European Roulette Wheel and its numerical order of numbers

I’m seeking some assistance in trying to learn the numbers around a European roulette wheel, that is the roulette wheel with one single green zero and not the American roulette wheel where there are two zeros (a 0 and a 00). Firstly I would like to be able to differentiate between all numbers in terms of their colors. So I would like to know for example that number 28 is black and that number 36 is red for example. The other thing I’d like to know is which two numbers are directly opposite each number on the roulette wheel. For example opposite a zero, one would find the following two numbers a 5 and a 10 (as there are two numbers opposite each number). I am looking for a strategy to learn this information off pat without the necessity of reference to a ‘hand-held roulette card’. I thought learning the numbers in their sequence starting from the zero which is green and going clockwise around the roulette wheel would work well using the major system (or association method) and linking each number (as an image) to the number preceding it using the story method or link system. The other question I have is how too would one know which two numbers lie to the left and right of any given number? In trying to remember which numbers are red and black, I am using an image for the numbers themselves but I am far from complete in the exercise and any creative suggestions would be more than welcome. I thought of visualizing things that are naturally associated with being black for the numbers, eg. 2 = Black Swan (Movie), 8 = Black Pool Ball, 10 = Breaden Barret (NZ All-Blacks) number 10. etc. I’m guessing if I only remember the black numbers then everything else by default is obviously a red number (with the exception of Zero of course). Is there anyone on this forum that has any ideas or suggestions as to how one can best accomplish this mission?

Memory palace with PAO where P is your number and A and O are the numbers opposite. Create one palace for red numbers (Ps) and one palace for black numbers (Ps).

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I’m no expert, but this is how I would do it.

Since I use the Dominic method, all the numbers to 100 are associated with people. Since in this example 00, 01,02 are largely irrelevant I would probably use my 02 (Omar Bradley) rather than a 2 (swan). I would imagine a large palace with lots of doors. I walk in the building and the entrance is 00, So the door is opened by Ozzy Osbourne and behind him is Omar Epps (10) riding a horse and shooting a rifle (Action, Annie Oakley, 10). Walking to the left, the first door is opened by Charles Bronson (32) and behind the door is Annie Oakley (05) running up the beach in a bikini (Bo Derek). Next door opened by Albert Einstein wearing a black beret on his head, behind him Bo Derek with a black beret saying “I’ll be back” (Arnold Schwarzenegger)

So basically walking around the wheel, for a black number, the person is wearing a black beret.

I’m not sure how well that would work, but that would be my first attempt anyway.

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The Dominic PAO system will work very well for the (a). Number (say Zero) and the two opposite numbers across the Roulette wheel from it (say 5 and 10). But how do I go about memorizing (b) neighbours to a number (i.e. the two numbers to the left of a number (say Zero) and the two numbers to the right of the same number (say Zero)? I think that to achieve both objectives that I am surely going to be needing to have some additional pegword systems to achieve both desired stated objectives? Otherwise, I will have my Dominic cast of characters 0-36 crashing all over the place into one another?

The PAO Dominic system will work well just as you have explained it. There is however additional information that I am trying to get into permanent memory and that is the ‘neighbours’ the two numbers both to the left and right of every number around the Roulette wheel. I am thinking that I will need to develop another ‘pegword’ system to achieve that stated objective? The distinction between ‘Black’ and ‘Red’ numbers is a further kink in the bow as it’s not as easy as merely saying all even numbers are ‘Black’ and all odd numbers are ‘Red’. There has to be a number of different ways out there to achieve all three of my stated objectives? Ideally, I need to experiment and find the ‘optimal solution’ (in terms of mnemonic systems) out there that will best achieve all three objectives. I still think my idea of pegging the colours "Black’ and ‘Red’ to my images will work best for each of the individual numbers 0 - 36. But can I imagine a Green Ozzie Osbourne, a Red ‘Quaker OAts’ man and a Black Otto Bismark. Once I would have gone through all 37 numbers (i.e. o -36) I’m guessing I would be terribly confused.

I think doing 4 numbers “across” is actually better than 2. In might make it easier since you could always have the Person be Red and Action be Black, therefore you don’t even need to think of a marker for red or black. For example, across from 0 is 23/10 & 05/24. 23 (Barack Obama) is a person and therefore Red, shooting a rifle from a horse (Annie Oakley) is the action, and it is therefore black. Same for the other two 05 & 24. 05 (Omar Epps) is a person, and therefore that is Red, running up a beach in a bikini (Action = Black) Bo Derek.

