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Backgammon – 3 Main Plans

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In exceptionally general terms, there are three general plans used. You need to be able to hop between tactics quickly as the action of the match unfolds.

The Blockade

This comprises of building a 6-deep wall of pieces, or at least as deep as you might manage, to lock in the opponent's pieces that are on your 1-point. This is considered to be the most adequate strategy at the start of the match. You can build the wall anywhere within your eleven-point and your 2-point and then move it into your home board as the match continues.

The Blitz

This is comprised of locking your home board as quick as possible while keeping your opponent on the bar. i.e., if your challenger tosses an early two and moves one checker from your one-point to your 3-point and you then roll a 5-5, you will be able to play six/one six/one 8/3 8/3. Your opponent is now in big-time trouble since they have 2 pieces on the bar and you have closed half your inside board!

The Backgame

This course of action is where you have two or higher anchors in your competitor's home board. (An anchor spot is a position consisting of at least two of your pieces.) It should be employed when you are significantly behind as this action greatly improves your circumstances. The best places for anchor spots are towards your opponent's lower points and either on abutting points or with a single point separating them. Timing is crucial for an effectual backgame: besides, there is no reason having 2 nice anchor spots and a complete wall in your own inner board if you are then forced to break up this right away, while your opponent is getting their checkers home, because you do not have any other extra pieces to move! In this case, it's better to have checkers on the bar so that you are able to preserve your position until your competitor provides you a chance to hit, so it will be a good idea to attempt and get your opponent to hit them in this situation!

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