Gambling Terms S to Z

Have you ever been puzzled by a gambling term? This is the perfect page to have those questions answered and to brush up your betting knowledge.

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

S

Scared Money

“Scared Money” in gambling refers to funds that a player cannot afford to lose and is consequently apprehensive about wagering. This term highlights a psychological state where the fear of losing impacts a player’s decision-making ability. Players with scared money often play conservatively, avoid taking necessary risks, or make irrational decisions due to the pressure of potentially losing money that is significant to them.

It’s a common saying in gambling that “scared money never wins”. Emphasizing the importance of a relaxed and confident mindset for successful gambling, as playing with money that one is afraid to lose often leads to suboptimal strategies and reduced enjoyment of the game.

Scatter Symbol

In slot machines, a “Scatter Symbol” is a special symbol that triggers a bonus feature or win, regardless of its position on the paylines. Unlike regular symbols that typically need to line up on a specific payline to grant a win, scatter symbols can appear anywhere on the reels to unlock bonuses such as free spins, mini-games, or other special features.

The specifics of what the scatter symbol activates vary from game to game, but it’s generally one of the most sought-after symbols due to its potential to significantly increase winnings. The number of scatter symbols required to trigger a bonus feature also varies, with most games requiring a minimum of three.

Seven Out

In craps, “Seven Out” refers to the event where the shooter rolls a seven after establishing a point, but before re-rolling the point number. This outcome ends the shooter’s turn and results in the loss of all Pass Line bets. When a Seven Out occurs, the dice are passed to the next player. This term is crucial in craps, as rolling a seven is statistically the most likely outcome with a pair of dice, making it a pivotal moment in the game. The Seven Out marks the conclusion of a betting round and signals a shift in the game’s momentum, as it resets the progression of betting and shooting.

Shill

A “Shill” in a casino context refers to a person employed by the establishment to play games, especially poker or table games, using the casino’s money. The primary role of a shill is to fill up the tables and stimulate action in the game, making it more attractive for other, real players to join. Shills typically do not keep the winnings they may accrue; instead, their winnings go back to the casino.

Their presence is intended to create an atmosphere of higher activity and excitement, encouraging others to play more. Shills are different from “prop players” who play with their own money but may receive compensation from the casino for their role in encouraging games.

Shooter

In craps, the term “Shooter” refers to the player who rolls the dice. Each player at the table has the opportunity to be the shooter, with the role rotating around the table in a clockwise direction. The shooter’s main task is to make a “come-out roll” to start a new round of play. If a point is established on the come-out roll, the shooter continues to roll the dice until either the point number is rolled again (resulting in a win for bets on the pass line) or a seven is rolled (a “seven out”), which ends the shooter’s turn. The role of the shooter is central to the game of craps, as it is their roll that determines the outcomes and bets for the round.

Simple Bet

In craps, a “Simple Bet” refers to a straightforward, easy-to-understand wager with a clear outcome. These bets typically involve predicting the result of a single roll or a small set of possible outcomes. Examples of simple bets in craps include betting on a specific number to be rolled next, such as a 6 or an 8, or wagering on the immediate outcome of the next roll, like betting on “Craps” (2, 3, or 12) or a “Natural” (7 or 11).

Simple bets are popular among beginners or those who prefer less complex betting options, as they don’t involve the more intricate rules and multiple roll outcomes of some other types of bets in craps.

Slot Machine

A Slot Machine is a popular gambling device found in casinos, known for its simplicity and potential for high payouts. It consists of reels with various symbols, and players win by lining up specific combinations of symbols. Traditional slot machines had mechanical reels, levers, and simple paylines. Modern versions use digital screens, random number generators (RNGs) for fair outcomes, and offer multiple paylines, bonus games, and diverse themes.

Players bet by inserting coins, tokens, or using digital credits, and then spin the reels, either by pulling a lever or pressing a button. The appeal of slot machines lies in their easy-to-understand gameplay and the exciting possibility of a substantial win from a small bet.

