Probably the oldest, certainly one of the simplest – the Martingale system is also one of the most misunderstood roulette strategies in existence. Depending on which site you visit then the martingale is either described as a huge confidence trick, a mysterious hidden secret to wealth or somewhere in between. In this page with the help of a small computer program I want to demonstrate the reality behind the Martingale system and then you can make your own mind up (the Martingale simulator is at the bottom if you want to skip straight there!).
First of all let me first say that in general I don’t believe in roulette systems, if you look at the mathematics behind most of them then they simply don’t add up. I’ve lost count of the number of systems I’ve worked through to discover that they in fact do absolutely nothing to increase your chances of winning. In fact on a purely mathematical basis I would tend to agree with the Wizard of Odds who states that all betting systems are worthless.
But are they worthless? It’s true that none actually reduce the house edge. However if you’ve ever watched a drunken punter at 3.00 AM at a Vegas casino throw his chips around the table like confetti, you’ll realise that some people could actually benefit from a more structured way of playing.
Summary of Martingale Simulator System
But back to Martingale, the concept is quite simple and fairly logical. You place a bet on an even money return like red/black or odd/even, if it wins you pocket the cash but if you lose then you double your next stake. You keep doing this until you win, therefore in theory guaranteeing a small win on every sequence you play. The problem is the real world and these important points –
Betting Limits – All Casinos place a limit on a single bet, if your required amount in martingale goes above this, then you will lose.
Infinite Bankroll Required – The amounts required can quickly get very large if you get a streak of bad luck. You need the cash to place the large bets needed otherwise you lose.
The Zero (or zeros on an American wheel) mean that it’s not a true 50/50 bet
These two facts make the Martingale a very dangerous system to play, for instance just imagine a small losing streak. The first spin you bet $5 then $10, $20, $40, $80, $160, $320 and then $640. Streaks like this are surprisingly common if you spend any amount of time watching a roulette game. So remember if you do play Martingale then start low and you need to play at a European roulette wheel with one zero and which has a high stake limit. Oh and don’t forget the large bank roll of course.
The Martingale Simulator
However you can still test out Martingale and indeed any sort of progression betting system you want by using the practice modes of most major online casinos. Don’t, please test them out in the money areas until you’re used to using the system and you believe they work of course!
The icon below will take you to a valid casino in your location which has a free play or practice area for most casino games.
But if you want to play around with the possibilities of the Martingale system then try this simulator. It allows you to input your stake, the length you want to play, your bank roll and then generates a sample session. You’ll probably notice that on long sessions you will almost certainly lose inevitably hitting one of those streaks that blow your bankroll – the simulator doesn’t count maximum stakes. You can alter the house edge by selecting the different roulette wheel.
If you cut the number of spins down to 25 or 50 you’ll see what usually happens with martingale, that you’ll generally win a series of small amounts but these will be interrupted by some huge losses. Make sure you change the wheel to a European one to see the most favorable results, frankly no-one should ever play roulette on an American roulette wheel – if that’s the only thing available play something else !
Thanks Faym yes it’s useful to see how quickly things can go wrong with Martingale!
This Martingale simulator is great, thanks. It really illustrates what can happen when you get a few streaky spins – the stake requirement goes up very quickly !!!