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August 26, 2012


Experimenting with a new feature.  Trying to play all rolls for a given 3rd roll position.  I bought Opening Ceremony but could never get it to install and work.  So instead I will just rely on XG ++ for the evaluations.  These could be off but I am guessing they are close enough.

There is no real rhyme or reason as to why I chose this position to look at.  I guess you gotta start somewhere.

I got several of these wrong, so hopefully looking at these 3rd rolls will be a good learning exercise into the future.

Money game.  Black to play all rolls.

is Player 2

score: 0
pip: 163
Unlimited Game
Jacoby Beaver
                          pip: 156
score: 0

is Player 1
on roll, cube action?

eXtreme Gammon Version: 2.02

General thoughts. 

We have escaped one back man and we are up in the race.  This is good.

On the other hand, we are outboarded and behind in development, which is bad.

Our best gameplan at the moment is a running game - we are behind in terms of both priming and attacking - but the game is young and things could change.

We don't want to get hit, since we would lose the only advantage we have - the race. 

What would Mochy say?

Under Mochy's scheme, I think this positio best fits Blitz vs Prime.

Mochy's advice for this game type:
  • Attack if possible
  • Escpae back man if you can't attack
  • Don't Slot

*** My initial answers are underlined followed by my reasoning. 
*** Correct answer in bold if I am wrong. 

*** More commentary follows below on my wrong answers.

65.  Run 24/13


Run 24/14.  I think we should play to our strength  and try to escape both men.  We have an added bonus that if missed sixes connect to the 8 point while most numbers one apart make an outside point.

Making the 2 point 8/2, 6/2 doesn't feel right.  While the two point is an improvement, it's not much of an improvement.  This a blitzing / attacking play which is not what we are going for here.  Also we strip the 8 point while leaving the midpoint stacked.  I don't like it.

Splitting 24/18, 13/9 is a possibility but I don't like it either.  In the analagous 2nd roll position 31P-64 running is slightly preferable to splitting.  Since we already escaped one man I think running to try and escape both makes more sense.

63.  I am guessing Split 24/18, 13/10  and Run are pretty close. 

Running 24/15 could be right. 
+ It plays to our main objective and
+ getting hit isn't the end of the world but ....
- it fails to unstack the midpoint
- even if missed we will have to use next turn cleaning up our blot, and
- even if missed we have some duplication of our own numbers, as rolls two apart both make an outside point as well as inside points.

Splitting 24/18, 13/10 could be right too.
+ Getting hit isn't the end of the world.  We don't lose too much in the race by getting hit on the bar.
+ Opponent is stripped on the 8-point and would prefer not to hit with an ace.
+ we unstack the midpoint to start out development
- we give 54 as an extra hitter to the opponent
- we leave more shots than by running

Slotting 13/4 feels like the wrong strategy.
We are behind in the priming battle - trying to escape seems more logical

All in all I like Splitting 24/18, 13/10 but I'm not sure.


Split 24/18, 13/11.

Basically similar reasoning to 63 above.
With 62, we are up less in the race and get hit more which probably argues against running.
Splitting to the 11 point is a bit better spot for a builder, which is a plus, and also 54 doesn't hit this time.

So I am guessing Splitting is more clear here than with 63.

Run 24/16 is right.

61.  Make the bar point 13/7, 8/7.

54.  Two Down, 13/8, 13/9.  What else is there really?

53. Not sure about this one. 

Running 24/16 is always an idea since we are ahead in the race.  But I doubt it is right in this position since the other plays do something constructive.

Making the 3 point 8/3, 6/3 makes sense as this represents obvious improvement. 
+ Making a home board point
- Fails to unstack the midpoint

Two down 13/8, 13/10 is another possibility.
+ Develops the midpoint
- Fails to make a home board point
- Leaves 63 and 54 as (unnecessary) hitters

Making a point is for sure improvement so I will choose that.  8/3, 6/3.


Two Down 13/8, 13/11 is my gut play.  Develop the midpoint and give yourself many new numbers to make a good point next roll - all for the rather small cose of a 64 hit.

Down and Up 24/22, 13/8 scoots the back man up a bit to try and escape later but there should be time to escape later.  Also, you expose yourself to 53 (55 is good for him whether you jump up or stay back)


24/23, 13/8.  Scooting up with the ace isn't ideal, since we would prefer to use our sixes to escape but the alternatives just don'e make sense.  Slotting can't be right and running 24/18 is too desperate.


