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Backgammon – Three Basic Strategies

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In astonishingly simple terms, there are 3 fundamental strategies employed. You must be agile enough to hop between tactics quickly as the action of the game unfolds.

The Blockade

This is comprised of creating a 6-deep wall of checkers, or at least as thick as you can manage, to block in your competitor's pieces that are on your 1-point. This is deemed to be the most adequate course of action at the start of the game. You can assemble the wall anyplace within your 11-point and your two-point and then move it into your home board as the game advances.

The Blitz

This involves locking your home board as quick as possible while keeping your challenger on the bar. e.g., if your opponent rolls an early 2 and moves one checker from your one-point to your 3-point and you then roll a five-five, you will be able to play six/one six/one eight/three eight/three. Your opposer is then in serious calamity considering that they have two checkers on the bar and you have closed half your inside board!

The Backgame

This strategy is where you have two or higher pieces in your opponent's home board. (An anchor is a point occupied by at least 2 of your pieces.) It must be employed when you are decidedly behind as this plan much improves your chances. The best locations for anchors are towards your opponent's smaller points and also on adjacent points or with one point separating them. Timing is crucial for a powerful backgame: at the end of the day, there is no reason having 2 nice anchors and a complete wall in your own inner board if you are then required to break down this straight away, while your opposer is getting their checkers home, considering that you don't have any other spare checkers to move! In this situation, it's more tolerable to have pieces on the bar so that you might maintain your position up until your competitor gives you an opportunity to hit, so it will be a good idea to try and get your opponent to get them in this case!

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