Some U.S states such as Arizona and California frown at the traditional roulette, which has since been banned over there. However, a directive dated April 2004 exempted the variation called California Roulette because it substitutes corresponding playing cards for the roulette wheel—California thinks card games emphasize on skills, whereas the roulette wheel is all about luck. According to the Californian lawmakers, the playing cards should be used to settle on the winning numbers instead of turning the roulette wheel. So, California Roulette, which is classified as a banked card game, can be described as a cross between the American roulette and a card game, which inspired the alternative names card-based roulette and card roulette.
Shuffling machines (called automatic shufflers) and electronic card readers are common gadgets associated with casino operators providing California Roulette. This customized design aside, the player’s aim is similar to the other roulette versions: to bet on a particular (odd/even) number(s), colour, range of numbers, or split numbers.
California Roulette: Game Review
Thirty-eight numbers, which includes 0 and 00 but excludes the picture cards, are the symbols used in California Roulette. Unlike in the roulette wheel-based online variations where the players are proactive, California Roulette players are relatively less in control of the game because a dealer operates the aforementioned devices. Playing California Roulette involves these steps. First, players stake on the colour or oddness or evenness of an upcoming number(s). Secondly, the dealer works on the automatic shuffler, which randomly emits three playing cards; the dealer arranges the cards side-by-side, takes the inner card and puts it in the card reader, where its colour and value pops up in a screen. Third, the dealer places a marker over its matching symbol on the California Roulette grid.
Casino operators often demand $1 Ante bet in every California Roulette game round, and $5 minimum bet and $10 maximum bet for those betting on either the outside or inside grids. Players who opt for the inside grid (the numbers) must stake at least $5. California Roulette has these types of bets on the outside grid. The bottom row has 1 to 18, even, red, black, odd, and 19 to 36 from left to right whose payout is 1:1. The second row from the bottom has first 12, second 12, and third 12 plus the three rows at the top right marked as “2 to 1”; the payout is 2:1, and also applies to the strips, which are the three columns of numbers.
There are other types of bets and payouts in California Roulette. Should a player successfully stake on a specific number, called Straight Up, the payout is 35:1. Placing a chip between two or up to five numbers is known as splitting. The payout is 17:1 for splitting any two numbers; a chip on a row of three numbers offers 11:1; splitting any four numbers (also called a corner bet) has 8:1; 6:1 is the payout for splitting the five numbers (0, 00, and 1-3) at the top left, also called a basket bet.
Although the virtual roulette wheel signs inside Californian casinos give players a false sense of enjoying the real roulette, it is ironical because the wheel is legally absent in this otherwise downgraded version of the traditional roulette.
California Roulette: Strategy
The RTP and house edge of all Roulette variations are from 94.7% to 98.65% and 1.35% to 5.26%, respectively. California Roulette’s possible house edge of 1.35% is due to the en prison rule where players can get back 50% of their stakes, in case a game round results in a zero. Plays can boost their winning chances through combination betting rather than single bets, like six line betting strategy; and splitting numbers sparingly as, in so doing, their winnings’ values lessen progressively.