Backgammon – 3 General Techniques
October 3rd, 2020 by Claudia

In very general terms, there are three basic plans used. You need to be agile enough to hop between tactics quickly as the course of the game unfolds.

The Blockade

This is comprised of creating a 6-deep wall of checkers, or at a minimum as thick as you can manage, to barricade in your competitor’s pieces that are on your 1-point. This is judged to be the most suitable procedure at the begining of the game. You can create the wall anywhere within your 11-point and your two-point and then move it into your home board as the match advances.

The Blitz

This involves locking your home board as quickly as as you can while keeping your challenger on the bar. e.g., if your competitor tosses an early two and shifts one checker from your one-point to your 3-point and you then toss a 5-5, you will be able to play six/one six/one eight/three eight/three. Your opponent is now in big-time calamity due to the fact that they have 2 checkers on the bar and you have closed half your inner board!

The Backgame

This plan is where you have two or more pieces in your competitor’s home board. (An anchor spot is a point consisting of at least 2 of your checkers.) It must be employed when you are decidedly behind as it greatly improves your circumstances. The best areas for anchor spots are towards your opponent’s lower points and also on adjoining points or with a single point separating them. Timing is crucial for an effectual backgame: after all, there’s no point having two nice anchor spots and a solid wall in your own home board if you are then required to dismantle this straight away, while your challenger is getting their pieces home, because you don’t have other extra pieces to move! In this case, it’s better to have checkers on the bar so that you are able to maintain your position until your competitor gives you a chance to hit, so it will be a good idea to attempt and get your competitor to hit them in this situation!

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