Online Betting Systems
For almost as long as there has been gambling, there have been people developing betting systems that can supposedly improve the chances of winning. Generally speaking these gambling systems are designed with casino games in mind, but in theory they could be applied to any form of betting. We have listed a few of the best known betting systems and provided a little more details about each one. It is worth noting that the betting systems we are discussing are purely mathematical systems that involve adjusting the size of bets based on previous results. There are other betting systems that are more skilled in nature, such as card counting in blackjack or studying the form in horse racing, but they are different subjects.
We should also point out that the betting systems we are discussing here are largely flawed. When playing casino games, the house has an edge that cannot be overcome in the long run by changing the size of your bets. These systems should be treated as a bit of fun; they can help increase your chances of a win in the short-term and make playing casino games a bit more entertaining. However, you should not use any of these systems in the belief that they are guaranteed to make you money. Nearly all betting systems are gamblers fallacy.
The Martingale System
The Martingale system is the most well-known betting system developed and is designed to be used for even money bets, such as red or black in roulette. It is what is known as a negative progression system – meaning that you increase your bets every time you lose. The basic principle of the Martingale system is that you double your wager every time you lose with the expectation that you will eventually win and recoup all your losses. If you start with a stake of $1 and lose, you would then bet $2. If the $2 bet wins, you have recovered your previous $1 loss and made a profit of $1. If the $2 bet loses, then your next wager would be $4 – if that loses then it would be $8.
The theory behind the Martingale system is that, providing you double your wager every time you lose, when you finally get a win you will recoup all of your losses and make a profit equal to whatever stake you started the sequence with. While this sounds great, and even fool proof, there are two major flaws with the system. The first problem is the bankroll required. Assuming you were starting with a $1 bet, it would only take 10 losses in a row (which is perfectly possible) and your next wager would need to be $1,024. By that point you have already lost $1,023, so you are betting $1,024 to win just $1. If that bet lost too, you would need to wager $2,048 next. There will come a point when your bankroll has run out, and you are unable to make the required wager.
Even if you had a bankroll that could cope with a long losing streak, gambling sites have table limits. At some point, the required wager will be higher than the table limit allows and you will be unable to recoup your losses. You might think that long losing streaks are incredibly unlikely in games like roulette, but they happen more often than you might think. If you manage to avoid a long losing streak then the Martingale system may deliver you some short term profit – but for the reasons outlined it will cost you money eventually.
The Labouchere System
The Labouchere system is also a negative progression system and is similar to the Martingale system in that it involves increasing your bets when you lose. It is not quite as simple as the Martingale system though, but is also designed with even money games in mind. To use the Labouchere system, you must first decide on a set of numbers, and a base stake. For the sake of simplicity, we’ll use a base stake of $1 and the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6.
To start with, you would write down your six numbers in a line. Each time you make a bet, the size of the wager is the first and last number in the line added together, multiplied by your base stake. So, to start with, you would wager $7 (1 + 6 = 7, multiplied by $1). If your bet wins, you cross of the first and last numbers on the line, and then repeat; so your next wager would also be $7 (2 + 5 = 7, multiplied by $1). However, if you bet loses then you don’t cross of any numbers but add the size of your last bet to the end of the line. So if you lost your first bet, your line would look like 1-2-3-4-5-6-7, and your next wager would be $8 (1 + 7, multiplied by $1).
The system works on the theory that you will win enough wagers during a session to cross off all the numbers in your line – ensuring a profit – before starting the process again. However, the same flaws to the Martingale system also apply here; a long losing streak and either your bankroll will run out or the table limits will prevent you from placing the required wager.
The D’Alembert System
The D’Alembert system was also developed to be used on an even money wager, working on the simple premise that after a win a loss was more likely, and after a loss a win more likely. This, of course, is simply not true as cards, dice and roulette wheels have no memory as such and each result is independent of the previous result. So the D’Alembert system is fundamentally flawed as it is a based on an incorrect premise (also known as the gambler’s fallacy).
The system is actually incredibly simple. You basically start with a base stake – say $10 – and then you increase your stake by a certain amount – say $1 – when you lose, and decrease it by the same amount when you win. So if you started with $10 you would increase that to $11 if you lost, then $12 if you lost again and so on. The size of the wagers don’t increase at the same rate as they can in the Martingale or Labouchere systems so table limits are less likely to be a problem. But the system will not increase your chances of winning at all. In fact, you‘ll just lose more money on a losing streak than you would if you were playing with even stakes.
The Paroli System
The Paroli system is sometimes described as the opposite of the Martingale system, which is a reasonably accurate description. The concept behind the Paroli system is that you use house money to try and get a big win – by increasing your bets when you win, rather than when you lose. Like the previous systems, the Paroli system is supposed to be used with casino games that have an even money bet.
With the Paroli system you first choose a base stake (assume $1) and whenever you lose, you keep your wager the same. So if you start with $1 and lose, your next wager is also $1. However, if your bet wins, then you double the size of your wager to $2. If you win again, then you double the stake once more, to $4. If you win three bets in a row, then you reset your wager back to the base stake again. The Paroli system is much lower risk than the Martingale system as with a long losing streak you are only losing your base stake each time. If you do hit three wins in a row a few times then you may well have a winning session. However, the truth is that the house edge is still there, and the Paroli system is just another system that cannot overcome that edge.