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Discussion in 'Beginner Zone' started by bq325is, Jan 10, 2015.

  1. goatcabin, Feb 12, 2015

    goatcabin

    goatcabin Member

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    Review of "No-Nonsense Craps", by Richard Orlyn

    First of all, the copyright notice on the inside of the frontispiece says that no part may be reproduced except for "brief quotes used in connection with reviews written specifically for inclusion in a magazine, newspaper or website specializing in such reviews." Since I don't think this website qualifies as such, I will be limited to paraphrasing, rather than quoting.

    What I liked
    ------------

    Right in the introduction, he specifically rejects any ideas about charting tables or making any bets based on past rolls. IOW, he recognizes the totally random, independent nature of each roll of the dice.

    Secondly, he rejects the idea of setting and influencing the dice to alter the "perfect 36" probability matrix.

    He does not provide nor recommend any strategies based on "hot" and "cold" shooters or tables.

    He avoids the common "always take maximum odds in order to reduce the house advantage" line of many books about craps. In his method odds bets have their place, and I will address that later.

    He points out, in no uncertain terms, that the odds bets do not change the ev at all. The ev of -$.14 on a $10 pass bet remains the same, regardless of odds taken or not, no matter the odds multiple. He does throw out the usual 0.85%, 0.61% overall HA figures for single and double odds, and even 0.02% for 100X odds, but the expected loss is still the same. I haven't seen this in another book.

    I like his classification of point numbers into first (6/8), second (5/9) and third-tier (4/10) points, based on their decreasing probabilities of being won (from a "right" betting point of view, of course). The distinction is important in his "Table Time Plus" (TTP) strategy, the only one he proposes.

    He stresses the fun of playing craps.

    What I didn't like
    ------------------

    He doesn't address variance as such. In fact, when writing about the odds bets on pass and come points, he makes a serious mistake, stating that these bets "attenuate" good and bad luck. The verb "attenuate" means to "reduce the force, effect or value of", with synonyms "weaken", "reduce", "lessen", "decrease", "diminish", "impair". That is exactly the OPPOSITE of what odds bets do. Compared to just making pass and come bets, taking odds result in larger swings, not smaller. I suspect that he meant to say "accentuate". "Attenuate" is not a very common word, after all.

    In discussing buy bets, he ignores the rounding issue, i.e. at what point does the vig go from $1 to $2. He does cover the difference between collecting the vig in advance or only on a win. If you can make a $30 buy bet with just a $1 vig, collected only on a win, you get an HA of just 1.11%. If they round up at $30, try $25 with a $1 vig, HA 1.33%.

    He gives short shrift to lay bets, not even distinguishing between the vig collected up front or on a win. He basically brushes these bets aside, nor does he point out that collecting the vig only on a win is a much bigger advantage on buy bets than lay bets, because lay bets win more often than they lose.

    He dismisses wrong betting, and makes some rather negative characterizations of wrong bettors. In comparing DP with pass, he uses the (in my view) misleading 1.36% HA, but he also points out that the difference is very small, about $.05 for every $100 bet. He essentially says he can't understand why anyone would bet that way. Rather judgmental, in my view.

    Other than place, buy and lay bets, he rejects the other bets out of hand, based exclusively on the high HAs. The attraction of these bets, other than "showmanship", is their high payouts on wins and the resulting variance. In fact, as a general rule, the HAs increase as the variance increases. The casinos do not like variance much, so they charge more for it. A $1 bet on the twelve has the same ev as a $10 bet on the pass line, but a standard deviation of over five times the amount of the bet. If you scatter 20 of these in a session, you have a .325 probability of winning one of them, for a profit of $11, and a .105 probability of winning two or more of them, for a profit of $42 or more. Of course, the probability of losing them all is .569, but, hey, it's $20. JB on another thread describes his idea of "Lotto Craps", using parlays of hard ways and/or 2 or 12. In any case, the failure to include variance in his discussion of various bets is, in my view, a serious drawback -- a drawback shared, to be sure, by every other craps book I've read.

