Backgammon terms

In order to better understand the rules of Backgammon, it’s essential that all new players, whether playing online or offline learn the terms that are used in the game. The below terms about Backgammon are in alphabetical order

refers to the number 1 on the dice

Acey – Deucey
in regular backgammon, this is a role of 1-2

Action play
any move where hits are exchange

Active Builder
a piece that can build a point

Advanced Anchor
when you make a point on the opponent’s home board. It typically applies when it’s on the 3, 4, or 5 point

Ahead in the count
this means that you’re winning during the game by having a better pip count than your opponent

when you’ve successfully built a point on your opponent’s home board

Back Game
this is a strategy. When you’re behind in the game, you try to build as many anchors as you can

Back man
a player’s piece that is furthest behind in the race

it’s a point that’s between the two sides of the backgammon board. Hit checkers rest here

Bar Point
also the seven point on the board

Bearing off
taking checkers off the board (but in a positive way, not when they’re hit)

after accepting a double without giving up possession, you immediately redouble

strategy where you try to hit blots on your home board

points that are built to stop the opposition from passing

it’s one individual checker which can be hit

it’s a checker that you leave free in hopes of using it to build a point

Bury a checker
essentially pulling a checker out of the game by putting it deep in your home board

when you spread out checkers to try and hit a blot

one of the pieces you play with. There are 15 in total

Close a point
when you’ve got a checker on a point

Closed board
when you have made it to all six points on your home board

Close out
the board is closed, but it happens when your opponent has a piece on the bar

Cocked dice
this doesn’t apply in online Backgammon, only in the game using a board. It happens when the dice don’t lie flat. When this happens, they need to be thrown again

Combination shot
in order to hit a blot that’s more than 6 points away, both dice must be used

Come in
when a player enters from the bar

it’s the open space between checkers

when the number of blots are decreased

Control a point
a player has more than 2 checkers on a point, it’s referred to as controlling a point

Control the cube
when a player has the doubling cube (they have the next chance to use it)

the number a player needs to bring all their checkers home

when the number 2 is rolled on the dice

Direct hit
a direct hit is when any number from 1 to 6 causes a hit

when there’s an offer to double the stakes

when a player refuses a double

Drop point
when it’s the right move not to accept a double

End game
this is the point of the game when players begin to bear off

when a hit piece is able to come back in from the bar

Forward game
it’s a strategy where players try to get their pieces home fast, without paying too much attention to defense

this is winning the game when the opponent has not beared off with any of their pieces

Heavy point
this is a point with more than 3 pieces on it

landing on a point that has a blot, sending it off the board

Hit and cover
when a player makes it to a point and hits a blot in the same turn

Home board
the part of the board players have the goal of getting to so they can bear their pieces off to win the game

Lovers’ Leap
a 6-5 roll on the first roll of the game

Make a point
2 checkers on the same point which makes it secure

On the bar
hit pieces are placed on the bar and must stay there until they roll to re-enter the board

pip is the distance used in Backgammon

Pip count
this is the number of pips each player is away from winning. Pip counts are displayed in games of online Backgammon which gives players an idea of how they’re doin versus their opponent

when they make consecutive points

A blot is left open, but with hopes of being able to cover it right away

Snake eyes
rolling a 1-1

when there’s two separate pieces on a point that make blots

Suicide play
players setup a blot for strategy so it can be hit

tempting an opponent to give up a point by leaving a blot that they can hit