Backgammon Rules: A Comprehensive Guide for Beginners


Backgammon is a classic board game that has been around for centuries. It is a game of strategy, skill, and luck, and is enjoyed by players of all ages and skill levels. If you are new to backgammon and want to learn how to play, this guide will provide you with a comprehensive overview of the rules and gameplay.

Setting Up the Game

Before you can start playing backgammon, you need to set up the game board. The backgammon board consists of 24 triangular points, divided into four quadrants of six points each. Each player has 15 checkers in their color, which they place on the board according to a specific pattern.


Placing the Checkers

The checkers are placed on the board in a specific pattern, with two checkers on the 24-point, five on the 13-point, three on the 8-point, and five on the 6-point. The checkers must be placed in alternating colors, with one white checker and one black checker on each point.

Rolling the Dice

Once the checkers are placed on the board, players take turns rolling two dice to determine how many spaces their checkers can move. askmarvin The player with the highest roll goes first, and then players take turns rolling and moving their checkers.

Game Objective

The objective of backgammon is to move all of your checkers off the board before your opponent does. This is done by moving the checkers in a specific direction, either clockwise or counterclockwise, depending on which side of the board you are on.

Movement of the Checkers

Players move their checkers according to the numbers rolled on the dice. A player can move one checker the sum of both dice, or two checkers separately. Checkers can only move to an open point on the board, or a point where they have a “blot,” or an opposing checker.

Hitting and Entering

If a player lands on a point occupied by a single opposing checker, that checker is “hit” and placed on the bar in the center of the board. The player must then “enter” that checker back into the game, starting from their opponent’s home board.

End of the Game

The game ends when one player has moved all of their checkers off the board. If a player bears off all of their checkers before their opponent has borne off any, it is called a “gammon” and counts as two wins. If a player bears off all of their checkers while their opponent still has checkers on the board, it is called a “backgammon” and counts as three wins.

Here are the main rules of backgammon in a table format:

ObjectiveThe objective of the game is to be the first player to bear off all of their pieces from the board.
BoardThe board is divided into four quadrants, each with six triangular points. The quadrants are referred to as the player’s home board and outer board, and the opponent’s home board and outer board.
Starting PositionEach player starts with 15 checkers on the board in a specific arrangement: two on the 24-point, five on the 13-point, three on the 8-point, and five on the 6-point.
Rolling DiceEach player rolls a pair of dice to determine how many points they can move their checkers. They can move one or two checkers, depending on the roll of the dice.
Moving CheckersCheckers can only be moved to an open point, a point with only one of the opponent’s checkers, or a point where the player has more than one checker. The player can also hit an opponent’s blot (single checker) and send it to the bar.
Hitting and EnteringIf a player has a checker on the bar, they must enter it onto their opponent’s home board before making any other moves. If the opponent has a checker on the entry point, the player must hit it and send it to the bar.
Bearing OffOnce a player has moved all of their checkers to their home board, they can begin bearing them off. A player must roll the exact number needed to bear off a checker from the corresponding point. If a player cannot move any checkers, they forfeit their turn.
Doubling CubePlayers can use a doubling cube to increase the stakes of the game. The cube starts at 1 and can be doubled by the player who is offering the double. The opponent can accept or decline the double, which ends the game and awards points based on the current stakes.
WinningThe game is won by the player who bears off all of their checkers first. If a player forfeits, they lose the game. If the game is played with the doubling cube, the winner receives the points equivalent to the current stakes on the cube.


Backgammon is a game that can be played by anyone, regardless of their age or skill level. By following these basic rules and practicing your gameplay, you can become a master of this classic board game.
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