Roulette Call Bets
Even though call bets are not an important part of the roulette game; knowing about them can one day make you a lot of money. They are usually ‘faster’ than layout bets, for in some cases a player can call these mid-spin. The term ‘call bet’ is not exactly accurate (call bets refer to bets that have no collateral /chips/ placed on the table; such bets are considered ‘credit-bets’ and are illegal in many countries around the world). The correct term people should be using is ‘announces’ or ‘announced bets’.
They are called ‘announced’ bets because a player must ‘announce’ their wager, and thus not placing his chips on the layout itself. You might be asking yourselves “How can a player place a wager without there being a layout present”? In this case, the betting system corresponds to the wheel itself, and not the layout, or its groupings. This means that lines, dozens, odds/evens etc. are completely out of the game; replaced by more convoluted combinations (most often used in European casinos), such as the Voisins du Zero, Orphelins and Tiers du Cylindre, among others. Before we move on to discussing every one of these, let us first look at the basic French wheel (To the right*).
Voisins du Zéro
Literally translated, this bet means “Neighbours of Zero”. And if we look at the wheel, we can see which are the Voisins du Zero numbers: 22,18,29,7,28,12,35,3,26,0,32,15,19,4,21,2,25. The bet itself is played using 9 chips – or multiples of 9 chips, like 18, 27 etc. – placed on the first street 0,2,3; one chip goes between 7 and 4 (split); plus one more split on 12 and 15; and one more on 18 and 21; again on 19 and 22; one last split on 32 and 35; and finally a square on 25,26,28,29.
Tiers du Cylindre
Now that we’ve seen the ‘zero neighbourhood’, let’s look at the other end of the wheel, where the Tiers du Cylindre (Thirds of the wheel, also known as Small Series or Series 5/8) numbers are: 27,13,36,11,30,8,23,10,5,24,16,33. This bet is handled pretty straight forward: the 12 numbers are split into pairs and played using 6 chips (or a multiple of 6). The bets that make up a Tiers du Cylindre include 5 and 8, 10 and 11, 13 and 16, 23 and 24, 27 and 30, 33 and 36 – all splits.
Orphelins refer to the 2 ‘orphan’ sets of numbers between Voisins du Zero and Tiers du Cylindre. On one side we have 1, 20, 14, 31, 9 and on the other 17, 34, 6. This bet is made using 5 chips or multiples thereof. There are 4 splits: 31 and 34, 17 and 20, 14 and 17, 6 and 9 and a single chip on 1.
Also known as the ‘zero game’, this bet is very popular among German; and many other European casinos throughout the Old Continent. The numbers are 12, 35, 3, 26, 0, 32, 15, and they constitute 3 splits, 1 chip each (0 and 3; 12 and 15; 32 and 35) and one chip straight on 26.
Number X and the Neighbours
Number X can be any one of the 36 numbers on the roulette disk and the neighbours are the two adjacent numbers on either side. The bet is played using 5 chips, so a 4 and the neighbours bet, for example, would be placing a single chip on 19, 15, 21, 2 and 4.
Of course, there can never be a ‘final bet’ while at a casino. Final bets (or final, for more dramatic effect) are bets that group kind of ‘diagonal/zig-zaggy’ going numbers; basically, a combination that begins with a digit and each number afterwards ends with the same digit. An example of this would be 4, 14, 24, 34; or 2, 12, 22, 32 etc. etc.
The Racetrack Wheel and Call Bets
The racetrack wheel is a common feature in certain roulette games, primarily those found on the Internet. It is shaped like a racetrack and this is where it gets its name. The racetrack wheel is part of the betting layout and it portrays the numbers in the same order as they are on the main wheel. What’s more, the racetrack wheel also usually holds three or four popular call bets.
The main reason behind the racetrack wheel is convenience. Since it features the sequence is the correct order and allows you to place bets on any of them, you do not have to consult a guide every time you wish to place a call bet. Moreover, being able to automatically place a call bet is certainly more intuitive than clicking on the layout multiple times. It saves you time and does exactly what you want it to.
Racetrack wheels do differ between the various games out there. Some will include particular call bets but others will only make do with only the common ones. It is up to you to find the game that best serves your needs and wants. Luckily, the online roulette scene has developed much over the years and now includes something for everyone.
Difference Between Call Bets and Standard Bets in Roulette
Now that we have an understanding of how call bets work, we have to ask ourselves the question whether they are worth it over the traditional inside and outside wagers. As with most things in life, there is no clear answer. It all depends on your play style and the size of your bankroll.
Call bets, as we have explained, are not stand-alone wagers, but rather a collection of several smaller bets. Each of those smaller bets has to be placed individually for the call bet to be complete. As a result, call bets are much more expensive than any single wager you can make in roulette. You will have to wager anywhere between 3 and 9 chips or multiples thereof to put down a call bet. Naturally, this will affect your bankroll significantly. The longer you play, the more money you will have to wager and with that comes extra risk. It only takes a few unfortunate spins for your bankroll to be depleted.
On the flip side, if you score a win from a call bet you will be better off. Basically, call bets amplify your luck. If you win, you win more. But if you lose, then the losses will be worse. It is all a matter of whether you want to accept the greater risk in terms of staking more money per spin.
Odds of Call Bets
Oddswise, call bets are no different than the small wagers of which they consist. There is no inherent advantage or disadvantage to using call bets where the odds are concerned. The house edge and RTP values of the game remain the same no matter what.
While some players might believe that the proximity of the pockets makes it more likely for a winning call bet to come up, this is not exactly true. It could potentially be the case where a physical roulette wheel is concerned since the laws of physics play a role in determining the winning number. However, the odds of any single number being the winning one never change. Only 1 in 37 numbers will come up in a single spin and there is nothing you can do to manipulate it.
This is best shown in online roulette where no physical wheel is involved. The RNG system randomly picks one pocket and presents that as the winning one. The adjacent numbers to the winner have no effect and are not even a factor.
While using call bets, you might be influenced by the near-miss fallacy. It goes something like this: you place a bet on a random number, the wheel spins, and the ball lands in the pocket next to your chosen one. You may think that you were close to winning. In reality, you were not. The odds of winning a Straight Up bet were always the same and just because the winning number was close to your original pick makes no difference.
When we consider this, placing a Les Orphelins bet, for example, is no different than betting on any random 4 Splits and a Straight Up. Call bets are simply more organized and better to look at than anything else.