Classic Mail Order Systems
If you gamble a lot, you probably receive a lot of mail, and much of it involves systems "guaranteed" to make you win at the casinos. These blackjack and craps systems sell for between $20 and $100 and most are almost worthless. To make matters worse, the methods presented in these two to twenty page "reports" are old, and usually derived from three "classic" systems - Martingale, Paroli, and D'Alembert.
Most people are familiar with the Martingale. If you bet and lose, you simply double your bet. Then, you keep doubling on losses, and when you win, start your bets over at one unit. Sounds good, but if you're a $10 bettor, your progression is 10, 20, 40, 80, 160, 320...and then you're stuck - you can't double again without hitting the usual house limit of $500.
The Paroli method is simple - If you lose, you keep the same bet when starting out. When you win, increase by one unit. Then, if you lose, decrease your bets by one unit. This makes more sense than the Martingale, but you need to have a set win and loss limit to play Paroli.
There is also a Grand Paroli - When you win, you double your bet, and add one unit to it. When you lose, just go down one unit. Your winning progression would be 1,3,7,15,31, etc. If you're winning, you'll win a lot using this method.
Not to be outdone, there is also a Grand Martingale, the exact opposite of a Grand Paroli. When you win, go down one unit. When you lose, you double your bet and add one unit to it.
The last "classic" system is the D'Alembert which is the exact opposite of the Paroli. When you win, you decrease your bets by one unit. When you lose, you increase your bets by one unit.
One more system, which has a variety of names, involves the choosing of three numbers, like 3, 4 and 5. The amount bet is always the sum of the two outside numbers, in this case 8 units (3 +5). On a win, the two outside numbers are scratched off. On a loss the previous bet is added to the sequence, so in this case it now becomes 3,4,5, 8. The next bet would be 11 units (8+3). If you win, scratch off the 3 and 8 and your bet would be 9 units (4+5). The series is finished when all of the numbers have been scratched off. The theory behind this system is that to show a profit, you only need to win half as many times as you lose. Are any of these systems worth the exorbitant money that they demand? Probably not. And, the "guarantee" that comes with them is very difficult to fulfill, as it usually requires you to write down hundreds of your bets and their decisions over a long period of time. Besides, you now know the six most popular systems that are sold by mail order - keep this article and try them all on a computer simulation and see how they work for you!
And, as always, good luck at the tables!