems) against the game of faro (pharaoh). Like Martingale the Paroli betting
progression is also a negative one asking a player to raise the bet size
after a loss. The progression, however, develops a lot slower in comparison
with Martingale.
The system can be
used with any type of bet. The best chances for success are with
the even money
bets. The basic idea of the Paroli is to play until you have two wins in a
row. After a first win a player parlays his winnings. His second bet will be
two times (two units) of the original bet (one unit). If a player succeeds
and wins both bets, his net profit is 4 – 1 = 3 units. The table below shows
basic progression of the Paroli system for the even money
bets.
The progression
helps a player to recover the losses for all previous bets and show the
profit at the end of the sequence. For ex, if you lost 5 bets in a row, the
bet #6 must be 3 units in order to produce a profit. Two successive wins
with the initial bet of 3 units produce a net profit of 6x2 3(initial bet)
7(bets lost in the previous 5 attempts) = +2 units.
Bet #  Bet Size  Net Profit  Bet #  Bet Size  Net Profit 
1  1  3  14  29  2 
2  1  2  15  39  3 
3  1  1  16  52  3 
4  2  3  17  69  2 
5  2  1  18  92  2 
6  3  2  19  123  3 
7  4  2  20  164  3 
8  5  1  21  218  1 
9  7  2  22  291  2 
10  9  1  23  388  2 
11  12  1  24  517  1 
12  16  1  25  690  3 
13  22  3  26  920  3 
The table shows
that the bet size can grow dangerously fast but not as fast as with
Martingale system. Some players in order to keep the bet size under control
don’t go through the whole progression. If for ex, they lose a bet #8, they
might take a loss and stop the session. Later, they’ll start a new session
with bet #1. Many big players prefer the Paroli system
over other roulette systems. They modify it
to make it fit better their bankroll and suit better their psychology.
The “Philiberte”
Roulette System
A player using this roulette system hopes that the Bank will not be able to win 3 bets in a row. He plays progressions consisting of 3 increasing bets. If 3 losses happen, a player starts a new progression, which uses bigger bets.
Suppose that the
bets are even money bets. The first progression employed is 1, 2, and 4. If
the first one unit bet is lost and a second bet of 2 units wins, the net
profit is one unit. If 2 bets are lost and the 3^{rd} one of 4 units
won, the outcome is a positive return of 421= +1 unit. If all 3 bets for
the amount of 7 units are lost in succession, a player starts a new 3 bets
progression: 1, 3 and 7. He plays that progression until he gets back first
7 lost units. After that he goes back to his first progression of 1, 2. and
4 units. It the second progression goes bad and 1+3+7 = 11 units are lost, a
player starts a third progression with increased bets: 2, 4 and 8. He tries
to recover all the previous losses of 7 + 11 = 18 units. If he is
successful, he goes back to the first progression. If not, the 3^{rd}
progression is replaced by the 4^{th} one, which is: 2, 6, and 14
and if still unsuccessful the 5^{th} progression starts – 3, 6, 12
to be followed by 3, 9, and 21 etc….
If you have a lot
of patience and enough capital, that roulette system can keep you in the game for a
considerable amount of time  a lot longer than
Martingale and other roulette systems..
The “Garcia”
Roulette System
or “Tiers Et Tout A La Boule De Neige”
This
roulette system was
devised by the legendary Spanish gambler Thomas Garcia who used it in the
Homburg Casino. Garcia tried many roulette systems but finally
made that one his system of choice. It was also occasionally played by Charles Wells in Monte
Carlo.
Garcia was a
traveling salesman for the French company. In his spare time he gambled to
increase his income. He was a cardsharper and used marked cards and loaded
dice to get consistent wins. By August 1860 he accumulated a sizable
gambling bankroll and went to Homburg for the first time to try himself
against casino.
He liked to bet on
Red and he was betting big. Sometimes he lost heavily, but at the end of his
first visit he won 240,000 francs. He had enough common sense to take his
win and leave.
Two weeks later he
returned and had even more success. He managed to break the Bank 5 times and
at one point in time he was ahead by 1,750,000 francs. He left with the
profit of more than 500,000 francs of casino money. After his first two
visits he was ahead by 800,000 francs.
