|Subject:||Re: [Bug-gnubg] I just played a game Expert vs Expert -- lasted 4 minutes, I got 0 off. What the H... am I doing wrong?|
|Date:||Wed, 13 Mar 2013 10:33:17 +0000|
I’m delighted that you are trying to improve your skill at this great game. This isn’t really a mailing list for teaching backgammon strategy, so I recommend the excellent www.bkgm.com as a starting point. Firstly, I recommend that you read about the opening rolls, because principles learned there apply for much of the game. (There are some other excellent sites out there; the discussion board at www.bgonline.com is frequented by some of the world’s best players.)
That said, I’ve analysed this game and I can provide some comments. (I’ll email you the analysed match file off-list.)
Firstly, to be pedantic, the game isn’t Expert vs. Expert – it’s Expert vs. Human. I only mention this because it implies that you don’t fully understand what the settings are doing. Setting the Player 1 Skill level only applies when gnubg is making the moves - it won’t help you play better ;)
Secondly, you did have the worst of the luck in this game, so you can’t really expect to win against a superior player. Luck will even out in the long run.
Thirdly, you didn’t give yourself the best chances because you made some typical beginner’s errors. I’ll provide my analysis of a few below (you’ll also see them in if you display the “Commentary” window when you look through the file I send you. (Select View…Panels and ensure Gane Record, Analysis and Commentary are enabled.)
Too cautious. In the early game, you need to diversify your men so you can create points and hit blots.
Again, too cautious. You need to fight for your five point. Hitting 6/5* knocks your opponent of a point you really want to make, and unstacks from the pile on your 6 point.
Again, you fail to fight for your five point. And hitting twice is very strong.
Too cautious again - it's the same theme of developing your heavy points and fighting for the points you need. You are letting your opponet develop their position freely.
From here you have no choices; you are dancing or entering from the bar, until…
Running is the wrong idea. You should be moving your outfield men to run off the gammon. Your anchor on the four point hinders your opponents smooth bearoff because you might hit a last ditch shot and even win the game.
From here you are almost certain to be gammoned, so nothing you do will make much difference to the result of this game. However, when the race to escape the gammon is closer, better technique will save you many points in the long run.
When trying to run off a gammon, the correct technique is to try to pile all your men on the six point, so that you don't waste pips playing deep in your home board. If you don't use 1s and 2s to bring in the men on the six and seven points, you may later be forced to use higher numbers to do so, which could have been more profitably spent bring men round the board.
Playing 7/5 is a tactical move, so that a last ditch 5 can bear off to save the gammon. If the ifve point is empty, that 5 must be plated 6/1, so it would fail to bear a man off.
I hope this helps.
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