Backgammon – 3 Main Techniques

by Erin on October 15th, 2017

In astonishingly general terms, there are three fundamental tactics used. You want to be agile enough to switch game plans quickly as the course of the match unfolds.

The Blockade

This comprises of assembling a 6-deep wall of pieces, or at a minimum as thick as you might achieve, to barricade in the competitor’s checkers that are located on your 1-point. This is deemed to be the most acceptable course of action at the begining of the game. You can assemble the wall anyplace between your 11-point and your 2-point and then shuffle it into your home board as the game continues.

The Blitz

This consists of locking your home board as quickly as possible while keeping your competitor on the bar. i.e., if your competitor tosses an early 2 and shifts one piece from your one-point to your three-point and you then toss a 5-5, you can play 6/1 6/1 eight/three 8/3. Your challenger is now in big-time dire straits because they have two checkers on the bar and you have closed half your inner board!

The Backgame

This tactic is where you have 2 or higher pieces in your competitor’s home board. (An anchor spot is a position consisting of at least two of your pieces.) It must be used when you are significantly behind as this action much improves your opportunities. The best areas for anchors are close to your competitor’s smaller points and also on abutting points or with one point separating them. Timing is essential for an effectual backgame: after all, there is no reason having two nice anchor spots and a complete wall in your own home board if you are then forced to break apart this straight away, while your opponent is getting their pieces home, taking into account that you don’t have any other additional pieces to shift! In this situation, it’s more favorable to have pieces on the bar so that you can maintain your position up till your competitor gives you an opportunity to hit, so it will be an excellent idea to try and get your opponent to get them in this situation!

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