The Martingales Probability and Casino Strategy

There are a few articles about the Martingale System on this website, however here I wanted to cover a little bit more information on Martingales Probability and the flaws of using this method in an online casino.

But before we start a word on randomness, at the heart of the martingale strategy is a requirement for randomness, it is a system that will fail very badly in the light of any bias. So be sure your casino is fair and random and beware leaving your luck in the hands of a random number generator – if only for your own piece of mind.

The concept of the martingale strategy is quite straight forward, you play consistently on a single bet type – usually 50/50 one like odd/even or red/black. You are relying on the low probabilities of repetition and on a mathematical inequality. The amount – S is put on this single event, say on red being spun, if the bet does not win then the Stake (S) is doubled to S2 on the second spin. The third spin will require 4S (double the last bet) if it loses and so on, doubling the bet until the win.

When the winning bet does occur then the final amount will exceed the losses from all the previous games, a fact which is actually algebraically provable.

Here’s some sample odds from American Roulette (the odds for European are slightly different but not greatly)

Some Martingales Probability

For example, the probability of black occurring

  • 2 times in a row – 22.43%
  • 3 times in a row – 10.62%
  • 4 times in a row – 5.03 %
  • 5 times in a row – 2.38%

When we look at this system, the mathematical certainty of doubling the bet bringing a win eventually, and the low probability of consecutive repetition of the same color – it looks extremely tempting and some will say infallible.

There are problems though, as mentioned it suffers badly if there is any bias although it could be argued that any strategy would.   The reliance on randomness though makes playing ordinary online casinos with their computer generated spins less than appealing.   It should only be used in a real life casino or where you can play online roulette here – DublinBet which is a real online casino from dublin played in real time.

There are however some problems which actually exist outside the realms of probability and mathematical certainty of the Martingale system. The system actually carries a major risk of consuming all your cash before paying out, it can be surprising how many times you’ll see long consecutive streaks of the same color for instance. Be careful how you try this if you do play online roulette

Even with sufficient funds you could find yourself in the position of placing an enormous bet to make a very small profit. If your nerve fails you, the house blocks your bet or you do not continue doubling your stake for any reason – then you lose. These are very real reasons combined with the fact that wins are small but regular, that make the Martingale system great in the land of probability but more flawed in the real world.

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