Oklahoma Tribal Casinos Introduce Ball and Dice Games

Oklahoma Ball and DIce Games - Roulette Craps Oklahoma Tribal Casinos

Roulette and craps gaming was legalized to help pay for Oklahoma teachers’ raises.

Oklahoma tribal casinos began offering legal ball and dice” gaming this week. On Monday, amendments to the state’s gaming compact with certain tribe took effect, allowing certain tribal casinso to offer craps and roulette on their gaming floors.

The Cherokee Nation’s Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Tulsa in Catoosa, a Tulsa suburb, was one of the first casinos to offer ball-and-dice gaming. 10 other tribes are in the process of altering their gaming compacts so they can offer craps and roulette, two of the more popular table games in Las Vegas-style casinos.

With the inclusion of ball-and-dice gaming, Oklahoma’s tribal casinos eliminated one of the final distinctions between their gaming venues and out-of-state commercial casinos found in Las Vegas, Atlantic City, Tunica, and dozens of other cities across America.

Craps Tables at Hard Rock Tulsa

Tulsa World discussed with one player, Chuck Hoskin Jr., the prospects of playing craps for the first time in his life. Hoskin, who happens to be the secretary of state for the Cherokee Nation, stood before the craps table and somewhat nervously said, “Never in my life have I played this game before”.

Mickey Ward, the senior director of corporate gaming for Hard Rock Tulsa, said the new law puts Oklahoma casinos on the same footing with commercial casinos. Ward said, “It lets us compete better with casinos out of state. Now people don’t have to leave the state if they want this type of game.”

Oklahoma Education Association’s Ball and Dice Demands

Local gamblers can thank the Oklahoma Education Association for the inclusion of “ball and dice” games in the tribal casinos. During the recent teacher’s strike, the ball-and-dice gaming legalization was one of three demands by the teaching groups.

It is estimated the new form of gaming will generate between $20 million and $49 million in tax revenues for the state. Adding roulette and craps to casino gaming spaces was a relatively painless way to fund pay raises and get teachers back to work.

As for the economic impact on the Cherokee Nation, the tribe said it does not know how much revenue it should generate, but Chuck Hoskin said, “There’s obviously a lot of need for the money. For the Cherokee Nation, it will go toward housing, education, health care, and other needs that our people have.”

Craps, Roulette Replaces Card Game Versions

Tribal casinos like the Hard Rock Tulsa had their own versions of craps and roulette before now. Taking a page from California casinos, they used a deck of cards to produce similar results to craps and roulette. Due to arcane gaming laws, resolving the bet with cards instead of dice or spinning wheels makes the game legal.

In some cases, Oklahoma casinos even would include video of a roulette wheel or rolling dice, though those videos had no bearing on the game. Ultimately, dice shooters want to play real craps and roulette bettors want to see the mesmerizing spin of a real roulette wheel.

Trained 50 Dealers for New Gaming

The Hard Rock is a good indication of the difference in interest level. It had 1 craps table and 2 roulette tables using cards. Now it has 3 full craps tables and 4 roulette wheels. In all, Hard Rock Tulsa trained 50 new dealers and croupiers to handle the new types of gambling in their casino.

Mickey Ward said the casino has heard a lot of buzz about the new card and dice games. Comparing the traditional versions to the card versions of craps and roulette, Ward said, “People are more familiar with them…I think there‚Äôs a lot of excitement about it.”

Craps Is Easy to Learn

Local Tulsa gamblers who’ve never played craps might have the same reaction as Chuck Hoskin Jr. Craps looks complicated, because of the many bets on the table layout. In fact, shooting dice is among the simplest games to play, if you stick with the basic bets.

New players often assume the bettors who place the exotic-looking craps bets have a winning betting system or inside knowledge of the game, but those people are making the sucker bets. If one keeps that in mind, playing craps is easy.

Craps is the most social game in any casino. Most bettors bet on the shooter, meaning most of the players at the table are hoping for the same results. When the shooter wins, most everybody wins. Shared interests instills a sense of camaraderie in the players.

Why Players Play Roulette

Roulette has an entirely different feel. Roulette is an interesting combination of relaxation and excitement. The spinning wheel takes a bit longer to resolve bets, so many casual players enjoy the pace of the game. At the same time, roulette offers 35-to-1 and 17-to-1 bets, so players can wager on longshot propositions and get a big adrenaline boost when they win the inside bets.

Roulette’s house edge is not as good as craps’ odds. If you make the basic bets in craps (the pass-line, don’t pass, come, and don’t come bets), then the house edge of craps is between 1.35% to 1.41%. Taking the odds in certain situations helps your odds even more. American roulette, on the other hand, has a 5.26% house edge, so craps is the game to learn if you like excitement and good odds.

In both cases, you will not have to learn a bunch of strategy to play well, like you would in poker, video poker, or blackjack. Ball and dice games have no strategy or skill components, despite what your cousin tells you about his roulette betting system. Both games are designed to appeal to casino bettors who enjoy fun without study or memorization, which is why craps and roulette have been so popular for so long.