Backgammon – Three Basic Strategies
October 11th, 2022 by Princess

In very general terms, there are 3 general techniques employed. You want to be able to hop between techniques instantly as the course of the match unfolds.

The Blockade

This is comprised of assembling a 6-deep wall of pieces, or at a minimum as deep as you are able to manage, to block in the competitor’s checkers that are located on your 1-point. This is judged to be the most acceptable course of action at the start of the match. You can create the wall anywhere within your eleven-point and your 2-point and then shuffle it into your home board as the game advances.

The Blitz

This consists of closing your home board as fast as possible while keeping your opposer on the bar. i.e., if your opposer tosses an early 2 and shifts one checker from your 1-point to your 3-point and you then toss a five-five, you can play 6/1 six/one 8/3 8/3. Your competitor is then in big-time calamity taking into account that they have 2 checkers on the bar and you have closed half your inner board!

The Backgame

This course of action is where you have two or more checkers in your opponent’s inner board. (An anchor spot is a position filled by at least two of your pieces.) It would be used when you are extremely behind as it greatly improves your opportunities. The better locations for anchors are close to your opponent’s smaller points and also on abutting points or with one point separating them. Timing is critical for an effective backgame: at the end of the day, there’s no point having 2 nice anchors and a solid wall in your own home board if you are then forced to break up this right away, while your opponent is shifting their checkers home, considering that you do not have other additional pieces to move! In this case, it is more tolerable to have pieces on the bar so that you can preserve your position until your opponent provides you an opportunity to hit, so it may be an excellent idea to attempt and get your opponent to hit them in this situation!

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