Do you know how roulette, the popular casino game of chance came to be? Although its origins are still not clear, roulette was most likely invented in France. This theory defeated the other theories of historians, who think that the game may have originated in ancient China, Rome or Greece.
The Invention of Roulette
Most historians believe that roulette was invented by Blaise Pascal in the XVIII century. Pascal most likely based the game on a perpetual motion machine from the XVII century and the Italian game Biribi. The first written evidence of roulette can be found in the French novel La Roulette, where it states that the game uses a gaming wheel with two pockets for the bank, which is the source of its mathematical advantage over the players.
Sometime around the 1800s, roulette was prominently played at French casinos and became a pretty popular game among the wealthy. A century and a half later, French couple Louis and Francois Blanc introduced a ‘revised’ version of roulette, removing one of the bank pockets from the wheel and introducing a new concept of roulette (0 style) which competed with the standard blackjack variations at the time.
The single-zero variant soon became the preferred choice for players, replacing the double-zero standard and making Louis Blanc a legend. At that time, Blanc’s invention was considered a stroke of genius which lowered the high house edge of the game. No one’s really sure how Blanc invented the game we know today as European roulette, but some suggest he may have sold the soul to his devil to unlock the secrets of the game.
Roulette In the USA
Due to the increasing popularity, roulette was bound to make the jump to the USA. This came in the early XIX century. However, it didn’t cause the shockwaves casinos hoped it would due to the 5.26% house edge for the double-zero variant. Players quickly lost interest in the game, and the gambling community rejected Blanc’s 0 style variant. This left gamblers no other option but to play the double-zero variant, which led to the game we know as American roulette today.
Roulette was pretty popular in the USA in the beginning, but players quickly switched to games they could beat due to the high house edge. Fortunately, all of this changed with the arrival of online casinos.
Microgaming opened the first online casino in 1994. Just over two decades later, online casinos are an industry standard due to the fact that they offer all the roulette variants you can think of. You can play American or European roulette as well as other variations that will surely satisfy your needs.
Of course, the ability to play for free is another factor that goes in favor of online casinos, which have essentially brought back roulette from the dead. Thanks to online casinos, you can learn and play roulette game online. Furthermore, roulette has become a staple in casinos all around the world and forms the ‘holy trinity’ of casino games along with poker and blackjack.