    In the TTP strategy, if the player has a pass bet with odds and a come bet (with or without odds) and wins the come bet, he recommends REMOVING the pass odds and using that money for another come bet. This is similar to taking down a don't pass bet when the point becomes 6 or 8. He is moving a bet without any expected loss to one with expected loss. The reason for this move makes sense in the context of his strategy, which stresses getting two numbers covered and using a come bet as a hedge against a seven out. His example, of course, illustrates a positive outcome, ignoring the negative outcomes, and he comes THIS CLOSE to reasoning that the seven is more likely on a comeout roll. The net of possible outcomes, however, is negative, as it must be when you move "free" money to "taxed" money. He even calls this his favorite "move" in the strategy. Let's examine the consequences of this "move":

    remove $10 odds bet on pass line and make $10 come bet
    1) next roll is seven; the pass and come are a push, rather than losing the pass and its odds
    2) next roll is eleven; win the come bet, collect the winnings and leave the come bet up
    3) next roll is 2, 3, or 12; lose the come bet, replace it from your rail
    4) next roll is the pass point; you lose the long payout on your odds bet and the come bet moves to the same number, with a negative expectation
    5) next roll is a different point; come bet moves to its point, with a negative expectation

    The Table Time Plus strategy
    ----------------------------

    The basic thrust of the strategy is to get two points covered, at least one of them a "first-tier" point, with a "basic bet amount", which does not change. He says to take odds only in that same amount, and only on "first-tier" points; no odds on 4, 5, 9 or 10. The emphasis is on creating a situation where there are more ways to win (combined ways to make two points) than to lose (six ways to roll seven). The avoidance of second- and third-tier points and not taking odds on them is based on their lower likelihoods of winning. He recognizes, of course, that the payouts on the odds bets on these points even out the W-L probability, but says a session may not be long enough for the probabilities to "show themselves". Of course, he ignores the fact that a player is just as likely to be lucky as unlucky, and winning a couple of 4/10 points with odds is a real boon for the bankroll.

    If the basic bet is $10, you want to get a 6 or 8 and another point (ideally the other first-tier point) covered with the basic bet amount plus the same amount in odds (only on 6 or 8). Thus, if the pass point is not 6 or 8, you make a place bet for $12 on one of them, rather than a come bet. The maximum exposure in a cycle is to have $10 each on 6 and 8, with $10 odds on each, so $40. It's a bit complicated, and he uses two decision charts with arrows all over the place to illustrate it, but the basic idea is actually pretty simple if you keep the principles is mind.

    The basic bet remains the same, regardless of outcomes. IOW, he rejects the idea of increasing bets on a loss (Martingale-like) or on a win (progressive betting). It's a conservative strategy, for sure, with low variance. The standard deviation of the line bets is basically 1.0, the SD of place 6/8 is 1.08 and the SD of odds on 6/8 1.095, all relative to the amounts of the bets. At the end of the chapter, he does finally talk of increasing the "basic bet amount" if you're ahead and want to "go for it", possibly adding an odds multiple rather than increasing the amount of the line bets.

    Many people will consider this rather boring, once they are past having to think about the next move. Personally, I prefer an even more boring style of play, but considerably more volatile. Many people will be contemptuous of the lack of aggression in his strategy. I concentrate of the pass line, while others prefer making multiple come bets, all the way to Bases Loaded's continuous come bets. I think the thing to keep in mind is that, for every number you cover -- you have to pay, whether it's 1.4% or 1.52% or higher. The expected loss is not reduced by adding odds bets to line bets, but only by shifting money from negative-ev bets to odds bets.
     
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  2. Grizzoola, Feb 12, 2015

    Grizzoola

    Grizzoola Member

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    Thanks for this exhaustive review of Orlyn's book. I think his aim is to introduce a rank beginner to the game, to cover the main concerns and leave the more advanced stuff for intermediate or advanced authors and players.

    I know, from an experienced player's perspective, the book falls short, esp. in terms of SD's, variances, etc. But, that's not the purpose of the book. In fact, if he had gotten into all the items you have, I probably would not have started playing the game; it would have been too much. I bought 3 or 4 other books after this, and indeed, they do get into the "finer" points of the game.

    I've said I use variations on his "TTP" strategy; one of them is taking odds on the 4,5,9, & 10. But, I take fewer odds on them than the 6/8. And, several times I've had a Come on the 6 w/ full odds & a PL w/ full odds on the 8 & got wiped out by the 7 the very next roll.

    Nothing is foolproof in craps & I think Orlyn makes that clear. As far as his comments re: dark side betting, I think he's done enough for a rank beginner that it's a style to use if you want to, as with the prop bets.

    I'm sure he was tempted to go into more detail, but the object was to keep the book short, simple. I enjoyed his conversational writing style. It was easy reading & I still recommend it for the rank beginner like I was.

    I did enjoy your review, Alan; I was curious what you thought of it.
     
