Celebrating 15 years in backgammon games

Mythbusters 1: Make the 5 Point

by Stick
25 January 2011


Stick

Most Americans know of the show Mythbusters. I'm not sure how well known it is internationally but I do know that most nowadays have the option of getting the Discovery Channel so maybe it's known worldwide. In short, the show aims to prove or debunk common myths such as can someone beat a lie detector test, could using a cell phone near a gas pump help cause an explosion, could you escape from Alcatraz, etc... At the end of the show there are three possible outcomes. The myth is either 'busted' or proven false, plausible, or confirmed which means it's considered to be true.

When I started playing backgammon I heard a lot of backgammon proverbs. Common examples would be 'make your 5pt', 'always run the last checker', and 'offense before defense'. There are many other that I've picked up along the way and tested to see their level of usefulness. Some sayings needed refining but once polished up a bit, they are dead useful. Others I've completely discarded and still others I've created on my own. Over the next set of articles I'll be inspecting these proverbs and hopefully adding an element or two to your game to help keep your error rating down.
 

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2.
Subject: Re: Mythbusters 1: Make the 5 Point
From: Ian Shaw   
Date: 25 Jan 2011 10:25 EST

Great article Stick, one of your very best. I got 6 wrong, giving up 0.328, but hopefully I'll be evaluating positions better in future.

4.
Subject: Re: Mythbusters 1: Make the 5 Point
Date: 29 Jan 2011 18:06 EST

Sorry, I mean that in #11 I would have anchored if the 21pt blot were on the 20pt.

6.
Subject: Re: Mythbusters 1: Make the 5 Point
From: *Stick*
Date: 10 Feb 2011 23:16 EST

Thanks for all the feedback.

@Timothy - I don't think it's safe to say in the early game the 20pt anchor is better than the five point. I will try to find some examples of this and get back to you on BGO (I have some in mind already) but most of them depend on the distribution that is left after making either point and of course the urgency that you need an anchor.

@Animalj - 61P-31P-21 the rollout is below: I am unable to post the actual position but these are the plays rolled out for your position.

1.Rollout124/23 24/22eq: -0.120
Player:
Opponent:
47.46% (G:12.45% B:0.56%)
52.54% (G:15.64% B:0.61%)
Conf: ± 0.006 (-0.126...-0.114)
Duration: 6 hours 12 minutes
2.Rollout17/5 6/5eq: -0.126 (-0.006)
Player:
Opponent:
46.96% (G:14.60% B:0.73%)
53.04% (G:16.67% B:1.08%)
Conf: ± 0.006 (-0.132...-0.120)
Duration: 6 hours 16 minutes
3.Rollout124/23 13/11eq: -0.133 (-0.014)
Player:
Opponent:
47.17% (G:13.01% B:0.63%)
52.83% (G:16.45% B:0.77%)
Conf: ± 0.006 (-0.139...-0.127)
Duration: 6 hours 07 minutes
4.Rollout224/21eq: -0.138 (-0.018)
Player:
Opponent:
47.12% (G:12.27% B:0.61%)
52.88% (G:15.58% B:0.66%)
Conf: ± 0.008 (-0.146...-0.130)
Duration: 4 hours 19 minutes
 
1 20736 Games rolled with Variance Reduction.
Dice Seed: 21140344
Moves and cube decisions: 3 ply

2 10368 Games rolled with Variance Reduction.
Dice Seed: 21140344
Moves and cube decisions: 3 ply

8.
Subject: Re: Mythbusters 1: Make the 5 Point
From: David   
Date: 14 Feb 2011 16:12 EST

Stick:

This articles is awesome. Thank you!

Sadly, I will probably still butcher these plays. It's so hard for me to not make the chicken defensive play.

10.
Subject: Re: Mythbusters 1: Make the 5 Point
From: Animalj   
Date: 20 Feb 2011 05:20 EST

@ Stick

Ty, I forgot about the stripped 8 pt, maybe after a sequence like 5-1slot/6-1pt/5-1(8-5)/2-1?? making the 5 pt. makes more sense. Regards John.

12.
Subject: Re: Mythbusters 1: Make the 5 Point
From: higonefive
Date: 07 Mar 2011 16:54 EST

Well done. I subscribed for one year because i want to read this article. You made me snoopy. "Mortgage your house" can stay in my amygdala.

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Celebrating 15 years in backgammon games