Backgammon – 3 Basic Techniques

by Erin on April 20th, 2021

[ English ]

In astonishingly simple terms, there are three main game plans used. You must be agile enough to switch techniques quickly as the action of the match unfolds.

The Blockade

This involves building a 6-thick wall of checkers, or at a minimum as thick as you might manage, to lock in your opponent’s checkers that are on your 1-point. This is deemed to be the most suitable course of action at the start of the match. You can create the wall anyplace between your eleven-point and your 2-point and then move it into your home board as the match continues.

The Blitz

This is composed of closing your home board as quick as as you can while keeping your challenger on the bar. i.e., if your competitor tosses an early 2 and moves one checker from your 1-point to your 3-point and you then toss a five-five, you are able to play 6/1 six/one 8/3 eight/three. Your opposer is now in big-time calamity because they have 2 pieces on the bar and you have closed half your inner board!

The Backgame

This plan is where you have two or more checkers in your opponent’s home board. (An anchor spot is a position occupied by at a minimum two of your checkers.) It should be used when you are decidedly behind as this plan greatly improves your circumstances. The better places for anchors are close to your opponent’s smaller points and also on adjacent points or with a single point in between. 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 home board if you are then forced to break up this right away, while your opposer is getting their pieces home, taking into account that you don’t have any other extra checkers to move! In this situation, it is more tolerable to have checkers on the bar so that you are able to preserve your position until your opposer provides you an opportunity to hit, so it can be an excellent idea to attempt and get your opponent to get them in this case!

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