Sic Bo

Sic Bo: A casino game with dice and strategy

The game is played with traditional dice, which show the numbers 1 through 6. In Sic Bo, three dice are in play at the same time, and the goal is to guess which possible combination of the dice will be on the table. The closer your prediction is to the truth, the higher the (chance of) winning.

Unlike a card game, for example, it is difficult to devise specific strategies for winning at Sic Bo. They are there (more on that later) but they work only sparsely. What you need is a good dose of luck and a little knowledge of the basic rules of the game. Sic Bo will probably not sound familiar to people in the Netherlands, as it has not been played here for very long.

Sic Bo at Holland Casino

If you’ve ever been to Holland Casino, you may have come across the name Sic Bo. Sic Bo is a dice game, where a total of three dice are used. The minimum and maximum sums thus come to 1 and 8.

There are numerous ways to bet your money on the board in the game of Sic Bo, with large differences in risk. In order to get to know how Sic Bo works, it’s recommended to play Sic Bo for free first. This way you can get used to the different gambling options and know what pace is used around the game.

Sic Bo requires a great deal of luck, but a little strategy never hurt anyone. So how do you do that in a game with three unpredictable dice? First, you need to know what possibilities you can bet on. Sic Bo is a bit like roulette. Do you recognize the roulette betting on dozens? You can bet on the number 1 through 12, 13 through 24 and finally 25 through 36. You can do something similar in Sic Bo as well. For example, you can bet on the total number of pips on the three dice to be between 11 & 17 (big), or 4 & 10 (small).

All types of payouts

Standard payouts

Once the dice start rolling, everything is open. Sic Bo is a very interactive game, where the betting public can be extremely involved in the final outcome. Below are all the possible payouts for a game of Sic Bo, and there are quite a few:

  • Big/Small: Between 11 & 17 or 4 & 10 Double your bet.
  • The number of dice correctly guessed (Any single die) 1 die correctly doubles your bet, 2 dice correctly guessed (2:1), 3 dice correctly guessed (3:1). Often in the latter case you also have the highest possible win up your sleeve, we’ll get to that in a moment.
  • Two die: Combination of two dice correctly 6:1 win

The total sum

The next possible payout comes from a correct prediction of the number of eyes, but that’s where things get trickier. You can choose 9, 10, 11 or 12, which allows you to win back six more times your bet. After that, the total sum really becomes a gamble, because you can choose 8 or 13 (8:1), 7 or 14 (12:1), 6 or 15 (18:1), 5 or 16 (30:1) and 4 or 17 (60:1).

The total sum is thus often a bet on one combined number and the probability of the dice together falling on this is not particularly high. The total of three dice together is incidentally a minimum of 3 and a maximum of 18. That’s why the odds of 4 or 17 are very low and the payout for a correct prediction is very high.

Double bet of any triple in Sic Bo

If you predict that two of the three dice will show an equal number, you win 11 times your bet back. Three dice with the same number of pips gets you as much as 30 times your bet as profit. This is a random bet, so you are not betting on three times a 3, but on three times the same number. This makes the chance that this combination falls higher than the one with the highest chance of winning; the specific triple.

Specific tiple; the main prize

For the real daredevil, the specific triple is an attractive option to bet on. In contrast to the ‘any triple’, here you bet on a specific number that you think will fall three times. In this case you bet on, say, a ‘5’ three times and when it falls you win 180 times your stake back. If we are going to compare this with roulette, then you can compare the ‘specific triple’ with the Royal Flush.

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Is there a house edge?

In Sic Bo, there is house edge. Unlike, say, a card game, in Sic Bo there is no way to predict what the next round will do. You don’t have decks that run out and cards that have already passed, so there is a certain margin of uncertainty in the game. The various payouts involve the following advantages for you versus the casino, or the possible payout percentage per combination:

– Big/Small: 97,22%
– Any single: 92.13
– Any double (pair): 88,88%
– Any triple: 86,11
– Specific triple: 83,80%
– Total sum: 92,59% to 84,72%

Start playing

Since in Holland we are less familiar with the rules of Sic Bo, it is wise to watch the game first. Sic Bo is quite fast-paced and the betting options can be confusing and unfamiliar at first.

As you get to know the game, however, you’ll notice which betting options you prefer and where the dice fall the most. For example, do the dice often fall on a pair, i.e. two dice with the same number of pips? Then that’s an interesting and attractive option to bet on.

