Backgammon – Three Basic Strategies

Monday, 20. March 2023

In exceptionally simple terms, there are 3 general techniques used. You need to be agile enough to hop between techniques quickly as the action of the game unfolds.

The Blockade

This comprises of creating a 6-deep wall of pieces, or at least as thick as you can achieve, to block in your opponent’s checkers that are on your 1-point. This is deemed to be the most adequate strategy at the start of the game. You can create the wall anyplace inbetween your 11-point and your two-point and then shift it into your home board as the game progresses.

The Blitz

This is composed of closing your home board as quick as as you can while keeping your opponent on the bar. For example, if your opposer rolls an early two and moves one piece from your 1-point to your 3-point and you then roll a 5-5, you can play six/one six/one 8/3 8/3. Your challenger is then in big-time calamity since they have two pieces on the bar and you have locked half your home board!

The Backgame

This plan is where you have two or more pieces in your competitor’s home board. (An anchor spot is a point filled by at a minimum 2 of your checkers.) It would be employed when you are extremely behind as this action greatly improves your chances. The strongest locations for anchors are towards your opponent’s smaller points and also on adjacent points or with a single point separating them. Timing is important for an effectual backgame: after all, there’s no point having 2 nice anchor spots and a complete wall in your own inner board if you are then forced to break apart this straight away, while your opposer is shifting their checkers home, owing to the fact that you do not have any other additional checkers to move! In this situation, it is better to have pieces on the bar so that you are able to preserve your position up till your opponent gives you a chance to hit, so it will be a great idea to try and get your opposer to get them in this situation!

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