Sic Bo (pronounced like ‘Sea Bo’) is a dice-based gambling game that has been around for centuries in one form or another. Emanating originally from China, the game today is popular across Asia and indeed the rest of the world, with players globally switching on to the benefits Sic Bo game can deliver. With a name meaning ‘precious dice’, it’s perhaps no surprise that this game operates on a similar level to the much more widely played Craps – one of the main exceptions being that SicBo is played with three rather than two dice. While the latter is one of the most popular games played in both on and offline casinos, this casino game has its own legion of fans – both online and offline – as it grows in its cult popularity.
So what is Sic Bo, and how is it played? More importantly, how do you go about making money from it? Here’s an introduction to the basics.
Sic Bo is a game played against the roll of dice, similar in many ways to the popular casino game Craps. However, where Craps uses two dice, SicBo relies on the roll of three dice. This delivers much more potential combinations on each roll, which enables the payouts to range from an even-money return right through to 150-1 and beyond on the more obscure rolled outcomes. The game is based on a specific table layout, which maps the various different betting outcomes that can be taken, and similar to craps dice are rolled on to the table, albeit with the 3 dice required to generate a result.
The dice in Sic Bo are rolled by the dealer only, and rolls are contained within a defined rolling cage on the table. Players place their wagers according to the likelihood of the outcomes they forecast, and there are a number of different bets that can be taken. Payouts are defined ahead of time according to the actual odds of an outcome (factoring in house edge), but can be generous with a limited house edge as compared to other games.
Sic Bo is popular in Asia and South America, and land casinos in Macau are famed for their large, fast-paced SicBo games. Today, it is also becoming a much more common feature in Western casinos, and players everywhere are switching on to the high-rolling quick play action this game can bring. For a fast moving, fun game that has the potential to match any other table game for payouts and house edge, it’s perhaps hardly surprising that this game is seeing such a resurgence in popularity.
There are a number of different betting outcomes in Sic Bo, and the idea is that players will choose one or a combination of bets depending on the outcome they favour. While it is difficult enough in two dice games like Craps to call the direction of each roll, this becomes significantly more difficult in game with three dice, although there is the added option of many more betting combinations to help cover these increased possibilities.
There are several different types of bets you can take, and these are always marked on the table layout. They are:
Small/Big numbers: A bet on the total of three dice being between 4 and 10 and 11 and 17 respectively. Any triple number (i.e. 1/1/1) will yield an automatic loss.
Triples: A bet on any 3 dice outcome appearing, which pays out at 180-1.
Two Dice Bet: Any bet on 2 particular dice out of 3, which pays out at 6-1.
Number or Point: A bet on a specific numerical total, which pays out ranging between 6-1 and 60-1, depending on the difficulty of achieving that number on any given roll.
These represent the main classifications of bets that you can expect to find at the Sic Bo table, and depending on your particularly objectives or targets, you may decide to choose a strategy that features one or more of these bets more specifically in order to maximize your winnings or minimize your losses from the table.
How To Increase Your Chances of Winning
There are a number of ways you can play this casino game. Generally, players choose to go for less frequent big money pay-offs, or more frequent lower pay-offs, and depending on the nature of the strategy, this will affect the types and nature of bets that are most suitable.
While the particularly strategy players use depends on individual risk/reward calculation, many players think that the best way to maximize their chances is to split your bets across multiple outcomes, building in the potential for both home run wins and small, sustainable profits. This combination of big and small money should help them to ensure the frequency necessary to bankroll their game, while being able to win the big money prizes when those outcomes do arise. However the big money bets feature way too big casino advantage (most well over 10%) to justify using such a strategy in longer term. The best strategy is always to keep playing bets with lowest casino advantage (Big or Small bets and Odd or Even bets if available feature lowest edge of 2.78%). And once you are able to lock in some profit you can get more fancy with bet selections if you are willing to accept the high casino advantage.
Advantages of Sic Bo Online
This game is not just popular in land casinos – it has been gradually winning a larger fan base from those that like to play their gaming online. Even the thrill of the land casino is under threat, with live Sic Bo games available at selected casinos online providing direct access to a real-time table and shooter from the comfort and convenience of your home.
While there’s no doubting that it is a more convenient, direct way to game, to play Sic Bo online. Perhaps the most central reason behind its success as an online game is the potential for bonuses. These, sometimes large, bonuses that online casinos pay out have now been extended to players of this game, meaning that those that choose to play online will not only benefit from convenience, but will be rewarded financially for their decision. That means you get access to the biggest possible bankroll for your gaming, so you have the longest possible timeframe to devise the perfect strategy. On the other side the bonuses come with terms and conditions and need to be wagered specific number of times before any winnings can be withdrawn.
Overall Sic Bo is an interesting game and its availability as live dealer game online makes it an excellent substitution for craps (craps live dealer games online are not available) with the best bets featuring only slightly bigger casino advantage. Remember to stay away from the high casino advantage bets to get most of your bonus or deposit.