Backgammon – 3 Basic Strategies

In exceptionally general terms, there are three fundamental techniques employed. You want to be agile enough to hop between techniques almost instantly as the course of the match unfolds.

The Blockade

This is comprised of creating a 6-thick wall of checkers, or at a minimum as thick as you might manage, to block in your competitor’s checkers that are located on your 1-point. This is judged to be the most acceptable procedure at the begining of the game. You can create the wall anyplace between your eleven-point and your two-point and then shift it into your home board as the match progresses.

The Blitz

This consists of closing your home board as quick as possible while keeping your opponent on the bar. For example, if your opponent rolls an early 2 and shifts one piece from your 1-point to your 3-point and you then roll a 5-5, you can play 6/1 6/1 eight/three eight/three. Your competitor is then in big-time calamity considering that they have 2 pieces on the bar and you have locked half your inside board!

The Backgame

This plan is where you have two or more pieces in your competitor’s inner board. (An anchor spot is a position consisting of at a minimum 2 of your pieces.) It should be employed when you are significantly behind as it much improves your chances. The strongest areas for anchor spots are close to your opponent’s smaller points and also on abutting points or with one point in between. Timing is integral for a competent backgame: at the end of the day, there’s no point having two nice anchors and a complete wall in your own home board if you are then forced to dismantle this right away, while your opposer is getting their checkers home, taking into account that you don’t have any other spare checkers to move! In this case, it’s more favorable 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 opponent to get them in this situation!

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