Backgammon – 3 Basic Techniques

by Erin on January 28th, 2018

In astonishingly general terms, there are 3 basic strategies employed. You need to be able to hop between strategies almost instantly as the action of the game unfolds.

The Blockade

This comprises of building a 6-deep wall of checkers, or at least as deep as you might achieve, to block in the competitor’s checkers that are on your 1-point. This is deemed to be the most acceptable procedure at the start of the match. You can build the wall anywhere inbetween your eleven-point and your two-point and then shift it into your home board as the game progresses.

The Blitz

This consists of locking your home board as quickly as possible while keeping your competitor on the bar. For example, if your competitor tosses an early two and shifts one checker from your one-point to your 3-point and you then toss a five-five, you are able to play six/one six/one eight/three 8/3. Your competitor is then in big-time calamity considering that they have two checkers on the bar and you have closed half your inside board!

The Backgame

This tactic is where you have two or more pieces in your opponent’s home board. (An anchor is a point occupied by at least 2 of your pieces.) It needs to be employed when you are significantly behind as it much improves your opportunities. The strongest locations for anchor spots are close to your opponent’s lower points and also on adjacent points or with a single point separating them. Timing is critical for an effectual backgame: after all, there’s no point having two nice anchor spots and a complete wall in your own inner board if you are then forced to dismantle this right away, while your opponent is shifting their checkers home, owing to the fact that you don’t have any other extra checkers to shift! In this situation, it is more favorable to have checkers on the bar so that you are able to maintain your position up until your competitor gives you a chance to hit, so it may be a great idea to try and get your competitor to get them in this situation!

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