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Backgammon – 3 Main Techniques

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In exceptionally general terms, there are three fundamental plans used. You must be agile enough to switch strategies quickly as the action of the game unfolds.

The Blockade

This involves assembling a 6-deep wall of checkers, or at least as thick as you can manage, to barricade in your opponent's pieces that are located on your 1-point. This is considered to be the most acceptable tactic at the begining of the game. You can assemble the wall anyplace within your eleven-point and your two-point and then shift it into your home board as the match advances.

The Blitz

This consists of closing your home board as quickly as possible while keeping your challenger on the bar. e.g., if your opposer rolls an early 2 and moves one piece from your one-point to your three-point and you then roll a five-five, you can play six/one six/one eight/three 8/3. Your opponent is now in serious calamity because they have two pieces on the bar and you have locked half your home board!

The Backgame

This plan is where you have 2 or more anchors in your opponent's home board. (An anchor spot is a position filled by at least two of your checkers.) It would be played when you are decidedly behind as this action greatly improves your circumstances. The best areas for anchors are close to your competitor's smaller points and also on adjoining points or with a single point in between. Timing is essential for a competent backgame: besides, there is no reason having 2 nice anchor spots and a complete wall in your own inner board if you are then required to break up this straight away, while your challenger is moving their checkers home, seeing that you do not have other additional pieces to shift! In this situation, it is more tolerable to have checkers on the bar so that you can preserve your position up till your challenger provides you an opportunity to hit, so it can be an excellent idea to try and get your challenger to get them in this situation!

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