Backgammon – Three Main Schemes

In extraordinarily general terms, there are three main game plans used. You need to be agile enough to switch techniques instantly as the action of the match unfolds.

The Blockade

This is composed of creating a 6-thick wall of checkers, or at a minimum as thick as you might achieve, to lock in your competitor’s pieces that are on your 1-point. This is judged to be the most suitable strategy at the begining of the match. You can build the wall anywhere inbetween your eleven-point and your two-point and then shuffle it into your home board as the game progresses.

The Blitz

This consists of locking your home board as quickly as as you can while keeping your opposer on the bar. e.g., if your challenger tosses an early two and moves one checker from your 1-point to your three-point and you then toss a 5-5, you can play 6/1 6/1 eight/three 8/3. Your opposer is then in serious difficulty due to the fact that they have 2 pieces on the bar and you have closed half your inner board!

The Backgame

This plan is where you have 2 or higher pieces in your competitor’s home board. (An anchor is a point consisting of at least 2 of your pieces.) It must be used when you are extremely behind as it much improves your circumstances. The strongest areas for anchors are towards your competitor’s smaller points and also on abutting points or with one point in between. Timing is crucial for a competent backgame: besides, there is no reason having 2 nice anchors and a complete wall in your own home board if you are then required to break up this right away, while your opposer is shifting their pieces home, seeing that you do not have any other spare checkers to shift! In this case, it is more favorable to have checkers on the bar so that you might preserve your position until your challenger provides you a chance to hit, so it will be an excellent idea to attempt and get your opponent to hit them in this case!

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