Winning Backgammon

There are many ways to winning the backgammon game and we have listed the four key stratgies that may help winning the game a little easier.

Winning Backgammon: Four Key Attack Strategies

In backgammon, aggressive players can set the pace and dictate control of the game right from the beginning. Passive players, on the other hand, let their opponent determine the direction and call the shots. That is not the way you want a game to go, you stand a better chance of winning being aggressive, not passive.

Backgammon is just like strategizing an army – you have a better chance of winning by being the one who attacks, not the one who is reacting. Here are four key opening strategies to consider:

1. Go after your opponent

When you get a roll allowing you to hit a checker, go for it. It puts your opponent at an automatic disadvantage right at the beginning because his checker has to go to the bar and then reenter your home board before he can even begin planning his moves. That gains you a heads-up in the race around the board, buying valuable time to move your back checkers to a safer point.

A tip: given a choice between hitting and building, hitting is the best move in most situations.

2. Block your opponent

Set up blocking points that make it more difficult for your opponent to move his back checkers. Six points in a row is a full prime and any checkers caught behind a full prime are trapped until the prime is broken. The longer you can keep those back checkers trapped, the further ahead you can get in the race.

3. Build an anchor

An anchor is an advanced point in your opponent’s home board. For the black player, the 20 point, 21 point or 18 point would constitute an anchor. By moving his two back checkers from their starting position at Point 24 to one of those points, black has a strong defense that is hard to penetrate or block

Note: if your opponent makes an advanced anchor, it is critical for you to make an anchor of your own to increase your chances of winning.

4. Mobilize your Men

This essentially means you are moving your checkers in positions enabling you to better accomplished the above mentioned goals 1 through 3. By rolling 4 on the opening throw, you could move a back checker from Point 24 to Point 20 and hope to set up an anchor on the next turn. With a roll of 3, you could move a checker from the 13 point to the 10 point and try to set a blocking point on the next turn.

Remember this: you can’t begin with a double since you have to win the opening roll by throwing a bigger number than your opponent. Each of you throw one die to begin a game, so don’t put doubles in your initial move strategy.

Also don’t count hitting your opponent on your opening strategy since neither you nor your opponent in starting position have any blots. But that could change quickly after your opponent’s opening move so keep your eye on the table for follow-up moves.

Read more Backgammon Rules and Strategies