Big Six under study

My latest report is up over at the Center for Gaming Research. It’s a look at why Big Six is such a great game–for the house:

Big Six is a minor casino game, but one that has high visibility on most casinos floors. Positioned where it is easily accessible by casual and novice gamblers, the game offers payouts as high as 45 to 1. But all of the bets, particularly, the longshots, have relatively large advantages for the house, ranging from about 11% to over 24%. The game is one of the worst bets on the casino floor for gamblers.

Looking at field results from a single table in an Atlantic City casino over four years, it is clear that this is a wheel that spins predominantly to the house’s, rather than player’s, advantage. The average win percentage of 42.25% for the period examined explains why seasoned gamblers avoid this game.


I’m glad I took a look at the game–it didn’t take long, and it’s nice practice for testing assumptions a little more controversial than “Big Six isn’t such a great game.”

I fully expect to get several emails from outraged Big Six players, telling me how they’ve won hundreds of dollars on the game over the years.

If you’re in this boat, and are getting ready to email me to tell me I “got it wrong” about this game, here is the offer I’ll make: if you can replicate your winning formula for Big Six in a casino with me or another representative watching and recording all of the details for your bets over several hours, I’m willing to test your theory. If you’re right, we will have found something new.

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