A London casino has taken the unusual step of renaming the well-known dice game craps, due the name causing some confusion and embarrassment. The Hippodrome casino, in Leicester Square, now calls the game simply “dice” in the hope that it will encourage more people to play. They are also running regular teaching sessions where players can learn how the game works.
Craps is one the favorite games in casinos in the United States, and also in many other parts of the world, but is not hugely popular in the United Kingdom. Although you will find tables in a number of casinos, they are rarely as busy as the blackjack and roulette tables. Simon Thomas, owner of the Hippodrome, has been attempting to raise the profile of the game but thinks the name is having an adverse effect.
The word crap is commonly used in United Kingdom in derogatory terms and has toilet based connotations. As such, Thomas says, people are put off playing the game. He believes that by changing the name to dice players will be more comfortable, saying “There’s a lot of sniggering and smirking going on and it can cause confusion……Whatever it it’s called it’s the same game and we expect it to be a massive hit.”
Whether his players take to the game remains to be same. Many people see craps as a very complicated game – largely because of the many different wagers that can be placed. Once you have a handle on the rules though it is pretty straightforward, as proved by its popularity around the world. The fact that the Hippodrome is offering to teach players to learn the game for free could well encourage more people to try it, and may just have just as much impact as changing the name will.
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