    #22
  3. Onautopilot, Feb 12, 2015

    Onautopilot

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    Nice overview Alan. Seems like a standard basic information type writing, with his own opinions, likes and dislikes, thrown in...which you didn't seem to care for, and I would agree. I still think you should write your own book, not sure what the market would be, but I suspect it would be one of the better ones, as to the look of the game of craps.
     
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  4. Grizzoola, Feb 12, 2015

    Grizzoola

    Grizzoola Member

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    I think it's important for any author to decide what audience he's writing for: beginner, intermediate, or advanced. Of course, all three audiences could be in one book with beginner in first section, etc. Then, one could start w/ the fundamentals, go on to intermediate when ready, etc. Some chess books are written this way.

    Of course many books are aimed at particular audiences & the author must have clearly in mind what his/her purpose is and who are the targeted readers. Everything else flows from those.
     
    #24
  5. Grizzoola, Feb 12, 2015

    Grizzoola

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    Well, that & formatting. I think the book needs better formatting, more to the standard.
     
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  6. basicstrategy777, Feb 13, 2015

    basicstrategy777

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    mis-spelled words.......

    "I am so sorry Ed. I've been riddled with guilt and I have to confess. I have been helping myself to your wife, day and night when you're not around. In fact, I have probably been getting more than you. I do not get it at home - but that's no excuse. I can no longer live with the guilt and I hope you will accept my sincerest apology with my promise that it won't ever happen again."

    On reading the text, the man, anguished and betrayed, went directly into his bedroom, grabbed his gun and, without a word, shot his wife dead.

    A few moments later, a second text came in, "Bloody spell check!! Sorry Bob, the second sentence should refer to your wifi."

    777
     
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  7. goatcabin, Feb 13, 2015

    goatcabin

    goatcabin Member

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    Inspired by reading/reviewing "No-Nonsense Craps", I went to Amazon.com and downloaded four Kindle books about craps, costing between $2.99 and $4.99. I will review them one at a time. One of them was perhaps the worst book ever written. It's sad that one of the effects of the Internet is that somebody like that can get "published". I have read a few SciFi books on Kindle that were free or 99 cents, and they were really bad, but this guy charged $2.99. Well, you'll see what I mean later today.
     
    #27
  8. goatcabin, Feb 13, 2015

    goatcabin

    goatcabin Member

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    Beat the Casino Craps Game
    -A simple proven strategy that produces steady profits
    by Chuck Green
    Kindle edition: $4.99

    This book promises "very consistent profit" at casino craps.
    Author has not included, for the sake of brevity, the mathematical calculations necessary to prove each point he makes.
    He says that each roll of the dice is an independent, random event, but that "Over 36,000 rolls of the dice, for instance, you will find that all the numbers have come up in very close to their proper ratios." The use of the word "ratios" is important, even if he doesn't understand why, because they will not come up particularly close to their expected NUMBERS.

    He calls odds bets "Free Odds (so called)". Although this book is dated 2011, it refers to odds bets being limited to single or double. To his credit, he understands that taking or laying odds does not affect the expected value of the line bet. OTOH, he says they are not beneficial unless the player has some way of knowing that the bet will win. His "reasoning" is that, when a point is established, the bet is now more likely to lose than to win, so why bet more on it? He then drags out the old "diluted advantage" argument against laying odds, even though those bets are more likely to be won than lost. So, his two arguments fly in each other's face. "Although they are paid off at true odds, these Odds bets tend to dilute the edge that the Wrong bettor already has before he lays Odds and compound the bad position that the Right bettor is in after a point has been established."

    Of course, it's easy to show that these arguments are fallacious. However, his method is based on low variance, so odds bets, which add variance without additional expected loss, are not helpful.

    He rejects all bets other than the line bets and place bets on 6 and 8, based on house advantage. Here again, he is not looking for high variance.

    He states: "A good strategy along with proper money management can overcome a 1.5% house advantage, but no method of play can overcome an edge of 5% or more". He states that he tried many recommended "systems", but was dissatisfied with the results. He wanted a system that would be:
    --simple and easy to play
    --usable in any casino in the world
    --capable of returning an average of at least two betting units per hour in profits on a bankroll
    of no more than 50 units with "little evidence of the chance of extended negative swings" (whatever in the name of sense THAT means)
    He developed his system using the book "72 Hours at the Crap Table" (which I used to own), which contains 14,967 actual dice rolls. "I figured if I could beat the book I could beat any game."

