Online Backgammon| The Ultimate Guide to Playing Backgammon Online

Backgammon online has been around for thousands of years as a game to wager on and earn money. It was originally designed as a board game to play with friends and acquaintances and has since moved into the realm of online gaming locations. Online Backgammon adheres to the same rules as the board game found in homes. When learning the game for the first time, it is important to get the Backgammon rules in mind before playing for real money. It is either best to start playing off line with a friend or to learn the rules of Backgammon by playing in demo mode. The rules for Backgammon are simple, with about ten things to follow. Learn how to play Backgammon in the below guide and decide if it is worth playing. You will wager a single stake that can be doubled when you have the advantage.

What is Backgammon?

Backgammon is a type of board game that people tend to make wagers on during the game play. It is a combination of a board and dice, where strategy and luck do play a part in how one wins. The game also includes checkers. The goal of the game is to be the first player to “bear off” their 15 checkers. Players will roll the dice to move their checkers on the board.

Origins of Backgammon

Backgammon dates back 5,000 years. The origins indicate the game started in Mesopotamia, what is now Iraq. Archeologists uncovered a Backgammon board that they were able to date. They also found human bone being used as dice for the game. It is thought that Backgammon may have come from the Royal Game of Ur, which existed about 2,600 years before Backgammon. Today, the Middle East still plays the game, and often coffee houses feature the game for people to come sit and play. The game made its way to Persia (Iran), Armenia, and was around during the Roman and Byzantine Empires. The game soon made its way around Asia, Greece, Turkey, and through Western Europe. During the high court days, many people would play Backgammon and wager on the outcomes, including the ladies during gatherings. It was not until the 1920s that the game was first introduced in the United States. It is also the time when the Double Cube was added. In 2009, work to re-popularize the game began in the US, under the Untied States Backgammon Federation.

How to Play Backgammon - Rules Explained

Learning how to play Backgammon before you gamble online is important. There are nuances that can change the outcome of the game, entirely, if you do not know the Backgammon rules.

The Board

The board has two sides, with 30 checkers (15 black and 15 white). Boards may be white and black, green and brown with tan, or other colors. There is a pattern to the board. The pattern is based on 24 triangles, which are called points. There are two home zones on opposite sides of the board for both players. The goal is to get all the checkers into the home zone and bear them off. To bear off means to remove them from the board. The first player who removes all 15 of their checkers wins. On the board, white moves in a counterclockwise way, while black goes in the clockwise direction.

Throwing the Dice

Each player will roll the dice before they move. There are two dice, and the number they add up to determines the points or amount the checkers can move. If the player rolls a four and two, then one checker will move four points, and another can move two points. It is also possible to move one checker six points. Most rules state that two separate moves should be made according to the amount on the dice, even if only one checker moves. The exact number on the dice needs to be adhered to. If there is snake eyes or doubles on the dice, the player moves the amount twice. However, if the player cannot move checkers that add up to the numbers shown, the player gets to move as much as possible.

How to Move the Backgammon Checkers

A checker must be selected and moved. One can drag the checker or pick it up and count the points. Once a player picks the checker and begins moving, it means that checker will need to move the distance elected and cannot change their mind. Only a checker that can move to a point that is empty may move. If a player encounters the other players checker, they can “hit” it and remove it to the bar. The player then continues to move the total number of points with one or two checkers.

Free Your Checkers

When a checker is hit and moved to the bar, a player rolls the dice. If the point is open the player can enter as many checkers as are on the bar (of their checkers) and then forfeit the rest of the turn. If a point is not open and the player does not have any other moves, the player loses a turn.

Remove Your Checkers

This is called bearing off and happens when a player has all 15 checkers on the home side of the board. The player needs to roll a number that corresponds to a point the checker is one. If a six is rolled the checker on the sixth point can be taken off. A player has to continue moving checkers forward on the points based on the dice rolls, and when possible remove the checker by being able to move it based on the dice numbers. Let’s say a player has two checkers on the 1, 2, 3, and 4 points, and one on five. If the player rolls a five and four, then the player can remove the one on the 5 points, and one of the checkers on the four point.

Doubling Cube

Wagering comes in with regards to an agreed amount per point. Each game will begin with one point, and a player can decide to double the stakes if there is an advantage. It means the players will then have a new higher stake to play. The player who becomes the one to accept the double stakes will be the owner of the cube and will need to double on the next move. It is also possible to redouble, which could send the cube to a new player or if the player refuses to redouble then the player needs to pay off the points staked in the prior move.

Backgammon and Gammon - The Allocation of Points

During game play a player may have born off one checker. If this is the player with the least points, the value of the doubling cube will be lost to the other player. If the player did not have any checkers born off, then he is gammoned and will lose twice the amount on the doubling cube or the initial wager (if doubling did not occur). If the player has all 15 checkers on the board, then he is backgammoned and will lose three times the value wagered.

Tips for Playing Backgammon Online

During play, you want to make sure you are utilizing strategy.

  • Know the rules.
  • Remember that you want to cube, attack, race and block.
  • You also want to double when you have the advantage.
  • Double and redoubling are advantageous only when you are in a favorable position.
  • Keep track of open spaces, to avoid being blocked or removed to the bar.

Backgammon Glossary

Here are a few terms to help you play the game.

ACE – a die that shows 1.

ACEY-DEUCY – a roll where 1 and 2 appear on the dice.

ANCHOR – a point that is occupied by two or more of your checkers on the opposing home board.

ANTI JOKER – a bad roll.

Backgammon – a board game with dice and checkers.

Backgammon BOARD – the board one plays on, which has 24 triangles that are called points.

BAR – a raised center portion of the board, where the home and opposite player’s home are split, and a place checkers go when they have been “hit.”

BLITZ – an attack on the opposing player to blot your home board and close out the opponent.

CHECKER – a marker, often a piece of plastic that a player moves around the board.

DOUBLES – a player will request the stakes to be doubled.

DOUBLING CUBE – the cube that reflects single stakes, doubled stakes, or redoubles.

GAMMON – a completed game, where the loser has not “born off” any checkers.

GOLDEN POINT – when the opposing player has five-point to create an anchor.

HIT – when one checker is moved to the bar, due to a blot.

POINT – one of 24 triangles on the board, where each player has 12 on their side of the board.

SPLIT – when two separate checkers are together on one point.

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