SCOBE’S GOLDEN TOUCH CRAPS:
by Frank Scoblete
Alene Scoblete is the CEO of Paone Press, which sells gaming books and tapes at discount prices. She also writes for www.scoblete.com. Her husband, Frank Scoblete, is the #1 best-selling gaming author in America. Frank’s books and tapes have sold over a million copies. For a free brochure call: 1-800-944-0406 or write: Frank Scoblete Enterprises, Box 446, Malverne, NY 11565. Frank’s websites arewww.goldentouchblackjack.com, www.goldentouchcraps.com and www.scoblete.com.
Starting with this issue of the BJI, I will be writing bi-monthly articles about craps, alternating each month with my Atlantic City Report. Why? Well, first Atlantic City’s blackjack games really do not show much movement from month-to-month in terms of rules and penetration and, second, so many players are now turning to craps for fun and, more important, for profit through controlled shooting than ever before. I’ll handle the controlled shooting in future issues of the BJI. This month’s article deals with the random game of craps and the use of the Captain’s 5-Count.
The Captain’s 5-Count
(Excerpted from Frank Scoblete’s new book Casino Craps: Shoot to Win!)
How do you position yourself to take advantage of hot rolls without losing a fortune betting on every single shooter and every single roll of the dice? How do you get the same amount or more in comps with less risk? The legendary Captain from Atlantic City developed a method called the 5-Count, which considered both these questions.
On our sitewww.goldentouchcraps.com is an interesting article discussing what the 5-Count can and can’t do for smart craps players. One of our Five Horsemen, Skinny, has done a series of articles on the strength of the 5-Count, using University of Massachusetts’ mathematician Dr. Don Catlin’s study of the 5-Count as his basis. The 5-Count cannot magically transform random rollers into controlled shooters, nothing can do that but practicing how to control the dice, but the 5-Count can find controlled shooters better than any other method, if those shooters are at your table. The only method better than the 5-Count is to know who the controlled shooter is in advance!
When the brilliant Captain was discovering his great 5-Count playing method, he knew he had three imperatives.
1. Reduce the numbers of random rolls you bet on to save your money.
2. Increase likelihood that the shooters you do bet on will win you money.
3. Increase your comps based on body time as opposed to risk time.
The 5-Count accomplishes all three of the Captain’s imperatives based on Dr. Catlin’s study.
So what is the 5-Count? It is the method we use to decide which rollers to bet on. It starts with a Point number on the Come-Out roll (4, 5, 6, 8, 9, or 10) and ends with a Point/Box number. Throws between rolls #1 and #5 can be any number, except if the shooter sevens-out. Let’s take a look at the various scenarios:
Example One: The Basics
The above is the bare bones 5-Count. The shooter is on the Come-Out roll and rolls a 7, which is a winner but is not the start of the 5-Count since it isn’t a Point number. [Remember that point numbers are also called Box numbers.] His second roll is a 4. The 4 is a Point/Box number and is also his Point. Now he rolls an 11, the 2-count, then a 6, the 3-count, then a 3, the 4-count, and then an 8, another Point/Box number, which completes the 5-Count.
Example Two: The Holding Pattern
Example Two shows what happens when other than Point/Box numbers are thrown after the 4-count. This causes a holding pattern. Roll six, which was an 11, established the 4-count, but then the shooter rolled a 3 and then a 2 – both of which are not Point/Box numbers – which causes the 5-Count not to be completed. The 4-count is holding until a Point/Box number is rolled. Finally, the shooter rolls a 10, which is a Point/Box number, and the 5-Count is completed.
Example Three: Shooter Makes Point
Example Three shows what happens when a shooter actually makes his Point during the establishment of the 5-Count. His first roll is a 4, the 1-count; his second roll is a 3, the 2-count and on his third roll, he hits his Point, the 4, which is the 3-count. Now he is on the Come-Out again. He rolls a 7. Because it is a Come-Out roll, that 7 becomes the 4-count. Now the shooter rolls a string of non-Point/Box numbers (the 11, 7, 11, 3) before he finally hits another Point/Box number, the 9. The 5-Count is now completed.
How to Bet with the 5-Count
Now that you know how the 5-Count works, you have to decide how you are going to structure your betting. Remember that the 5-Count is the Captain’s way to eliminate approximately six out of every 10 random rolls and save you a bundle of money. So how do we bet on the shooters who get through the 5-Count?
The best way is to make minimal Come bets and take the full Odds. The Odds bet is a wash between the casino and the player. If you can afford to take the Odds, do so – if you are a frequent player, the Odds bet will wind up being an even proposition between you and the casino.
Please Note: Dice controllers should consider always taking Odds even on random rollers since taking Odds makes you look like a regular player. Very few Rightside players don’t take the Odds.
If you go up on three Come bets of $10 each, your risk is 1.4 percent of $30 or 42 cents.