    The basis of his system is that, he believes, sequences of consecutive wins are actually more rare than the basic probability suggests. He shows the calculated odds against different numbers of consecutive passes in a little table, but claims that the actual odds against them are higher. I don't know for sure, but I am assuming that he came to this conclusion based on the 4,525 decisions in the book. As I recall, those decision somewhat favored the don't.

    So, the basis of his system is to bet that no shooter will make three consecutive passes. The mathematical odds against this are 7.35 to 1 (this is correct), but that the real, practical odds are "somewhat higher". So, he decided to "lay 7 to 1" against this by using a three-stage Martingale on the Don't Pass, starting with one unit and doubling up to twice after losses. So, only if the shooter passes three times in a row does the sequence lose, and it then loses seven units, after which no more bets are made against that shooter. After wins (shooter loses) no more bets are made against that shooter, and the bet against the next shooter remains one unit. The idea is to win one unit for each shooter. He never makes more than three bets against any one shooter and never lays odds.

    He claims that he tested the system against the "72 Hours" book and it showed a net profit of 175 units, which translates to 2.43 units profit per hour. If you were playing $10 DP, that would mean about $24 an hour profit. He also claims that he has never had a losing day when using this strategy exclusively, and he says "neither will you". I no longer have the book, and I would not take the time to go through it, anyway, but I have created a WinCraps Pro auto-bet file to simulate the system.

    I set the bankroll at $500 (50 $10 units), the win goal at $130 ($630 bankroll) and a limit of 150 DP decisions, representing roughly five hours' play. I ran 10,000 such sessions.

    winning sessions: 5943
    breakeven sessions: 81
    losing sessions: 3976

    5443 sessions ended with $130 win goal reached
    916 sessions busted

    mean net outcome: -$21.68
    median net outcome: +130
    mode net outcome: +130
    standard deviation: $200.41
    skew: -0.99
    kurtosis: -0.43

    There was a large spike at +130.
    The overall HA was -1.33%, so the DP did somewhat better than expectation.

    Later on, he offers some variations or enhancements for people who crave more action. In one, he recommends placing both the 6 and 8, hoping for one hit then taking both down. He recommends a bet size for these place bets of 1/4 of a unit, so this is not feasible at the $10 unit level. If the unit is $25, he would bet $6 each. If the shooter sevens out, he'd win the $25 DP but lose both place bets.

    In another variation, he recommends making up to two come bets of 1/4 unit.

    He does not shoot the dice, saying it "does not make sense" to shoot when utilizing this strategy. He doesn't say why. As far as playing "wrong", he says just don't worry about what anyone else is doing.

    He says the system works on any table, but that results can be improved somewhat by "concentrating on tables where the dice SEEM at least to be running "cold". He also says he changes table frequently as conditions change. He warns against following "gut feelings" about a particular shooter and skipping him/her. You MUST bet that each new shooter will not make 3 consecutive passes.

    He recommends a bankroll of 50 units, and claims that, in actual play, he has never gotten more than 22 units behind. He sets a win goal of 2 1/2 units per hour, so for five hours that would be 12 1/2 units, so that's how I set up my simulation.

    He goes on, however, to recommend starting with just 15 units and changing tables if he's down to less than seven units, the amount needed for a full sequence.

    So, we all know that a Martingale system will allow more winning sessions than losing ones, but the losses will overcome the wins. The WinCraps Pro simulation shows that you can expect to lose between 43 and 50 units almost 10% of the time, while reaching the win goal almost 55% of the time.

    This guy claims he's never gotten more than 22 units behind in actual play, but during tests with the book he was once 40 units behind. Well, maybe he's just a "self-aggrandizing fabulist", huh?
     
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  9. goatcabin, Feb 13, 2015

    goatcabin

    goatcabin Member

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    Craps Strategy
    --Casino Craps Strategy for Shooting Dice to Win at Craps
    by James Harper (2014)
    Kindle version: $2.99

    This is one of the worst books I have ever read. Not only is it full of erroneous information about craps, but some of the sentences are absolute gibberish! It starts out touting "proven winning strategies" (of which there are none, of course). His description of the flow of the game is very disjointed and sometimes simply incorrect. For example, "However, if the comeout rolls are 7 or 11, the shooter will be changed and everyone who betted (sic) on the pass will win." In fact, the shooter keeps the dice after a natural win. He doesn't know what the "ON" button means. He says you should place your I.D. "on the table and not anywhere else during the game as a sign of respect." WTF? His description of the 36 possible dice outcomes is almost unintelligible, then he says: "Boxcars is the instance wherein a shooter gets a six on each dice (sic), of which the outcome would be 12. This usually does not happen since the probability of this roll is just 1%" Of course, it's actually 1/36, or 2.78%.

