Casino glossary

Casino glossary

Glossary

All-in

Especially in table poker, a player announcing “all-in!” plays and bets all the chips he has left.

American wheel

Refers to a roulette wheel, the American version of the game usually includes 38 pockets (0, 00 and numbers from 1 to 36). This is in contrast to the European roulette wheel, which has 37 pockets (0-36).

Baccarat

A card game played in casinos, there are 6-8 card decks used to play baccarat. To win in baccarat, a player’s hand value has to be higher than the banker’s (dealer’s). Baccarat is a game of chance, but applying the right strategies may increase the player’s chances.

Banco

A banker in baccarat.

Bankroll

This is the amount of money that a player sets aside only for gambling. Bankroll cannot be considered as all the money a player has and it should be separated from other spending.

Bankroll management

A way of directing the financial resources in gambling – sticking to the proper bankroll management is one of the crucial principles of a successful player.

Bingo

A game based on luck. Bingo is played in casinos or bingo halls.

Black/red bet

In roulette, this is a bet on a red or black number. The payout here is like in a classic coin flip and it is 1/1.

Blackjack (hand)

In blackjack, a hand consists of two cards: an ace and any of tens or face cards (a jack, queen or a king). The summed up value equals 21 and the player is paid off in ratio 3/2, unless the dealer doesn’t have 21 too.

Bonus

A freebie, gratis, extra value or bonus is usually a kind of promotion offered by casinos to attract new players or to reward the regulars or VIPs. It might be some extra cash, free spins, tournament tokens, etc.

Breaking

See: busting.

Busting

Or breaking – busting is when you exceed the sum of 21 points in blackjack.

Buy-in

An amount of money a player starts a game with. The minimum and the maximum buy-in are always specified for different particular games.

Caller

A person who conducts a bingo game – the caller spins a bingo drawing machine and calls the numbers out loud.

Card counting

One of the strategies in blackjack. Counting cards greatly increases the chances of a player to beat the game. However, it is forbidden in almost every casino in the world.

Cashier

This is where players buy chips in live casinos. In online casinos also, players can deposit and withdraw funds from the cashier.

Chips

Colorful and round tokens used in casinos instead of money. In order to participate in casino games, a player must buy chips from the cashier.

Coin flip

This is commonly a bet which has a 50% probability at succeeding (like a coin flip). In roulette, it might be a bet on any 18 numbers of black, red, odds, even, high or low.

Column bet

In roulette, this is a bet on one of the 3 columns. The payout here is 2/1.

 

Come out roll

This is the first phase of a single round in craps. In the first roll, a player wins if the come out roll is 7 or 11. However, when the roll comes out as 2, 3 or 12, the bet is lost.

Corner bet

In roulette, this is a bet on 4 numbers placed next to each other. The payout here is 8/1.

Craps

A casino game played with dice. The game is conducted by a croupier and may be played usually by up to 8 players and wagers may be placed on different random events. For example, ‘any 7’ means that a player wins if any combination of 2 dice, giving 7 points together will be drawn. Craps is a typical chance game.

Credit

A coin in slot machines or the video poker games, the money is exchanged into credits. A player also receives credits as a reward for hitting the winning lines or hands.

Dealer

Also called croupier, this is a person who assists players in casino games. A dealer deals cards in poker, blackjack or baccarat and conducts games like roulette or craps.

Discarding

This means exchanging cards in video poker. The video poker is based on the rules of five-card draw poker. In the first round, a player receives 5 cards. To complete the best possible hand, the player can discard all the cards maximally.

Double down

In blackjack, double down means doubling the initial wager. Exactly one card has to be drawn and after that, the hand is over. If you don’t know when you should stand in blackjack, check our cheat sheets.

Dozen bet

In roulette, this is a bet on one of the 3 dozens: 1-12, 13-24, 25-36. The payout here is 2/1.

eCOGRA

This is an abbreviation of eCommerce Online Gaming Regulation and Assurance. eCOGRA is the international agency who tests the online casinos to protect customers.

eCOGRA approves the casinos by publishing an audit report, which includes payout rates and guaranty of high quality. The accreditation also proves that the casinos operate responsibly and honestly. It also ensures that games are fair and the deposits are safe.

European wheel

Refers to a roulette wheel, the European version of the game usually includes 37 pockets (0-36). This contrasts the American roulette wheel, which contains 38 pockets (0, 00 and numbers from 1 to 36).

EV (expected value)

Mathematical term used in statistic. In gambling, EV is used for defining an average profit expected on every particular event. In roulette for example, the chance of hitting black or red in every event is 48.5%. The expected value in this event with an investment of $1 is $0.97 (player’s $1, casino’s $1) x0.485). The expected value in the casino games is usually minus because of the house edge.

Face card

A jack, queen or a king.

Fish

This is a weak player, someone who loses money. The term is most commonly used in table poker slang.

Flush

A strong hand in poker, flush consists of any 5 cards of the same suit, for example: A♦, J♦, 6♦, 3♦, 8♦. Flush is stronger than a straight, but it’s beaten by a full house.

