Backgammon – 3 General Schemes

In very general terms, there are three basic plans used. You need to be able to switch tactics almost instantly as the action of the game unfolds.

The Blockade

This is composed of assembling a 6-deep wall of checkers, or at least as deep as you can achieve, to barricade in your competitor’s checkers that are on your 1-point. This is considered to be the most adequate procedure at the start of the match. You can assemble the wall anyplace between your eleven-point and your two-point and then shift it into your home board as the match continues.

The Blitz

This involves closing your home board as fast as as you can while keeping your opponent on the bar. e.g., if your competitor tosses an early two and shifts one piece from your 1-point to your three-point and you then roll a five-five, you are able to play 6/1 6/1 eight/three eight/three. Your opponent is now in serious calamity taking into account that they have 2 pieces on the bar and you have locked half your inside board!

The Backgame

This strategy is where you have two or more checkers in your opponent’s inner board. (An anchor spot is a point consisting of at a minimum two of your pieces.) It must be used when you are decidedly behind as it much improves your chances. The strongest areas for anchor spots are towards your opponent’s smaller points and either on abutting points or with a single point separating them. Timing is important for an effective backgame: after all, there’s no reason having 2 nice anchors and a complete wall in your own home board if you are then required to break down this right away, while your opposer is shifting their pieces home, considering that you don’t have any other spare checkers to move! In this situation, it’s better to have pieces on the bar so that you can maintain your position up till your opponent gives you an opportunity to hit, so it may be a great idea to try and get your competitor to get them in this situation!

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