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How to Play Craps for Beginners

charlotte paisley
Written By Charlotte Paisley 5 min read

Craps is played with 2 dice and players must wager on the expected outcome of each roll. In this guide on how to play craps for beginners, we provide the basic gameplay and the types of bets you can choose from.

Craps Gameplay

In craps, two dice are rolled and the resulting combinations determine whether you win or lose. The game table displays all the available betting options and the amount you can bet ranges from $0.50 to $100. 

So how do beginners start to play craps online? Before anything, find a free online craps game, particularly at a top online casino that offers demo versions without sign up. 

This way you can practice for free on the games that you may eventually bet real money on. Then, you can start familiarizing yourself with the gameplay and the different bet types. 

Without further ado, here are the main points you need to know about how a craps game unfolds:

  1. Once you’ve settled on your wager amount, you need to place a bet on the designated area(s) of the table. 
  2. In addition to the bet types explained below, you need to understand the two potential phases of the game: The Come Out Roll and The Point Phase.
  3. In the Come Out Roll, which refers to the first roll of the dice, you may win or lose based on the initial result (see further explanations below).
  4. If there is no win or loss, you go into the second phase, The Point Phase, in which a number is chosen as “the point,” depending on the bet type.
  5. You keep rolling until you obtain this point number or a 7. Whether you win or lose will depend on the bet. For example, the point must come first for the Pass Line, while the 7 must come first for the Don’t Pass Bar.
craps demo

Craps Bets

An essential gameplay feature that all players want clarity on when asking how to play craps for beginners is the bet types. Why? Because in craps, the betting system forms the foundation of the gameplay

We tested the game to compile a comprehensive list of bets for your convenience. For more information on their corresponding house edges and their payouts, please refer to our complete online craps guide.

Pass Line and Come Bets:

  • Pass Line: 7 or 11 wins, 2, 3, or 12 loses. Other number becomes the point. Win if the point emerges before 7.
  • Come Bet: Similar to Pass Line, but made after the come-out roll. Win if the point is rolled before 7.

Don't Pass and Don't Come Bets:

  • Don't Pass Bar: 2 or 3 wins, 7 or 11 loses, 12 is a tie. Other number becomes the point. Win if a 7 is rolled before the point.
  • Don't Come Bar: Similar to Don't Pass but made after the come-out roll. Win if 7 appears before the point.

Odds Bet:

  • Additional bet made after the point is established. 

Field Bet:

  • Win with 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, or 12.

Place Bets:

  • Bet on specific numbers (4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10) appearing before a 7.

Big 6 and Big 8:

  • Win if a 6 or 8 is rolled before a 7.


  • Specific double combinations or non-double combinations of the same numbers will appear before a 7.

Any Craps:

  • Win with a total of 2, 3, or 12 on the next roll.

Horn Bet:

  • Combination bet covering 2 and 12 or 3 and 11. Any other number is a loss.

Any 7:

  • Win if the next roll is a 7.

Craps Strategy

Although there is no full-proof strategy in craps, as this game is based on chance, there are some tips that can help players truly understand how to play craps, increase their response time, and perfect their gameplay.

These tips can also help improve your chances of winning and keep the games fun. Evidently, managing your budget is essential, but sticking to bets with a low house edge can help you keep things in control.

The truly best way to improve is, of course, to practice. We recommend practicing with free online craps, while keeping an eye on the game’s help menu. This menu usually provides the rules and specific payouts of each bet. 

However, having to regularly open the game guide on the same page as the gaming table can become tedious. As such, you can use one of our trusty guides on how to play craps for beginners instead for visual simplicity.

Following a guide while you play will ensure that you know what you are doing as you are practicing. This will help you internalize the phases and bet types so you can eventually focus on the game itself.


What are the rules of craps? chevron-down-icon

The rules of craps are relatively simple: Essentially, players must bet on the expected outcome of each dice roll. Each type of bet has its own odds and payouts. Therefore, it’s important to understand the various types of bets before placing your wager.

What is the best strategy in craps? chevron-down-icon

There is no best strategy in craps because this game is based on chance. However, there are some general tips that can help you improve your chances of winning. These include sticking to bets with the lowest house edge and managing your budget.

How can I play craps on mobile? chevron-down-icon

To play craps on your mobile devices, you need to first find a reputable online casino that offers the game. Then, simply access the online casino’s website on your device, navigate to the online craps game of your choosing, and start playing.

Can I play craps online for free? chevron-down-icon

Yes, some online casinos offer free online craps. These games allow you to practice and become familiar with the different bets without risking real money. Simply find the game you're interested it, hover over the game icon and click on demo mode or free play.

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