If you’re a regular reader, you probably think: I just try to guess. But don’t go that far! It works just as well to try to know the outcome, and then actually make a bet on the outcome. If I knew the final outcome, I wouldn’t get to bet so much — and I’m only going to make bets on outcomes I like. After you’ve decided what you’re going to try to guess, think it through from a betting perspective:
How many times could it happen in the first place? (I’ll come back on that in a bit.) What would I really like to happen?
For example, if we’re betting on whether a rock falls to the left or right, the most I might get to do is hit a single rock between 10 and 15 times (for a total of 60 tries). Now, remember the following: in some situations, that is what actually happens — but in lots of other situations it doesn’t.
Take for instance a game of roulette where a dealer decides to place a number of “flips” on the ball — at random. In each of these flips, the dealer gets to choose whether there are two coins or three coins on the board, or whether the ball is at least six points, or more. In other words, any game of roulette where you decide the outcome without ever getting paid for it has a chance of happening.
For a lot of scenarios like that, it’s probably wise to take a different approach than you would for more traditional games like a 50-50 chance.
What’s the right bet for an even number of players?
First let’s do a rough calculation to see where this gets us. Let’s say for instance that the starting bets are $10 and $20, and that I have some cards on one side of the table, and some on the other:
Let’s assume I guess the numbers 1 and 2 that I’m given (I don’t know that it is).
I have a $30, $10, $20 bet on the “1” card; I also have four cards on the other side of the table. That adds the cost of $17 to my total bet.
Let’s assume my guess is as accurate as you’re going to guess (for most bets, I’m fairly confident): $5 on the first two cards, $3 on the third to $7 on the fourth, and $2 on
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