Racing to Win: the Backgammon Straight Race

The backgammon straight race is also known as the "pure race." This is by far one of the easiest ways to play since the backgammon race depends entirely on the role of the dice. Whoever rolls highest, wins the fastest. In this approach to the game, the starting point is the same as the standard set-up used in a standard game except that the two back-pieces, placed furthest from each player's home territory, are played first. These two are positioned along the mid-point of the board before any other pieces.

After this, all contact between the players is essentially avoided, creating a faster play. Players try to move their pieces home as quickly as possible, avoiding blockages and capturing their opponent's pieces as much as they can. The backgammon straight race is helpful for beginning players, to learn the basic concept of the game of backgammon before having to worry about strategy.

Essentially, once contact is broken, a backgammon race is played in every game. Once both players have successfully maneuvered past each other during the course of a standard game, their only objective is then to finish the race home and to bear off all their pieces. A backgammon straight race may be started at any time during a standard game, when one player feels he or she is ahead and places greater emphasis on moving towards home than in protecting pieces from hits or from blocking the progress of their opponent.

The backgammon straight race is an inescapable element of any backgammon game. How one chooses to emphasize its role in the course of the game, is up to the skill of the individual players.


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