Last Updated: July 23, 2012

Two Up

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Introduction

When a friend made a trip to Sydney, Australia, I asked him to report on the casino scene down under. What I got were several pamphlets from the Star City casino, mostly on the same games in the U.S., but one on a game called Two Up. The game is based on the toss of coins, with four bets to choose from.

Rules

Players take turns tossing two coins at the same time into a circular playing field. The player places one coin heads up and one tails up on something called a "kip" and tosses them "a reasonable height above his/her head." Bets are in rounds, which can last up to five tosses. Following are the betting options.

Heads

The heads bet will win if two heads are tossed before two tails. However if one of each are tossed, known as "odds", five times in a row all bets lose. The following table shows the possible outcomes. The lower right cell shows a house edge of 3.125%.

Heads Bet

Event Combinations Probability Pays Return
Win 31 0.484375 1 0.484375
Loss 33 0.515625 -1 -0.515625
Total 64 1 -0.03125

Tails

The opposite of the heads bet. Player must get two tails before two heads or five odds.

Spinner's Bet - Heads

The Spinner's Bet on Heads is like a three round parlay bet on heads. In other words the player is betting that heads will win three rounds in a row. The payoff odds are 7.5 to 1, which is better than the 7 to 1 you would get with manually parlaying winnings. The following table shows the possible outcomes. The lower right cell shows a house edge of 3.40%.

Spinner's Bet - Heads

Event Combinations Probability Pays Return
Win 29791 0.113644 7.5 0.852327
Loss 232353 0.886356 -1 -0.886356
Total 262144 1 -0.034029

Spinner's Bet - Tails

The opposite of the Spinner's Bet on Heads. Tails must win three consecutive rounds and a win pays 7.5 to 1.

Odds

The Odds bet wins if the coins land on one heads and one tails five times in a row. The chances of any single flip resulting in one of each is 1/2. So the probability of this happening five times in a row is (1/2)^5 = 1/32. Wins pay 25 to 1. The following table shows a house edge of 3.125%.

Odds Bet

Event Combinations Probability Pays Return
Win 1 0.03125 30 0.937500
Loss 31 0.96875 -1 -0.968750
Total 32 1 -0.031250

Dragon Phoenix, a similar game at the Venetian Macau.

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