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Old 09-08-2017, 08:05 AM   #1
Join Date: Jan 2017
Posts: 8
Progress in Backgammon

I thought it might be consoling a bit if I outlined my progress in BG.

3 years ago I started to try and get better. I bought backgammon for winners and boot camp. I also bought NJ so I could begin to analyze errors and understand where I was.

There may have been some positive influence from the books but as that was the start point (except for the 20 years or so of occasional fun games) I cannot measure it. At first you try and understand the various metrics that describe your play then you begin to understand small things about the game. In here somewhere the familiarity with all the different small bits of information NJ gives in cooperation with your basic understanding of the game begins to inflate your Elo.

So it seems progress has finally come and it has in a small way. You have begun to understand pip count as it pertains to races, the perfection of the doubling behavior of the bot and the books convince you to take a bit more than you might have previously, the glowing hint cube (by far the biggest influence) removes your worst plays without you ever having made them etc....

In my case I think my NJ elo went to 1700 or something like that. I understood though that I had some info that I didn't have when I played over the board and so I began to remove it....bit by bit and then completely. Back to 1500 or so.

In here I began to play online a little and I realized I was in a pretty experienced pool of players and so was not surprised that my Elo was lower than NJ. This phenomenon was further bolstered by the complete lack of information the bots invariably provide. In the case of cube action, just by virtue of them being bots.

"Lessons, that must be the ticket" thought I. Here I think I was correct. The game began to open up and deepen out and I began to realize how much I didn't (don't) know. I got xg and began to more thoroughly analyze my play. I started seeing very early in games with friends what their skill was and the style of their play became clearer.

I've been taking lessons for about a year now, once a week usually. My pr is about 13 and my best matches are played at about 5......worst about 40. It happens as you work to incorporate new ideas.....especially about doubling. My online Elo hasn't responded much but that is largely because once you settle into an area of Elo only players near your rating are willing to play with you and I have largely given up on that.

I think I can get to an 8 or so PR on xg and that will be more than good enough for me to enjoy some money games or whatever.

There are some downsides....your friends prob play at an Elo of 1400 or something via NJ and an pr near 20 on becomes less fun for both parties with serious study. Nackgammon and other things help tho.

I'd planned to be a bit more detailed but I think some folks will see themselves in this and continue to move forward. Oh and if you still think the bots cheat welll.....keep studying.
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