Gambler’s Fallacy in Roulette: Why Most Players Lose

Firstly, the page at reveals detailed information about why most systems fail. It explains, what works, what doesn’t work, and why. The page was created specifically to help roulette players understand their mistakes. Unfortunately it hasn’t helped a lot of players like I hoped. This article discusses various reasons why.

The same principles also apply to other casino games, such as slot machines. The differences are more the odds of winning vs the payout. But the core principles of gambler’s fallacy are the same. See slots no deposit if you prefer playing slots.

Most Players Believe What They Want To Believe

Do you believe what you want to be true, or what the truth appears to be from your observations?

To a logical mind, clearly the truth is the truth, regardless of what you want. But with typical gamblers, matters are different. Most tend to believe what they find convenient, and what they want to believe. This is clear because for decades I have tried to explain gambling mistakes to many players. But no matter how clear my examples are, they are often not at all understood.

I’m not sure exactly how it works, but many players tend to have a bias towards information that suits them. Perhaps it’s literally delusion. For example, say a players system was waiting for 5 reds in a row, then the player bets black. The player may be convinced that black is due soon. Of course the reality is red or black have an equal chance of appearing on the next spin. I could explain to the player the reality of the situation, and exactly how to test to verify what I’m telling them.

In this case, I would suggest testing over a very large volume of spins (millions if possible). You would then note the spins where five reds occur in a row. Next you would consider the spin that occurs after the five consecutive reds. For now ignore the existence of green zero, so the only possibilities are red or black.

Tally up the amount of times red or black spin next. You will find that they occurred much the same amount of times. In other words, you would have just verified red and black have the same chances of spinning, regardless of any previous streaks of red or black. So what’s the point of waiting for five consecutive reds? There is none.

The facts of the matter are irrefutable. And although this is a simple example, much the same thing happens with typical roulette systems. In our red and black example, testing is very simple. But other roulette systems use a much more complicated bet selection. However, the result is the same, which is regardless of previous spins, the odds of any number spinning next are unchanged.

Slot Machine Fallacies

Much the same fallacies occur with slot machines. Of course you should test on free slots no deposit win real money, before playing for real.

Matters are a little bit different for slot machines though. Some slot machines produce truly random spins, based on a pseudorandom number generator. But other slot machines bass player payouts on what they have paid out previously – this guarantees the casino never loses.

You should only attempt to play fair slot machines, and you can see some recommendations at slots no deposit.

A More Complicated Example

Now let’s say a system tried to utilise the principle of the law of 1/3. This law indicates that after thirty-seven spins, around one third of the numbers will be repeats. Put another way, there will be about twenty-four unique numbers in thirty-seven spins.

Here’s where most players get stuck: even if you test billions of spins, you will see the law of 1/3 is quite dependable. In fact the chances are you will never see thirty-seven unique numbers in thirty-seven individual spins. So a system player might consider this predictability to be something they can use.

The reality of the situation is the more numbers that appear, the more likely they are to repeat on the next spin. So say if you had twelve different spins, with twelve different numbers. On the next spin, the odds that the winning number will be one of the twelve numbers is 12/37 or 32.4%. So there is a very good chance you will have the first repeating number on the next spin. It should be common sense. It’s just basic statistics.

But the inexperienced gambler will not look at the basic statistics. Instead, they will focus on the fact that around third of the numbers will be repeats after thirty-seven spins.

So here you can understand the player is looking at the wrong thing. They are forgetting basic statistics, and not understanding the reality of the situation.

Does Predictable Behavior Mean Predictable Spins?

This put the above example in different context. Again let’s ignore the existence of zero. After around a hundred spins, you can expect about fifty blacks, and fifty reds. It sounds predictable, right? To an inexperienced player, it sounds like something they can depend on. They may believe if they wait for a severe imbalance between reds and blacks, they can just bet on the color that has appeared least.

For example, they may track one hundred spins and notice seventy are red, and thirty are black. They may then consider that after a total of two hundred spins, we normally expect about one hundred blacks, and one hundred reds. So they may then assume black needs to catch up, therefore it is best to bet black. The reality is on each following spin, red and black have exactly the same chance of spinning next. So it wouldn’t matter which color you bet on.

One Of The Most Ridiculous Incorrect Theories

As the owner of the world leading roulette forum, I’m properly in a better position than anyone to see some of the most ridiculous gamblers fallacies. Here’s one that I came across recently:

The player claimed that his system won more than it lost because he used a collection of different systems. He said that at any time, one of the systems may go bust. But because he quickly switched systems, he could avoid a loss.

To a professional player, his claims are ridiculous because if one system didn’t work, and the secondary system didn’t work, then both of them together won’t work either.

It’s Mostly About Player Perception

It is very easy for players to look at particular facts, and misunderstand what they represent. The example of the law of 1/3 is just one common misunderstanding. The law of the third takes place simply because the more numbers that spin, the higher the probability that one of the numbers will repeat on the next spin. Knowing this doesn’t at all increase the accuracy of your predictions on the next spin. And all that matters is the next spin. After all, you only get paid for wins.


If typical gamblers properly understood why their approaches didn’t work, casinos would almost be out of business. The whole casino industry revolves around delusions and illusions. It all comes down to ignorance. Despite many websites and resources from professionals, which clearly explain reality, most players choose to ignore such resources. Alternatively, there are a lot more websites full of nonsense, which perpetuate poor understanding.

Does this mean that the ignorance is due to misleading websites? In part, perhaps. Although it’s the minority of the websites that have inaccurate information, an intelligent player need only test properly to understand why their system eventually fails.

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