The modern casino is a sprawling complex of entertainment and luxury. It’s a lot like an indoor amusement park for adults, with a focus on games of chance. Slot machines, blackjack, roulette and craps are just a few of the popular gambling games that help casinos rake in billions of dollars in profits each year. But despite the elaborate themes, musical shows, restaurants and shopping centers that draw in the crowds, casinos would not exist without the game of chance itself. The large amounts of money handled within casinos create opportunities for both patrons and staff to cheat or steal, whether in collusion or independently. That’s why casinos spend a huge amount of time, effort and money on security.
In addition to cameras and trained eyeballs, casino security staff also use patterns to catch any atypical behavior. For example, the way dealers shuffle and deal cards and how players place their bets on table games follow certain predictable routines. Security personnel look for any deviation from these patterns to spot any cheating or stealing.
While the precise origins of gambling are unknown, it is widely believed that some form of it has existed in almost every culture throughout history. In fact, primitive protodice (cut knuckle bones) and carved six-sided dice have been found at many ancient archaeological sites. But the idea of a casino as a place where you can find a variety of ways to gamble under one roof didn’t emerge until the 16th century, when a gambling craze swept Europe and Italian aristocrats held private parties called ridotti to gamble and socialize.