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Today’s online casinos are dominated by modern casino games that are designed with the latest innovations in iGaming technologies. With the striking graphics and sound effects of video slots to the immersive experience offered by live dealer games, all these are changing how players enjoy their online casino entertainment. But there are still a few casino games that remain true to its roots and offer a no-nonsense approach to gambling entertainment. A perfect example of this is backgammon which is still carried by a number of Philippines-focused online casinos. While a number of online casino games are products to recent innovations, the game of backgammon is a product of long and colorful gambling history. Backgammon is one of the oldest board games around, and according to historians, the backgammon game is more than 5,000 years old!
Popular in the Middle East during ancient times, backgammon offers easy rules that can be mastered easily by anyone. As a board game, backgammon requires two players, each assigned with fifteen checkers which should be moved in twenty-four triangles on the board (which are called points), and the movement will depend on the outcome of a throw of the dice. According to backgammon rules, the objective of the game is to successfully bear off (move) all of the pieces off the backgammon board. This is primarily designed as a table or board game and it managed to cross over to the online gambling environment.
Compared to the other modern casino games that can be played on Philippine casinos, backgammon requires a combination of luck and skills. Although the movement of the pieces will depend on the throw of the dice, it is the player who will decide on the course of action to take. Much like the game of chess, backgammon requires a set of concentration and skills to come up with the best moves and to anticipate the moves on the board that may be taken by the other opponent. In short, the game of backgammon will also require you to adopt certain strategies and techniques which makes this casino game truly exciting and interesting.
Quick Look at the Table Layout and the Terms Used
If you are playing backgammon online, it pays to understand the backgammon setup, particularly the design and presentation of the backgammon board. During online play, you will notice that different casinos will offer different designs for the board. In most cases, you will need to configure first the design of the game or board by selecting the ‘Player Color’. The free demo versions of backgammon game allow you to play against the computer. Under this arrangement, you will notice two boards and a pair of dice.
There are also a few terms that you need to keep in mind when playing backgammon. Here are some of the most-used terms that you will encounter when playing backgammon:
- Home Board. This refers to the six points located on the right of the game’s Jump Bar.
- Jump Ba This serves as the division between the inner and outer board of backgammon. Your objective for the first roll to get the pieces over this division.
- Out Bar. This refers to the bar outside your outer game board.
- Point These are your ‘triangles’ that you will find on the board and the areas where the game pieces will move.
- Outer Bar. You will find these six points on the left side of the board’s Jump Bar.
Here’s how to play backgammon against the computer or other players.
When playing this game, you will notice 12 long triangles on each side of backgammon’s board. These are known as points and designed as a continuous line of points from 1 to 24. To start in backgammon, you will play fifteen pieces, and two pieces are located on the 24th point, three pieces on the 8th point, five on the 13th point, and the 6th point. The challenge of the game here is to move the pieces around the board and ultimately removes all the pieces from play. The first participant who can remove or bears off the pieces will be declared the winner in backgammon.
The pieces can be moved by clicking the dice. The number reflected on the dice will indicate the number of spaces that you can use for the movement of the pieces. The screen will highlight the game spaces where the pieces are allowed to move and occupy. If you managed to roll a double, you can move the dice two times, or four moves during the turn. Remember: you can only move your game pieces into areas (points) that are occupied by your pieces or if it’s empty, or it only features a piece from the other opponent (or the computer) of backgammon. How to play rules also specify the right step to take when occupying a point with one piece from the other opponent. If you can land on a point that’s occupied by a player’s piece, you have the power to knock it off position and send it back to its original position.
The challenge for the other opponent is to roll the dice and place it in an empty spot in your area to put it back into play. The other opponent cannot move the other pieces in backgammon if this piece is not returned on the game board. This strategy and move in this game can also work against your favor. The other player may also land on a spot occupied by your piece, thus knocking it out of play.
Once all pieces are already secured in the upper right quadrant of the board (or the home board), the game of backgammon will not allow you to remove or bear off the pieces. During bearing off, you may place the pieces into their slot on the right side, thereby taking them out of play. In backgammon, the participant who removes all the pieces first will win!
Doubling Cube to Speed Up the Play
If you want a more challenging approach to playing the game of backgammon, then your best option is to play by doubling cube. Instead of a dice that you need to roll in backgammon, a doubling cube serves as a marker with numbers like 2, 4, up to 64. The numbers indicated on this cube of backgammon will refer to the stake to be played.
During the start of the backgammon round, this cube is positioned on the middle bar with the number ‘64’ on display which means that it’s centered on ‘1’. If this is centered, the players may propose doubling cube to double the stake in the backgammon dice game. In this variant of backgammon, you have the option to take the proposal or simply drop out of the game. Once the proposal has been accepted, this numbered cube will be positioned on the side of the opponent who has the power to re-double.
If the other player decides to drop out of the doubling cube stages, he will then lose the game using the current value of the cube. For example, if during play this cube shows ‘2’, and the player wants to redouble the wager to make it ‘4’, the player who decides to drop out will lose two units, or double the original wager proposed.
Difficult to Master, But Fun Board Game to Play
Just like chess, backgammon requires not just the understanding of the game rules and terms but also requires critical thinking. In this game, you don’t just move your pieces based on the outcome of the roll of the dice. If you want to win in backgammon games, you also need to think about your options before moving the pieces across the board. More than that, you also need to anticipate the moves of the other player. This is the reason why many players develop their own set of strategies when playing online backgammon games in their preferred online casino Philippines operators. It takes a lot of practice to master the moves and to be successful in real money
For many players, a set of strategies and techniques are often used when competing in tournaments or when participating in real money play. A popular strategy that is used by backgammon players is the ‘priming game’. When using this strategy, the player will set-up a wall of pieces called the prime, and they will cover a number of linked points. This will obstruct or limit the movement of the pieces of the other player.
A variant of this strategy is called the ‘blitz’ where the player will attempt to cover the home board in the quickest possible time while keeping the pieces of the opponent on its bar. Since the other player will have a hard time re-entering, the player can easily get a running advantage and win in this popular game.
Aside from these offensive strategies in the games, some players may also attempt to play defense when participating in a backgammon live game. In short, there are different approaches and ways on how to win and master this game. What you only need to realize is that like other popular games this game requires time, commitment, and patience to master the game play and the strategies. If you are new to this game, we recommend that you consider first the free backgammon Philippines games that are available right now. With free demo versions, you can test the rules and try a strategy. Once you are ready to take on the real money version, check our site for a list of the best casinos where you can play backgammon.