American and European Roulette Wheel

All you need to know about American and European Roulette Wheel

There are many new beginners in the field of casino games who find it hard to differentiate between American roulette wheel and European roulette wheel. Well, there is really no reason to be confused anymore. In this roulette guide, we will look at the similarities, differences, characteristics, rules, and every other thing that you need to know about these two variants of roulette.


First, let us establish that Roulette is one of the most popular and most played games in the world of casino. Due to its popularity, many variants have been invented overtime but the most popular variants are the American and European Roulette.



What are American and European Roulette?

The roulette game is one of the most famous games of chances in the casino. It was invented in the 17th century in European France. Over the course of the year, it slowly began to move to Las Vegas. The original variation of the game is known as the European roulette and it happens to be the most popular and well played version of the game. Since its introduction into the world of casino, it has continued to gain attraction and it has remained one of the most played casino games in the world today. There is also another variant of roulette known as the American roulette. This was invented at a much later date in the U.S.A.


The European roulette wheel basically includes a metal ball, a wheel, where the ball is thrown into, and then a table, where players generally place their bets or wager. The figures of the game range from one to thirty-six and come in black or red color. The implication of this is that there is an equal number of red and black (that is low ends of 1-17, and high ends of 18-36).


In addition to this, there is a single zero that is allotted a green color. The green color is known as ‘house number’ which gives a little house edge to the game. If the house number has not been introduced, the result would be such that when a player bet on red or black, the odds will be the same because the ball could either land on the black or red color (just like a coin will naturally flip on either on its head or the tail).


The green zero slot attach a thirty-seventh pocket to the wheel where the ball can land in. By this additional number, the chances of the ball landing in either black or red are slightly lower than half because once in a while, the ball will land in the green pocket and any player who bets on black or red will lose to the house. In actual fact, the house has an edge of about 2.70% simply because of the single green zero pocket in the European roulette wheel.


The American roulette wheel has the same rules application to it. The only difference is that there is an additional green color slots with two zeros. With this addition, the house has a higher odd to earn more profits and make the players lose big sums of money at a very fast pace. Technically, the American roulette does not have any benefit and this is why the European roulette seems to be a much preferred game for winning larger sum of money.


It is important to mention that it is only in the United States that you can find the American roulette wheel because players across the world play only the European Roulette wheel. Of course, this makes a lot of sense when you consider the benefits that come with it. There are many players in the United States that stick with the European roulette. In fact, players who play the American roulette in the U.S. do so because they are great fans of the game or simply to encourage the game. Before you start playing at a casino, it is crucial that you check whether it is an American roulette wheel or a European roulette wheel that you want to play at.


Similarities between the European Roulette and American Roulette

Basically, the similarity between the two variations of Roulette game is that both are casino games and are played by both professional and newbie in the gaming world. The two games have rules, strategies, and methods of play. The rules, strategies, and methods are similar with very subtle differences. Another similarity is that both are gambling games. Players can win in either of them and can also lose. This covers about all the simple similarities between the two variants.


Differences between European Roulette Wheel and American Roulette Wheel

There are some major differences between the two variations that distinguish them from one another. These differences include the game layout, the house edge, and the rules.


Game Layout

One of the major differences between the American Roulette Wheel and European Roulette Wheel is the layout of each of the games. The American roulette features 38 pokers on the wheel while the European roulette features 37. Pockets refers to the destination where the ball lands. The reason for the difference in the number is basically because the American version of the wheel has two zeros, that is, one ‘0’ pocket, and another ’00’ pocket.


The European variant on the other hand has only one ‘0’ pocket. Other than these differences, both roulette variants have 18 black pockets and 18 red pockets each. Apart from the ‘00’ difference, the American roulette wheels also has varying sequence when compared to the European roulette variants. The wheels for American roulette function in counter clockwise order of numbers. If you understand the game, it will be easy for you to differentiate the two because the different types of roulette are accurately laid out to ensure that the evens, and odds, blacks and reds are accurately distributed.


House Edge

This is another major difference between the American roulette wheel and the European roulette wheel. This is the manner in which the variation in the pocket numbers impact the house edge from the beginning to the end of the game. It is essential to point out that this is the crucial factor that determines the choice of players when it comes to choosing the type of roulette to play.


When it comes to American roulette wheel, the house edge is usually about 5.26% which is almost the double of the European variant. The technical reason for this is because of the fact that the American roulette wheel comes with the ‘0’ pocket and ‘00’ pocket. This means that when a player places a bet, the house has a greater advantage in the game, especially when even money bet is involved. Based on the fact that payouts strategy is the same across the different formats of the game, players have better chance at winning when playing at a European roulette wheel where the house edge is quite lower than the American roulette wheel.


For the European roulette wheel, the house edge is about 2.7%. The reason for this is because the existence of the ‘0’ on the wheel offers better odds for the player when he places a bet. This means you are better off playing at the European roulette wheel to increase your chances of winning. Of course, the difference is not much since it is just one pocket. However, if you want to win on the long run, the seemingly slight difference makes a lot of difference on whether you win or not. The odd of winning at American Roulette is 1 in 38 but with the European roulette, it is 1 in 37.