Lots of options here.

Totally safe 13/7.  It's ugly but it preserves your assets (race lead, escaped back man) while leaving no shots and hoping for a better roll next time.

Two Down 13/9, 13/10.  This is the move you want to play if you know you will be missed next time.  You develop the midpoint and give yourself all sorts of rolls to make a new point next time.  But, you get hit on 8's (62, 53, 44) and 9's (63, 54, 33) so is the risk worth it?  Perhaps 44 and 33 shouldn't count since these are good rolls anyway, so let's say is 8 shots worth the risk? I am guessing not.

Up and Down 24/21, 13/9.  The halfway house play has some merit too.  We develop the midpoint while leaving less shots.  But stepping up into the attack zone (the 4 point) is waving a red flag to a bull - the opponent will happily attack you there.  I don't like this play.

42. Make 4 point 8/4, 6/4.


13/8.  Safe and a small improvement.  Given our race lead I think we should be conservative here.

24/23, 13/9. 
+ Unstacks the midpoint
+ diversifies rolls to make points next time
- leaves 8's as hitters
- takes away your escaping sixes next time (and into the future).

On balance, I see the wimpy 13/8 as a definite improvement while the unstack is a maybe improvement.


13/8.  Similar reasoning to 41 above.  It is not the most sexy play, but it represents a small but for sure improvement.

Two Down 13/11, 13/10.  Again the play you want to make if you know you don't get hit.  But is the risk worth it?  9's (63, 54, 33) and 10's (64) hit but 33 is good already so really only six hitters.  This could be right but I still play wimpy.

Split 24/21, 13/11 doesn't make sense since you are inviting the attack for no reason.

Reverse Split 24/22, 13/10 is a bit better since at least opponent would rather attack on 4 point than 3 point, but it seems better alternatives exist so I reject this play.

31.  Make the 5-point 8/5, 6/5.


24/23, 13/11 gives you the best builder but may give you some problems with sixes in the future.  On the bright side, 64, 63, 61 all make points while 62 you can still run, so only 65 is bad next time.  Also, note opponent's 64 is duplicated.

13/10 preserves the sixes but this builder is not as good as the 11 point builder, and you also give more shots to get hit.


13/7(4) takes advantage of the fact that you have 6 on the midpoint.  You leave no shots and make a new point.  Definite improvement.  i like it.

24/18, 13/7(3) makes a new point and attempts to escape - but I think you should have time to escape later. 

55.  13/3(2) seems forces.

44.  13/5(2) closing the 5-point is too good to pass up.

33.  There are other plays but I like 13/10(2), 6/3(2) which unstacks the midpoint and makes a home board point and leaves no shots.

22.  13/11(2), 6/4(2) seems pretty clear,

11.  I like 8/7(2), 6/5(2) which places tremendous pressure on the opponent to hit. But it leaves a blot so I will prefer 24/22, 6/5(2) instead.

Follow up on my errors, and other observations.

63.  My splitting play is a whopper with cheese, wrong by .15.  I guess the gameplan simply demands you run and hope for the best.  All the other considerations are overanalyzing.

62.  Well at least I was right the splitting with 62 was better than with 63, but only in the sense that it is less wrong.  Splitting is wrong by .08, and still bleeds red on XG.  Once again, it seems that once you are racing you gotta race and hope for the best.  Hopefully, next time I run.

53.  Making the 3 point is correct, but I was surprised that running is 2nd best, and beats two down.  This underlines for the me the importance of the running game plan, or conversely, emphasizes that because you have escaped one man you don't want to get hit.

52.  XG++ likes my play but I wanted to note that 24/22, 13/8 is very close - only .01 error.  I am starting to see a theme here.  Let's make it a rule of thumb.  When you have one man back to two men back you don't want to get hit!!  Tend towards the safe play.

43.  Two down was the right play by .03.  My totally safe play was 2nd best.  8 hits is a lot, but I guess you still want to take your risks while the game is young.

32.  My play 13/8 was right but this really confuses me.  Two down seems more logical here (at least to me) than with 43, since the risk is less (you get hit less).  Do any of my readers have ideas here?

21.  The two options 13/10 and 24/23, 13/11 are essentially tied.

66.  13/7(3), 24/18 is right by a lot.  I guess this an example of Pottle's Law which says "always run the back checker"

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