Backgammon – 3 Main Strategies
January 25th, 2023 by Princess

In very simple terms, there are three main strategies employed. You want to be able to switch strategies quickly as the action of the match unfolds.

The Blockade

This consists of creating a 6-thick wall of checkers, or at least as thick as you are able to manage, 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 between your 11-point and your two-point and then shift it into your home board as the game advances.

The Blitz

This consists of locking your home board as quickly as possible while keeping your opponent on the bar. e.g., if your competitor rolls an early 2 and shifts one checker from your 1-point to your 3-point and you then toss a five-five, you are able to play 6/1 6/1 eight/three eight/three. Your opposer is then in big-time calamity seeing that they have two checkers on the bar and you have closed half your home board!

The Backgame

This course of action is where you have 2 or more checkers in your competitor’s home board. (An anchor is a point occupied by at a minimum two of your checkers.) It needs to be played when you are significantly behind as it greatly improves your opportunities. The better locations for anchor spots are towards your opponent’s lower points and also on abutting points or with one point in between. Timing is critical for a powerful backgame: after all, there’s no point having 2 nice anchor spots and a solid wall in your own home board if you are then forced to break apart this straight away, while your competitor is moving their pieces home, because you do not have other extra checkers to shift! In this situation, 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 a great idea to try and get your opponent to hit them in this situation!

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