Roulette Myths and Legends

Roulette School

Most gamblers will tell you that roulette is the easiest game to play in the casino. It’s a common mistake to think that slots are the easiest game to play, because in the past twenty years slot machines have become very complicated with their complex paylines structures, confusing progressive jackpots and a multitude of betting options and confusing additional features such as bonus games.

On the other hand the game of roulette has not changed since the 18th century. Land-based casinos tend to offer one or all three main types of roulette variations; French roulette, European roulette and American roulette, all three existed back in the 19th century (with French roulette dating further back to the 17th century) and they exist and played in the same manner today.

Therefore it is no wonder that over the centuries this worldwide game has created many heroes and villains and turned some of them into roulette legends. Countless myths developed around the game and suggested different ways for manipulating the roulette wheel or manipulating betting in order to guarantee a win.

Early Roulette Legends

François Blanc who together with his brother Louis added the single zero pocket to the already existing French roulette wheel in order to increase the house edge and make it more popular with casino operators is also the man who is responsible for opening the first casino in Monte Carlo thus starting it on its journey to becoming Europe’s gambling Mecca.

Legend has it that François was so obsessed with cracking the secrets of successful roulette playing that he has made a deal with the devil in exchange of roulette secrets. The origin of this story can be traced back to the roulette wheel itself as if you add up all the numbers on the roulette wheel you reach the sum total of 666 or as some people like to call it the “Number of the Beast”.

In addition there are old famous stories about the likes Joseph Jaggers who in 1873 swindled over $325,000 from a faulty roulette wheel in a Monte Carlo Casino, and Charles Wells who is famous for “breaking the bank” by playing roulette at a Monte Carlo casino back in 1891.

Roulette in Popular Culture

The game of roulette has a special place in popular culture. Over the past three centuries it has been featured in countless books, from crime novels through adventure books to serious literature. However it wasn’t until the invention of cinema that roulette has gained its mythological status.

Roulette was featured in early films such as the 1942 film Casablanca. It was also featured in successful Westerns such as the 1971 comedy Western Support Your Local Gunfighter and the 1973 crime thriller The Sting featuring Robert Redford.

The game continues to be featured in modern films and it is virtually impossible to come across a movie about gambling, gangsters or rich people without coming across at least one scene at the roulette table.

Modern Roulette Legends

Even during the modern times we live in today, roulette continues to provide us with exciting stories and creating new roulette legends which will surely be discussed by future generations.

Like the story of Ashley Revell, a young man from London, England that sold all his earthly possessions except the clothes on his back and traveled to the Plaza Hotel in Las Vegas with the $135,300 he managed to collect when selling his car, books, clothes and anything else he owned at the time, and adding to it some money he was given by Blue Square bookmakers who paid him to legally change his name to Ashley Blue Square Revell before traveling to Las Vegas.

Revell took all that money and wagered it on a single round of roulette. He made an even-money bet on the color red and when the ball stopped on 7 Red, Revell turned into an instant roulette celebrity. His new found fame was aided by the fact that the whole event was filmed for a reality show.

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