Backgammon – Three Main Techniques

In very simple terms, there are 3 fundamental tactics used. You want to be able to switch tactics quickly as the action of the game unfolds.

The Blockade

This involves creating a 6-deep wall of checkers, or at a minimum as deep as you are able to manage, to lock in the opponent’s checkers that are located on your 1-point. This is deemed to be the most acceptable course of action at the begining of the game. You can create the wall anywhere between your eleven-point and your two-point and then shuffle it into your home board as the game continues.

The Blitz

This is composed of closing your home board as quick as as you can while keeping your opponent on the bar. For example, if your opposer rolls an early two and moves one checker from your one-point to your 3-point and you then roll a five-five, you are able to play 6/1 six/one 8/3 eight/three. Your opposer is now in big-time trouble seeing that they have two pieces on the bar and you have closed half your inside board!

The Backgame

This course of action is where you have 2 or higher checkers in your competitor’s home board. (An anchor spot is a position consisting of at a minimum 2 of your pieces.) It would be employed when you are decidedly behind as this action much improves your circumstances. The strongest locations for anchor spots are close to your opponent’s smaller points and also on adjacent points or with one point separating them. Timing is critical for a powerful backgame: at the end of the day, there is no point having two nice anchors and a complete wall in your own home board if you are then required to break down this right away, while your competitor is moving their checkers home, seeing that you do not have other spare pieces to shift! In this case, it is more favorable to have checkers on the bar so that you can preserve your position up until your opposer provides you an opportunity to hit, so it may be a good idea to try and get your opposer to hit them in this case!

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