In astonishingly general terms, there are three main strategies employed. You want to be agile enough to switch tactics instantly as the course of the match unfolds.

The Blockade

This consists of assembling a 6-deep wall of checkers, or at least as thick as you are able to manage, to lock in your opponent’s pieces that are on your 1-point. This is considered to be the most adequate tactic at the start of the game. You can build the wall anyplace inbetween your eleven-point and your 2-point and then shift it into your home board as the game continues.

The Blitz

This involves locking your home board as quickly as possible while keeping your challenger on the bar. For example, if your challenger rolls an early two and shifts one piece from your 1-point to your 3-point and you then roll a five-five, you can play 6/1 6/1 eight/three 8/3. Your challenger is then in big-time calamity considering that they have two pieces on the bar and you have closed half your home board!

The Backgame

This plan is where you have 2 or more anchors in your competitor’s home board. (An anchor is a position consisting of at a minimum two of your pieces.) It should be employed when you are significantly behind as this strategy much improves your opportunities. The best places for anchors are near your opponent’s lower points and also on abutting points or with a single point separating them. Timing is integral for a powerful backgame: at the end of the day, there is no point having two nice anchor spots and a complete wall in your own inner board if you are then forced to break down this right away, while your challenger is moving their checkers home, owing to the fact that you don’t have any other extra pieces to move! In this case, it is more tolerable to have pieces on the bar so that you are able to preserve your position up until your opposer gives you an opportunity to hit, so it may be an excellent idea to try and get your competitor to hit them in this case!