The Art of Martingale and Its Advantages and Dangers

If a player at a Roulette wheel makes an even bet on black there is a near 50% chance they will win. If they lose and then double down on black for the next spin they have utilized a very old strategy. Centuries-old in fact. In the 1700s they finally gave it a name, the Martingale System, and it is a gambling system both recreational and avid players utilize. The system works for any game of chance save slots. It is a very simple concept and odds are most gamblers have used it a time or two without realizing it. Here is everything one needs to know about the Martingale System.


What Is It?

The Martingale System is a strategy that utilizes even bets and the chances of repeat results. In Roulette, there are two even bets a player can make. They can wager on colors or numbers. This is because half the numbers on the wheel are either red, black, odd, or even. So if a player bets on odd for instance, they have a fifty-fifty shot the marble will fall on an odd number. However, this percentage diminishes with each spin as lightning rarely strikes twice. So by doubling down on the next spin the player is almost ensured victory, and the doubled bet will pay them back for their loss.

This is where Martingale plays repeated results. The chances that marble will land on black twice in a row is 25%, 12% on the third spin, and 6% on the fourth. So each spin the chances of the same result become near impossible. As the percentages dwindle the odds become stacked in a player's favor. So if they keep doubling down each time their eventual win will allow them to break even. This is the essence of the Martingale system.

What are the Cons?

  • Streaks: If a player finds themselves on the wrong side of a streak it can be very costly. Yes, eventually they will win but it does no good if they run out of money first.
  • Cost: Martingale can be costly as a player has to double their bet each loss. If the losses build up the wagers can become very pricey.
  • Profit: While doubling down will net a player their loss back, if they are not careful that is all that will happen. They will win and lose but at the end of the day make no more money than what they brought in. Even if a streak takes a player to the seventh spin and they win a sizable amount it will only serve to pay back their original wager.

What are the Pros?

  • Stacks: A player using Martingale only doubles up on a loss. The idea is that they will also win a good bit too. This means the money will stack. If a player is betting $10 a spin they will increase their bankroll by ten steadily.
  • Less Risk: The idea that double downs return lost money means that Martingale provides less risk. So a player can only add money to their bankroll. As long as they have enough to cover a decent-sized streak they are never in danger of losing any money.
  • Better Odds: Martingale starts off with a good pro in that bets have to be even. This means that players have better odds at winning, to begin with. As even bets bear a 50% chance of victory on the first spin they are a lot safer than betting on specific numbers.

Lerato Dlamini

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