The Backgammon Setup Made Simple

A dazzling array of triangles and strangely numbered dice can make the backgammon setup look extremely complicated. But don't be put off! It can be explained simply, and get you started. The setup begins with the board. It consists of 12 stretched triangles connected to the outside edges, which point inwards. The alternating colours each represent where the playing pieces (checkers) sit, and are referred to as points.

Each point is numbered from 1 to 24. These numbers are not visible as the players move in opposite directions on the backgammon board: number 1 for player A is number 24 for player B

Points numbered 1 to 6 are named the home (or inner) board, and points 7 to 12 are the outer board. The bar in the centre divides these and may contain checkers during play. These sections are important in the backgammon setup as they affect possible moves and the scoring of the game.

The board layout is very specific at the start of each game. Players must place their checkers in lines on specific points; 5 checkers on the 6 and 13 points, 3 checkers on the 8 point, and 2 checkers on the 24 point. Both players have checkers on either side of the board, but not on the same points. The backgammon setup does not change whether played online or live.

A pair of dice always determines the amount of moves each player can make. A dice with the numbers 2, 4, 8, 16, 32 and 64 is the most unusual object in the whole backgammon setup. It is only used for strategic play, to double stakes. Now you know what the setup contains and how it works, you are ready to learn how to play.


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