Big Six Wheel: Worth the Bet or Too Risky?

By in Casino & Gaming on
7 Minute Read
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Gamblers are used to playing table games like baccarat, blackjack, and roulette. These games have been around in some form or another for centuries.

With that said, many gamblers go on the lookout for something new from time to time. Big Six Wheel is a popular choice for those who are tired of playing the same old games again and again.

True to its name, it features a large wheel that spins around and determines prizes. Many players love this simple concept and the large payouts that are available.

As you’ll see on this page, though, Big Six can feature a really high house edge. Is this game still worth playing in light of this fact?

You can find out below by reading more about it and if you can somehow lower the crazy house advantage.

Basics of Big Six Wheel

Big Six features a large wheel with many slices on it. If you’ve watched Wheel of Fortune before, then you should quickly understand the concept.

Each slice represents either a dollar amount or casino logo. On the table, you’ll see all of the dollar amounts and logos represented by spaces.

You bet on the space that corresponds with which dollar/logo will win. Assuming the wheel’s pointer stops on your choice, then you’ll receive a prize that’s equivalent to what you bet on.

A common North American wheel features the following 54 spaces:

  • $1 – 24 slices; pays 1 to 1
  • $2 – 15 slices; pays 2 to 1
  • $5 – 7 slices; pays 5 to 1
  • $10 – 4 slices; pays 10 to 1
  • $20 – 2 slices; pays 20 to 1
  • Casino logo – 2 spaces; pays 40 to 1

Again, the model shown above is a common Big Six Wheel. But variations with more or fewer slices exist both online and in land-based casinos.

Note that the dollar amounts don’t indicate how much you have to wager. Instead, they just represent what you stand to win.

If you bet a dollar on the $10 space, for example, your potential prize will be $10. Assuming you risk $2 on the $5 slice, you’d also stand to win $10.

Getting Started With Big Six

Big Six Wheel features a simple playing process that lets you begin enjoying it as quickly as possible. Here are the steps to get started:

  • Step 1 – Buy Chips: You need to purchase chips from the dealer just like any other table game. Interestingly enough, Big Six features $1 metal tokens in addition to regular chips. You can buy both tokens and chips by sliding your cash towards the dealer.
  • Step 2 – Make a Bet: You place desired bet(s) on one of the dollar and/or logo spaces. Keep in mind that you can make multiple wagers in a round.
  • Step 3 – Enjoy the Round: After placing a bet, you can sit back and watch the round play out. The pointer will determine whether you win or lose.

Where to Find Online Big Six

Unlike blackjack or European Roulette, Big Six isn’t one of the most widely prevalent games. Nevertheless, you can find this game through online gaming.

Online Big Six Wheel comes in both virtual and live-dealer versions. Gamesys provides one of the few virtual versions.

Gamesys’ Big Six offers a wheel with 51 slices—instead of 54. This game’s wheel breaks down as follows:

  • $1 – 24 slices; pays 1 to 1
  • $3 – 12 slices; pays 3 to 1
  • $7 – 6 slices; pays 7 to 1
  • $15 – 3 slices; pays 15 to 1
  • $23 – 2 slices; pays 23 to 1
  • Joker – 1 slice; pays 47 to 1
  • Logo – 1 slice; pays 47 to 1

As for the live dealer version, several software developers offer this game. Evolution Gaming features one of the most notable variations in Dream Catcher.

The latter plays very much like traditional Big Six. However, Dream Catcher also includes 2x and 7x multipliers.

Assuming the pointer lands on a multiplier, then the dealer spins the wheel again to determine the winning number. The multiplier applies to all wins.

Here’s an example:

  • You bet $10 on the $2 space.
  • The wheel lands on a 7x multiplier.
  • The dealer spins the wheel again.
  • The $2 slice wins.
  • 2 x 10 x 7 = $140 payout

Finding Big Six Wheel in Brick and Mortar Casinos

Many land-based gambling destinations offer Big Six. Atlantic City, Charles Town (WV), Las Vegas, Macau, Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Sydney are all examples of US and international casino hubs that feature this game.

You’ll commonly find the wheel with 54 slices in North American casinos. However, the different types of wheels can vary across the US and in other countries.

Macau, for example, features the following slices on its wheels:

  • Orange ($1) – 24 slices; pays 1 to 1
  • Purple ($3) – 12 slices; pays 3 to 1
  • Green ($5) – 8 slices; pays 5 to 1
  • Blue ($10) – 4 slices; pays 10 to 1
  • Yellow ($20) – 2 slices; pays 20 to 1
  • Logo ($45) – 2 slices; pays 45 to 1

As you can see, Macau labels its slices with colors rather than dollar amounts. However, the concept is the same.

