Backgammon – 3 General Schemes

by Erin on November 5th, 2016

[ English ]

In exceptionally simple terms, there are three main techniques used. You need to be agile enough to hop between tactics instantly as the course of the match unfolds.

The Blockade

This is composed of creating a 6-deep wall of pieces, or at a minimum as thick as you are able to achieve, to block in the competitor’s pieces that are located on your 1-point. This is judged to be the most suitable strategy at the start of the game. You can assemble the wall anywhere between your eleven-point and your 2-point and then move it into your home board as the match advances.

The Blitz

This involves locking your home board as quick as as you can while keeping your challenger on the bar. i.e., if your challenger rolls an early two and moves one checker from your 1-point to your three-point and you then toss a five-five, you will be able to play six/one 6/1 8/3 eight/three. Your challenger is then in serious calamity considering that they have 2 pieces on the bar and you have locked half your inside board!

The Backgame

This strategy is where you have 2 or higher checkers in your competitor’s home board. (An anchor spot is a position consisting of at a minimum two of your checkers.) It needs to be employed when you are significantly behind as it much improves your chances. The best locations for anchors are near your opponent’s lower points and either on abutting points or with a single point in between. Timing is integral for an effective backgame: after all, there’s no point having 2 nice anchors and a solid wall in your own home board if you are then forced to break up this straight away, while your competitor is moving their pieces home, because you do not have any other extra pieces to move! In this case, it’s better to have checkers on the bar so that you can maintain your position up until your competitor gives you an opportunity to hit, so it will be a good idea to attempt and get your opponent to hit them in this case!

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