Backgammon – 3 Basic Strategies
December 1st, 2021 by Claudia
[ English ]

In very general terms, there are three general strategies employed. You need to be agile enough to hop between tactics quickly as the course of the match unfolds.

The Blockade

This involves building a 6-deep wall of checkers, or at least as thick as you are able to achieve, to block in your opponent’s checkers that are located on your 1-point. This is considered to be the most acceptable strategy at the begining of the game. You can create the wall anywhere within your 11-point and your two-point and then shuffle it into your home board as the match continues.

The Blitz

This is composed of locking your home board as quick as possible while keeping your opposer on the bar. e.g., if your opponent tosses an early two and shifts one piece from your one-point to your three-point and you then toss a five-five, you are able to play six/one six/one 8/3 8/3. Your opposer is now in big-time trouble due to the fact that they have two pieces on the bar and you have locked half your inner board!

The Backgame

This strategy is where you have two or higher anchors in your opponent’s inner board. (An anchor spot is a point filled by at a minimum two of your pieces.) It would be employed when you are decidedly behind as this plan much improves your opportunities. The better locations for anchors are close to your opponent’s smaller points and either on abutting points or with a single point in between. Timing is integral for an effective backgame: at the end of the day, there’s no reason having 2 nice anchors and a complete wall in your own inner board if you are then forced to break down this right away, while your competitor is getting their pieces home, owing to the fact that you don’t have any other spare pieces to move! In this case, it’s more favorable to have pieces on the bar so that you are able to maintain your position until your opponent gives you a chance to hit, so it will be a good idea to try and get your opponent to hit them in this case!

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