Obviously the inner two are directly across and the others are neighbours.

That’s an interesting idea. But number 20 on the Roulette Wheel is Black and will always be Black. Barrack Obama will never be Red so there’s a fault in you system right there?

Dominic PAO, Major PAO… either way… just know that it’s overkill to encode both numbers when the one opposite is enough when using a memory palace. Since you already know that 5 and 10 are opposite 0, just forget about 0 for now and you got 18 across from 18.

Like I said

Forget that linking or peg system, etc. stuff you mentioned. In a memory palace you got things in order and whatever is in location 5 follows what is in location 4 and vice versa.

Let’s take is from the top though…

Between 1 - 10 and 19 - 28 the odd numbers are red and for the rest of the numbers even is red… et voila…

  • 28 is even and in the aforementioned range from 19 to 28; therefore, it is black.
  • 36 is also even but not in the aforemented range and thus red

…absolutely no need to encode that into any kind of image.

You simply use a memory palace. The two to the left/right of location 5 are locations 3, 4 and 6, 7

Like I said before, ignore the 0 and there’s only one number on the other side, so simply encode it as a PA or a PO instead of a PAO (it’s also much less repetition of redundant information). If you want to know the number next to it when including the 0 again, just look at the Object (if using PO) in the following location in your memory palace.

Btw, I have no idea why you’d want to know this information but hey, up to you. Personally, I’d go with voisins, tiers, and orphelins instead. Maybe have a look here… page I found in English… dunno what your preferred language is. There are certainly better resources but in case you haven’t heard of these terms before, it’s a nice primer and then you can google from there…

Maybe if you could be a bit more elaborate (now that the black/red issue is resolved) in what it is you are trying to achieve, it’d be easier to answer your questions.

PS: …and if you really don’t want to use a memory palace… maybe you don’t know how yet (now would be a good time to learn), just create a peg list from 1 to 36 and then match the number in that position as a PA or PO. So 01-32, 02-15, 03-19, etc. Now if you want to know what’s across the 3rd position, just add 18 to it and look at the 21st position. For across numbers greater than 18, you have to do a modulo 36.

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Thank you so much for your valuable insights. I was just looking for a memory challenge other than the usual playing cards, digits of Pi, names and faces and binary numbers etc. to get my teeth stuck into. I thought the Roulette wheel with the 37 numbers posed an interesting challenge and hadn’t seen any information on how one could encode the information on it into a systematic meaningful pattern to recall. Your suggested systems certainly answer that call. I guess the lesson to be learnt here is that one can adapt the time tested PAO system to just about anything that is ‘number related’ and randomness (such as digits of Pi or placement of numbers around say a Roulette wheel or a Dart board) can be internalized into one’s memory if the correct approach or strategy is adopted. Thanks again!

I typed this out in reply to your private message before reading the comments, but it’s similar to some of the ideas above.

After memorizing the numbers in a 37-location memory palace or peg list, you could add location numbers: How to add position number?

If the current location number is even, it’s red. If it’s odd, it’s black (with the exception of position 1).

One way to get the location between the two opposite numbers:

  • If the current location number is in the range 1-18, then add 18.5.
  • If the current location number is in the range 19-37, then subtract 18.5.

Example 1: If you’re at position 12 (number value: 27), add 18.5 to get 30.5. That’s the line between the two target locations. Hop over to location #30 and look at the values in locations #30 (even, so it’s red) and #31 (odd, so it’s black). The numbers are 18 and 29.

Example 2: If you’re at position 34 (number value: 12), subtract 18.5 to get 15.5. Then hop over to location #15 and look at the values in locations #15 (odd, so it’s black) and #16 (even, so it’s red). The results there are 11 and 30.

Just some ideas. I didn’t test it with locations. :slight_smile:

Edit: it might be interesting to create a circular 37-location memory palace that generally matches the layout of the wheel. Then it might even be easier to mentally hop across the room.


