The Bones at Turning Stone
it werent for the 135,000 cars that pass the Turning Stone Casino on the New York
State (Thomas E. Dewey) Thruway on a daily basis, this place would be a hidden gem in the
gently rolling landscape of NYs Central Leatherstocking region. Instead it is a lively and effervescent gaming
operation that is hopping during each and every one of the twenty-four hours in a gambling
Oneida Nation of Indians operate this 120,000 square foot behemoth without need or want of
outside management from dark empire death-stars like Harrahs. Instead, they run a tight, well-oiled machine
which just happens to contain more than half-a-dozen incredibly neutral-rolling craps
be fair, my opinion of Turning Stone is a little biased.
the time they opened in 1993 to this very day; I havent encountered a bad (read:
major losing) session there since, well, ever.
Now before you start looking around for your never-close-enough-when-you-need-it
can of Bullshit Repellant, let me quickly add that a winning session can mean
as little as a $1 net-win
and I can candidly tell you that more than a couple of
those thousand or so Turning Stone sessions did end up only producing a buck or
however most of them turned out to be significantly better than that.
important point though, is that I go into every casino expecting to win
go into the Turning Stone Resort absolutely convinced that Im going to win. Like I said, some of those wins are downright
tiny, but when you keep your perspective and you combine a winning attitude with
level-headed betting and a relentless pursuit of steadily improving Precision-Shooting
skills; an undeniable profit-making strategy inevitably emerges.
Whip In My Hand Here
What To Do?
significant part of that indefatigable profit-making strategy is the crucially important
element of low-level Loss-Limits.
simply means that if you keep your loss-limits low enough, you arent constantly
having to fill in all of your previous losses just to break-even. Unfortunately for most advantage-players, when
that critical factor is missing from their game (or if its set too high); then they
make the entire profit-making journey much more difficult and wrought with many more
discipline-testing obstacles that they just dont encounter (or have to deal with) if
their loss-limits are set and maintained at a more reasonable lower level.
you lose $500 today, that means youll need to win at least $500 during your next
session just to break even. If instead, you
restricted your loss-limit at say $150 or even $200, then your next $500 win would put you
$300 or more ahead of the game.
aint complicated folks, its just common sense.
players know that they can accomplish significantly higher win-averages if they would
apply lower loss-limits to their own game, but they lack the self-discipline to see it
through. If you let yourself down often
enough, youll end up being convinced that its virtually impossible for anyone
to do it.
shallower you keep your losses, the more you can use your subsequent winning sessions to
produce tangible net-profit which can be used to build your bankroll and fuel your
or at least fuel your car.
an advantage-player, you have to be brutally honest with yourself as to how deeply your
own skills will allow your loss-limit to go.
overcome half a dozen 50% of bankroll loss-limits, you have to be a pretty good shooter. So you have to honestly ask yourself whether your
customary loss-limit percentage is so high that your current win/loss ratio will make it
almost impossible to ever produce a tangible overall net-win.
you fear the answer to that question; then you already know the solution.
loss-limits actually limit your chances of EVER turning an overall net-profit.
arrived at Turning Stone quite a bit later than planned.
A late-afternoon meeting with some associates in Rochester ran a little
longer than I expected.
usual, the mid-evening (9 p.m.) mid-week (Wednesday) tables were fairly busy, yet two of
them were still set at $5. Along with the two
similarly full $10 layouts, there was a $15 one that only had a small handful of decidedly
unenthusiastic players whose steadily decreasing bankrolls looked like they had been on
the receiving end of a Mike Tyson punch-fest.