Free is risk-free

Since you have about 300 ways to bet on Sic Bo, it’s easy to imagine that you’ll be betting a lot of money for one round. This can make you lose money fast, or win money fast. To determine how much you will need for betting per round, a free version of Sic Bo to play is ideal. Through games websites you can try Sic Bo for free. This way you can bet as much as you want without any risk and find out what the rules of the game are. The game itself is very easy to understand and the betting options will quickly become recognizable.

Advantages of playing for free

Playing Sic Bo for free is risk-free and that’s a great way to get to know the game. Practice makes perfect, as the saying goes about various sports and games. This is of course 100% true. The more you practice with Sic Bo, the more familiar you become with all the options the game offers. You’ll also notice that there’s a lot of money to be won and you can develop your own strategy. These are possible strategies for Sic Bo:

  • Low Risk: Betting on common options, such as Small/Big. This option can be compared to the 1 through 18 & 19 through 36 on the roulette table.
  • Medium risk: Betting on both certainties and the occasional gamble. You bet on common combinations or numbers per die, but don’t be afraid to bet on a duo or triple die.
  • High risk: You want to win money fast and therefore bet on less common combinations and sums of numbers. You’re someone who wants to make money fast, and that means taking risks.

Whatever your strategy, the best way to learn Sic Bo is to start with a free version. This way, you’ll get the hang of the game in no time.

The history

Sic Bo is one of, if not the oldest casino game you can find. First practiced in China, Sic Bo’s unique features and capabilities have now won over the entire Asian continent. Sic Bo is less well-known in the Netherlands and is rarely offered in offline casinos, at most once during the Chinese New Year at the Holland Casino. Online, however, Sic Bo is becoming more and more popular, and the opportunities for playing the game are expanding.

Sic Bo can be seen as a combination of the American Craps and roulette games.

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The main terms of the game Sic Bo

Sic Bo is a Chinese game often played in Asian countries. Of course, an Asian game comes with its own set of terms. If you’re just starting out in a casino game, it’s helpful to know what they’re talking about. There are the options by which you can win, which all have a different name.

In addition, there are a number of terms that will often recur during a game of Sic Bo. We’ll list the most important terms here and explain them to you briefly.


The bet with which you are least likely to lose is a bet on small or big. Sic Bo is played with three dice and the minimum and maximum sum of these dice is 3 and 18. The small/big bet is similar to the 1-18 and 19-36 bets in roulette, you bet on the lowest or highest half.

The minimum and maximum numbers don’t count in this case and that gives you a bit of house advantage. The small bet runs from 4 to 10, while the big bet runs from 11 to 17.

Single die

Predict one die correctly when it comes to the number of pips. If you predict that one of the three dice will show a ‘4’ and it happens, you double your bet.

Two dice

Here it gets a little trickier. This is the single die, but then you predict the outcome of two dice correctly. In the case of Two dice, this is then on one die, for example, a ‘2’ and on the other a ‘5’. You get six times your bet back if you get it right.


If you predict that two dice will be the same and it comes true, you win eleven times your bet back. The double is for example twice a ‘6’. You don’t have to choose a specific number to be rolled twice, this is just a random bet on two dice with the same number as the outcome.

Any triple

For gamblers who like a risk there are the triples. The triple that is slightly less risky is the ‘any triple’. Here you predict that three dice will have the same result with a random number of pips. An example is three times a ‘1’. But as said, with Any triple you don’t have to choose a specific number.

Specific triple

This is different with the ‘specific triple’. Here you specifically choose a number, such as ‘2’. If all three dice subsequently fall on 2, you can win 180 times your bet back. You’re taking a high risk, but if you win you’ll probably be the winner of the night at Sic Bo. Especially for gamblers who don’t shy away from risk.

Total sum

Finally, there is the total sum. Easily translated, this is the total sum of three dice added together. For example, 3+1+4 is a sum of 8. If you have bet on this, you can earn back the stake that matches this ‘total sum’.


The three dice are held and placed under this ‘cage’. This is often a bowl or cup that is not transparent from the outside.


Three dice are turned by the dealer in the center of the ‘cage’ and must land exactly in the center of the cage. Often this variant is used for special moments, for example when people at the table bet on one specific number or a triple.

The Grand Hazard

The last specific term for Sic Bo is the Grand Hazard. You won’t see this term everywhere, but in a country like England it is sometimes used. In this case, the dice are shaken and rolled in a special type of cup, where the dice must first pass through several layers before they land on the table. This, according to insiders, would lead to a fairer and more exciting outcome.

General terms

Besides the specific terms of Sic Bo, each casino game also has some general terms. For example, house edge is also known as ‘house edge’. In Sic Bo, the house edge varies between 2.8% and 16.2%, depending on your own bet and winning combination. There is also the ‘re-bet’, where you, the player, place exactly the same value on your bet as the round before.

