A Guide to Sic Bo

Shane C

Feb 12, 2023

Playing Sic Bo Online

The Origins of Sic Bo

If you think Craps is a bit overwhelming due to its many table features and different betting options, and Roulette is somewhat obsolete when it comes to your fun department, then Sic Bo might be the game you want to play. This ancient casino game, also known as Tai Sai, Dai Siu (mostly in Macau and Hong Kong casinos), Big and Small, or Hi-Lo (popular reference in the Philippines) was originally created in China and is widely popular in Asia.

The game was brought to western countries such as the United States by Chinese immigrants and can be found in most American casinos, including the ones in Las Vegas. This phenomenon led to the creation of a couple of variants. The United Kingdom version is called Grand Hazard, while the US version was named Chuck-a-Luck.

Sic Bo can be somewhat seen as the combination of the complexity of betting opportunities found in Craps and the simplicity found in Roulette. This Yin Yang of two opposed but complementary characteristics is what makes this game so special and fun to learn how to play. 

Gameplay & Rules

Sic Bo Betting TableThe outcome of the game is simple. Like in most other popular casino games, players make a bet, in this case on specific dice outcomes, and based on the numbers seen on the dice, they either win or lose. In a nutshell, the gameplay can be divided into three simples steps:

  1. The player makes a decision on what bets to place on the board.

  2. Depending on the casino version you’re playing, either the real dealer shakes the container where the three dice are in, or the online casino’s software does the job and shows the outcomes.

  3. Based on the bets the player made, either the predictions result in a win or a loss.

Now that the path to victory is clear, let’s dive into some details. Apart from the luck derived from the rolling of the dice, which you cannot control, your goal as a player is to make a prediction on either the exact number or set of numbers displayed, or the sum of the outcomes. In order to do so, there are a few different betting options available; Total, Single, Double, Triple and Two Dice Combinations.

Starting with the most basic ones, a player can make Small and Big bets based on the outcome of the total of the three dice. When one bets on the result of the dice sum being between 4 and 10, including these two numbers, it is called a Small bet. On the other hand, when the player bets that the sum is between 11 and 17, also including these two numbers, that is called a Big bet. Notice that the sums of 3 and 18 are not included in these bet-winning outcomes. This is due to the fact that they count as triple bets elsewhere on the board. These are the bets most beginners and more risk-averse players start with, since it gives the highest probability of winning – 48.61%.

Still in the universe of Total bets, a player can also choose a specific sum between 4 and 17, including the two numbers, and bet on it. Depending on the chosen sum, both the payout ratios and house edge will be different due to the different possible combinations that are available to reach a specific sum. 

Regarding Single bets, one wins when the chosen number - from 1 to 6 - ends up displayed in any of the three dice. This means that if a player bets on a number 6, if one, two, or even three of the dice land on this single number, it’ll result in a win. The payouts differ based on the different dice the chosen number is displayed. If it is one dice, it gives a 1 to 1, two dice 2 to 1 and three dice 3 to 1.

Double and Triple bets occur when a player thinks any of the numbers will appear in two or three dice, respectively. There is also the possibility of betting on a specific number landing on all three dice. This is called the specific Triple and gives the highest payout ratios.

Lastly, a player has the opportunity of betting on Two Dice Combinations. This kind of bet results in a win if one predicts that two dice will show a specific combination of two different numbers, for example, a 3 and a 5.

Strategy & Tips

Sic Bo Dice GameUltimately, as in all the other casino games, luck plays a big part in the outcomes. Nevertheless, there are tips and strategies that players may apply in order to increase their chances of becoming the dice masters of Sic Bo tables. 

  • Do not try to cover all areas of the table with bets all at once. While in some cases it may be favourable to place multiple bets in one roll of the dice, covering too many areas of the table can significantly increase the risk-to-payout ratio. Be diligent with your stake, and carefully analyse the fewer combinations that maximise your probability of success.

  • If you are a beginner, focus on the Small and Big bets since these provide the lowest house edge and the highest winning combinations.

  • If you’re a more advanced player, you may start introducing riskier strategies to your portfolio. One interesting strategy is to bet on at least four different numbers. Analyse the combination of odds, payout and house edge and find out which combination of four numbers best suits your risk appetite. 

  • Try to avoid the temptation of making Triple Bets. Even if the outcome is extremely tempting, the 0,55% of winning is so low that it might suck all your money before you know it if you try it often.

  • Take your time and stay in control. Emotional stability is a huge factor when it comes to keeping self-control after consecutive losses. If needed, take a break for a few minutes if you’re feeling overwhelmed and then start playing again. This is essential for you to keep applying your strategy no matter the outcome.

Neither of these tips and strategies is a guarantee of results, but they surely increase your chances of success. The most important thing is for you to practise and test your strategy to see if it provides good results in the long run. This way you’ll feel more confident when you’re playing with real money.

Win Real Money Playing Sic Bo Online

If you are a fan of online gambling, it is possible to play Sic for real money and if you want to practise first, playing for free in some demo versions is also a possibility. The online version of this game has been gaining popularity since it is really easy to start playing, it’s you as a player who gets to issue the command for the software to roll the dice and when playing for real money, it is possible to make small wagers at a time. 

Also, when playing online you may take advantage of bonuses which help leverage your stake and maximise your returns. Using them wisely may be a really powerful tool to be able to play for more time and significantly increase your bank account.

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