I bought in at the $15 table and started shooting from the Darkside, my first
Point-then-Out hand was the last straw for a couple of them. Frankly I couldnt blame them for leaving. The table had obviously been brutal well before I
even got there, but my appearance and of course the subsequent appearance of yet another
quick 7-Out from somebody that was obviously TRYING to 7-Out, was more than enough
to convince two
then four of them to call it a night.
one of the few times during this wrong-way journey, I was actually accompanied on the
DP-line by two other intrepid bettors who joined me about fifteen minutes after everyone
else had abandoned ship.
was doing fairly well in terms of fending for myself as a Dark-shooter. I wasnt making any hand-over-fist kind of
money, but it was certainly steady enough to keep me interested.
was taking a range of two to eight rolls to throw my intended 7-Out. Unfortunately I did manage to shoot myself in the
foot on a couple occasions
one was even a bull-frogged two-throw PL-repeater. Although any DP loss will put a slight dent
into your session-winnings (especially when you have full-Odds out there), its the overall
NET-win (or loss) that is the true barometer of how effectively your
dice-influencing skills are doing. Using that
measure, I was sufficiently pleased with the outcome.
as a side note, Turning Stone recently discovered that the rest of the world has entered
the 21st century and as a result, they now offer 3x, 4x, 5x-Odds on their
tables. For the Darksider, that means you can
lay up to six times (6x) your flat DP or DC-bet in maximum allowable Odds.
two back-line cohorts were doing pretty well with their own Dont-shooting as well. They were a little hesitant as far as laying full
Odds against the Point, but their efficiency in terms of snapping off fairly rapid
7-Outs made quick work of their efforts.
three of us continued the same DP shooting routine for close to an hour. Once I determined that their Precision-Shooting
skills were for real, I joined them on the Dont-line for each of their subsequent
hands. After a couple more go-rounds I even
added full inverse Odds to my line bet. They
both commented on my apparent faith in them. I
simply replied that the dice cubes were behaving more like ice-cubes, so I had to go
with the trend. A knowing nod and
subtle smile was all it took to acknowledge everything else that I wasnt
called it an evening after about two hours at the table.
fifteen and twenty minutes of that time had been spent solo-shooting while the balance had
been spent with no more than five other players sharing the shooting duties.
that period, my initial red and green Christmas-colored chip-rail had blossomed into a
more favorable shade of St. Patricks Day green and black with a sprinkling of Easter
resolved to either use a higher base-bet if I got back on that same table the next day, or
to use my Doey-Dont Odds Stretcher Method to generate more
Odds-revenue and less Come-Out volatility.
of my C-O Game Within A Game approach; it was fair but definitely not great.
than 15% of my net-win from Session One resulted from Come-Out Horn-bet winners.
compounding that was the fact that almost all of my Horn-win-fueled pressed-up World-bets
were negated by subsequent C-O DP 7-losers
followed by a Point-establishing
box-number; so it had the unmistakable feeling of one-step forward and two-steps back
all over again.
also resolved to shoot a few after-session tosses once I got squared away in my suite.
a hint of heat, derision or contempt of any sort was detectable from the crew, box,
pit-folks or the new-to-his-duties Casino Host who introduced himself about midway through
comp-levels at some of the more mainstream resorts have been curtailed to varying degrees,
my host at Turning Stone was doing his best impression of Nadia Komenich as far as bending
over backwards to assist all of my accommodation needs and wants.
to me, he had upgraded my previously offered Patio-suite to a slightly better one in their
golf-centric Lodge. Although I was pleased
with the luxuriously appointed accommodations (which are reminiscent of a low-end Four
if there is a such a thing), the Lodge itself is a fair distance away from
the casino, which means you should pack a lunch if you arent used to walking long
check-in took a grand total of ninety pain-free seconds to complete.
intended, I did a few after-session tosses in my suite just to properly correct what I
already knew was an on-axis double-pitch problem. It
was most annoying and obviously most troubling while using my C-O S-6 set. I wasnt perfectly satisfied with the
immediate results from those adjustments, but I resolved to work on it again in the
morning before heading over to the tables.
