Backgammon – Three Basic Techniques

Wednesday, 26. December 2018

[ English ]

In exceptionally general terms, there are 3 general tactics employed. You must be agile enough to hop between game plans almost instantly as the course of the game unfolds.

The Blockade

This is comprised of assembling a 6-deep wall of checkers, or at least as deep as you might achieve, to lock in the opponent’s checkers that are on your 1-point. This is considered to be the most adequate strategy at the start of the game. You can create the wall anywhere between your 11-point and your 2-point and then shuffle it into your home board as the match progresses.

The Blitz

This is comprised of closing your home board as quickly as as you can while keeping your competitor on the bar. i.e., if your opposer rolls an early two and shifts one checker from your 1-point to your three-point and you then toss a five-five, you are able to play six/one 6/1 8/3 8/3. Your opposer is now in serious trouble seeing that they have two pieces on the bar and you have closed half your inner board!

The Backgame

This tactic is where you have two or higher checkers in your competitor’s inner board. (An anchor is a position consisting of at least 2 of your checkers.) It needs to be played when you are significantly behind as it much improves your circumstances. The better places for anchor spots are close to your competitor’s lower points and also on abutting points or with a single point separating them. Timing is crucial for an effective backgame: at the end of the day, there is no point having two nice anchor spots and a solid wall in your own home board if you are then forced to dismantle this right away, while your challenger is shifting their pieces home, taking into account that you don’t have any other additional checkers to move! In this situation, it is more tolerable to have pieces on the bar so that you can preserve your position up till your competitor gives you a chance to hit, so it will be an excellent idea to try and get your opponent to hit them in this case!

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