He came back for
the third time one year later in the autumn of 1861. This time he lost all
the money he brought with himself plus the money he could borrow from others
during his stay. Garcia left Homburg and never returned.
When a player
plays the “Garcia” system, he hopes that the Bank will not win 2 times in a
row. Beginning play with a capital of 9 units, Garcia would place one third
of it (3 units) on the table as his first bet. In case of a loss, the
remaining two thirds (6 units) would be the second bet. That’s why the
initial bankroll of 9 units is needed. If a player wins his first bet of 3
units, his capital grows to 9 + 3 = 12 units if he bets on even money bets.
The next bet is one third of the new capital of 12 units or 4 units. If this
bet is lost, the two thirds from 12 or 8 units become the next bet. In case
of a win, the new capital is 8 + 8 = 16 units. After that the bet is one
third of 16 or 5 units. If won, the new bankroll is 16 + 5 = 21 units. The
next bet, obviously, is 7 units and the progression continues in the same
fashion. If a player makes a dozen of wins with this system without
encountering the two consecutive losses, he can run up his initial capital
of 9 units to 200 units or so. If 2 losses happen in a row, the most he can
lose is his initial bankroll of 9 units only – no more, no less. If that
happens, a player stops his session.
As you see, this
roulette system consists in always dividing your capital by three, and staking first
a third, and in the event of a loss, the remaining two thirds. Many players
like to make bets on a color opposite to the previous winning color. If a
player comes to a table and sees that Black appears, he puts 3 units on
Red. His session could look like the sequence shown in the table below. The
session will result in increasing his initial 9 unit stake to 202 units.
Bet #  Black  Red  Result 
1  Black 
No Bet 

2  Red  Win  
3  Red  Lose  
4  Black  Win  
5  Black  Lose  
6  Red  Win  
7  Black  Win  
8  Black  Lose  
9  Red  Win  
10  Black  Win  
11  Red  Win  
12  Red  Lose  
13  Black  Win  
14  Red  Win  
15  Red  Lose  
16  Black  Win  
17  Red  Win 
The strength and attractiveness of that roulette system in comparison with other roulette systems is that a player won’t lose more than 9 units, but if lucky, can win a significant amount of money.
The “Jaggers” Roulette System
In the History of
Monte Carlo, Joseph Jaggers became a legend. He was an intelligent mechanic
or engineer from the north of England. He was not a gambler, but he had
heard of Monte Carlo, and of the wonderful roulettewheels so ingeniously
made that no one could beat them. Mechanic by trade he knew how impossible
it is to maintain a delicate machine in an absolutely perfect condition for
a length of time. He consequently realized that at least some Roulette
Wheels in the rooms of Monte Carlo were sure to be untrue, in a greater or
less degree, and he did not see why he should not use his knowledge to try
to gain an advantage in casino. Thus, the Jaggers' system
exploited faulty equipment instead of relying like other roulette systems on
any betting progression or a particular combination of bets.
When he arrived in
Monte Carlo he did not intend to play. It was the wheels themselves that he
wished to see. He found out that he was not supposed to keep a seat at the
table and watch the game for a long time without playing. In order to study
it in peace he began playing with minimum bets. He had a favorite table
where he happened to feel more at home than at any other; and, while
laboriously taking down numbers in order to make a record, he hit upon an
astonishing discovery. Some of the numbers appeared more often in a day’s
play of about five hundred bets than they had a right to do mathematically,
according to the Theory of Probability. Jaggers continued his tests for
several days, until he was satisfied that the particular roulette wheel
under observation had some mechanical defect – that it was not truly
balanced, but had a bias in one direction which caused the ball to fall more
often in one quarter of the cylinder than in the others.
On that fault, not
of roulette in general as a game, but of this roulette wheel in particular,
did Jaggers then and there found his amazingly successful “system”. He
decided to risk in his roulette venture all the money he had, knowing that,
though he must fail occasionally, he ought to win far more often than lose.