Me and you and a dog named Boo
next morning I made one of those in-room coffees before I headed to the tables, but it
tasted like the bottom of a moldy old golf bag
just dont ask me how I know what
that tastes like.
made a few cursory practice tosses, but without the stimulation of sufficient caffeine
jet-fuel, I wasnt surprised that my throw still looked a little ragged.
hiked over to the casino and got a truly memorable cup of go-juice from their Stone Roast
Coffee bar. You can use comp-points off of
your Diamond Club players card to pay for pretty much any food, merchandise or services
that are found at Turning Stone.
was surprised the tables were so busy at that hour of the morning. Apparently a dog enthusiasts (Kanine
Kollectibles) convention was being held in the nether regions of the resort, and it
looked like half of them (including all of the eccentrically dressed ones) were
sniffing around the table-games pit. I got an
SL-2 spot at a semi-crowded $15 table between two fairly sane looking players whom I was
pretty confident werent going to intentionally mark their carpet-territory where I
was standing or to start humping my leg without provocation, so I settled in.
were not the carefully coiffed dog-handlers that you would see at the Westchester Kennel
Club. Rather, they wore gaily-colored brocade
vests adorned with enough pins and patches to make a full-regalia outlaw biker look
started with $25 on the Dont Pass and rebuffed the idea of using my usual $25
matching World-bet because my warm-up had looked barely passable. In its place I put out a $1 straight-up wager on
the 12-Midnight, and instead of my usual S-6 Come-Out set, I opted to go straight for a
Point-establishing number by using the conventionally arranged V-2. I set the 8 as my anti-Point avoidance-number. A couple of rolls later
up sprang the
Your First Hand Confidence
my mind, the first hand of the first session often sets the tone for the rest of the day,
and thats why I always like to produce a first-hand profit (even if its a tiny
one). The more confidence you approach a
session with, and the more that it is confirmed and bolstered by a first-hand win; the
better youll be able to recognize and capitalize on each and every subsequent
advantage-play opportunity that comes along. In
other words, you wont be trigger-shy when the right situation presents itself.
not to say that you cant recover if your first hand is less than ideal. Rather, its easier to get into the
right frame of mind and to stay in the right frame of mind if your first-hand
shooting produces positive results. In light
of the less-than-spectacular no-caffeine warm-up that I had shot just a short time
that first-hand, first-session quick-Out was exactly what I needed to let me
know that my Dark-shooting was dialed-in sufficiently to bring about those intended
few players came and went over the next ninety-minutes, but the damp clouds of coolness
hung over the table like a wet dog blanket.
seemed to be throwing more money on the layout in apparent hope that things would turn
around or at least warm up to the point where someone could throw more that four or five
rolls before Mr. Ugly reared his head. On the
other hand, I was hoping that the steady coolness would drive away all the current players
AND discourage any new ones from joining in, but that was not the case.
upside was that the dice came to me about once every twenty minutes or so, and although
some of my rolls ran a little longer than I would have wished for, they all ended with a
7-Out without any painful Point-repeaters in the interim.
each hand, Id take a quick chip-census to see just how big my current
profit-population had grown to. Surprisingly
enough, I reached my daily win-goal after just one-and-a-half hours. Although I wasnt calling it a day, I did
call it a session and got a comp to the Seasons Harvest buffet.
Does It Take To Make Your Daily Nut
get a lot of mail from guys who just cant seem to wrap their mind around the idea of
consistently hitting a daily-win goal of $1000.
reality is, the math is the easy part
its the execution that even the most
seasoned of Precision-Shooters have the most difficulty with.
know Ive flogged the match your bets to your shooting ability
horse until it dropped dead before it even hit the final five furlongs; but it is as true
now as it was when I first started harping on it on the public dice boards seven or eight
years ago. Unfortunately some players are
just too stubborn and set in their ways to adapt their game to properly suit their
incredible dice-influencing talents.
Darkside shooters plan of attack does not have to be complicated or contain all sorts of
advantage-eroding hedges and non-performing props.
lets take a look at a straight forward wholly uncomplicated approach to determine
HOW a very modestly skilled dice-influencer can achieve what at first seems like an
ambitious daily win-goal.
ignore any Come-Out action for the time being. While
you may have a verified edge there too, well overlook those bankroll-builders for
the moment and focus on the most basic of requirements to turn some of the casinos
money into your money.
this scenario, your flat-DP bet will always be backed up with 6x-Odds. At a 3x, 4x, 5x-Odds table, the Dont shooter
only has to remember that his DP or DC can be backed with a max of six times his flat bet.
also ignore the use of a full or partial Doey-Don't Odds Stretcher (which is
fully discussed in previous chapters of this series).
