How to play Roulette

Spinning and winning roulette with MrQ

Want to learn how to spin and win with roulette? Read our comprehensive guide on how to play and bet on one of the oldest and most popular table casino games. This extensive guide will give you insight into what roulette is, its origins, and give you the top tips and tricks to make you a roulette master.

What is roulette?

Roulette is a table casino game where players bet on a betting table and a wheel to decide on the winner. Roulette is played by spinning the wheel and placing the ball on it. It will spin until it lands in one of the numbered spaces. The phrase ‘spin to win’ traditionally refers to roulette because of its use of the wheel which has become an iconic part of the game. There are a variety of potential roulette bets including on the colours black or red and on numbers odd or even. Players can also bet on specific numbers on the wheel with a total of 37 numbers up for grabs including 0. Some versions of roulette, namely those favoured by American casinos, features two 0 spaces on the wheel increasing the number of pockets to 38. Each bet has its own odds which are explained in the how-to bet section.

Where does roulette come from?

Roulette has a rich history dating back to the 17th century and was inspired by an Italian game known as Biribi. In Biribi, players selected from a grid of 70 numbers and the winners were selected from a sack containing slips of numbered paper. The system was viewed as unfair and corruption became a frequent complaint against those who ran the games. Roulette appeared as a result of this and utilised a wheel that would keep it fair for both players and the house.

Roulette skyrocketed in popularity in the 17th century when it was adopted by the French public. The name Roulette translates from French to mean “little wheel”. By the 19th century, Roulette was the biggest land casino game in the world. Roulette would go on to be the most prominent casino game in all major land casinos. The game even featured in some of the biggest casino film scenes including Casablanca and Diamonds are Forever.

Nowadays, because of the huge popularity of roulette worldwide, online casinos have adapted roulette to be played from the comfort of your own home. Players can play with a virtual or live roulette wheel without needing to travel to play. Online casinos have continued to expand their library of roulette games by including some thrilling variations of the classic rules to heat up the action while still keeping what makes it special. However you like to play, you can always expect fun when you spin to win with roulette.

How to bet on roulette

Betting in roulette seems intimidating on the surface, but we have you covered with a handy little guide to get you betting like a pro in no time! There are two types of betting in roulette known as inside bets and outside bets. These bet types depend on if the bet is on the numbered grid or if it is outside of it. Each bet has its own winnings ratio meaning some are riskier than others but offer a greater potential reward.

Inside Bets

Inside bets are bets made inside of the numbered grid on the roulette table. Bets that are inside bets are any of the 37 coloured numbers on the grid including the green space for 0. Different bets can be made depending on where the bet is placed on the grid. Below is a handy table of all the potential inside bets and how to do them.

Bet typehow do I bet on itWhat does it do
StraightPlace your bet in the middle of any numbered space on the grid.This places a bet on the specific number chosen and does not take into account the colour of the number.
SplitPlace your bet on the white line between two numbered spaces.This will bet on the 2 numbers next to your bet either left to right or up and down.
StreetPlace your bet on the bottom of the lowest number on a 3 number row.This will bet on the 3 numbers that are above your bet on the grid.
CornerPlace your bet in the middle of any 4 numbered squares.This will place a bet on all 4 numbers that are surrounding your bet placement.
Six lineSimilar to a street bet except you place the bet in on the bottom of the two lowest numbers between them.This will bet on the 2 rows (or streets) of the numbers selected. This means a six-line bet will have a total of 6 numbers for any one bet.
0Place a bet on the green coloured 0 at the end of the table. This is the only numbered space that is not red or black.0 bets act the same way as a straight single number bet and has the same payout ratio. The biggest difference is 0 is not affected by any outside bets including black/red or column bets.

Outside Bets

Outside bets are made on the outside of the numbered grid on the table. These bets include almost 50/50 bets like odds/even, black/red, and low/high. Outside bets also include column bets and dozen bets. Below is a table on the outside bets and what they mean.

Bet typehow do I bet on itWhat does it do
OddsPlace your bet on the odds square that is placed on the outside of the numbered gridThis places bets on all numbers that are odd between 0-37. This means that a bet has been placed on half of the available numbers.
EvensPlace your bet on the even square that is placed on the outside of the numbered gridThis places bets on all numbers that are even between 0-37. This means that a bet has been placed on half of the available numbers.
BlackThis places a bet on all numbers in black.This places a bet on half of the numbers on the board as red and black are equally split across all available numbers excluding 0.
RedThis places a bet on all numbers in red.This places a bet on half of the numbers on the board as red and black are equally split across all available numbers excluding 0.
HighPlace your bet on the space numbered 19-36.This will place a bet on all numbers between 19-36 regardless of colour.
LowPlace your bet on the space numbered 1-18.This will place a bet on all numbers between 1-18 regardless of colour.
ColumnPlace your bet on the end of any of the 3 available columns on the right-hand side. This is highlighted by green spaces labelled 2:1.This will place a bet on any of the three available rows of 12 numbers from left to right regardless of colour. Numbers are not in numerical order so each column has different sets of numbers.
DozenPlace your bet on the green spaces labelled either 1-12, 13-24, or 25-36.This will place a bet on the 12 numbers that are below the labelled space regardless of colour. Similar to a column bet expect on numbers are in a 3x3 grid rather than a singular line of 12 numbers.

