Backgammon – 3 General Techniques

In exceptionally simple terms, there are 3 main strategies employed. You want to be able to switch game plans quickly as the action of the game unfolds.

The Blockade

This is comprised of assembling a 6-thick wall of pieces, or at a minimum 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 begining of the match. You can create the wall anywhere between your 11-point and your 2-point and then shift it into your home board as the game continues.

The Blitz

This consists of locking your home board as quick as as you can while keeping your opponent on the bar. i.e., if your competitor tosses an early 2 and moves one checker from your one-point to your three-point and you then roll a five-five, you are able to play 6/1 six/one eight/three eight/three. Your opponent is now in serious difficulty because they have two checkers on the bar and you have closed half your inside board!

The Backgame

This tactic is where you have 2 or more anchors in your competitor’s inner board. (An anchor is a position consisting of at least two of your checkers.) It would be used when you are decidedly behind as it much improves your chances. The strongest places for anchor spots are close to your opponent’s smaller points and either on adjoining points or with a single point separating them. Timing is critical for an effective backgame: besides, there’s no reason having two nice anchor spots and a solid wall in your own inner board if you are then required to break up this right away, while your competitor is shifting their pieces home, because you don’t have other spare pieces to move! In this case, it’s more tolerable to have checkers on the bar so that you can preserve your position until your opposer gives you an opportunity to hit, so it may be a good idea to attempt and get your competitor to hit them in this case!

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