Though that method is quite valid for a Darkside shooter to get more Odds
and less flat-bet C-O volatility, well keep this example as simple as possible.
where we can start to figure out how effective your 7-Out shooting has to be to cover that
$1000 nut, and obviously how many hands its going to take to get there.
have to figure out how many times on average that you are able to intentionally
7-Out versus how often you shoot yourself in the foot by repeating the PL-Point. You should figure this out on a percentage basis. For example, if you can intentionally 7-Out
eight-times-out-of-ten-hands, then your first-point effectiveness is 80%.
your first-point effectiveness percentage is based on the number of times with
which you can purposely 7-Out without unintentionally repeating your DP-Point
with that information, you then take your typical DP w/Odds payout and multiply it by the
first-point effectiveness percentage that you just calculated.
obviously, the size of your base-bet will determine the amounts of Odds that youll
lay, and therefore control what your average winning payout will be.
this example well stick with a flat DP line wager of $10 and $60 in Odds, so
lets determine how much a perfect 7-Out hand pays for each box-number:
or 10 produces a net profit of $40
or 9 produces a net profit of $50
or 8 produces a net profit of $60
average then, a winning DP bet with full-Odds (at a 3x, 4x, 5x table) produces an average
net-profit of $50
the reason we use our "first-Point" 7-Out percentage (80% in this example) is
because any subsequent 2nd or 3rd PL-Point 7-Out winnings will obviously only partially
offset the cost of your first PL-Point loss.
see how those losing hands affect our average winnings-per-hand.
of lets say 10-hands, we have 8 winning ones and 2 losing ones (where we
accidentally shoot ourselves in the foot before finally 7ing out on our subsequent 2nd
or 3rd attempt during the same hand).
means our 8 winning hands will produce an average payout of $50 each (for a total
gross-win of $400), but our two losing hands will each subtract $70 from that figure (for
a total of $140 in gross-losses). Subtracting
one from the other ($400 in gross-wins minus $140 in gross-losses) leaves you with a
net-win of $260.
you divide that net $260 win into the ten hands that it took to produce it, you get an
average profit-per-hand of $26.
at first blush, a $26/hand profit doesnt look all that great, but for a $10 DP with
Full-Odds player (a $70 investment), that $26 represents an overall 39%
return-on-investment on every hand (including the losing ones).
a $26/hand profit doesnt look all that great either if your daily win-goal is set at
$1000 because it would mean youd have to throw about 40 hands per day just to get
there, but it also demonstrates that you clearly dont have to pin your hopes on
hitting all kinds of exotic parlays in order to make decent money either.
a gaming jurisdiction where you have a wide choice of sparsely-populated tables, 40 hands
per day (for the $10 DP bettor to reach his daily win-goal) is no big deal, but in a
market with a limited number of casinos and few open tables, that could mean putting in a
22-hour work-day. Obviously that isnt
practical, but you could use your steadily increasing bankroll to fuel a higher bet-level
while concurrently seeking out higher-denomination, lower-population tables.
most players will look at the $26/hand profit figure and smirk at the lack of excitement
that this type of Darkside shooting generates. Admittedly
it may not stir your loins and get you all lathered up with restless enthusiasm like an
octuple parlay on the 12-Midnight would, but then again, we are talking about an every-hand
profit here instead of a once-every-Supreme-Court-nomination-cycle kind of
you figure out your average-win/hand (based on your bet-amount comfort-level and your
sufficiently-sized bankroll), youll be able to readily figure out just how many
hands it will take to get to whatever your daily profit-goal is.
Ya Mean All I Gotta Do Is 7-Out?!
third session saw me playing at the same $15 session-one table for about forty-five
minutes before one of my table-mates came to the realization that I was deliberately
trying to 7-Out. He said, Hey,
youre intentionally trying to 7-Out
why would you wanna do that? I acknowledged that I was at least HOPING
that I would.
the look on his face, I knew that he couldnt quite fathom why I was purposely trying
to lose. Even after explaining that
my Dont Pass bet would win if I 7d-Out, he said he still couldnt
understand why anyone would play the game like that.
