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This page is an introductory craps tutorial that will cover the concepts of the game, the important pass line bet, and set you up to read about the other bets available on the board.
Craps is played on a large long flat felt table, which has walls built along the sides. The game-play looks like someone is just throwing a pair of dice down from one end of the table to the other, which it is. You can bet on the outcome of that roll, and a million things that relate.
The person throwing the dice is known as the 'shooter'. The shooter is only the shooter for one round, then the pass the dice along to the next person on their left. This happens when a 'session' ends, and the new dice-holder starts the next session.
The very first roll the new shooter throws is called the 'come-out roll'. Before the shooter rolls the come-out roll for a session, they are required to make a pass-line bet. Other players will likely also make a pass line bet at this point, although it isn't necessary.
What the shooter rolls on the come-out roll is important. The resulting dice total will either win or lose for pass line bets or remain neutral for pass line bets. If it wins or loses (a win is a roll of 7 or 11, a loss is a roll of 2, 3, or 12) the session is instantly over and the same shooter rolls another come-out roll.
When the come-out roll doesn't instantly win or lose for the pass line bets, it means a different number must have been rolled. The only other numbers are 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, and 10. If one of these is rolled it becomes known as 'the point' number for the remainder of the session.
Now the pass line bets that have been left in limbo are resolved (won or lost) based around the point number. After the point has been set, the shooter just keeps rolling and rolling. If they happen to roll the point number a second time before they roll a 7, the pass line bets win. If the shooter happens to roll a 7 before they hit the point number again, the pass line bets lose. That's called 'sevening out'.
The shooter is by default a pass line bettor (remember how you have to place a pass line bet before you can shoot the come-out roll?). Everyone else who chooses to make a pass line bet along with the shooter is said to be playing 'with the dice'. The pass line bet itself is a bet that is 'with the dice'. In the case of someone placing a bet that wins when the pass line bettors lose, they would be known as 'wrong bettors' or 'betting against the dice'.
This is all fine and dandy you may be thinking, but it doesn't tell me much about how to play. No worries, this craps tutorial is just a primer, the entire site is what will teach you. To get on the right track with this tutorial, let's just have a proper look at the pass line bet and the cycle of play so you're clear, then you'll be ready to learn the rest of the bets. At that point you'll be able to look at the whole craps board and know what everything is and what it's for.