Snake Eyes

“Snake Eyes” in craps refers to a roll of the dice resulting in two ones, making the total two. This term is one of the many colorful slang terms used in the game of craps to describe specific dice rolls. Snake Eyes is significant because it’s one of the possible losing rolls for Pass Line bets on the come-out roll, along with a total of three (called “Ace-Deuce”) or twelve (referred to as “Boxcars”). The name “Snake Eyes” comes from the visual resemblance of the two single dots on the dice to the eyes of a snake. Although it’s a rare roll, it’s a well-known term due to its unique appearance and impact on the game.

Soft Hand

In blackjack, a “Soft Hand” is a hand that contains an Ace counted as 11 without the total going over 21. The term “soft” indicates that the hand has flexibility. For example, a hand with an Ace and a 6 can be counted as either 7 or 17. The presence of the Ace gives the player an advantage because if they choose to take another card and the total exceeds 21, the Ace can be counted as 1 to avoid busting. This flexibility allows players to be more aggressive in their strategy when holding a soft hand, as there’s a reduced risk of going bust with the next card. Soft hands are contrasted with “Hard Hands,” where there is no Ace or the Ace can only be valued as 1.

Speed Bingo

Speed Bingo is a variation of traditional bingo that is played at a much faster pace. In this version, numbers are called out quickly, one after the other, significantly reducing the duration of a game. The rapid pace of Speed Bingo makes it more challenging and exciting, as players must be extra attentive and quick to mark their cards.

This game is ideal for those looking for a quick and dynamic version of bingo, and it’s particularly popular in online bingo platforms where the game can be accelerated without the limitations of a physical bingo hall. The rules and the objective to form a specific pattern on the bingo card remain the same as in traditional bingo, but the quicker pace requires heightened focus and reaction speed.

Split Hand

In blackjack, a “Split Hand” refers to a situation where a player divides their initial two-card hand into two separate hands. This option is available when the first two cards dealt to the player are of the same rank, such as two 8s or two Kings. To split the hand, the player must place an additional bet equal to their original bet. Each card of the split pair becomes the first card of a new hand, and the dealer deals an additional card to each new hand. The player then continues to play each hand separately, following the usual rules of blackjack.

Splitting can be a strategic decision, especially if the split cards are of high value, as it offers a chance to potentially double the winnings. However, not all pairs should be split, as the decision depends on the dealer’s upcard and the specific blackjack rules of the casino.

Split Ticket

In Keno, a “Split Ticket” is a type of bet where a single ticket is divided into two or more separate bets. Each section of the ticket contains a different group of numbers chosen by the player. These sections are played independently of each other within the same game, essentially allowing the player to participate in multiple games with a single ticket.

For example, on a split ticket, you might select one set of numbers in one section of the ticket and a different set in another section. Each set is treated as a separate bet, with its chances to win. This approach can increase the excitement and potential winning opportunities, but it’s important to note that numbers cannot be shared across the different sections of a split ticket. Each section’s bet is evaluated independently when the winning numbers are drawn. The split ticket offers flexibility and variety for players looking to diversify their bets in a single round of Keno.

Square Pair

In craps, “Square Pair” refers to a roll of the dice resulting in two fours, making the total eight. This term is part of the colorful jargon used in craps to describe specific dice combinations. The name “Square Pair” comes from the visual similarity of the square shape made by the four dots on each die when a four is rolled.

The roll of a square pair is significant in the game, especially for bets like place bets, where players bet on specific numbers to be rolled before a seven. While it’s a specific outcome with its own odds, the square pair is just one of many possible dice combinations in craps, each with its own nickname and relevance to the game’s bets and strategies.

Staggered Payout

In slot machines, a “Staggered Payout” refers to a pay structure where the winnings vary significantly based on the number of coins bet. This system is designed to incentivize players to bet more coins per spin. For example, a slot machine might offer a payout of 100 coins for a single coin bet if a certain combination is hit, 200 coins for a two-coin bet, but a much larger 500 coins for a three-coin bet on the same combination. The jump in the payout for the maximum coin bet is typically disproportionate to the increase in the number of coins bet, making the highest bet more attractive. Staggered payouts add an extra strategic element to playing slot machines, as players must balance their budget against the potential for higher payouts.

