Main goals when opening a backgammon game

This game is basically a game of technique and strategy, in which the experience of a player can tell the difference. Besides knowing a few of the opening moves, one must set his goals during the game. It is best to set your goals even from the beginning, among the first two or three rolls, in order to increase the chances of winning.

One of the main goals is to advance the back checkers, because they are too far away from your other checkers. This can be done in two different ways. One of them is to move the checkers as far as possible, near the mid-point. From this position, they can be easily used as builders, but can also be at risk of being hit.

The other way, which may be a little safer than the first one, is to move the two checkers little by little, and try to create a defensive point, called an anchor. From this defensive point it would than be easier during the game to make a leap. Another important goal is to try to prevent your opponent from doing the same thing as you do, that is to advance his back checkers. You can do that by making home-board points, ideally 4-point, 5-point and 7-point, which will make it harder or even impossible for the opponent to move his checkers.

You can make some of these home-board points even from the opening rolls, but the others must be done with the help of the checkers called builders, which must be brought from, or around the mid-point. What is risky about the builders is the fact that they are unprotected, and may be hit by the other player.

Since I mentioned that your builder might be hit, it is only fair to say that another important goal is to hit your opponent’s blots, action that will make him go back. Be careful though, if you decide to hit a blot, not to have some blots of yourself inside the home-board.

The opponent may have the luck of hitting them, thus making you go back all the way to his home-board. If you find yourself in the position of choosing between two possible moves, the best move is the one that creates a more difficult situation for the other player.