He said the idea of the game was to hold the dice for as long as
not to give them up as soon as possible, and wondered why I
didnt just pass the dice back to him. I
countered that I thought the idea of the game was to make some money regardless of
how long anyone hung onto the dice. I
elicited a barely suppressed belly laugh from the two base-dealers and the box-lady when I
explained to him that the planets werent aligned properly to allow for good shooting
right now and that I knew the universe wasnt in harmony so why fight the
the dice WANT to 7-Out
why not let them.
looked at me like some kind of weirdo and never said another word to me for the rest of
his session which went on for another 50 minutes. My
bizarre dead-pan explanation apparently got the intended response that I was looking for. During his remaining time, he lost his original
$500 buy-in as well as two further $300 re-buys as well
mostly by betting against me.
played solo on that table for another 25-minutes or so after he left. A few curious players stopped by to observe the
game for a while, but never bet. I think
Dylanfreaks Scare Em Off By Shooting From The Donts
method of keeping the table empty has a LOT of merit.
Though it may not empty out a full table, his scare them off
concept has the effect of keeping a solo-shooting session just that way for much, much
longer than youd normally expect. My
hat goes off to Dylanfreak for that fine idea.
was tempted to stay and play a little longer, but I had a meeting in nearby Syracuse with
some former associates who arent used to being kept waiting. After my cash-out at the cage, I walked past the
still-empty table that I had been playing at. The
dealers and pit-folks tried to beckon me over for one more hand. I cordially declined, but promised to seek them
out at the same time tomorrow.
didnt get back to the craps table until late in the evening the following day.
the first time in several sessions, my Come-Out Game Within A Game
strategy finally got back on track. At first
blush, throwing Horn-numbers should be as easy as throwing a 7. Theres six ways out of thirty-six for a
random-roller to throw a 7, and there are also six ways to throw a Horn-number too (one 2
and one 12, plus two 3s and two 11s)
so it should be just as easy
to throw one of those as it is to throw a 7, right!
some of you know, the World-bet has formed the basis of my C-O game for a very long time
(both from the Rightside as well as the Darkside); however, I had been in a Horn-shooting
slump for almost a week and it was starting to weigh on my mind. I didnt have any problem whatsoever in
throwing the 7 component of the World-bet, but the other parts (the 2, 3, 11
and 12) had gone on a disturbingly long sabbatical. Much
to my relief, it came back early in session-four
and ready to rock
n roll after an extended exile in random regions unknown.
C-O on the first hand (using the S-6 set in its traditional configuration) produced
then a 2
then a 3
then an 11
then a PL-Point of Hard-10. Clearly thats only one primary-face outcome
in five results, but like I said it was the first time I had hit back-to-back-to-back
Horn-winners in about a week. A few rolls
later, I got the 7-Out that I was looking for.
C-O sequence for my second hand resembled a fraternal twin to the first one. It produced a 3
then a 2
11s in a row before re-establishing the Hard-10 as the anti-Point again. It took three more rolls before I was rewarded
with my 7-Out winner. By the way, two out of
those three Point-cycle rolls were also Horn-numbers, but I wasnt on any of
confidence in terms of aggressively pressing the C-O Horn-hits after their first
appearance had certainly returned. It never
fails to surprise me how much confidence just two or three good hands in a row can restore
your shooting-faith and buoy the trust in your betting.