Sticky Bonus

A “Sticky Bonus” in the context of online casinos is a type of bonus that cannot be withdrawn. Unlike a typical cashable bonus, which players can withdraw after meeting certain wagering requirements, a sticky bonus remains in your casino account. It can only be used to place bets and play games, but the bonus amount itself cannot be cashed out.

When you win using a sticky bonus, you can withdraw the winnings, but the original bonus amount is deducted from your balance or remains in your account for continued play. This type of bonus effectively boosts your playing bankroll, allowing you to play more games or place larger bets than you could with just your deposit alone. However, it’s important to read and understand the terms and conditions associated with sticky bonuses, as they can significantly differ from other types of casino bonuses in their usage and restrictions.

Straight Bet

In roulette, a “Straight Bet” is a type of wager where the player bets on a single number. To make this bet, the player places their chips directly on the number they choose on the roulette layout. This bet has the highest payout in roulette, typically 35 to 1, meaning if you bet $1 and win, you receive $35 in winnings plus your original $1 back. The straight bet is considered one of the simplest yet riskiest bets in roulette. The chances of hitting any single number are relatively low compared to other types of bets, like betting on red or black, which have almost a 50% chance of winning. However, the high payout is what makes the straight bet attractive to many players seeking a significant win from a small stake.

Straight Ticket

In Keno, a “Straight Ticket” is the most basic and straightforward way to play the game. When you choose a straight ticket, you simply select a set of numbers, typically between one and 15, and mark them on your Keno card. The number of spots (numbers) you decide to play is entirely up to you.

Once the game starts, the Keno machine draws a set number of balls, and you win based on how many of your chosen numbers match the numbers drawn. The more numbers you match, the higher your payout. The simplicity of the straight ticket lies in its single wager; you’re betting that your selected numbers will be drawn in the next game. There are no additional rules or combinations to track, making it an ideal choice for those new to Keno or those who prefer a more straightforward betting experience.

Street Bet

In roulette, a “Street Bet” is a type of wager where you bet on a row of three consecutive numbers on the roulette table. To place a street bet, you position your chips on the outer boundary line of the roulette table, at the end of the corresponding row. For example, if you want to bet on the numbers 4, 5, and 6, you place your chips on the line at the end of the row that contains these numbers.

This bet covers three numbers, and if the roulette ball lands on any of these, you win. The payout for a street bet is typically 11 to 1. This means if you bet $1 and win, you get $11 in winnings plus your original $1 back. Street bets offer higher payouts than more general bets like red/black or even/odd, but they come with lower odds of winning, since only three numbers can result in a win. This type of bet is a popular choice for players who want to balance the risk of betting on individual numbers with a reasonable chance of winning.

Surrender

In blackjack, “Surrender” is an option that allows a player to give up their hand and forfeit half of their bet after seeing their initial cards. This option is typically available only on the player’s first two cards, and only certain versions of blackjack offer it.

There are two types of surrender:

  1. Early Surrender: This allows the player to surrender before the dealer checks for blackjack. It’s a more favorable option for players, but it’s less commonly found in casinos.
  2. Late Surrender: This is more common and allows the player to surrender only after the dealer checks their hidden card for blackjack. If the dealer has blackjack, the surrender option is not available.

Surrender is a strategic choice used when the player believes that their hand is unlikely to win against the dealer’s hand, based on the cards shown. By choosing to surrender, a player can minimize their losses in situations where the odds are notably against them. This option should be used judiciously, based on a solid understanding of blackjack strategy.

T

Tai Sai

Tai Sai, also known as Sic Bo, is a traditional Chinese gambling game played with three dice. The name “Tai Sai” translates to “Big Small” in English, reflecting the game’s primary betting options. In Sic Bo, players place bets on various possible outcomes of the roll of three dice.

Bets can be placed on specific numbers, combinations of numbers, the total sum of the dice, or whether the total will be “big” (a high number) or “small” (a low number). The game is known for its fast pace and wide range of betting options.

