One of the most important things in the process of learning how to play backgammon and evolving your backgammon game, in addition to knowing the basic backgammon rules is to understand the implications, which can be critical, of each move and roll. The dice represent the luck factor, but there are so many possibilities of how to use these two numbers that the crucial thing becomes the way a player chooses to utilize the numbers for defense, attack, planning future moves etc.
learning from mistakes during a backgammon game and in retrospective is the best teacher one can find, as in any learning processes; therefore, without the experience and practice, it is very hard to make a progress. The following assembled backgammon tips, try to give beginner backgammon players, a chance to learn from other players experience and start playing with a deeper understanding of the backgammon game and a broad vision of situations and positions, even if they have not had the chance to encounter them themselves. Needless to say, that learning about something can never replace experiencing it in person.
Backgammon Tip 1
When your rival is significantly ahead in the backgammon game, you will find it useful sometimes to fall behind, deliberately. You can improve your position by letting your rival hit you, since it will strengthen your back game, without breaking your inner board.
Backgammon Tip 2
Build your rival’s 5 and 6 points, to prevent him from a prime as well as threatening him, especially if he has been making points at your home board.
Backgammon Tip 3
If you are ahead, keep moving forward. Try to play a fast backgammon game and break contact. Do not let the rival hit you; just race.
Backgammon Tip 4
If you find yourself hesitating – hit! It is usually the best thing to do, particularly if you hit in adjacent to your rival’s inner board, where it may create a significant delay.
Backgammon Tip 5
Make an attempt to build a prime and or a blockade, even if you must leave exposed checkers, with a single exception – do not risk being blocked behind a prime yourself.
Backgammon Tip 6
Feel free to offer or accept a double if your opponent is ahead in the match. For instance, if the score is 2-0 for your rival, in series of 3, you should accept a double offered to you and then double again, since you have nothing to lose. If you lose the backgammon game you lose the series whether you double or not, but re-doubling gives you an opportunity to win the series by winning the game.
Backgammon Tip 7
If you are lagging, do not rush to give up anchors or strategic points. Wait for the numbers you need, as it may be your only chance to win.
Backgammon Tip 8
Building your 1-point early in the backgammon game is not recommended, because you will not be able to use those checkers later on.
Backgammon Tip 9
If your opponent leaves a blot and you roll the right numbers to hit and cover the point, you should attack and establish your 1-point.
Backgammon Tip 10
Strategically you should block your opponent 2 and 3 points, if you are forced to play a back game.
Backgammon Tip 11
It is advisable to leave your opponent’s 7 or 9 points blocked, if he is ahead in the race, in order to defend yourself. This position enables you to threaten opposing checkers.
Backgammon Tip 12
You should offer a double, when you are leading the backgammon game and you know your opponent is going to refuse, in order to collect the scores or the money, before the game actually ends. This advice is true, except for a situation in which you are so far ahead, you can gammon or backgammon and get higher scores.
Backgammon Tip 13
When leaving blots, try to have other checkers located nearby (maximum of 6 pips away) for protection. That way, you will have the opportunity to cover the blot on your next turn, or to re-hit, if the rival dares hitting your checker.
Backgammon Tip 14
One of the most strategic points you should block, is your 13 point or your rival 12 point. It is important for protecting your outer board and blocking the opponent.
Backgammon Tip 15
At the final stages of a backgammon game, you should use the dice numbers wisely to avoid a gammon. In order to do so, you should calculate your steps carefully and bring as many checkers as possible to your home board, with no significant to their order or location.
Backgammon Tip 16
There is a window of opportunities for doubling, when you have 60-70% of winning. If you try to double before the window opens, it might be harmful for you, and if you offer double after the window is closed, the opponent will refuse and quit the backgammon game.
Backgammon Tip 17
Consider quitting instead of accepting doubling offers, when you have less than 25% chances to win.
Backgammon Tip 18
In the early stages of a backgammon game it is important to distribute your checkers in a way that allows you to make different moves according to the dice numbers. You do not want to find yourself in a situation, which forces you to build ‘candlesticks’ that limit your game options.
Backgammon Tip 19
Your rival’s 5-point is your best defense point. It is advisable to block it at early stage of the game.
Backgammon Tip 20
When breaking a point, it is preferable that the blot will be in danger of an indirect hit, rather than direct hit; meaning, the opponent needs the sum of both dice in order to hit.
Backgammon Tip 21
If possible, it is wise to bring your checkers from the opponent point 1 to a safe place at the opponent’s point 12. 5-6 roll allows you to do that.
Backgammon Tip 22
The 7-point on your outer board is a strategic point, used to block opposing checkers, still trapped in your home board.
Backgammon Tip 23
It is advisable to establish the opponent’s points 9 and 5, at the beginning of the game, if you roll 4-4.
Backgammon Tip 24
Rolled dice that have difference of 2, at early stages of the game, are commonly used for building points in the inner board; for example, a roll of 1-3 builds 5-point and so on.
Backgammon Tip 25
It is desirable to move your runners quickly out of the opponent’s inner board, or to block his 5-point.
Backgammon Tip 26
Be careful of leaving blots when your rival’s home board is significantly blocked.
Backgammon Tip 27
The next move should always be planed to fit as many move combinations as possible; you do not want to be in a situation, in which you must expose blots or break points.
Backgammon Tip 28
Do not build too many points that have no extra checkers, since it will force you later on to leave blots.
Backgammon Tip 29
If your opponent is ahead in the game, try to make as many points as possible on your home board; it will create opportunities to hit his checkers, delay his progress and hopefully turn the backgammon game in your favor.
Backgammon Tip 30
It is better to build a point rather than hit, when there is a danger of re-hit.
Backgammon Tip 31
When starting the bear-off stage, you should focus on removing checkers, no matter how they are arranged.
Backgammon Tip 32
Try to duplicate your rival’s strategic points.
Backgammon Tip 33
Leaving blots should be done in your rival’s home or outer board rather in your side of the board.
Backgammon Tip 34
If your rival has a few checkers in your home board, try to build points rather than hit his blots; too many opponent’s checkers might strengthen his back game and weaken you.
Backgammon Tip 35
If there are opposing checkers in your inner board, while you start to bearoff, avoid leaving odd number of checkers on high points, so you will not be compelled to expose checkers, when rolling high doubles (6-6, 5-5 etc.).
Backgammon Tip 36
Blocking 7-point is important but blocking points 4 and 5 has a higher priority.
Backgammon Tip 37
If your competitor is substantially stronger use ‘running’ strategy; meaning, escape! Do not attempt to attack; instead, be focused on bringing your checkers as fast as possible out of your rival’s hands.
Backgammon Tip 38
In the event that you are left with a checker or more on your opponent’s point 1, while he has 3 checkers left on the board, sited on point 2, you should not attempt to run away, as you are going to lose the game anyway. Your only chance is to stay put and try to hit him, if he does not throw double higher than 1-1.
Backgammon Tip 39
Watching skilled players’ online backgammon game is an excellent way to learn how to play backgammon.
Backgammon Tip 40
Re-double is worthwhile when there is a high probability of winning the game.
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