The game of roulette holds a special allure for most casino-goers. Many of them also swear by various strategies that they claim gives them the edge over other players, and even over the house itself.
One of the more popular roulette strategies out there is the so-called James Bond roulette strategy.
You will see many roulette fans refer to it in online discussions, and increasingly around tables in land-based venues.
But where does the strategy come from, why was it named after the fictional spy, and does it actually work?
Roulette featured heavily in the original Bond novels. Indeed, the opening chapter in the first novel Dr No, we read about Bond playing (and winning) a game of roulette.
But the truth is, roulette barely made an appearance in the actual movies, as 007 preferred baccarat, craps, poker, and even a bizarre fantasy casino game named Domination (here, players receive a series of electric shocks of increasing intensity in proportion to the amount wagered).
Perhaps Evolution Gaming will buy the rights to a Domination-inspired live casino game one day... who knows?
But perhaps roulette’s most famous connection to Bond stems from a famous incident in 1962, when actor Sean Connery won over $200,000 in today’s money at the Casino de la Vallee in Italy by successfully betting straight-up three times on 17 black. In his last outing as Bond in 1971’s Diamonds are Forever, Connery repeated that same trick using 17 black - but other than that, the game of roulette did not make another appearance in the series.
So that explains Bond’s rathe disappointing connection to the game of roulette.
But the James Bond roulette strategy itself? The truth is that there is no evidence in either the books or the movies for any particular strategy to have been used by Bond. It sounds to us like some roulette gambler invented the strategy, and then decided to popularize it by calling it after the most famous casino patron in screen history.
So how does this famous strategy work? There are two main aspects to the system:
A progressive betting strategy means that the amount you bet in every round changes depending on the outcome of the previous round. The most popular such strategy is the Martingale (where you double-down on each losing bet, until you win...or go bankrupt!).
However, a non-progressive strategy requires you to bet the same amount of money in every round regardless of the outcome, and the James Bond strategy is one such system.
Therefore, from a money management perspective, no matter how the previous round ends, all you have to do is repeat the same bet size.
First, the James Bond system asks that you make a bet of a total value of $20, but you’ll have to divide that into three different selections.
The first step is to make a $14 stake on the high numbers, by placing the chips on 19 to 36. After that, place $5 on the six-line (double street) to cover the two rows consisting of three numbers each — these are the numbers 13 to 18.
Finally, you need to put the remaining $1 on green zero. Please take into account that this system only works well for European roulette, which has only one zero pocket, unlike its American counterpart that comes with two zeroes and an increased house edge. Therefore, if you want to try the James Bond system, you need to play the European version of the game.
The idea of this multi-layered approach is to cover more outcomes than you would usually do otherwise.
Here’s how the outcome of a single round might look like.
So, can the James Bond roulette strategy help you beat the house, as its proponents claim?
Actually, no, it can’t. The roulette house edge exists no matter which combination of numbers you bet on. James Bond is an excellent money management strategy, and will keep you in the game longer. But even then – the more roulette spins you play, the more likely that the house edge will assert itself, so casinos themselves must be delight to see patrons using it.
All betting strategies are there to help us improve our money management and stick to a betting pattern. However, roulette is a game of chance, with the odds slightly tilted in the house’s favour. You can't beat the house at roulette, at least in the long run.
The truth is, in games like roulette it’s impossible to use any strategy that would help you gain an edge. Otherwise, casinos would go broke within a few days of play.
If you’re eager to test how this strategy works, you can join one of our licensed real money online casinos and play online roulette right away. Many also let you play roulette in demo mode, so you can test your strategies out.