    There are simply too many examples of total ignorance to mention. I actually got a few chuckles from this one: "Avoid placing minimum bets on the "Don't Pass" line since this entitles you to be deemed as someone who is laying the odds." I swear I'm not making this up! This person should not be writing in English, I think.

    Here's another classic: "There is something called the "Hard 8" in Craps. This means that most bets on the number 8, after 6 rounds, often lead to losses, so do not under any circumstances place your bets on the number 8 after the 6th round of the game."

    Here's his description of the Put Bet: Bet $5 on the Pass line and win when the shooter sevens out.

    Here's his description of "The safest bet": Bet on the pass line once the shooter establishes his point. Take full house odds on the number you have placed your bets on. Just keep on playing until the shooter sevens out." (This is actually a description of a Put Bet.)

    Here's another one: "One of the best ways on how you can win at Casino Craps is by creating your own strategy." ?? ... "In addition, you have to know about probabilities and outcomes of your bets based on what usually happens." This is followed by an unreadable table of different outcomes, with passline outcomes mixed in with place-bet outcomes. Then: "The usual deviation per pass line is actually 4.9% or around 5%."

    Anyway, this book is utterly worthless for learning about craps. Its only value is amusement. I leave with another few hilarious examples:

    "What you have to know is that it's okay to think, but it's definitely NOT OKAY to over-think"

    "Do not hedge your bets. Keep your options open and see if you can still bet on something else other than what you have in mind."

    "Know that it's impossible for you to win with every roll of the dice. That's why there are probabilities involved per roll."

    "Some people just place their bets in both the "pass"/"don't pass" lines in order to stay long in the game and be able to get more profit."

    'Nuff said.
     
    #29
  10. Onautopilot, Feb 13, 2015

    Onautopilot

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    You are making this up, right? Is that an internet book, couldn't possibly be a published book... could it? I love it, wish I had a copy, but ain't gonna buy one. :)
     
    #30
  11. KokomoJoe4, Feb 13, 2015

    KokomoJoe4

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    All I wonder is where can I get this book. Although he did leave out the part about paying an extra quarter on the quarter field bet in order to bring the five into play. I'll give you a no field five....
     
    #31
  12. goatcabin, Feb 13, 2015

    goatcabin

    goatcabin Member

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    Of course it's an Internet book, available on Amazon.com for download to a Kindle or other e-reader. $2.99, cheap. Please, JB and Kokomoe, go to:
    http://www.amazon.com/Craps-Strateg...qid=1423876848&sr=8-2&keywords=Craps Strategy

    and look at some of the other reviews of this thing. It can only be that most of these reviews are written by the author or his relatives and friends. It might even be worth your while to download it, if you own a Kindle, just for amusement. I mean, it's only $3.
     
    #32
  13. Onautopilot, Feb 13, 2015

    Onautopilot

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    I might just do that, I have a grandson that's a dealer now, he would probably love it. :)
     
    #33
  14. goatcabin, Feb 13, 2015

    goatcabin

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    How to Play Craps
    --Master the Game of Craps--
    --Rules--Odds--Winner Strategies--
    --And Much, Much More--
    by Kevin Gerrard, 2014
    Kindle version: $2.99

    Of the four Kindle books I downloaded for review, I suppose this one is the best, although that's not saying much. First of all, he starts out by saying that anyone who claims to provide a way to consistently win is "confused, lying, or talking about some form of cheating." 1 point

    He presents the "perfect 36" in a readable table. 1 point

    He gets very confused about the ramifications of this table. He says "there is one chance in six of throwing 'craps'...and four chances in 18 of throwing a 'natural'. He then goes on to say there are 7 chances in 18 to resolve the passline bet on the comeout roll and "11 chances in 18" to set a point. I have no idea how he came up with those numbers, which we all know are 4/36 to throw craps, 12/36 to get a comeout decision and 24/36 to get a point, but why use a base of 18, anyway, when you've just shown the 36 outcomes? -2 points

