The original prototype for the roulette wheel was conceived by the renowned French mathematician Blaise Pascal in the year 1655 while trying to create a device for perpetual motion. In so doing, he would inadvertently invent the very first roulette wheel. The results of his initial efforts were actually a failure; however one of his friends supposedly used the general idea for gambling.
From as early as 1758, there were some literary works in New France, presently known as Quebec, which gives reference to the game of roulette. Another reference from 1801 also describes the roulette wheel from the year 1796. It specifically stated the rules and the layout of the game. From what could be gathered, historians believe that after almost two centuries, the game remained unchanged.
However, in 1842, the game would receive its first change. Two Frenchmen brothers, Francois Blanc and Louis Blanc removed the pocket with '00' (the double zero). Their version of roulette now had 37 numbers on the wheel with the numbers 0 to 36, instead of the usual 38 pockets wheel.
Removing the double zero was to decrease the house edge by half. By doing that they attracted all gamblers interested in a good deal, ans it was not long before all roulette wheel in Europe used the same model of 27 pockets. They also altered the colors of the pockets with alternating red and black; the zero for the house was colored green.
During these times, gambling was actually prohibited and illegal in France, but this did not stop the brothers. They moved to Hamburg in Germany and went on to spread the popularity of roulette. Later in Monte Carlo, it was Francois Blanc who put up the first casino establishments and it was there where roulette became known as the "King of Casino Games."
It quickly became popular all across Europe especially when Francois, together with his son, traveled to Southern France, meeting with the Prince of Monaco, Charles III, who was well-known as an avid gambler. The Prince then quickly took up the game and promoted it in his kingdom in hopes of alleviating the nation's distressed economy.
Roulette arrived in the United States in the mid 1800's; during which time it gained popularity mainly throughout the duration of the gold rush. As these new American casinos were looking to buy roulette wheels, they ended with all the outdated 38 pocket wheels from Europe that no casino was using anymore on the Old Continent. This is why American Roulette has two zeros to this day (the '0' and '00').
This version of roulette has 38 pockets with 1 through 36, a single zero, and a double zero. At this time cheating became so widespread for gamblers and even operators that they finally decided on placing the wheel on top of a table to discourage frauds. The layout for making bets was also simplified. This would come to be known as the American version of roulette.
To this day, both European style and American style Roulette are still played all over the world in casinos both online and land-based. But the American version of roulette is still the only format played in North America, while European casinos only know of European roulette. However, one does not have to look too far to play European Roulette; almost all online casinos indiscriminately let you play roulette online in this version of the game.
Yes nowadays there is nothing easier than a game of online roulette or two, and the fun is just one click away.
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