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Creating More Shooting Opportunities

The Idea

If Precision-Shooting reduces the house-edge or eliminates it altogether; then the idea that a Precision-Shooter would want to throw the dice as often as possible makes a lot of sense.

With that in mind, I thought that a list of suggestions that will increase the number of times that you get your hands on the dice, might be a good idea.

Suggestion #1 – Play During “Off” Hours

Prime time for most casinos is from 7 pm to 2 am.  The range of those hours may vary somewhat from city to city, and casino to casino.  However, we can generally agree that the tables are busiest at night, and emptiest in the very early morning from 5 am to 10 am.  The other hours connecting those empty and busy periods are somewhere between the two extremes.

Suggestion #2 – Play During “Off” Days

Tuesday and Wednesday are traditionally the lightest days for in-house traffic, while Friday, Saturday and Sunday are customarily the busiest.  Of course if a casino is offering 5x-Points on all of their Tuesday and Wednesday slot action, then the casino may be crowded, but the craps tables may still be barely attended, especially in the morning. 

During busy convention periods, major sporting events, and of course long weekends and holidays you can expect the biggest crowds.  However, the two days BEFORE a long weekend, and the day AFTER a long weekend is traditionally the LIGHTEST.

Suggestion #3 – Play during “Off” Season

When the weather is a searing 132-degrees in the shade, Las Vegas, Laughlin and Mesquite offers some of the best travel bargains as well as some of the emptiest craps tables.  During the late fall, winter and early spring, Las Vegas is crushed by conventioneers, snowbird refugees from colder gaming environs, plus California and Arizona daytrippers.

Conversely, when the frigid winter storms of the East Coast blow into Atlantic City, only the heartiest of craps players will trudge through 37” of snow and 50mph icy winds for a chance to roll the bones.

In essence, if you play when most other people DON’T want to, you’ll find that the dice cycle around to your spot with a much quicker tempo.  If you avoid the crowds, you increase the number of times that the dice will be in your hands.

Not Anti-Social, Just Pro-Profit

I don’t want you to get the idea that I’m anti-social, or that I don’t like playing craps with other people.  It’s fun to be at a full table when the dice are sizzling hot and the black, purple, orange and gray (or brown) chips are tumbling in like an avalanche.

The truth is that I love people, and I especially enjoy helping them through articles such as this.  However, I’ve also learned that I can make much, much more money when I get to shoot the dice as often as possible.  That’s not bragging; it’s just a matter of fact.

I’m not anti-social.  It’s just that I happen to be very PRO-profit, and the best way that I know how to make a profit in a casino is to shoot as often as possible. 

The more I throw, the better able I am to groove-in my Precision-Shooting efforts and to maximize my betting patterns.  If other people are at my table, and taking advantage of my skill; then it’s all the better for them.  Likewise, if a lucky shooter comes along, I’ll be riding his fortunate coattails all the way to the bank.  

On the other hand, once the ride is over, don’t be surprised if I don’t stick around for very long after I shoot.  I’ll be on my way in search of more shooting opportunities.   Again, it’s nothing personal, it’s just good business.

Suggestion #4 - Change of Shift

Find out when the casino normally changes their dealer-shifts, and ask when they usually open additional tables.  Traditionally Swing-shift will have the most open tables, while the graveyard-shift will have the least.

Casinos generally split up their crews into three shifts.

Day-shift is normally from 10 am to 6 pm, or 11 am to 7 pm.

Swing-shift is usually from 6 or 7 pm until 2 or 3 am.

Graveyard or Sunrise-shift starts at 2, 3 or 4 am and ends at 10, 11 am or noon.

To deal with crowds, they will sometimes schedule staggered starts that will see additional tables opened in the mid-afternoon or late evening to correspond with the growing multitude of players.

One way to take advantage of these shift changes is to find out if they usually open additional tables when they change shifts.  That way you can schedule your play for when new table(s) are first opening.   Since you know that very few people like to “open” an empty table, you can usually be the first player to get the dice.   Not only that, but you can usually be a solo shooter for a number of hands before other players clue in or drop their social-inhibitions.

Suggestion #5 – “If You Liked That, Then Let Me Shoot Again”

I’m serious.  If your Precision-Shooting is good enough, those nine little words will return the dice to you often enough to make the effort well worthwhile.  Let me paint a little scenario for you:

Let’s say that your average casino-day totals four sessions of one-hour each.

Let’s assume that you get to throw the dice twice during each one-hour session. 

We’ll estimate that in four hours of play, you’ll get to shoot the dice at total of eight times.

Now suppose that out of those eight shooting opportunities, you manage to have two excellent hands in the range of 40+ rolls.

At the end of excellent hands like that, you’ll often see players high-fiving each other, and the entire crew applauding your success (and theirs too, since you hopefully had them on the Pass Line with full Odds). 

Now in that scenario, how often does someone suggest passing the dice right back to you so that you can shoot again?  The suggestion probably happens quite often, but there are usually one or two players who want to have their turn too.  So the ratio of someone SUGGESTING that everyone pass the dice right back to you, and the ACTUAL number of times when everyone AGREES to do it is usually a 50/50 proposition, at best.