    He has a nice color illustration of the crap table. 1 point

    He says, "Up to eight players can be playing at any one time." ?? -1 point

    He gives a nice introduction to craps "lingo". 1 point

    In his description of the Don't Pass bet, he fails to mention the bar 2 or 12. In describing the Don't Come bet, he says you win if the first roll is a 2, 3, or 12. -2 points

    He glosses over Buy and Lay bets, assuming that the vig is collected up front and not addressing the rounding issue. -1 point

    He divides the bets into two categories: safe and high-risk. The line bets, odds and come bets are low-risk, low-reward, since the chances of winning are relatively high, the payoffs near even money. He does not address the issue of odds multiples nor recognize the additional risk/reward, i.e. variance, these provide. He compares these bets to Certificates of Deposit and bonds. For more excitement, fun, risk and potential reward, he recommends "to move into the high-risk area with at least part of your bankroll." BTW, in his table of odds and HAs, he shows 2/12 as paying 33 to 1, 3/11 at 16 to 1. The thrust of this section is that, if you bet $1000 on the pass line you have an expected loss of $14.10 and you could possibly win $1000; if you put $1000 on the 12, you have an expected loss of $52.10 (????), but you could win $33,000. I'm going to dock him a point for giving the odds short shrift, but give him one for understanding the appeal of the longshot bets, and his advice to bet most of your money on the low-risk bets, but take an occasional flier on a high-reward bet. net zero

    He recognizes that players do not ALWAYS lose; "...casino games are designed so that, a minority of the time, but not too small a minority, players do win. + 2 points

    He addresses both dice setting/influence and "paranormal" influence, stating that the evidence is inconclusive. As an illustration of how a small "skew" of the probabilities would affect outcomes, he says that of every 42 throws, on average 6 of them will show a seven. Whoops! That would be 7, right? He says increase the 6 sevens to 7, and you would have an even bigger advantage on the comeout roll. This is really shabby proof-reading, Kevin! He talks about observing shooters who might be influencing the dice: "For example, if you find that a certain shooter rolls more fives than he should, and he makes a come-out roll of five, that's a good time to place a taking the odds bet." More sloppy proof-reading, but also it's ridiculous to determine that a shooter is making "more fives than he should" but just observing for a while. - 2 points

    He presents a few systems -- Martingale, Paroli, Gambler's Fallacy (both directions), and explains that they don't work. Also writes that searching for a "hot" table is part of the Gambler's Fallacy + 2 points

    He presents some betting "patterns" (as opposed to systems), like hedge betting, Iron Cross, 3-Point Molly, "Classic Regression", not recommending any of them, but explaining them fairly well. + 1 point

    Finally, he suggests a pattern that "Actually Works". 1) Make a constant-size pass or DP bet; 2) make high-percentage bets that do not hedge the line bet, like come bets or placing 6/8; 3) make these constitute at least 3/4 of your bet handle, or even 80-90%; 4) Place a small bet on something low-chance, high-payoff from time to time, hoping to get that one extra hit that more than makes up for the losses. He does not call this a "winning" strategy, but one that is fun, allows you to keep playing for a long time and occasionally gives you a big win. +2 points

    He describes variations on classic craps, like Crapless Craps, High-Point Craps, Die-Rich Craps, New York Craps, pointing out that the house advantage in these other games is higher than regular craps.

    He presents a nice section on "slang" at the crap table, a section on etiquette, and a section on craps superstitions. +1 point

    This book could have been improved by careful proof-reading by someone familiar with craps. The mistakes in some of his numbers are an embarrassment that could have easily been avoided. I think the biggest failure is not recognizing the power of the odds bets to "jack up" the variance.

    A cursory look at the "points": I count +4, right?
     
    #34
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  15. goatcabin, Feb 14, 2015

    goatcabin

    goatcabin Member

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    How to Play Craps
    --with the best odds of winning--
    --The Ultimate Guide to Craps (for Beginners)--
    by Donald Schuler, September 2014
    Kindle version: $2.99

    The introduction contains this: "Of course, even the experts lose every once in a while....But don't fret, there are secrets and tricks which can increase the chance that you will win more than you lose -- and this book will delve into the specific strategies that make that concept more likely." Unfortunately, the advice here is not conducive to winning more than you lose.

    A presents a reasonable description of the crap table, the dealers, etc. He doesn't, however, mention the little rubber pyramids on the walls, a very important point, as they send the dice off in different directions, assuring a random roll.

    This book has "for Beginners" in its title, but Mr. Schuler writes like a beginner, himself. He describes the Don't Pass bet as "the complete opposite" of the pass line, where "you'd want to see the 2, 3, or 12". Bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzt!!

