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Gaffed dice: Real or imagined?24 December 2009
A player known as The Craps Devil on my private website at www.goldentouchcraps.com posted an interesting question about the dice used in the casinos:
For decades I have heard talk of these "Saturday Night Specials," or gaffed or biased or cheating dice, which are fixed so that the seven comes out more than its normal one-in-six times on average for every 36 dice rolls. Without really analyzing this reasonably, some players think their ill fortune at the craps tables must be due to rigged dice. These same types of players think that since they have had bad luck at one casino but good luck at another other casino, the "bad" casino is that way because it cheats.
First, let's get this concept out of the way — the casinos do not use gaffed dice. The only Saturday Night Special they might actually have is probably a drink. Aside from the fact that the casino control boards specify exactly how the dice must be made, the casinos have edges that go up to 16.67%, which is the any seven straight up.
With such edges, they would be nuts to jeopardize their licenses if they got caught cheating in this way.
Then again would gaffed dice really be cheating? The darkside (or don't players) could make a fortune betting against the point (or the box numbers) and for the seven. Word would quickly spread that such and such a casino seems to be favoring the darkside and every darkside player this side of Europe would be playing in that casino and winning a fortune.
In the bad old days of street craps, some games did not allow darkside betting and therefore gaffed dice really could change the nature of the game. In short, players could get screwed big time in such games.
But in a casino where you can bet with or against the numbers, using dice that adds sevens to the probabilities would be suicide for the casino. Casinos are not run by completely ploppisized executives. The bottom line for them is money, moolah, dough and using gaffed dice would limit their take and probably take their jobs and their casinos away from them.
Now, keep in mind that it favors the casinos to have a random game at craps because the casino either wins more decisions than the players — for example, the casino wins 251 decisions on the pass line but only loses 244 decisions — while on the other bets, such as place bets, the casino while changing the probabilities, will not pay out the fair amount for a wager.
Take, as an example, the 12, known as boxcars. This bet faces a 35 to one probability. You should lose 35 times and win once. If you bet a dollar, you would lose $35. However, in a fair game the one bet you win would pay you $35. You would be even.
The casinos do not offer a fair game; they can't if they want to show a profit. Indeed, they pay back only $30 for that wager on the 12. They keep the extra five dollars for themselves. The casinos do this on both sides of the game, the right side (betting with the numbers) and the darkside (betting against the numbers), so the casinos win no matter how the player wagers. They do it with every bet on the table. It assures them of a long-term profit, pure and simple.
The truth is that a random game is a winning game for the casinos and a losing game for the players; while a gaffed game would quickly become a losing game for the casinos and a winning game for the players smart enough to recognize the bias of the dice.
Thus in every way, legally and intelligently, the casinos would be crazy to ever consider bringing in such false dice. If you hear a player whining about fixed games or gaffed dice, listen to him patiently, and then ignore him. He's a ploppy!
This article is provided by the Frank Scoblete Network. Melissa A. Kaplan is the network's managing editor. If you would like to use this article on your website, please contact Casino City Press, the exclusive web syndication outlet for the Frank Scoblete Network. To contact Frank, please e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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