Craps Rules FAQ
Understanding the few simple rules about how a craps table works and what orders the play will allow you to get quickly underway on your craps playing adventure.
How do I start playing at a craps table?
First, choose a table based on the posted table limits. Newer players will do well to start at a $1 or $5 table to get more accustomed to the game before moving to higher limit tables.
Should I hand my money to the craps dealer?
No. You have to buy chips at a craps table, but the dealer isn’t allowed to take your money directly. Put your money down on the craps table in front of you and say “Change.” The dealer will pick up your money from there.
How do I get my betting chips?
Once the dealer picks up your cash, he hands it to the boxman who counts and announces the total amount.The dealer then issues you chips for your cash amount, placing the chips in front of you on the table. You can then move your chips to the groove in the table railing and play them from there. When you need more chips, say “change” again and repeat the initial process.
Who are all these people at a craps table?
A craps table is staffed by a team of four to five people. There are typically two active dealers and sometimes a relief dealer, the boxman and the stickman. The dealers stand at each end of the table to place certain bets, change money and collect or payout the winning bets.
What does the “boxman” do and why is he the only one seated?
The boxman is the casino representative that ensures no illicit play occurs at the craps table. The boxman or boxwoman records the bets, manages the house bankroll, and maintains a constant vigilance on the table and dice to prevent any forms of cheating. Any disputes that arise at the table are settled by the boxman. He sits at the table to stay closest to the literal table, as part of preventing any manipulation of the table or the game elements.
What is the stickman’s role?
The stickman or stickwoman at a craps table is the game host of sorts, like Pat Sajack and Vanna White all in one. The stickman passes the dice to the shooter with a long stick (hence the name) to avoid any foul play contact with the dice. He or she also announces the outcome of every roll so each player knows exactly what is on the dice. Finally, the stickman uses the guide stick to remove the completed bets from the table for the dealers to collect. The stickman typically controls the pace and tone of the craps table.
Why does everyone keep moving around?
This craps table staff team shifts positions around the table every 20 to 30 minutes to ensure the most fair play at the craps table. For one, if any player tried colluding with a casino employee at the craps table, that employee only controls one aspect of the game for a very limited time frame, making it very difficult to favor a player from that role. Additionally, the variance of staff personalities keeps the game moving, with different energy and tone with the role changes. It also keeps the staff fresh in their attention to the various details at the table.
Which bets can I place directly on the table?
There are six types of bets players make directly by placing their chips onto the craps table. Those are pass-line bets, don’t pass bets, come-line bets, field bets, Big 6 bets and Big 8 bets. All other bets are placed by the dealers.
Which bets do I need to ask the dealer to place?
Dealers must place the proposition bets and specific number bets on the table. The player puts their chips on the table and calls out the desired bet. The dealer or stickman moves the chips to that betting zone on the table.
Why do the dealers have to place some bets?
Primarily, this has to do with the position of the table and the dealers’ proximity to that part of the table. Having a player stretch across the whole table to place these bets offers the potential to accidentally or intentionally disturb other bets on the table or cover up some form of manipulating the already placed bets as a mean of cheating. It is another safeguard to protect the honest, fair play of the game.
What does it mean to be right or wrong in craps?
In craps the terms right and wrong don’t have to do with any moral position. They simply indicate whether a bet is placed for or against the shooter. A right bettor places bets that state the shooter is going to win the terms of their roll. A wrong bettor asserts that the shooter is going to lose the terms of their roll. Both right and wrong bets are acceptable, but most players tend to be right bettors to “morally support” the shooter as a fellow player.
How does the play occur in craps?
All players place their bets, directly or with the dealers. The stickman passes the dice to the shooter, who picks up and rolls one of the dice pairs. If the shooter wins her roll, the winning bets are paid and the losing bets are collected. New bets are placed for the next roll. The shooter rolls until she loses the roll. Then the dice are passed to the next player at the table, who becomes the new shooter.
What happens if the dice leave the craps table?
Since the most crucial tool of the craps table are the dice, when a players’ roll or other situation causes the dice to land off the main table, in the chips’ railing or any other location besides the main table area, the stickman announces a “no roll.” The roll does not count and neither do any bets. A new set of official dice are given to the shooter, again preventing any potential cheats from the introduction of loaded dice, and the shooter rolls again.