    In his description of how to enter the game, he omits the "Change only" when you "place your cash on your space on the table. Don't worry, the dealer will automatically replace your cash with chips."

    He illustrates the passline bet with an example, in which the player bets $5 on pass. The shooter rolls a seven, and the player parlays (he calls it "press"). Now the shooter rolls a six, and he describes the puck being placed white side up in the six box. After a couple of non-decisive rolls, the shooter rolls a six again, and the player parlays again, now having $20 on pass. "The Shooter now rolls a seven, or "sevens out". Unfortunately, you now lose the twenty dollars' worth of chips on the table, and the cycle starts again with the next Shooter. And here ends our basic walkthrough of a Craps game." Bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzt!!! Well, this guy seems rather confused about what happens after a shooter makes the point, doesn't he?

    One rule: you can't pick up your bet once the point number is established. He does not mention that you cannot make a Don't Pass bet after a point has been established.

    He presents an elaborate table of the "perfect 36", showing each combination resulting in each outcome and expressing all the odds in 36ths. Then, he makes the same mistake many people do, concluding that a 6/36 probability for a seven means that "seven should come up once every six rolls", "9 or 5 every 9 rolls", etc. In my view, this is a serious mistake, tending to lead beginners into erroneous, Gambler's Fallacy thinking. He does point out that you can use these probabilities to figure out how likely a number is to come up before another number, but he doesn't illustrate this with an example, as he should. He refers to this as "true odds". He goes on:
    "To maximize your probable payout, you must play 'true odds', as well as 'free odds'. This serves as a supporting bet, aside from your main line bet." How does one play both "true odds" and "free odds", and what is the difference?

    In writing about casino's edge, he states, "Typically the casino takes a higher edge on more likely roll." Actually, most of the high-edge bets are those less likely to win but with a high payoff. This guys simply doesn't know what he's talking about.

    He describes come/don't come, place bets (no HA figures), field (no discussion of double vs. triple 12) and proposition bets. His description of hardway bets: "To win this, you must get a double for the number that you are betting on BEFORE it comes up through another combination." Would that it were so!!! What about the seven, Dan? He describes the Big 6/8, and mentions that the edge is over 9%, but does not point out that you can bet these numbers for 7-to-6 payoff in the place boxes.

    He does note the difference between "to" and "for" in payouts, correctly.

    Money Management
    ----------------

    He recommends shooting for a 10% or 20% profit, "pocketing" your initial investment "the moment you start winning". Now you're playing with the "casino's money", and you try to win your 10% using that. Of course, he doesn't specify "the moment you start winning"; does that mean if you win your first bet you pocket your initial bankroll and play with the winnings from one bet? Well, he doesn't say. He does say, though, "DO NOT reach back in your pocket." If you reach your 10% goal, he allows you to pocket 5% and use the rest to try for 20%, so if you lose that at least you have your 5% profit.

    He advocates a loss limit, but nothing specific. He says to divide your bankroll into 50 betting units or, if you are going to be playing twice a day for three days, to divide your total stake into six parts. "In this way your betting unit can earn, and even if it loses, you still have money reserved for the next session." Huh? I don't even know what that means. Are these people native speakers of English? Do they even read over what they wrote?

    Now comes the good part! >:) Recommended Bets, chapter 7

    Free Odds
    ---------
    First, he says that these are the bets that "actually let you rake in the money". But he goes on to say that it's best to avoid pass/come/don't pass/don't come bets. Huh? Then he says that it's better to bet free odds behind the original bets, to lower the house edge. What is he saying?

    He recommends placing 6 and 8 to win or lose, and something he calls "Against 10 or 4", which I assume means lay bets, but he doesn't discuss the vig or how it works. He recommends placing the 5 or 9 to lose. Finally, he gets around to a Field bet with triple 12.

    Bets to Avoid -- Chapter 8

    Field if no triple 12. He also says that "field bets have the lowest chance of winning"; I guess he doesn't know that place or buy bets on the outside numbers have lower chances of winning than the field bet.

    Pass Line (I just have to quote here)
    "The primary objective in playing Craps is to win more than the bet that you have placed originally. The Pass Line, however, doesn't work that way. It only lets you win even money. This makes the Pass Line a bad bet."

    Come/Don't Come
    Same reason as the Pass Line, but also that you have to get a number to show up TWICE.

    He says to avoid the proposition bets and Big 6/8.