At first he played quietly, with small stakes. Then he increased them until
soon he was playing with maximum on the wheel’s favorite numbers, and
winning immense sums of money. Feeling sure of his ground, Jaggers now
engaged a staff of men to play for him, taking turns at the table as the
croupiers do, and his wins continued till the Casino authorities became
seriously alarmed. Never had the Casino, in the whole history of gambling at
Monte Carlo, suffered so severely. Seeing that Jaggers always played at the
same table, the management removed the cylinder from that table at night and
transferred it to another table.
Jaggers, however,
had expected the possible change in luck because his wheel of
fortune was lost among other wheels useless for his “system”. To avoid that,
he had observed on his cylinder a tiny white speck by which he could
identify it among many others apparently alike. Each morning, on arriving at
the table, he glanced at the wheel and made sure of the white speck before
starting to “work”. As soon as he saw the white speck, he and his staff of
clerks began to kill the table again.
In four days
Jaggers had taken from the Casino the unprecedented sum of 1,500,000 francs.
The authorities began to suspect that all the cylinders were imperfect. The
maker was sent for, and each wheel was subjected to a rigid scrutiny. The
faulty one was discovered and taken away, and next morning Jaggers' tide of
fortune turned. For a few days he went on playing, and lost back to the
Casino some 500,000 francs of his enormous winnings. Then he was wise enough
to see that he was finally beaten. He discharged his staff, ceased play, and
retired with the comfortable sum of 1,000,000 francs. Never did he appear
again at Monte Carlo; but his memory lived there since as a classic one.
The “Labouchere System” or “Labby”
This
roulette system carries the
name of Henry Dupre Labouchere. He was the 19th century Victorian journalist
and politician who loved to play it. It was reported that during his
vacations from his newspaper he often visited Monte Carlo where he played
roulette on a daily basis. According to his statements
his system was superior to other roulette systems
and helped him
to win regularly enough money to pay for vacation. Some historians of the
game believe that 18^{th} century French mathematician was the real
inventor of this system.
When a player plays
Labby he divides his bankroll in three unequal parts and writes them down on
a score sheet. For ex, he writes down the sequence 1, 2 and 3. The numbers
are in betting units. The bets are made on even money bets. The player’s
goal is to win 1 + 2 + 3 = +6 units.
In order to achieve that
goal he makes his first bet and all following bets equal
the sum of the first and
the last numbers in his sequence. Thus, his first bet is 1 + 3 = 4 units. If
he wins, he then bets 2 units. If he wins again, his total profit is 4 + 2 =
6 units and the goal is achieved.
Suppose the first bet of
4 units is lost. A player adds 4 to his sequence, which looks now as 1, 2, 3
and 4. His next bet is the sum of the first and the last numbers or 1 + 4 = 5
units. If the bet is successful, the player crosses out 1 and 4 out of his
sequence, which now looks like 2, 3. He follows with the bet, which is the
sum of 2 + 3 = 5 units. If the bet is won, his total profit is 5 + 5 – 4 =
+6 units and his goal of 6 units is achieved. After that he starts working
again with his initial sequence 1, 2 and 3.
Suppose his last bet of
2 + 3 = 5 units was lost. A player adds 5 to form a new sequence: 2, 3 and
5. The next bet is 2 + 5 = 7 units. If this bet is won, the player follows
with a 3 units bet. If successful, his positive net result equals: 3 + 7 + 5
– 5 – 4 = + 6 units. His goal of 6 units profit is achieved again. If a 7
units bet loses, the process goes on in a similar fashion. A player
continues adding a lost bet to the sequence, crossing out 2 numbers after a
win and adding the first and the last numbers in the current sequence to
determine the size of the next bet.
This roulette system is far safer
than Martingale and other roulette systems. It will keep you in the game for a relatively long period
of time. Many players like it because when you lose a bet, you add only one
number to the sequence and when you win you cross out two of them. When all
numbers are crossed out, a player wins his goal, which is the sum of all the
numbers in units from his chosen initial sequence. This
roulette system looks like a
winner on paper, but an eventual prolonged losing streak will force a player
to play big bets and will lead to big losses just as with
other roulette systems.
Copyright Progress Publishing Co. 2006