Sic Bo Game Rules

Sic Bo is also played in casinos in countries such as China, Korea and the Philippines. If you translate the Asian term ‘Sic Bo’ into English, you get ‘Dice Pair’.

All the rules you need to know before playing Sic Bo

Nevertheless, the game is played with three dice and both combinations and triples are possible. In fact, a triple will earn you the most money if you bet correctly. Here you can read more about the rules involved in a game of Sic Bo, an Asian invention in casino life.

The Sic Bo board

One of the most striking elements of the game of Sic Bo has to be the board on which it is played. Although the board looks complex and crowded, the game itself is not difficult to understand and can be played well by anyone.

In the center of the board, you’ll find only the numbers 4 through 17, the minimum and maximum possible combinations of three dice. If you bet on these, you have a chance of winning in the ‘Total Sum’, where you as a gambler can bet money on the final sum of all three dice.

Top left and top right you can find the ‘Small’ and ‘Big’. These small and big are similar to betting on a dozen or ‘1 through 18’ in the game of roulette. You bet on a spread between 4 & 10 or 11 & 17. The chances of three dice falling within that range are relatively high. You also have the option of betting on a double number, for example twice a 5. At the bottom of the Sic Bo board are the individual options to bet on a particular number. The board looks crowded, but all betting options are easy to identify. For you as a gambler, there is plenty of choice and plenty of options to win money. An interesting game!

Starting to play

As a new player you are naturally curious about how to place your bets. On the Sic Bo board, which is full of options, you can predict the sum or outcome of the three dice together. Choose a combination, go for a possible triple or pick the number that is on at least one die; it’s all in your hands. Maybe you know the game ‘craps’ yourself, which you play with two dice and even then it is difficult to predict the outcome. Consider how it is with the game of Sic Bo.

Imagine that prior to the rolling of the dice you believe in the outcome 8. You can then start betting money on all possibilities that have to do with 8. Take for example the ‘Small’ bet, which is supposed to fall between 4 & 10. If your prediction is correct, you will receive 2x your stake back in any case. You can also bet on the fact that a 3 will fall twice and a 2 once. This gives you a chance to win a ‘Two die’ and earn back six times your bet. Sic Bo has different calculations to match the predictions and height of the numbers. Before the dice roll you must have already made a bet, so don’t hesitate too long.

What about the stakes?

At Sic Bo, there is not necessarily a minimum or maximum bet. You can play with 5 euros on one particular option, but you can also choose multiple options to bet 5 euros on. If you want to win more and faster, you can also bet 100 euros per round, but that depends on your personal preferences and situation. However, there are a few things you should not try at Sic Bo.

What is not recommended or advised?

In any game there are hard rules and soft rules. The hard rules apply to every player and you should basically abide by them. Soft rules are more about advising you not to do something in order to avoid losing money quickly. And believe us, you can win money fast at Sic Bo, but you can also lose it. The following points are things to keep in mind when playing Sic Bo:
– It’s still gambling, so in order not to lose too much money in this game you can also just choose a “Small or Big” bet. In fact, Sic Bo is ideal for such bets.
– Don’t bet too much on the highest chance of winning, as a ‘specific triple’ is very rare.
– Take advantage of free try-outs online so that you know what you’re getting into
– Play with a budget that suits your situation and stick to it, even if you do lose a lot of money in the long run.

Frequently asked questions about Sic Bo

🎲 Can I play Sic Bo for free?

Yes. There are games sites where you can find a free version.

🎲 Do I have to bet on all the dice?

At Sic Bo you have many different combinations to bet on. You don’t have to bet on the outcome of all the dice. It is also possible to bet money on, for example, two of the three dice as a pair.

Furthermore, there are many betting options for the total number from two dice. It is important to note that in Sic Bo specific Triples pay out the most. This bet does apply to all dice at once.

🎲 Which bets are best?

The Small and Big bets offer the best odds of winning at Sic Bo. The Small applies to any combination between 4 and 10.

With the Big bet, you bet money on a combination between 11 and 17. Furthermore, the Even or Odd bets have the same odds, only you bet on an ‘even’ or ‘odd’ number.

Enter the world of Sic Bo

Sic Bo is something completely different from what you might be used to from a casino. The casino game is easy to learn, although there are many betting and winning possibilities. So it’s best to hold back on all possibilities and profit potentials in the beginning, so that you have a good idea of what you’re betting on.

However, a dice game like Sic Bo is very catchy and you can play this game with your friends outside of Holland Casino as well. Step into the world of Asian casinos and try out Sic Bo for yourself!