Four of a kind

A very strong hand in poker – it includes four cards of the same kind, for example four aces. Four of a kind beats full house, but it’s weaker than a straight flush.

Free spin

This is a kind of slots bonus offered by the casinos. Free spins are usually offered to new players or as a reward for the regulars. As the name suggests, the player can play slots for free. It’s the perfect opportunity to win some real money without risk!

Full house

A strong hand in poker, it includes 3 cards of the same value and 2 other cards of the same value. For example: J♠, J♥, 9♣, 9♦, 9♥. Full house is stronger than a flush, but it’s beaten by four of a kind.

Hard/ soft totals

In blackjack, the hand is “soft” if it contains an ace valued as 11. After taking any additional card, the player can’t go bust because the sum of any 2 cards (an ace and a drawn card) will never exceed 21. Otherwise, a hand is “hard”. For example: 9 and 7 is hard 16; after drawing an additional card, the player busts if the coming card is higher than 5.

High card

This is the weakest hand in poker and even lower than a pair. Example for Texas Hold’em: the board is Q, 2, 3, J, 8 and a player holds AK. Example for five-card draw (played in video poker games): Q, 7, 3, 4, 9 offsuit, after discarding.

High/low bet

In roulette, this is a bet on a high or low number. The payout here is like in a classic coin flip and it’s 1/1.

High roller

A player who plays for big amounts of money or a casino game with a high buy-in.

Hit

One of the actions in blackjack, to hit means to draw another card. If you don’t know when you should hit in blackjack, check our cheat sheets.

House edge (advantage)

This is a commission which the casino takes for the use of their services. A player is charged by the house with every bet he decides to place.

The house edge differs depending on the game. For example, in the European roulette wheel, the casino advantage is 2,7%, which means that if the player bets $1 1000 times, he can expect an average return of $973 ($1000- (1000x $1x 2,7%)). In games like slot machines, every game has a different commission set-up.

Inside

In craps - numbers 5, 6, 8 and 9.

Inside bet

In roulette, inside bet means a bet on a single number or a few numbers in the inside section (poles with numbers 0-36 on the roulette table).

Insurance

A kind of a bet in blackjack, insurance is offered to a player before facing up the second dealer’s card. This move appears to be unprofitable in most cases.

Jackpot

This is the amount of money prize granted to a player who hits a particular rare event in casino games. For example, in video poker, the jackpot is a royal flush.

Jackpot meter

This meter measures the prize money in progressive jackpot casino games. The amount is displayed on the screen above the machine.

Jacks or better

This is most common in video poker games. Here, the minimum prize money is paid off to a player if he hits a pair of jacks or higher. Any lower pair is no paid.

Keno

Keno is a game of luck, similar to the lotto lottery. A player picks out a maximum of 20 numbers out of a possible 80. It is usually possible to choose between 4 and 15 numbers. The more number a player picks and the more he bets, the more he can potentially win.

Martingale

Martingale system is one of the strategies used in gambling, the most commonly in roulette. There are a few necessary conditions to be fulfilled - read more in our article dedicated to the martingale strategy.

Max bet

In slot machine games or in video poker, a player can place the maximum bet. Therefore, the max bet is the maximum number of coins possible per spin or a hand. Placing the maximum bet is usually a condition in order to be entitled to grabbing a jackpot.

Mindset

In sports or in gambling, this is a general term for the attitude to the game. It includes a few factors such as patience, accepting variance, accepting losses despite taking the right decisions, controlling emotions, positive thinking, staying focused, and even a physical workout. The mindset contributes to a player’s success and it is definitely one of the most important decisive elements in gambling.

Odd/even bet

In roulette, this is a bet on an odd or even number. The payout here is like in a classic coin flip and it is 1/1.

Odds

In casino games, this is a player’s chances for a particular event to happen and offered by a casino or bookmaker. The player’s wager is multiplied by the fixed ratio if the bet is the winning one. For instance, if the ratio (odds) is 4 to 1 (4-1) and the player wager is $10 and wins the bet, he wins $40.

One pair  

A pair consists of two cards of the same rank, for example two queens. One pair beats high card, but is weaker than two pair.

Outside

In craps - numbers 4, 5, 9 and 10.

Outside bet

In roulette, this means a bet on a group of numbers (dozen, column, black, red, odd, even, high or low) in the outside section on the roulette table.

Pallette

This is a wooden paddle used by a croupier to pass the cards to a player – used in baccarat.

Paroli

One of the strategies used in gambling and also called anti-martingale. Paroli is one of the systems commonly used in roulette. You can read everything you need about paroli here.

Pass line bet

One of the possible bets in craps; because of the lowest house edge (1.41%), pass line bet is considered as the most profitable play in craps.

Payline

In slot machine games, this is a line of particular symbols. If the pattern is hit, the machine pays off the amount accordingly to the pay table.

Pay table

In slot machine games or in video poker, the pay table is a structure of payoffs. The pay tables differ; depending on the game and the casino. It is highly recommended to check the pay tables before starting the game.

