Backgammon – 3 Basic Plans

[ English ]

In extraordinarily general terms, there are three main plans employed. You must be able to switch tactics quickly as the course of the match unfolds.

The Blockade

This is composed of creating a 6-thick wall of pieces, or at least as deep as you might manage, to barricade in your competitor’s pieces that are on your 1-point. This is deemed to be the most adequate course of action at the begining of the match. You can build the wall anywhere inbetween your 11-point and your 2-point and then shift it into your home board as the game continues.

The Blitz

This is composed of closing your home board as fast as as you can while keeping your challenger on the bar. e.g., if your competitor tosses an early 2 and shifts one checker from your one-point to your three-point and you then toss a 5-5, you will be able to play 6/1 6/1 eight/three eight/three. Your competitor is now in serious dire straits considering that they have two checkers on the bar and you have closed half your inside board!

The Backgame

This course of action is where you have 2 or higher pieces in your opponent’s inner board. (An anchor is a position consisting of at a minimum two of your checkers.) It needs to be used when you are significantly behind as it greatly improves your chances. The best places for anchors are near your competitor’s lower points and also on adjoining points or with one point in between. Timing is important for an effectual backgame: after all, there is no point having two 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 opponent is moving their checkers home, seeing that you do not have any other extra pieces to shift! In this case, it’s more tolerable to have checkers on the bar so that you might maintain your position until your competitor gives you a chance to hit, so it can be an excellent idea to attempt and get your opponent to get them in this situation!

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