    So, you should play "free odds", but you shouldn't play the line bets. Difficult.

    He also advises against playing at low-maximum tables, saying, "You are less likely to lose money here, but you're almost certain not to win anything".

    Well, that's that.

    I have to say that I am absolutely appalled at the extremely low quality of these books; one of them claims a winning system that is easily proved ineffective, and the other three are shot through with misinformation, errors and indecipherable sentences.

    The "Craps Strategy" book, the worst of the lot, has no copyright info at all. The one reviewed in this post is copyright by LCPublifish, LLC. When I "Google" LCPublifish I get a whole bunch of book titles that are on sale at Amazon, with titles like "Apartment Feng Shui", "Getting Him to Propose -- How to Make Your Boyfriend Want to Commit to You for Life" and "Definition, Signs and Symptoms of Skin Picking", but nothing about the publishing company itself. Gerard's book is copyrighted by him, the Martingale book by Monger Publications.

    The other appalling thing is that all of these books have some very positive reviews on Amazon, including the "Craps Strategy" book. This has to mean that most of these reviews are phony, written by friends, relatives, or maybe people who are hired to write positive reviews.

    After reading this crap, I am sorely tempted to drag out the notes I put together for a book. But will I?
     
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  16. Onautopilot, Feb 14, 2015

    Onautopilot

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    From your reviews, it is evident that these books were never meant for genuine informational purposes, but rather for a money making scam by "craps unqualified" individuals. Unfortunately, that is the case in many, many areas. Just take a look at the "Self Help" industry, every self appointed guru in the world, has a blog or an e-book out there....most of them read a bit like your examples here. But I enjoy reading your reviews....go buy some more! :)
     
    #36
  17. KokomoJoe4, Feb 14, 2015

    KokomoJoe4

    KokomoJoe4 Member

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    This appears to be excellent advice: next time in I'll play maximum free odds without a line bet. Better hold back btwthelines on that bet also. He'll be salivating with this good information.

    It does kind of suck to learn that the come must be made twice. Well at least the Pass needs made only once.

    I'll give Schuler a 3 out of 5. No wait a minute scratch that, that is simply the odds on the "against 5 or 9".
     
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  18. goatcabin, Feb 14, 2015

    goatcabin

    goatcabin Member

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    Well, most of the others on Amazon are by Frank Scoblete, and I'm not putting any money in his pockets. I just might work on my own book, finally. Or not.
     
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  19. goatcabin, Feb 14, 2015

    goatcabin

    goatcabin Member

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    Here is a "peek" at an introduction to a book I wrote a few years ago:

    What this book isn’t – and what it is

    This book is not a “Craps primer.” I am not going to explain all the different bets, how they are resolved and how much the house makes on them. You can find that in plenty of books, and in any case this book is not really aimed at beginners. The reader is expected to know the basic rules of craps, how to make the bets and how they’re paid off. We will, however, analyze different bets in considerable detail.


    This is not a manual on “how to become a winner.” Unlike most authors of books on Craps, I am not going to advocate a particular bet, combination of bets, progressive or regressive betting or money-management techniques. In my view, there is no way to ensure that you will come out ahead, either in a session at the table or over your gambling “lifetime.”


    Rather, this book is an objective look at craps through the “lens” of probability. I will use basic probability math to calculate expected value, variance and skew, and also an excellent Craps simulator, WinCraps Pro, to examine what I will call “The Shape of Possible Futures.” For lots of different bets and betting strategies, we will examine the range and relative likelihood of possible outcomes of realistically long craps sessions, two to four hours in length. Rather than simulating a style of play over a million rolls of the dice, we will simulate 10,000 to 30,000 sessions of 200 rolls each (about two hours’ play). After all this is how people actually play craps, mostly. When was the last time you played Craps for 10,000 hours straight? However, we will examine the relationship between long- and short-term results.
     
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  20. Onautopilot, Feb 15, 2015

    Onautopilot

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    I also, use to have that 72 hours book, it became so filled with pencil marks, that eventual I could not read the original numbers. :) It did have a slight DP advantage. I did run several winning strategies through it, one of them being my 99.8% win ratio strategy, the one you don't like. :) $5,000 bank roll with a $50 win goal, betting a 5% progression / regression. I also ran my flip/skip with a watered down Martingale through it, but the profits with a $5 base bet was less than a $1 per hour. I think the book cost $29.00, and I got many times that value from it, just from the "something to do on rainy days" thing. :)
     
    #40