Backgammon – 3 General Schemes

Friday, 31. January 2020

In astonishingly general terms, there are 3 chief techniques employed. You must be agile enough to hop between techniques almost instantly as the action of the match unfolds.

The Blockade

This consists of creating a 6-deep wall of checkers, or at least as deep as you are able to achieve, to block in your opponent’s pieces that are located on your 1-point. This is judged to be the most suitable tactic at the begining of the game. You can assemble the wall anywhere within your 11-point and your two-point and then move it into your home board as the game progresses.

The Blitz

This involves locking your home board as quickly as possible while keeping your opponent on the bar. e.g., if your competitor rolls an early two and shifts one piece from your one-point to your three-point and you then toss a five-five, you will be able to play 6/1 six/one 8/3 8/3. Your competitor is now in big-time trouble taking into account that they have 2 pieces on the bar and you have closed half your inner board!

The Backgame

This course of action is where you have 2 or higher checkers in your opponent’s inner board. (An anchor is a point consisting of at a minimum 2 of your checkers.) It would be employed when you are decidedly behind as it much improves your circumstances. The strongest areas for anchors are towards your opponent’s lower points and also on adjoining points or with a single point separating them. Timing is essential for a powerful backgame: besides, there is no point having two nice anchors and a complete wall in your own inner board if you are then forced to break up this straight away, while your opposer is getting their checkers home, seeing that you do not have other extra checkers to move! In this situation, it is more favorable to have checkers on the bar so that you are able to preserve your position until your opposer gives you an opportunity to hit, so it can be a great idea to try and get your opponent to hit them in this case!

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