Sic Bo - How to Play

Sic Bo is an old Chinese dice game. It is played throughout Asia and is gaining popularity in Europe and North America. It is variously known as Tai Sai or Dai Siu. The game is played with three dice. You bet on the outcome of a single roll of the three dice.

The game is popular both online and at land-based casinos. On land, there is a shaker that shakes the dice before they are rolled. Online, the numbers are generated by the Random Number Generator.

As with all dice games, there are many different types of bets. Each bet has a different payout, based on the odds of winning that particular bet. The house, of course, factors its edge into the payouts. Some Sic Bo bets have a small house advantage of 2.8%. These are, obviously, the most popular bets. There are many more exotic bets where the house edge may exceed 30%.

Sic Bo Table Layout

Sic Bo

The Various Sic Bo Bets

It is natural to be a bit dazzled the first time you see a Sic Bo table. It seems packed with information and options. Take a few minutes to read about the different bets available and find them on the table. It will all become much more accessible to you quite quickly.

*** The most popular bets are Big and Small. The payouts are only 1-1 but the house edge is also low, only 2.8%.

*** Big means the three dice will total 11 and 17. If there is a triple, however, you lose automatically.

*** Small means the dice will total 4 to 10, also with the exception of a triple.

*** The next most popular bets are Odd and Even. The payouts are the same as with Big and Small. Odd means that the total of the dice will be odd; even means the total will be even. As with Big and Small, if there is a triple you lose automatically.

Many players play only these four bets. The odds are the best for the player, they don't have to concern themselves with strategy, they can relax because they will neither win a lot nor are they likely to lose a lot.

Here are the more aggressive and riskier bets you can make in Sic Bo.

*** Specific Triples. You bet that one specific triple will be rolled. The odds are low, the payout is 180-1 but even with such a high payout, the house edge is more than 16%.

*** Specific Doubles. You bet that a specific number will come up doubles.

*** All Triples. You bet that any triple will come up.

*** Three Dice Totals. You can bet on 7 different pairs of three-dice totals. For example, you can bet that the three-dice total will be 4 or 17; 5 or 16; etc. The odds of a given total vary so the payouts do too.

*** Two Dice Combinations. You can bet on any two-dice combination.

*** Single Dice Bets. You can bet that a single number will come up.

*** Four Number Combinations. There are four four-number combinations to choose from. If any three of the four numbers come up, you win.

*** Three Single Number Combinations. You bet on a specific three-number combination.

*** Specific Double and Specific Single Number Combination. You bet on both a specific double and that the third die will be a specific number.

Strategy

In Sic Bo, the only bets that give players a fighting chance are Big, Small, Odd, and Even. Some people say that making those bets is like betting red or black at roulette. True Sic Bo fans like the combination bets.

The best strategy for making combination bets is to wager small amounts.

Summary

Many casino players like to go from table to table, tasting from all the games offered. Sic Bo surely qualifies as a slightly offbeat change from Craps. If you are a recreational gambler and wish to make one of the exotic bets, realize that the house's advantage is quite high.

Posted by Nick David

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