Progressive jackpot

In progressive jackpot casino games, this is the accumulated amount of money awarded to a player who hits an extremely rare event in a particular game. The biggest jackpots reach even a few millions dollars! The progressive jackpot is measured and displayed on a jackpot meter.

Punto

A player in baccarat.

Push

A push is a tie or draw in blackjack. This is when the sum of your points is the same as the dealer’s. A pot is then split and the hand is finished.

Reel

A part of a slot machine, the reel is a spinning wheel with drawn symbols. Depending on the machine, it may include 3 or 5 reels.

ROI

Return on investment (ROI) is a term pertaining to profit. As an example – if a player invests $100 and wins $130, his ROI is 30%. Most of the casinos specify the return on their games in their special reports. Usually, the return is between 80-100%, which means that the player’s ROI will be between -20 and 0%. At games where skills also matter (like poker or blackjack), players can increase their ROI thanks to their strategies and work ethic.

Royal flush

The strongest hand in poker, hitting the royal flush means to grab the top prize (jackpot) in video poker games. Royal flush is the highest of 5 cards in the same suit: A♠, K♠, Q♠, J♠, T♠.

Scatter symbol

The scatter is a kind of bonus in slot machine games. Depending on the slot, it may give different amounts of extra money or free spins per every symbol hit.

Shark

This is a very strong player, someone who wins a lot of money in gambling. The term is most commonly used in poker slang.

Shooter

Someone who conducts the game in craps – dealer.

Slot machines

Slots are the most popular of casino games. A player inserts money into the machine, or in online games, deposit money at the cashier. The money is exchanged into coins/credits, which are used to spin the reels. A randomly drawn combination of symbols on the reels may give the money reward, accordingly to the pay table.

Split

  1. Dividing a pot after a draw in casino games:a. In bingo, when 2 or more players win at the same time
    b. In table poker, when 2 or more players have the same hand
    c. In blackjack, when the hands of both player and dealer have the same value (push)
    d. In baccarat, when the player and the dealer have the same score (tie)
  1. One of the actions in blackjack – to split means to divide your hand into two. Those cards are then played separately as two different hands. If you don’t know when you should split in blackjack, check our cheat sheets.

Split bet

In roulette, this is a bet on two neighboring numbers. The payout here is 1/18.

Spots

Numbers picked by a player in keno.

Stand

One of the actions in blackjack, to stand means to keep your actual hand. If you don’t know when you should stand in blackjack, check our cheat sheets.

Straight

A quite strong hand in poker, straight is a combination of 5 consecutive cards offsuit, for example: 5♣, 6♦, 7♠, 8♠, 9♥. Straight is stronger than three of a kind, but it’s beaten by a flush.

Straight flush

The second strongest hand in poker, the straight flush consists of 5 consecutive cards in the same suit: 3♥, 4♥, 5♥, 6♥, 7♥. Straight flush beats four of a kind, but it’s weaker than a royal flush.

Surrender

One of the actions in blackjack, to surrender means to give up the hand in some specific and rare circumstances. If you don’t know when you should surrender in blackjack, check our cheat sheets.

The shoe

In casino games like blackjack, the shoe is a box or a device where the multiple decks are stored.

Three of a kind

A quite strong hand in poker – it includes three cards of the same value, for example three jacks. Three of a kind (sometimes called set or trips) beats two pair, but it’s weaker than a straight.

Tie

A draw in baccarat – the hands of the player (punto) and the dealer (banco) are the same value and the pot is split.

Tilt

  1. A situation when a casino machine is blocked and stops working.
  2. In gambling, a term used for a frustration caused by constant losing – when the player loses control after having a stream of successive bad luck. Tilt is dangerous and has a negative influence on the decisions taken by a player. Regular tilt is a syndrome of serious mindset troubles.

True count

True count in blackjack counting strategy means dividing the current count by the number of decks left in the shoe

Two pair

This poker hand consists of two cards of the same value and two other cards of the same value; for example, two kings and two fives. Two pair beats one pair, but it’s weaker than three of a kind.

Variance

This is a mathematical term used in statistics. In gambling, it is used in variance when we describe the swings which player experiences when playing casino games; for example, the ups and downs in roulette. Every spin is a different event and the chances are close to a coin flip (~50%). In the long term, after 1.000.000 flips (law of large numbers) for example, the number of heads and tails (red and black in roulette) will be close to 50/50%. In the short term, a running sequence of 7 or 8 of the same results in a row is nothing surprising. However, every gambler should be aware of this and accept the streaks of bad luck.

Ventiuna

Blackjack” in Spanish.

Video poker

A casino game played on a machine screen. Video poker is a game based on the rules of five-card draw poker. In the first round, a player receives cards; then, in the second round, the player decides which cards he wants to hold and which he would like to discard. The player can discard from 0 to even all 5 cards to draw the best possible 5-card hand. The machine pays off in coins according to the pay table.

Wager

A bet.

Wild symbol

This is an extra symbol in slot machine games; a joker. This wild symbol replaces any of the other symbols and it means that if a player hits 3 of the same pictures in one line and the wild symbol, the machine pays off like it was 4. “The wild” greatly increases the odds and potential winnings. It may appear as a picture or animation.