Tank

In gambling, particularly in poker, “tank” refers to a player taking a long time to make a decision during their turn. The player is said to be “in the tank” when they are carefully thinking about their next move, often weighing the odds, potential outcomes, and their opponents’ possible hands.

Tapped Out

“Tapped out” in gambling means a player has run out of money or chips and can no longer place bets or continue playing. This term is often used in poker and other casino games to describe someone who has lost all their available funds.

Texas Blackout

In Bingo, “Texas Blackout” refers to a variation of the game where players must cover all the numbers on their bingo card to win. This is also known as a “coverall” or “blackout” game. Instead of just completing a line, column, or diagonal, players need to mark off every single number on their card, making it a more challenging and longer game.

The Cage

In a casino, “The Cage” refers to the secure area where cash transactions are handled. This is where players can exchange chips for cash, cash checks, and handle other financial transactions. It is typically staffed by cashiers and equipped with security measures to handle large amounts of money safely.

Third Base

In blackjack, “third base” refers to the seat at the table that is located to the dealer’s immediate right and is the last player position to act before the dealer. This player has the advantage of seeing how the other players have acted before making their own decision.

The actions of the third base player can sometimes influence the outcome for the dealer, which is why this position is often considered strategic.

Ticket

In keno, a “ticket” is the card or form used by players to mark their chosen numbers. Players select a set of numbers on the ticket, usually ranging from 1 to 80, and submit it to the keno runner or machine.

The ticket is then used to track the player’s selections during the drawing of the winning numbers. The player wins based on how many of their chosen numbers match the drawn numbers.

Tilt

In gambling, “tilt” refers to a state of emotional frustration or confusion that negatively impacts a player’s ability to make rational decisions. This term is commonly used in poker but applies to other forms of gambling as well.

When a player is on tilt, they may make impulsive, reckless bets or plays, often leading to further losses. The term highlights the importance of maintaining emotional control to ensure effective decision-making during gameplay.

Toke

The term “toke” in the context of casinos refers to a gratuity or tip given to a dealer or other casino employee by a gambler. This term is derived from “token of appreciation” and is commonly used in the gambling industry.

Tokes are typically small amounts of money, often around $0.50 or $1.00, and they can represent a significant portion of a dealer’s income. The practice of giving tokes is a way for gamblers to thank dealers for their service and to ensure favorable treatment during their play.

Trey

The term “trey” in gambling refers to a card or die with the rank of three. It is commonly used in various card games, dice games, and dominoes to denote a score or value of three.

In poker, “trey” specifically refers to a card with the rank of three, and it can also denote a pair of threes, especially as pocket cards. Additionally, in basketball, “trey” is an informal and now obsolete term for a three-pointer.

Triple

The term “Triple” in craps refers to a specific bet where the player wagers that the next roll will result in a total of three. This is a rare outcome since it can only be achieved by rolling a one and a two (or vice versa) on the pair of dice.

This type of bet is also known as “Ace-Deuce” or “Three Craps Three” during the comeout roll, and it is one of the many specific bets that can be placed in the game of craps.

U

Under the Gun

The term “Under the Gun” (UTG) in gambling, particularly in poker, refers to the position of the player who is seated immediately to the left of the big blind. This player is the first to act in the initial betting round before the community cards are dealt (preflop) in games like Texas Hold’em and Omaha poker.

Being “under the gun” is considered a disadvantageous position because the player must make their decision without any information about the actions of the other players at the table. This position requires a tight and strong range of starting hands due to the pressure and lack of information.

W

Wad

The term “wad” in the context of a casino refers to a player’s bankroll or the funds they have available to play with. It is essentially the amount of money a player has at their disposal for gambling activities.

Wager

A wager, in the context of gambling, refers to the act of risking a sum of money on the outcome of an event, typically a sporting event or race. The return on the wager is proportionate to the perceived likelihood of the outcome, as measured by the odds.

Legally, a wager involves staking something of value on the outcome of a contest, sporting event, or game of chance, with the understanding that the person or another will receive something of value if a certain outcome occurs. This can include various forms of betting, such as lotteries or other prize opportunities that are predominantly subject to chance.

