One theory suggests that the French scientist and philosopher Blaise Pascal, invented the game during a monastic retreat in the middle of the 17th century to while away the time. Similar games had been played in England, such as Even-Odd and Roly-Poly, before this. However, as the word “roulette” means “little wheel” in French, this supports the theory that the game was invented in France. The first documentary evidence for roulette comes from New France, or Canada, in 1758, when it is mentioned alongside faro, dice and hoca, in a list of prohibited gambling games.
European-style roulette wheels consist of a ring revolving inside a bowl; when a croupier spins the ring a ball is whirled around. Eventually, it loses momentum and falls into one of the 37 (European) or 38 (US) numbered, red, black or green compartments. Roulette is designed to be a game in which the casino can reliably make money. The bank always has an edge on bets as payouts are set at 35 to 1. In reality there is a 1/ 38 (1 /37 for European roulette) chance at winning a bet on a single number.