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Home | Backgammon | General Rules

Backgammon Top 10 Playing Tips

By: tcads

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Even if you have never played backgammon before or you an expert, the following tips might just help you understand or play better, remember no game is ever the same and every player is different, but there are some patterns to play that at least point you in the right direction (excuse the pun) point is one of those long triangular shapes on the board, but there are lots of other terms in this top ten list which you will come across. So let us begin.

1. Look to keep options open. Try to think ahead when placing a checker on a particular point; try to anticipate your next move. Give yourself at least 2 alternatives for the next move.

2. Try to spread pieces in pairs. It stops you from being hit. Sometimes hits work to your advantage particularly if you are playing a back game or trailing badly, try to get your pieces at the bar, the moves will be quicker then.

3. Know when to leave a shot. If your opponent's checker is placed on the bar and you leave a blot or a prime (anchoring) then it's better to leave a shot.

4. Go to hit your opponent's checker in the 'away board'. It's more important than making a blot or blockade in the form of prime.

5. Try to focus at the ace-point in the final stages of the game, not at the beginning. Give your pieces time to move out. And stay off the ace-point.

6. The bar-point is very important. But always try to occupy the equity points at an early stage. Identified as the 4th and 5th points on both sides of the board.

7. Be aware of how to double, it is a match winning or losing decision. The break-even point of a double is 25%. If you're trailing a double can change the match. So be sure if you issue a double of what you are doing, know when to accept or decline and when to issue a redouble. In Woolsey's Law, you 'put yourself in your opponent's shoes'. Wise words.

8. Only redouble when you have nothing left to lose, if you have lost the first game in a three game match then go for it on the second and third game.

9. Use anchors to counterbalance your opponents anchors and also if you are badly behind.

10. Points to play holding the 7 or 9 point is good if you are trailing as it creates. pressure on the 12th point (Mid point) of the opposition. Try to avoid deep moves on your home board at the start of the game. Leave the 1/ 2/ 3 points empty. The 5th point is equally important like the 7th one as the 5th point also stops the pieces from getting onto the bar area.

Ten quick suggestions that are aimed at making your backgammon experience a little more intuitive and entertaining. How you use them is up to you.

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