C-O World-bet action typically looks like this: I
start with $25 on the DP and $25 on the World-bet
the first outcome is an 11...I keep the World-bet at its initial level and I replace my
DP-wager. That means that my first hit on an
11 generates a net-profit of $30.
the outcome is a 3...I double the World-bet to $50, and maintain the same initial $25 bet
for my DP-wager. That means that the W-B 3
(along with the DP even-money payment) generates a net-profit (after the World-bet is
pressed) of $55.
the outcome is a 2 or 12...I once again double the World-bet to $50, but still keep the
same initial bet for the DP-line. That means
that a 2 generates a net-profit (after the World-bet is pressed) of $130, while a 12
generates a net-profit (after the World-bet is pressed) of $105.
the very next C-O decision...
the outcome is a 7...I keep the same bet for both the World and the DP. If the World is at $50, then it stays at $50, but
I almost always keep my DP base-bet at $25 no matter how large the World-bet grows. Again, this acts to minimize the impact of an
on-axis C-O DP 7-loser.
my second Come-Out roll results is an 11; then I replace the DP and increase the
World-bet by one $25 unit.
the outcome is a 3...I increase my current World-bet by two more base-units
(of $25 each for a current total of $100 on the World), but I still keep the same initial
$25 bet on the DP.
the outcome is a 2 or 12...I increase my current World-bet by three
base-units (a $75 increase).
any subsequent Horn-payers, I add one additional unit to the previous scale.
press the World with a further two-unit ($50) increase if the 11 rolls.
press the World with a further three-unit ($75) increase if the 3 rolls.
press the World with a further four-unit ($100) increase if the 2 or 12
I'm fortunate enough to get another Horn-hit, I do the same "add one unit to the
previous scale" thing, as in
press the World with a further three-unit increase if the 11 rolls.
press the World with a further four-unit increase if the 3 rolls.
press the World with a further five-unit increase if the 2 or 12 rolls.
next progression (if another Horn-number repeats again), looks like this:
press the World with a further four-unit increase if the 11 rolls.
press the World with a further five-unit increase if the 3 rolls.
press the World with a further six-unit increase if the 2 or 12 rolls.
this point, your World-bet could reach the $500 mark (using $25 base-units) if youve
had the C-O results that see you using the maximum unit-increase on each one of those
steps (like if the 2 or 12 has been rolling). It
is also the point where you will very likely reach the maximum allowable Horn-bet
payout-level at many casinos.
C-O for my third hand finally started producing a few more of the primary-face 2s
and 12s that make the Horn-bet so productive.
Again, I started out with a 3
followed by another 3, but then two
2s in a row followed were by an additional 3 and an 11, followed yet again by
another secondary-face 3, then a 12
and finally an off-axis PL-Point of 9. My shooting went a little downhill from
there as I threw every other number except either the hoped-for 7 or the hoped-against 9. My tablemates were starting to think that things
were finally starting to warm up. It took
another five tosses before I finally managed to throw the 7-Out.
fourth, fifth and sixth-hand C-O were nowhere nearly as dramatic or profitable as the
three previous ones, but my World-action still produced some sizeable earnings
seventh hand started out well enough with four Horn-winners on the Come-Out, but my
Point-cycle offered up a near disaster as I managed to shoot myself in the foot twice. I repeated my first PL-Point of 8 as well as my
second Point of 6. With another 6x-Odds
backing up my line-bet, I was not feeling overly cocky
but my confidence wasnt
none too bruised either. I knew that both of
those Point-losers had been strong on-axis S-6 possibilities right from the start, so I
wasnt about to abandon my game-plan simply because the dice were mostly staying
on-axis and doing pretty much what I wanted for them to do, albeit, not in the
primary-face All-7 configuration that would bring about my 7-Out reward. It took the Darksiders prayer of third-Points-a-charm
before I finally 7d-Out around the twenty-fifth roll.
my eighth through tenth hands didnt reprise my seventh-hand disaster. However, my Come-Out progression on the
World-action during those next three hands didnt come close to surpassing the C-O
money that I made during my third hand either. Though
I did get back up to the third and fifth progression during my ninth and tenth hands
respectively, so I was pleased about that.
I was thrilled that my Come-Out Game Within A Game strategy of aggressive
Horn-pressing was definitely back on track. Added
to the profit that my Odds-bets were generating during the Point-cycle, those two separate
elements made the Turning Stone segment of my Darkside journey into the most profitable
I hope youll join me on the next leg.
Good Luck & Good
Skill at the Tables…and in Life.
The Mad Professor
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