Most betting systems require mathematical and statistical knowledge in order to provide profits, something not all players have been gifted with. Not the Martingale system – it requires no specific knowledge of mathematics and you don’t need to take notes as well.
The concept behind it is pretty clear you just need to double your stake after each loss. No matter the fact that it’s pretty common, the Martingale is a risky system which can make you lose a lot of money in a pretty short time, which is why seasoned casino veterans usually avoid it.
How Does It Work?
As we already mentioned, the Martingale system works on bets with 50:50 odds. When applied to roulette, it’s most suitable for even money bets such as High/Low, Red/Black, and Even/Odd numbers. This means that it works best for outside bets, as inside bets have much higher odds.
For even money bets, the Martingale progression should look like this: 1-2-4-8-16-32-64-218-256-512-1024-2048 etc. You always start with a small bet and stay with it until you lose. At this point, you’re supposed to double your stake in order to recover the previous loss and earn a tiny profit. It works well in theory, but when put into practice, the system can easily falter.
Here’s an example – you’re sitting at a roulette table and bet $5. You win the spin, you bet the same stake again. This time, you lose, so you bet the double, which is $10. You lose again, you bet $20. Another loss, now you bet $40, and after yet another loss, you wager $80. Finally, you win, but considering the fact that the odds are always 1:1, you’ve only won $5. Add to that the $5 you won before the losing streak, you have a profit of only $10. Not exactly worth it, right?
The Martingale system makes sense when you think about it, but considering the fact that the zero on the roulette wheel is included in the equation, the chances for you to win are even lower than 50%. If you’re playing American roulette, the chances are even worse due to the double-zero pocket.
Another problem is that the system is supposed to compensate for the house edge, but no system can ever do this – the casino always wins in the end. All it takes is one loss to wipe away all your winnings and you will need to start all over again. This may work for gamblers with infinite wealth, but let’s be realistic – such a player doesn’t exist.
Can the Martingale System Help You Win?
Ah, the question every player wants answered. The short version would be both yes and no. In the short term, you may win a bit of money, but don’t expect landslide wins unless you’re really lucky. In the long run, however, the system is extremely risky due to the steep progression. The bet size only rises and rises until you come to a point where your pockets are empty, eventually being forced to leave the table.