Betting table

Looking to strategise your bets or just curious about how much each bet can win? Here’s a handy little table to help you remember each bet and its potential payout.

Bet typeWinnings ratioWinnings (based on £1 bet)
Six line5:1£6

A step-by-step guide on how to play roulette

Now that we know the basics of betting, let’s get playing. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to play like a seasoned roulette pro.

Step 1: Place your bets

Make your inside and/or outside bets depending on your betting strategy. Remember that outside bets like red/black and high/low are the safest bets to make but have the lowest potential winnings. Once you feel confident, this is a perfect opportunity to flex your newfound roulette knowledge and make some inside bets that have larger potential winning.

Step 2: Spin the wheel

Once all bets are made, the wheel is spun and all bets are made final for the game. The ball spins in the opposite direction to the wheel and will fall into one of the 36 sections on the wheel. If the ball lands on the colour or number you have selected then you win!

Step 3: Collect winnings

Winnings are given depending on the bets made with single number wins giving the highest single bet payout at 35:1. The game restarts and bets are made for the next round. If you find yourself unlucky then experiment with new bet strategies and try different combinations. They say variety is the spice of life!

Step 4: Congratulations

You now have all the tools and know-how to strut up to the roulette table with confidence. Take your skills out into the world and enjoy one of the most popular table games in the world!

Top 5 tips for roulette

  • Start with small bets and set strict budgets to get your confidence up and practice playing.
  • Make initial bets on 50/50 spaces (black/red, odd/even) to get a better understanding of the rules before making riskier bets.
  • Once you feel confident, try out live roulette games to get that authentic land casino experience.
  • Don’t put all your eggs in one basket- split up bets and experiment with combinations of bets that work for you.
  • Take breaks and remember to keep it fun- MrQ offers ways to limit sessions in your account settings.

Biggest differences between online and land casino roulette

Convenience- Land casino roulette is played, as the name suggests, at a real casino. Online roulette allows players to play from the comfort of their own home without long commutes, strict dress codes, or handfuls of chips. Simply log on, pick your favourite roulette game, and have fun!

Betting limits- Land casinos generally have a higher minimum buy-in per game and feature a lot more large bets from high-roller players of up to £10,000+ per spin! Online casinos feature lower minimum bets at as low as 20p per spin to be more accessible to new and casual players. Don’t worry for the high-rollers, large bets are still possible with online roulette games.

Speed- Land casino roulette games are fast-paced and dictated by the dealer making it an environment that favours experienced players. Online roulette is dictated by the player and means that the pace of the game is based on the speed the player decides. This makes online roulette perfect for those new to the game and for players who want their roulette experience to be leisurely.

Types of roulette

Now that you know the basics of roulette, here are some variations of the traditional ruleset to spice up the action and bring new levels to your roulette game.

Auto roulette- Auto roulette speeds up the action by adding a timer to each betting round. Once the timer expires the wheel is automatically spun without the need of player interaction and winnings are recorded as normal. Auto roulette is perfect for those looking for the fast-paced action of the casino roulette table.

Real roulette- Similar to Auto roulette but with a unique difference. Real roulette games feature a real dealer who spins the wheel and announces the results. Real roulette adds that extra elements to give you an online roulette experience that authentically captures the excitement of the casino.

20p roulette- 20p roulette games lowers the minimum buy-in to 20p per spin. 20p roulette also adds a second optional roulette table where additional bets can be made. These are called neighbour bets and can only be added as inside bets.


What are the safest bets in roulette?

The safest bets in roulette are bets that have an almost 50/50 chance of winning. This includes red/black, odd/even, and high/low. These bets payout the lowest but have the highest percentage likelihood of winning.

What bets have the highest potential winnings?

The highest possible single bet winnings in roulette come from a single number bet with the odds at 35:1. Essentially, for every successful £1 bet the winnings will be £35.

Can you win real cash playing roulette?

Yes! All of the roulette games available on MrQ are real money casino games where winnings are deposited into your account instantly. Play today for as little as 20p per spin.

Can you play online roulette live?

As well as standard roulette, there are also a selection of live roulette games that feature a trained casino dealer who players can interact with live. Live roulette is set up to be as close to the land casino feel as possible; including real casino table and roulette wheel.

Where can I play roulette online?

You can play all of the finest roulette games online now at MrQ- the UK's #1 slots and casino site. Sign up today and play roulette for as little as 20p per spin.

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