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Backgammon – Three Basic Strategies

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In extraordinarily general terms, there are three basic game plans used. You must be able to hop between strategies instantly as the course of the game unfolds.

The Blockade

This is comprised of creating a 6-thick wall of pieces, or at a minimum as thick as you can achieve, to barricade in your competitor's checkers that are on your 1-point. This is judged to be the most acceptable strategy at the begining of the match. You can assemble the wall anywhere between your eleven-point and your two-point and then shuffle it into your home board as the game progresses.

The Blitz

This involves closing your home board as fast as as you can while keeping your opponent on the bar. e.g., if your competitor tosses an early two and shifts one checker from your one-point to your three-point and you then roll a five-five, you are able to play six/one 6/1 8/3 eight/three. Your opponent is then in serious dire straits because they have 2 pieces on the bar and you have locked half your inner board!

The Backgame

This tactic is where you have 2 or higher checkers in your competitor's inner board. (An anchor spot is a point consisting of at a minimum 2 of your pieces.) It would be employed when you are extremely behind as it much improves your chances. The better locations for anchor spots are towards your opponent's smaller points and either on abutting points or with one point separating them. Timing is essential for an effective backgame: besides, there's no point having two nice anchor spots and a complete wall in your own inner board if you are then required to break up this right away, while your opponent is shifting their pieces home, seeing that you don't have other extra checkers to move! In this situation, it is better to have checkers on the bar so that you are able to maintain your position until your challenger provides you a chance to hit, so it will be a great idea to attempt and get your opposer to hit them in this case!

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