Avoid Gambling: The Backgammon Double

You may have made the decision to take Backgammon seriously and even earn money from playing it. You’ve identified a wealthy but less skilled opponent, whom you’ve managed to persuade to play with you. Things seem to be going well, and it’s tempting to increase the stakes to boost your winnings.

However, beware of the doubling cube in Backgammon, as it can be a dangerous feature of the game. Despite winning steadily in previous sessions, your opponent may suddenly become reckless and start doubling the stakes when it’s not appropriate. This could lead to you accepting higher stakes than you’re comfortable with, and potentially losing a lot of money.

For instance, if you agree to start the game with a stake of 2, the doubling cube will automatically double it to 4. If the game continues normally, and you gain an advantage, you may double the stake to 8. However, if your opponent makes a comeback and doubles the stake to 16, the game may start to turn against you.

Despite this, you may still accept the double if it’s reasonable, and the game may swing back in your favor. If you offer another double to your opponent, they may decide to beaver, which means to double the current stake again, even though they should have dropped the double. This could result in the stakes increasing to a much higher amount, such as 64.

So be cautious when playing Backgammon for money, and don’t let the temptation of high stakes lead you to make poor decisions.


Black’s reckless behavior in the game could be disastrous for you, as he may now have a chance to turn the game around and double the stakes again. This is a risky situation for you, especially if you can’t afford to lose a significant amount of points. Despite this, refusing to accept the double would be a bad move since the game is still open.

In one instance, accepting the double to 128 points led to losing a gammon, resulting in the loss of 256 points. This is equivalent to approximately 15 sessions’ worth of winnings. Although this may seem like an unfortunate sequence of events, it highlights an essential lesson in Backgammon.

It’s crucial to be mindful of the initial stake and ensure that you can afford to lose a significant amount without causing undue distress. Otherwise, in critical stages of the game, you may hesitate to accept a double that you should take or delay giving a double that you should give. Losing 256 points is undoubtedly frustrating, but it’s important that such a loss should not be utterly disastrous.

It’s not recommended to set the stake so trivial that 256 points do not matter at all. If that’s the case, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to make reasonable money from the game. Instead, it’s essential to strike a balance between setting a stake that’s worth playing for and ensuring that a significant loss won’t put you in a precarious financial situation.

Being Redoubled: The Dangers and Consequences in Backgammon

One effective tactic against a steaming opponent is the early good double to lure them into a bad double. Although there’s always a risk in doubling too early, if you’re confident that your opponent will redouble too soon, the tables can quickly turn.

If you can anticipate your opponent’s psychology and successfully get the cube at 4 in a reasonably balanced position, it can work to your advantage. However, it’s important to keep in mind that the early double is only effective if you accurately understand your opponent’s mindset.

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