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How Many Numbers Are There in Roulette?

How Many Numbers Are There in Roulette?

Picture this: it’s a warm summer night in the glitzy city of Las Vegas, and you’re standing in the centre of a bustling casino. The air is thick with the chatter of excited gamblers and the whirring of slot machines. Suddenly, a captivating sight catches your eye – a shimmering roulette table with a spinning wheel, full of mystery and intrigue. You step closer, wondering, “How many numbers are there in roulette?”

Well, my friend, it’s time to find out! Join me as we embark on a thrilling journey through the numbers in roulette, exploring the intricacies of this fascinating game. In this punchy, engaging, and easy-to-understand article, we’ll uncover the world of roulette, one number at a time.

A Spin Through Roulette’s Origins

Before we delve into the number game, let’s take a spin down memory lane to learn about the origins of roulette. The word “roulette” comes from the French term for “little wheel,” a fitting name for this mesmerising game. Roulette traces its roots back to 17th-century France, where it was likely inspired by a combination of the Italian game Biribi and the English game Roly-Poly.

Legend has it that the French mathematician and inventor Blaise Pascal inadvertently created the roulette wheel while trying to invent a perpetual motion machine. Although he didn’t achieve perpetual motion, Pascal’s “failure” gave birth to one of the most popular casino games in history. Talk about a happy accident!

European vs. American Roulette – A Tale of Two Wheels

Now that we’ve covered the origins of roulette, let’s dive into the numbers. But wait! Did you know that there are two primary types of roulette wheels – European and American? The number of pockets on the wheel (and thus the numbers in the game) depends on the type of wheel you’re playing.

European Roulette

The European roulette wheel has 37 pockets, numbered from 0 to 36. The numbers are not arranged sequentially but are instead placed in a specific order to balance the red and black, high and low, and odd and even numbers. Half the pockets (1-36) are red and half are black, while the 0 pocket is green.

Imagine you’re at the luxurious Monte Carlo Casino in Monaco, sipping champagne while placing your bets on a European roulette wheel. You decide to bet on red, and as the wheel spins, you eagerly watch the little white ball whirl around the wheel, anxiously hoping it lands on a red number. With 18 red pockets on the European wheel, you’ve got a 48.6% chance of winning that bet – not too shabby!

American Roulette

The American roulette wheel, on the other hand, has 38 pockets, numbered from 0 to 36, plus an additional 00 pocket. This extra pocket is also green and significantly increases the house edge compared to the European wheel. Like its European counterpart, the American wheel’s numbers are arranged to balance the red and black, high and low, and odd and even numbers.

Picture yourself at the famous Bellagio Casino in Las Vegas, playing American roulette. You decide to bet on black this time, hoping Lady Luck is on your side. The wheel spins, and the little white ball races around, teasing you as it flutters past the black pockets. With 18 black pockets on the American wheel, you’ve got a 47.4% chance of winning that bet – slightly lower than the European wheel due to the extra 00 pocket.

The Enigma of the Green Zero

The Enigma of the Green Zero

Why is the green zero (and double zero in American roulette) so significant? Well, these green pockets are the key to the house edge, giving the casino a slight advantage over the players. In European roulette, with a single zero, the house edge stands at 2.7%. However, in American roulette, the double zero increases the house edge to 5.26%.

Imagine you’re playing European roulette and place an even money bet on red. If the ball lands on a red number, you win. If it lands on a black number or the green zero, you lose. The green zero pocket tips the balance in favour of the casino, ensuring that they’ll make a profit over time.

Now, consider playing American roulette. The presence of both the zero and double zero pockets means that you have two green pockets working against your even money bets. This results in a higher house edge, making it less favourable for players in the long run.

The Dance of the Numbers

Let’s shift gears and take a closer look at the arrangement of numbers on the roulette wheel. You might be wondering why the numbers aren’t arranged sequentially. The truth is that the placement of the numbers on the wheel is meticulously designed to ensure a balance of various factors:

  • Alternating red and black numbers
  • Evenly distributed high (19-36) and low (1-18) numbers
  • Roughly equal distribution of odd and even numbers

In European roulette, the sequence of numbers on the wheel is as follows:


Numbers on a European Roulette Wheel

For American roulette, the sequence is slightly different:


Numbers on an American Roulette Wheel

These sequences create a fascinating dance of the numbers, adding an extra layer of intrigue to the game.

The Allure of the Roulette Strategy

Despite the randomness of the roulette wheel, many players believe in employing strategies to increase their chances of winning. Some popular roulette strategies include the Martingale, Fibonacci, and Labouchere systems. While these strategies can make the game more engaging, it’s essential to remember that roulette is a game of chance, and no strategy can guarantee a win.

For example, the Martingale system involves doubling your bet after every loss. The idea is that when you eventually win, you’ll recover your losses and make a small profit. However, this strategy can lead to massive losses if you hit a long losing streak. It’s crucial to approach roulette with a healthy dose of realism, treating it as a fun and entertaining game rather than a surefire way to make money.


So, how many numbers are there in roulette? The answer depends on the type of wheel you’re playing. European roulette boasts 37 numbers (0-36), while American roulette has 38 numbers (0-36 plus the 00). The numbers in roulette are carefully arranged to create a captivating and balanced game that has captured the hearts of gamblers for centuries.

As we’ve journeyed through the world of roulette, we’ve explored the game’s origins, the differences between European and American roulette, the significance of the green zero, the arrangement of numbers on the wheel, and the allure of roulette strategies.

The next time you find yourself standing in front of a roulette table, whether it’s in the glitzy casinos of Las Vegas or digital roulette rooms of an online casino,, take a moment to appreciate the rich history and intricate design of this fascinating game. And as the wheel spins and the little white ball whirls around, remember that, in the end, it’s all about enjoying the ride and embracing the thrill of the unknown.

Now that you’re armed with knowledge about the numbers in roulette, you’re ready to take on the casino and join the ranks of countless players who have fallen under the spell of the spinning wheel. So, grab your chips, place your bets, and let the numbers work their magic. Good luck, and may the odds be ever in your favour!