Thanks Josh. I will use a 37 chronological pegword system as you have suggested and link the Roulette wheel numbers in associated pairs to each of my Dominic characters going around the wheel in a clockwise fashion. That solves that problem very well. Thereafter, as already suggested by other forum members, I will use the PAO system to get the two numbers opposite each of the numbers on the wheel. I think those two ideas work well in conjunction to one another. Finally I will use the palace method as suggested by bjoern.gumboldt to get the ‘neighbouring numbers’ on both left and right hand side of each number. I think that just about solves the matter for me but I am always interested to learn different approaches if anyone else has any further ones that work?

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PAO would probably be much faster for recall than my idea. :slight_smile:

(I don’t have a PAO system.)

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Maybe it’s a typo or you got distracted mid-sentence when you wrote this; but, the logic for red/black is…

…it’s not just the 1st position that’s different.

That seems a bit redundant… why would you bother with a memory palace if you already got 37 sequential pegs… or vice versa.

I was referring to location numbers, not the numbers stored in the locations. Location #2 is red, location #3 is black, and they keep repeating. If someone uses PAO, PAO would probably be a much faster way to recall than figuring things out by position, so your method would probably be easier.


Seems there’s a policy governing their distribution but no mathematical pattern.

"On both types of the roulette wheel, the numbers are split evenly between red and black and these alternate around the wheel. However, there’s more to the distribution than just red and black. The wheel has been designed to carry a balance of high, low, odd and even all around the board. In addition, high and low numbers should alternate wherever possible. This isn’t managed completely, but it’s better on the European wheel. Overall, the European roulette wheel is considered to be more balanced, but it’s no less challenging for newbies to learn!


Edit: Link is valid but not clickable due to concerns with Google policy and liking to a casino


So what I’ve done is to list all 37 numbers around the Roulette Wheel in their sequential order. I have used Major system pegwords for numbers 1-36 plus the Zero too. I peg the roulette number to the position number peg. So going clockwise around the roulette wheel, I start with number 32 which is Charlie Brown = Person (wearing a tie for position 1). The corresponding Actions and Object linked to Charlie Brown give me the two numbers on the roulette wheel diametrically across from number 32 (which happen to be 24 = Action (“Weighing”) of my Person for 24 in Dominic which is Barthelmew Dias and 05 = Canoe which is the Object of my Dominic’s #5 Old Edwardian).

The next number to illustrate. I peg position 2 using Major system peg of Noah (of Noah’s ark fame) to Albert Einstein for roulette number 15. I ask myself what action is Albert Eistein doing with what object on Noah’s ark? Answer: Albert Einstein is doing “Dumbbell Curls” (Arnold Swartnegger’s action for #16) with an “Anchor” Bartholomew Dias’s #24 Dominic System’s Object.

I know this really sounds weird and a little complicated but it satisfies most of what I set out to do which was:

  1. Knowing the numbers sequentially around the wheel in their correct orders. Starting anywhere on the wheel
  2. Knowing the two numbers across the wheel 180 degrees from the roulette numbers themselves
  3. Knowing the ‘neighbours’ (i.e. the two numbers to the left and the two numbers to the right of any roulette number.
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Thank you for the article. Yes there is both some semblance of order around a European Roulette Wheel and also no semblance of order whatsoever? The article strikes at the very core of what it is the casinos are trying to achieve with the design of the roulette wheel which is basically to confuse the hell out of you so you can’t perceive any meaningful perceptible pattern around the roulette wheel whatsoever, except the fact that the red numbers and black numbers alternate around the wheel (with the exception of green zero). The paradox to the roulette wheel is that the only consistency of the numbers around the wheel is their very inconsistency of how they have been placed around the wheel. Point taken that there is some level of order in alternating between high numbers and low numbers, But even there the very fact that a 5 and a 10 find themselves next to each other on the wheel negates that to some extent.

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Technically, clockwise from 0 it’s red highs / black lows and counterclockwise it’s black highs / red lows… 5 / 10 is the only exception as far as the hi/lo/hi/lo because that’s where the two meet.

Well, they’re trying to balance the wheel as much as possible and that’s why the numbers are arrange in that way. What kind of pattern would you be looking for and how would you benefit from it? Say the right side was all red and the left side was all black… how would that help you / influence your strategy… what would be the benefit?

This seems like the most natural and effective approach. With a peg system established, you can mentally back up or advance a step to find neighbors and then jump 16 or 17 steps (mod 37 ) to find the number on the opposite side.