Backgammon – 3 Basic Schemes

In very general terms, there are three fundamental game plans employed. You need to be agile enough to switch tactics instantly as the course of the game unfolds.

The Blockade

This is comprised of assembling a 6-deep wall of pieces, or at a minimum as deep as you might achieve, to barricade in your competitor’s pieces that are on your 1-point. This is judged to be the most suitable tactic at the begining of the game. You can build the wall anyplace between your 11-point and your 2-point and then shuffle it into your home board as the game progresses.

The Blitz

This consists of locking your home board as fast as as you can while keeping your opponent on the bar. For example, if your challenger tosses an early two and shifts one piece from your one-point to your three-point and you then toss a 5-5, you are able to play 6/1 6/1 8/3 8/3. Your opponent is now in serious calamity considering that they have two checkers on the bar and you have closed half your inside board!

The Backgame

This plan is where you have two or more anchors in your competitor’s home board. (An anchor is a position filled by at least two of your checkers.) It needs to be played when you are significantly behind as it greatly improves your circumstances. The better areas for anchor spots are towards your competitor’s smaller points and also on adjoining points or with one point in between. Timing is integral for an effective backgame: besides, there is no point having 2 nice anchors and a complete wall in your own inner board if you are then required to break down this right away, while your opposer is moving their checkers home, taking into account that you don’t have other spare checkers to move! In this situation, it is more favorable to have checkers on the bar so that you can maintain your position until your competitor provides you a chance to hit, so it can be a wonderful idea to try and get your competitor to get them in this situation!

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