The early origins of the game roulette date to the 17th century. There have been ancient accounts of similar games from China, Greece, and Rome, but there has been insufficient evidence to link them to the origin of modern roulette.
Evidence suggests that the modern game of roulette is of French origin. Blaise Pascal tried to invent a machine to demonstrate the hypothesis of perpetual motion. Pascal was known to be an avid gambler at the time of his invention.
The development of the game was largely influenced by two games that were frequently played throughout central Europe, known as ‘Even-Odd’ and ‘Roly Poly’. Both games use the principle of spinning a wheel and betting on an outcome. It is plausible that these games influenced the invention of the roulette wheel by Blaise Pascal.
The practice of gambling was met with strenuous gambling laws around the 18th century. However, nations such as Monaco commissioned the construction of gambling houses to restore financial stability to the monarchy. Roulette became more popular with dignitaries, aristocrats, and other wealthy individuals.
The basic roulette wheel is divided into evenly spaced numbered pockets. European and American roulette wheels are the two most common styles used in casinos. American-style roulette uses a double-zero, and the European style layout has a single zero on the wheel.
The roulette wheel is spun, and the ball will randomly coincide with one of the pockets on the ball track. Players can predict and wager on where exactly the ball will land. The game has improved over the years. For example, shallower pockets help to improve the randomness of the outcome.
Microgaming launched the first online casino in 1994. This would introduce millions of gamblers to online roulette. Today, players are spoilt for choice with countless online casinos that present the game in various exciting styles and configurations.