Backgammon – Three Main Techniques

Saturday, 17. April 2021

In exceptionally general terms, there are three basic techniques employed. You must be agile enough to hop between strategies instantly as the action of the match unfolds.

The Blockade

This is composed of building a 6-deep wall of checkers, or at least as deep as you might achieve, to barricade in the opponent’s checkers that are on your 1-point. This is considered to be the most acceptable procedure at the start of the match. You can assemble the wall anywhere inbetween your eleven-point and your 2-point and then move it into your home board as the match progresses.

The Blitz

This consists of locking your home board as fast as as you can while keeping your opposer on the bar. For example, if your opposer tosses an early 2 and moves one piece from your one-point to your 3-point and you then toss a five-five, you are able to play 6/1 6/1 eight/three 8/3. Your opponent is now in big-time calamity because they have two checkers on the bar and you have closed half your inside board!

The Backgame

This strategy is where you have 2 or higher pieces in your competitor’s home board. (An anchor spot is a position consisting of at least 2 of your pieces.) It would be used when you are extremely behind as this plan greatly improves your opportunities. The strongest areas for anchor spots are near your opponent’s smaller points and also on abutting points or with one point in between. Timing is critical for an effective backgame: after all, there is no reason having two nice anchor spots and a solid wall in your own home board if you are then required to break down this straight away, while your competitor is shifting their checkers home, seeing that you don’t have other additional pieces to move! In this case, it is more tolerable 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 may be an excellent idea to attempt and get your opposer to get them in this case!

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