So here is one example of how to utilize the Come bets in our most conservative way. You will put up a Come bet after the 5-Count is completed. This placement is favorable to you because there are eight ways to win on the initial placement of the Come bet (7 and 11) and only four ways to lose (2, 3, and 12). You have a two-to-one edge on this placement. If the shooter makes a Point number, your bet goes up on the number and you take Odds.
Now you place another Come bet if you wish. If the shooter sevens out, you lose the bet on the number and win the bet just placed on the Come. If he rolls another Box number, you go up on that number if you wish and take the Odds. If you wish to go up on a third number, you simply put out another Come bet. If the shooter has actually made his Point, then you make a Pass Line bet. We will use $10 betting units. You can translate these into your betting units.
Example Four: Come Betting
You can also go up on the Come before the 5-Count is completed, doing so after the 3-count or 4-count, but only put Odds once the 5-Count is completed. The longer you wait the better for your bankroll. However, many players don’t feel comfortable waiting for the full 5-Count if they are going the Come betting route. Dom and I prefer to go up after the entire 5-Count is completed.
Example Five: Place Betting
Place betting with the 5-Count is very simple. When the 5-Count is completed, you Place the 6 and/or 8. If you wish to bet on the 4 and 10, or 5 and 9, make sure these are buyable with the vig paid only on wins.
That is Yours, This is Mine
The 5-Count is the only shooter selection system that has been proven to work in a massive study of 200 million simulated shooters. Check out the report on our web sitewww.goldentouchcraps.com. It makes you look like a regular player but keeps your risk quite low.
And there is also an added benefit, which we alluded to earlier. Sometimes the 5-Count can actually give you what we call a monetary edge over the casino – even against random rollers.
What About Going Up on the Darkside Right Away?
Some players, trying to out-think the brilliant Captain’s 5-Count, think that going up on the Don’t Pass or Don’t Come before the 5-Count is finished is a way to play almost every roll with little risk. Not so. The very moment you put that Don’t Pass or Don’t Come bet, the casino’s edge is eight-to-three over you because the casino will win eight times on the 7 and 11 and the Don’t bettor can only win three times on the 2 and 3. So you are just giving the casino more cracks at your bankroll going up before the 5-Count is finished. In fact, going up on the Don’t Pass or Don’t Come right away is the same as betting on all shooters and all rolls.
If you like to play the Darkside Don’ts then wait until the 5-Count is finished, then bet a Don’t Come (or Don’t Pass) and once up on a number take full Odds. The 5-Count works the same for Darkside random players as for Rightside random players. Every player should use it.
What the 5-Count Isn’t
Some ploppies mistakenly think that the Captain used the appearance percentage of the 7 to the other numbers as the foundation of the 5-Count. He wasn’t looking at averages, or short-term results, not at all. He was looking at the totality of the game to save us money over extended periods of time. These ploppies then state: "How stupid the Captain is. With five rolls or more before you bet, the 7 is more likely to occur."
No it isn’t.
The 7 has about a 17 percent chance of occurring in a random game at any time – now and forever. There is no more likelihood of the 7 appearing on the ninth roll than on the first roll than on the 50th roll. Players who think a number is more likely to appear since it hasn’t appeared are mistaken. In a random game a number does not have more of a chance to come up than its probability indicates. It takes some time to see that this is so… but it is so. Ploppy critics try to out-think the Captain, which is a waste of their time...and ours.
The Exact Math
In the above discussion of the 5-Count I did not use fractions. However to be precise, Prof. Stewart Ethier did a mathematical study of the 5-Count against random rollers and here is what he found: the 5-Count players bet on 43.5 percent of the random rolls, and did not bet on 56.5 percent of the random rolls. He took four rollers as examples so we could see what he means.
Roller #1 survives five rolls, but does not achieve the 5-Count. You do not bet on Roller #1. Roller #2 survives 14 rolls, achieving the 5-Count on the seventh roll. You bet only on his last seven rolls in bold. Roller #3 survives 19 rolls, achieving the 5-Count on the eighth roll. You bet only on his last 11 rolls in bold. Roller #4 survives three rolls, but does not achieve 5-Count. You do not bet on Roller #4.
Professor Ethier summarized what his mathematical analysis found: "In the example, you eliminate two of four rollers, or 50 percent of the random rollers. Long-term percentage is 48.6 percent. In the example, you make no bet on 23 of 41 random rolls, or 56 percent. Long-term percentage is 56.5 percent. To state the converse: In the example, you bet on two of four rollers, or 50 percent. Long-term percentage is 51.4 percent. In the example, you bet on 18 of 41 rolls, or 44 percent. Long-term percentage is 43.5 percent."
Stewart Ethier is professor of mathematics at the University of Utah and has long had an interest in craps. For example, he wrote "Improving on bold play at craps" in the journal Operations Research.
Our Readers Report
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2PM – 3:30PM: You Can Beat BLACKJACK with best-selling author Henry Tamburin (1.5 hrs, $149)
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