Backgammon – Three Main Plans

[ English ]

In extraordinarily simple terms, there are three fundamental tactics employed. You must be able to hop between strategies instantly as the course of the match unfolds.

The Blockade

This is composed of assembling a 6-thick wall of pieces, or at a minimum as deep as you are able to achieve, to barricade in the opponent’s checkers that are on your 1-point. This is considered to be the most acceptable strategy at the start of the game. You can assemble the wall anyplace between your 11-point and your two-point and then shuffle it into your home board as the match progresses.

The Blitz

This is composed of closing your home board as fast as possible while keeping your opposer on the bar. i.e., if your opposer tosses an early 2 and shifts one piece from your 1-point to your 3-point and you then toss a five-five, you can play 6/1 6/1 eight/three 8/3. Your opponent is now in serious calamity because they have two checkers on the bar and you have closed half your inside board!

The Backgame

This tactic is where you have two or higher checkers in your opponent’s home board. (An anchor spot is a point consisting of at least two of your checkers.) It should be played when you are significantly behind as it greatly improves your circumstances. The better locations for anchor spots are towards your competitor’s lower points and also on adjacent points or with one point separating them. Timing is integral for an effectual backgame: after all, there is no point having 2 nice anchor spots and a solid wall in your own home board if you are then forced to break apart this right away, while your opponent is moving their checkers home, because you do not have any other spare pieces to move! In this case, it’s better to have checkers on the bar so that you are able to maintain your position up until your competitor gives you an opportunity to hit, so it may be a great idea to attempt and get your opposer to get them in this case!

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