However, you can dramatically increase your success-ratio if you show some bravado, and give the rest of your table-mates a little encouragement by saying something to the effect of, “If you want to keep on winning, how about letting me shoot again? 

It’s a little bit “showy” and perhaps somewhat arrogant, but since you are attributing your great rolls to your INCREDIBLE LUCK (and NOT your skill), you can use that common superstition to your advantage.

By saying, “I’m really lucky today, you better get it while the dice are still hot,” it plays into the common notions of the other players, as well as most casino personnel.

If you talk about LUCK and avoid all notion of skill it permits you to fly “under the radar”, while still taking advantage of increased shooting opportunities.  The only caution that I would add, is that you shouldn’t do this too often in the same place with the same Pit Crew.

Let’s look at some additional ways that you can get a few more throwing prospects:

Suggestion #6  - And the Survey Says…

During the first week of June, 2003, e-zine publisher Casino.com asked their readers this poll question:

How do you prefer playing craps?

~At a crowded craps table

~At a table by yourself

~At a table with only a few people

The results of just over 17,000 respondents were tallied. 

~Only 7% of voters like playing craps at a table by themselves.

~Most voters, 48%, prefer the action at a crowded craps table.

~Not far behind, 44% are happiest when there are only a few players at the craps table.

You can use these preferences to your advantage. 

A professional Precision-Shooter friend of mine jokes with the Pit Bosses that he is their unpaid shill, because he’ll happily start up a newly opened table, or resuscitate a “dead” game where the dealers are standing idle.

He loves playing at solo-tables, so he’ll gladly get the game started.  Then as soon as four or five new players drift over and he completes his own hand, he’ll seek out the next empty table that requires his “attention”.  If there are no empty tables where he is currently playing; then he’ll check his casino-notes to determine which places will be opening new tables, or which casinos should be the emptiest at that particular hour of the day.

He’s extremely well known for his steady toking (when he’s shooting), and his uncanny luck with the dice.  I’ve often seen where a dealer, Box-man, Floor Supervisor, Pit Boss or even a Shift Manager will motion him over to get a game started.  They too understand the reluctance of most players to step up to an empty table, so they tolerate his relatively modest, but consistent winnings.   He never sticks around long enough to wear out his comp-rich welcome.  Now THAT’S a great way to maximize shooting opportunities.

Why Crowded Tables Inhibit Your Profit

While crowded tables may add to the excitement of the casino experience, it actually diminishes and inhibits your profit opportunities.  While there are random occasions where someone will string together a great hand, you never know in advance where it will be, when it will happen or how long it will last.

A skilled Precision-Shooter takes a lot of the guesswork out of the casino experience.  If your shooting is up to the task, then you can reliably count on having at least a couple of excellent hands per day. In this way, you can reliably predict where it will be, how often it will happen, and how long your roll will likely last.  Not quite as reliable, is knowing exactly when it will happen.

Of course, while each of your hands will be variable in length, you should know from your actual in-casino SESSION-NOTES, how frequently you have good hands, and how long they last.  Armed with this information you can alter your betting patterns to take maximum advantage of the great ones when they come along, yet still keep your losses to an absolute minimum during your short-lived hands.

Once you realize how much better your shooting is compared to random-rollers, you can see that your major money-making advantage is in shooting as often as possible. This level of predictability is what most burgeoning Precision-Shooters aspire to, and is what brings consistency to your per-hour or at least per-day profit projections.

Suggestion #7 – Seek Out Turbo-Dice

Turbo-Dice is not a new video game or even a brand-name of dice.  Rather it is a term used to describe gaming-houses that move the dice as quickly as possible, thereby generating as many rolls per hour as achievable.  

Casino-operators have long known that more decisions/hour translates into a higher house-win/hour.  The cheaper the table-minimum and the more of a grind-joint the casino is, the better your chances of finding a fast moving Turbo-Dice game. 

By way of comparison, Caesars Palace will average about 70-90 rolls per hour, while a grind-joint like Barbary Coast will try to stay in the 150-to-180 roll/hour range.

With that in mind, here’s a very short list of some of the fastest games in town: 

Barbary Coast (see Cheap Craps Guide Part V for a full report)
Orleans Hotel (see
Cheap Craps Guide Part II)
O’Shea’s Casino
(see upcoming “Cheap Craps Guide–Part VI”)
Boardwalk Casino-Hotel (see my Mad Professor's Mini Tub Tour - Part III for a full report)
Westward Ho (see Cheap Craps Guide Part I for a report)
Slots’ o’ Fun (see Cheap Craps Guide Part II)
Jerry’s Nugget (see Cheap Craps Guide Part I )
Silverton (
see Cheap Craps Guide Part III )

If you are comfortable with a fast moving game, then these above-noted casinos are where you are most likely to find Turbo-Dice.

In “Part Two” of this series, we’ll look at another dozen or so suggestions to multiply the number of times you get a shot at the title.  Until then,

Good Luck & Good Skill at the Practice Table…and in Life.


The Mad Professor

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