Backgammon Strategies

Backgammon is a game for two, in which players roll the dice and move their checkers across the board. This is a very simplified definition of the game, which is really much more than moving checkers. It involves a great amount of strategy and tactics, and a good backgammon player is the one who always moves the best possible to any number combination seen on the dices.

Many say that it is a game of luck. This isn’t true. Luck can make your task easier but it can’t give you the game. In backgammon there are some basic strategies which you have to learn and memorize if you want to be a good player. One of this is the opening moves, which is quite critical. A bad start can cause failure almost in every game or sport.

When starting an online backgammon game, you can have many options. One of your options is to run away from the opponent’s house, the zone from where he has to remove his checkers. The downside of this strategy is that it’s quite hard moving out without leaving any checkers free on their points. This is important, because if you’re checkers are hit, they go back from where they started, and there is no point of repetitive tries.

Another strategy is to start building a blockade in front of your house. For example if your dices are showing you a 4-2 combination, you could move a checker on your number 4 point from the number 6, and one from the number 8. That way there will be 2 checkers blocking the way of the opponent’s way. If you start concentrating of collecting pairs of checkers in that area, you will block the opponent’s two checkers and in the same time you will have the advantage of having your checkers as close as possible to your area where you can start removing them.

It is indeed ideal if you can combine these two strategies. Depending on your moves, you can either run away with the two checkers sitting there solitary in the opponent’s area or built the blockade. If you have high numbers, than try to run away. If you have number combinations with which you can build the blockade, with two checkers in every points, than you should do that. There is only one important thing to remember, and that is never let one single checker on a point. If you are hit, than it is a pretty bad situation.

There might be situations when you must move and leave a checker alone. That is the worst scenario you should try to prevent these from happening. But if you are hit and the game is slowly heading to the finish, than you might try a risky, but effective strategy. Leave your checker on its starting position. If you are able to put it on the highest point number possible, than the best it is. Since the game is near its finish, probably the opponent has the checkers all pilled up there. Try to arrange your checkers until all points have at least two. Then, look for the opportunity to hit one of the opponent’s checkers. This way he won’t be able to introduce the checker that had been hit into his starting position, and you might win the game with this. Just make sure he won’t be able to do the same thing with you. If you are good and calculating the combination of moves correctly, this might save you and you might turn around the outcome of the game.

When collecting your pieces in your home, make sure you collect them on the smallest numbered point as possible. It is no use to have a bunch of checkers on the sixth point, and then throwing small numbers. This way you are only doing unnecessary moves while the player is getting closer to winning the game. This is something you want to avoid.

In the beginning of the game, in lots of cases you might wonder what to do with a move. For instance you must move 1 point a checker. That move is usually done by the prisoners, or one of them. Until they are in that starting area, it is really not important on which point you are, at the beginning of the game. So don’t risk being hit, just push one checker into the vicinity, and you can continue the game insured, not having to sweat under pressure and not knowing what will the opponent’s dices show. Never leave yourself in the hand of luck. It’s better if you are controlling the game, rather than the opponent or luck.

During the game, you always have to make sure there are enough checkers which are annoying your opponent, so to say. If you have checkers in front of the opponents’, and he can’t move those checkers he wants to move with, than you are in a strategic advantage. Not to mention the psychological advantage. No player likes it when his options are taken, or when he can’t do what he planned to do, or wants to do. This way you might force him into an error, and in backgammon one slight mistake can cause a loss. Also if you can recognize what backgammon strategy he wants to use, you might start taking counter measures. This way he won’t be able to reach what he proposed to reach, and a chance of strategy during game might lead to complications. If you can achieve all this, your chances for success will be much higher.