The Exception to the House Edge

No doubt, the house edge reduces the bankroll of every average player slowly. It is like a fee on bank transaction where you get charged for every transaction you conduct, whether you lose the transaction or you win. However, professional players in roulette systems games can predict the accurate winning number. With this, the odds in favor of the player increases significantly which means winnings happen more regularly than the norm.


As a matter of fact, the precision of prediction can be very high to the point that instead of 2.70% house edge, the player gets an edge of up to 120%. In this case, it doesn’t really matter the specific wheel that a player is playing at; whether European or American because the player still has a huge edge over the house. So if you are playing with a roulette computer, the variant of the roulette game is not such a major issue for you.


It all depends on the computer with the most predictable spins and the one that produces the biggest player edge. No doubt, the house edge is a factor, but the spin prediction is a more important factor when it comes to choosing between American roulette wheel and European roulette wheel.


The Rules of the Game

Technically, the basic rules of roulette games are the same across all the variants of the game. However, there are specific steps that the players can take when they are playing at European roulette table as opposed to the American roulette table. When playing at the European roulette wheel, there are two different advantageous rules that the player can engage. The first rule is the ‘En Prison rule’. This allows the player to have an additional spin when they place even money bet and the ball lands in the ‘0’ pocket.


Taking advantage of the En Prison rule can drastically reduce the house edge to as low as 1.35%. Secondly, players can make ‘call bets’ when playing at European roulette table. The ‘call bets’ are the kinds of bet that a player announce to the dealer instead of putting the chips on the roulette betting tables, just like you would in a regular betting. It is important to mention that the call bet is usually reserved for a time when you want to take a complex betting action. A call bet includes Red Split and Neighbors.


Red Split & Neighbors

When playing at an American roulette wheel, a player can place a ‘5 number bet’. This bet will be placed on 0, 00, 1, 2, and 3. Looking at this ‘5 number bet’ you can understand why it is practically impossible to play this particular game on the European roulette table. Bets like these are generally risky because the player has given the house an edge of a huge 7.9% which is higher than another bet on the roulette wheel.


Even if you have a payout of 6:1, the ‘5 number bet’ is still one of the minimal profitable wagers you can make in the American roulette game. As much as possible, ensure you try to avoid this kind of betting. It is crucial to mention that some of the rules may not be applicable to the online variation of the game. Therefore, before you engage in either American roulette wheel or European roulette wheel, you should first check the rules that are applicable and the ones that are not.


Which Option of the Roulette is better?

This is an important question you need to find answers to, especially if you are playing the game to make money (come to think of it; who gambles without the intention to win big?) So you are ready to play a roulette game but you are not sure of the specific game to choose; how do you make this important choice?


Well, this depends on the value you are looking for in the game. The European roulette wheel provides a better experience for players who are looking to make more money. With the option of ‘En Prison’ rule and a lower house edge that are in the favor of the player, playing at the European roulette wheel is surely a better option of increasing the odds of winning than the American roulette wheel.


As mentioned earlier, if you are playing at an online game where your system can predict a winning number, you can consider the American roulette wheel. There are many professionals who have the competence to achieve this and they win big at American roulette. With the advantage of using physics, the house edge is just a variable and not the determinant of the winning chances at the game. If you are playing at wheel that is predictable, it doesn’t matter much whether it is an American roulette or a European roulette. You can be sure of winning many rounds.


Now, when you have the potential to attain up to 120% edge, you definitely do not have a problem beating the machine, the problem is the greed that creeps in. When you begin to win too much, it raises suspicion and you may be detected. This may make you forfeit your winnings; so you have to be careful. Well, whether this is legitimate or not is on the grey side because there are many players who will tell you that there is nothing wrong with it.


If you don’t have the opportunity to predict the winning numbers, then stick with the European roulette wheel because better odds and lower house edge are the key ingredients of this game. This will give you higher odds of winning than the American roulette wheel.


Where to play American Roulette Wheel and European Roulette Wheel

There is a plethora of casino sites online that offer both the American and European roulette to players. Most of them are live sites, allowing players to place their bets in games conducted by real-life trained dealers. You can never be short of a casino site to play. However, you have to be sure of the specific variant of roulette you want to play before bankrolling a game.

Also, there are some other factors you should consider before signing up with a casino site. Check the review section on the casino site and also check independent review sites to know the reputation of the site. Of course, it will be disheartening to win so much and not be able to withdraw at the end of the day.



Roulette is generally a game of chance where you can win a fortune if you apply the right strategies and strictly follow the game’s rule. Before you start playing at a table, spend time to study the rules on the surface of the roulette table. In addition to this, learn from other players who have developed competence in the game and have one or two tricks to teach. There are various forums online where you can read up stuffs on the game.


Finally, do not be discouraged when you lose money at the start of the game. Remember, you are learning and you will definitely become better at the game. Having said this, remember that bankroll management is very important to your online gambling sanity. So whether it is an American roulette wheel or a European roulette wheel, try as much as possible to manage your bankroll judiciously.