In practical terms, a wager can be placed in various settings, including sportsbooks, casinos, and online gambling platforms, and can involve different types of bets, such as moneyline bets, point spreads, and prop bets. The term can be used both as a noun (the amount of money being risked) and as a verb (the act of placing a bet).

Wagering Requirement

A wagering requirement, in the context of online casinos, refers to the condition that players must meet before they can withdraw any winnings derived from bonus funds. It is typically expressed as a multiplier that indicates how many times the bonus amount (and sometimes the deposit amount) must be wagered before the bonus funds can be converted into withdrawable cash.

Key Points About Wagering Requirements:

  1. Definition: A wagering requirement is a multiplier that represents the number of times you have to play through a bonus before you can withdraw any winnings.
  2. Calculation: For example, if you receive a $50 bonus with a 20x wagering requirement, you must wager $1,000 ($50 x 20) before you can withdraw any winnings.
  3. Types of Bonuses
    • Deposit Match Bonuses: These bonuses match your deposit by a certain percentage and usually come with wagering requirements. For instance, a 100% deposit match bonus of $100 with a 20x wagering requirement means you need to wager $2,000 before withdrawing.
    • No Deposit Bonuses: These bonuses do not require an initial deposit but often have higher wagering requirements. For example, a $50 no deposit bonus with a 20x wagering requirement means you need to wager $1,000.
    • Free Spins: Winnings from free spins are often subject to wagering requirements. For example, if you win $50 from free spins with a 20x wagering requirement, you need to wager $1,000 before withdrawing.
  4. Eligible Games: Not all games contribute equally to meeting wagering requirements. For example, slots often contribute 100%, while table games like blackjack or roulette may contribute only 10% or less.
  5. Time Limits: Wagering requirements must typically be met within a specified time frame, ranging from a few days to several months. If the requirements are not met within this period, the bonus and any associated winnings may be forfeited.
  6. Pending Balance: Any winnings made while working towards the wagering requirements are stored in a pending balance and cannot be withdrawn until the requirements are met.
  7. No Wagering Bonuses: Some bonuses come with no wagering requirements, meaning any winnings can be withdrawn immediately. However, these are rare.

Understanding wagering requirements is crucial for players to make informed decisions about which bonuses to claim and how to manage their gameplay to meet these conditions. Always read the terms and conditions associated with any bonus to fully understand the wagering requirements and other related rules.

Wild Symbol

A wild symbol in slot machines is a special icon that can substitute for most other symbols on the reels to help create winning combinations. This feature is similar to the joker in a deck of cards, which can represent any card to complete a hand. Wild symbols cannot typically replace scatter symbols, free spin symbols, or other bonus symbols.

Types of Wild Symbols

  1. Standard Wilds: These simply substitute for other symbols to complete winning paylines.
  2. Expanding Wilds: These wilds expand to cover an entire reel, increasing the chances of forming winning combinations.
  3. Sticky Wilds: These wilds remain in place for multiple spins, enhancing the potential for wins over several rounds.
  4. Stacked Wilds: These appear in stacks on a reel, potentially covering the entire reel and creating multiple winning combinations.
  5. Shifting or Walking Wilds: These wilds move horizontally across the reels with each spin until they disappear off the final reel.
  6. Random Wilds: These can appear randomly on the reels during a spin, often in bonus rounds.

Function and Benefits

  • Substitution: The primary function of wild symbols is to substitute for other symbols to complete winning combinations, making it easier to achieve payouts.
  • Special Features: Some wilds come with additional features such as multipliers, which can increase the payout of the winning combination they help create.
  • Bonus Rounds: Wild symbols often play a significant role in bonus rounds, where they might appear more frequently or come with added benefits like multipliers or free spins.

Appearance

Wild symbols appear randomly on the reels, and their specific behavior can vary from game to game. They may only appear on certain reels, such as the center reels in a five-reel slot, and their presence and function are usually detailed in the game’s paytable.

In summary, wild symbols are versatile and valuable components in slot games, enhancing the player’s chances of winning by substituting for other symbols and often bringing additional features that can lead to bigger payouts.

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