Negative progression: A type of progression where you increase your bet when you lose. Martingale (1, 2 , 4 , 8 …) and Labouchere are characteristic negative progressions.
Positive progression: A type of progression where you increase your bet when you win. Anti-Martingale (or Parlay, or Paroli) where you increase after a win, Oscar’s Grind and Guetting Progression are very good examples of this type.
For the roulette player there are two very different enemies he faces: Fluctuation and Streaks.
1) Fluctuation (deviation) = Fewer appearances than expected.
Example: In the course of 100 spins you get only 35 reds. That can ruin you if you bet expecting something closer to the normal distribution.
2) Streaks = Long series of lost bets.
Example: In the course of 100 spins red came indeed 48 times, which is very close to normal distribution. But you could be a loser again because inside those 100 spins there was a streak/series of 12 blacks which destroyed your progression.
Fluctuation and Steaks are totally different animals.
There are systems (negative progressions) that deal very well with fluctuation. The best of them is the famous Martingale. Martingale didn’t become famous for nothing. It is the best progression approach against fluctuations. It can stand any fluctuation. It can wipe out all your losses and give a profit with a single winning bet. How cool is that. Martingale is indeed an ingenious approach- as long as there are no long loosing streaks.
Imagine that you play a 6 step Martingale (1, 2, 4, 8, 16, 32) on Red. In the course of 100 spins, red has come only 20 times. This is an extremely rare event, almost impossible. Yet, if the streaks of Black were no longer than 6 consecutive Blacks, then you will still come ahead with profit, even if you bet on Red. This is indeed an amazing achievement of the Martingale.
However, on another scenario, you could bet a 6 step Martingale on Red, have Red come 60 times in 100 and still go broke! Because no matter if the color you are playing comes often a series of 7 consecutive Blacks can kill you.
Martingale can beat Fluctuation (deviation)
Long Streaks can beat Martingale
– On the other hand, there are systems and (positive) progressions that deal very well with losing streaks. Take for example Paroli (Parlay) or the Guetting progression. These progression will never be ruined from a long loosing streak. Never. They can take as long a loosing streak as you throw at them. But this doesn’t mean they are winning. They just limit your losses. You can not make profit with a bad fluctuation, by using these systems. In fact, with some of these progressions, it is possible to have more winning bets than losing bets and still lose money!!!
These systems can overcome Streaks without losing everything, but they canot overcome a very bad fluctuation of results.
The obvious conclusion is that we need a system with the best of both worlds. A system that can stand long loosing streaks AND bad fluctuation. Compromises should be made. We should find the golden rule that will keep us equally away and safe from both these enemies.