Backgammon Tips

Here are several tips for backgammon players. Some tips may not be applicable to every backgammon player's game, but, as always, there is something for everybody.

Tip # 1: "The Peel 'em off and don't ask anymore questions" If you are bearing off, and if you can take the checkers off with both of your dice, just do it; take them all off. About 99.99% of the time it is better than players trying to smooth out their distribution -just take them all off.

Tip # 2: "Remember the No-Risk Double move" If you sense that you are going to lose, and if you think that your opponent will win the game at the present value of the cube, and you can double, do it. You will lose nothing by doing it.

Tip # 3: "Do not bury the checkers" At an early stage of the game, always try to avoid placing your checkers on very low points. It will restrict your options in the game later on. Oftentimes, if you feel it is right, and you still have a decent alternative, choose your best options and don't place your checkers on your 1 and 2 points early in the game.

Tip # 4: "The Best Bear-in Move" If you are placing your checkers to bear off, and you have no chance of hitting (or let us say being hit), your best strategy for this is not the even distribution. The bigger stack is on the 6 point. The best is sloping down at the 3 or 4 point.

The goal here is to have most of your rolls in a later part of the game, and not to be on the 5 or 6 point to bear off, or from the 4 point. This is best to ward off wasting pips, if you have downward slope information.

Tip # 5 "The Two Point Match": Let us say that you are playing with a 2 point match, or you have reached a score where both players must have 2 points to win the game (like the 1-1 with a 3 point match or the 3-3 with the 5 point match), it is right to usually double the first chance you get.

If your opponent is a strong player, you ought to double if you have the chance to do it, regardless of how slight your chance is. Surely, your opponent will double later on if they have the chance. In the latter part of the game, you may not realize it, but you might not know the right time to double.