Why Is Big Six Wheel Such a Risky Game?

Big Six is simple from a strategic perspective. As I’ll cover later, the strategy is straightforward and easy to execute.

However, this game presents plenty of risk due to the high house edge. Many versions give the casino a large advantage.

Here’s the house edge on each bet with the standard North American wheel:

  • $1 – 11.11% house advantage
  • $2 – 16.67%
  • $5 – 22.22%
  • $10 – 18.52%
  • $20 – 22.22%
  • Logo – 24.07%

Few casino bets feature anywhere near an 11.11% house edge—let alone 24.07%. This particular variation doesn’t offer great long-term odds.

The Macau version provides a better chance to win:

  • Orange – 7.69% house edge
  • Purple – 7.69%
  • Green – 7.69%
  • Blue – 15.38%
  • Yellow – 19.23%
  • Logo – 11.54%

Even in this case, though, you’re not looking at favorable odds of winning. Your best bet is to choose the top bets for a given game. As I’ll discuss below, you should also concentrate on online Big Six.

Tips for Winning More Money in Big Six

This game might initially look like the worst bet in the casino. However, you can boost your chances of winning by following the tips below.

Tip #1: Pick the Best Bets

Big Six Wheel presents a wide variety of wagers. Therefore, you may be tempted to switch your bets around for the sake of entertainment.

For example, you might bet on the $5 space during one round. The next, you may switch things up by putting money on the $10 spot.

If you really want to boost your odds, though, you should stick with the most-favorable wagers for the relevant game.

On a standard North American wheel, for example, the $1 space features the lowest house edge (11.11%). In the Macau version, orange, purple, and green all provide the lowest house advantage (7.69%).

Tip #2: Play Online Big Six

You’ll find more thrills and excitement when playing Big Six Wheel in land-based casinos. However, you’ll also face a larger house advantage in most cases.

The house edge ranges from 11.11% to 24.07% on the North American wheel. It ranges from 7.69% to 11.54% on the Macau wheel.

Neither case represents an ideal opportunity to win. This is especially true when considering that table games like baccarat (1.06%) and French Roulette (1.35%) offer really low house edges.

But you don’t have to totally exclude Big Six from your list of playable games. You can still enjoy it without needing to face a terrible house advantage.

Gamesys’ version features a 2.04% house edge on every bet. These odds are better than the majority of online and land-based table games.

Live-dealer Big Six games also provide a better opportunity to win than do brick-and-mortar casinos. Here are the house edges on every Dream Catcher bet:

  • $1 – 4.66% house edge
  • $2 – 4.49%
  • $5 – 8.76%
  • $10 – 3.42%
  • $20 – 7.26%
  • $40 – 9.19%
  • 2x and 7x multiplier – N/A

Tip #3: Account for the Volatility

Some variations, like Gamesys Big Six, feature the same house edge for each bet. With that said, you’ll enjoy the same long-term odds no matter which bet you choose.

However, you should also account for the volatility whenever picking wagers with longer odds. The $10, $20, and logo bets all feature higher volatility.

The $20 space, for instance, only pays out 3.70% of the time. Therefore, you’ll need to wait much longer on spots like this to pay.

Of course, you can always go for the bigger prizes when you feel like it. But you should have a larger bankroll before doing so.

Is Big Six Ultimately Worth Playing?

Big Six Wheel doesn’t normally offer the greatest odds in the casino. Nevertheless, it can be worthwhile under the right circumstances.

The online version is particularly friendly to your bankroll. Gamesys offers a version with just over a 2% house edge on every wager.

Live dealer roulette isn’t quite as generous. However, Dream Catcher does offer okay house edges on the $1 (4.66%), $2 (4.49%), and $10 (3.42%) spots.

The key is to perform research any time you find a new variation of Big Six. Specifically, you want to find the house edges for every bet.

With just 10 to 15 minutes’ worth of research, you can quickly identify the best variations to play. You’ll enjoy more winnings as a reward for your work.

Conclusion

Big Six isn’t quite like online blackjack or baccarat when it comes to the house edge. It can, however, give you a decent shot at winning with the right approach.

You can head straight for any of the online games we’ve covered here to improve your prospects. You could also research the best bets in your local land-based casino.

Also, don’t forget to consider the volatility with certain bets. You’ll generally need a larger bankroll if you hope to last when chasing the biggest prizes.

Michael Stevens

Michael Stevens has been researching and writing topics involving the gambling industry for well over a decade now and is considered an expert on all things casino and sports betting. Michael has been writing for GamblingSites.org since early 2016. ...

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