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How piggy for the BG?

Posted By: Bill Riles
Date: Tuesday, 24 January 2012, at 2:04 a.m.

In Response To: How piggy for the BG? (neilkaz)

I would love to see a Neil rollout of this position that Neil posted. (As I have the utmost respect for Neil's parametrically correct analyses of all positions).

I will not be surprised if my 3/0 move is not the absolute best technical play; however, I think the several candidate plays will be relatively close.

My limited analysis, with less than state of the art tools, indicates the 3/0 play losing 1%-2% more games (nothing approaching 7%); winning 3%-4% less gammons; and winning ~5% more backgammons. It is, obviously, a relatively simple position so I doubt analysis results will vary substantially.

All things noted, I'd still make the same 3/0 play if presented with the identical position over a live board in a match. I suspect many of those playing white would just as soon not see their blue opponent make the play that increases their chances of being backgammoned >10%.

As others have noted in the past, I think far too many get too caught up in the seeming exactitude of mathematical analyses of backgammon positions. The objective, for most, is to win the match, not to play the best PR.

Obviously, to play this game out, being hit or not, is relatively straightforward; however, as Ray Fogerlund often notes, the bot doing the analysis assumes the players will play perfectly thereafter. Obviously, this does not occur in the vast majority of positions (though it is probably true of blue here, hit or not); so minor variations in equities provided by analyses can, oftentimes, be exaggerated.

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