About Backgammon Proficiency Test

Summary

This Backgammon Proficiency Test attempts to fairly assess your skill at playing backgammon.

Backgammon game outcomes are not determined merely by luck.
Although there are scenarios that require intuition or bargaining with your opponent, there also are many aspects typified by probability, such as risk analysis and “mathematical knowledge” or “strategic thinking,” that affect the game. Backgammon is essentially a game of logic.
In recent years, software for computer-based analysis of backgammon has become popular; the importance to the game of disciplined and logical mathematical thinking has been drawing increasing attention.

This Backgammon Proficiency Test is intended to measure your “degree of knowledge and understanding of backgammon” that is, the logical abilities that are not dependent on luck and intuition.
In addition to a general knowledge of backgammon, there is a wide range of related fields that are of interest, involving mathematical knowledge such as probability calculation, theory, and strategy.

This test is sponsored by the Association of Backgammon Education, a group of education professionals. The test has also been certified as official by the Japanese Backgammon League.
This test has been developed to provide the world with a “world standard” backgammon test; some of the world’s leading players have been among the initial examinees who were held to vet the test.

Benefits

1. You can improve your basic backgammon skills

As it provides a commentary on all related issues, you can expect to improve your basic skills of backgammon by repeating the questions and commentary.
While the global top players, Masayuki “Mochy” Mochizuki, Michihito “Michy” Kageyama, and Hideaki Ueda are responsible for writing the test, Mochy supervised the entire process. Thus, the quality of the test is guaranteed. The test allows examinees to demonstrate strategic thinking and to help them understand the concepts of top players by repeatedly reviewing the descriptions of the issues and questions.

2. You can check your own level of expertise

High quality, well-balanced questions from a wide range of fields make it possible to evaluate the overall ability of an individual. Characteristics and weakness are identified as “strong in the early stages,” “weak in late-middle stages,” etc.

Furthermore, by comparing your current results to the results when you last took the test, or to famous overseas players’ results, you will be able to gauge your level of backgammon skills from various angles.

Guidelines

In Japan, you can take the exam at the Backgammon Festival in May and the Ouisen Tournament in October.
We plan to irregularly schedule the official test circuit at other conventions and meetings, as well as at the world tournaments such as the Nordic Open, the Texas Backgammon Championships, and the Istanbul Open. (Note: the test will be in the same form and will incorporate the same problems as at the Backgammon Festival.)

With the confirmation of the information such as date, venue, and price, we will announce the details for each test on this or at the convention sites.

Format

Currently, there is no classification of level (i.e., expert, intermediate, beginner, etc.) in the Backgammon Proficiency Test. Examinees are assumed to be at least at an intermediate level.
We plan to create tests for beginners.
The test problems are usually annually updated.

1. Backgammon Proficiency Test (for intermediate or advanced players)

Number of questions:50 (Multiple-choice questions)
Test time:60 min
Expected level:Intermediate to advanced players (anyone can take a test; no qualification required)
Remarks:Scored immediately; no pass or fail
Results will be published after the test (a choice of anonymous publication is available). ⇒ Example

Listed below is a problem sample from the past (from the first Backgammon Proficiency Test No.1)

No.1
How do you move black 43?
Match condition: Unlimited
Cube: Center



1.24/21 13/9
2.24/20 13/10
3.24/21 6/2*
4.13/10 13/9

See the correct answer and explanation here

3.24/21 6/2*

初手に相手が 4 でビルダーを下ろしてきた時は、放置しておくと次にいろいろな仕事をされてしまう。2p をヒットして相手の片目を奪うのが定石。3 はスプリットして 2 のデュープリケーションを利かせる。相手の 16,36,46,56,66 などが悪い目となる。

History

May 2011 The 1st “Backgammon Proficiency Test” took place at the JBL Ouisen (Tokyo, Japan).
2011 The “Backgammon Certification Committee” founded.
Nov 2011 The official test circuit took place at the Las Vegas Open (Las Vegas, US) for the first time.
Apr 2012 The official test circuit took place at the Nordic Open (Copenhagen, Denmark) for the first time.
May 2012 The 2nd “Backgammon Proficiency Test” started.
Sep 2012 The official test circuit took place at the Backgammon Saitama (Japan) for the first time.
Oct 2012 The official test circuit took place at the JBL Backgammon Festival (Tokyo, Japan) for the first time.
Jan 2013 The official test circuit took place at the Istanbul Open (Istanbul, Turkey) for the first time.
Jan 2013 Changed the name of the sponsoring organization to the “Backgammon Education Association”.
Mar 2013 The official circuit of the 2nd test ended. Total number of participants is 105.
May 2013 The 3rd “Backgammon Proficiency Test” started. Michihito “Michy” Kageyama joined our team.
May 2013 The official test circuit took place at the Porto Carras International Open (Porto Carras, Greece) for the first time.
Jan 2014 The official test circuit took place at the Texas Backgammon Championships (Texas, US) for the first time.
Mar 2014 The official test circuit took place at the Akasaka Backgammon Club (Japan) for the first time.
Apr 2014 The official circuit of the 3rd test ended. Total number of participants is 144.
May 2014 The 4th “Backgammon Proficiency Test” started.
May 2014 The official test circuit took place at the Chicago Open Backgammon Tournament (Chicago, US) for the first time.
Aug 2014 The official test circuit took place at the Backgammon World Championship (Monaco) for the first time.
Aug 2014 The official test circuit took place at the JBL U25 camp (Japan) for the first time.
Sep 2014 The official test circuit took place at the UK Backgammon Open (Coventry, UK) for the first time.
Oct 2014 The official test circuit took place at the Athens Open (Alimos, Greece) for the first time.
Apr 2015 The official circuit of the 4th test ended. Total number of participants is 191.
May 2015 The 5th “Backgammon Proficiency Test” started. Kazuya Nagai joined our team.
Mar 2016 The official circuit of the 5th test ended. Total number of participants is 114.
May 2016 The 6th “Backgammon Proficiency Test” started.
May 2016 The official test circuit took place at the Capital Classic Championships (Washington, US) for the first time.
Sep 2016 The official test circuit took place at the Šibenik Backgammon Open (Vodice, Croatia) for the first time.
Jan 2017 The official circuit of the 6th test ended. Total number of participants is 144.
May 2017 The 7th “Backgammon Proficiency Test” started.
Dec 2017 The official test circuit took place at the California State Championship (California, US) for the first time.
Jan 2018
May 2018 The 8th “Backgammon Proficiency Test” started.
Apr 2019 The official circuit of the 8th test ended. Total number of participants is 133.
May 2019 The 9th “Backgammon Proficiency Test” started. Hideaki Ueda joined our team.
Sep 2019 The official test circuit took place at the Swedish Open (Gothenburg, Sweden) for the first time.
Feb 2020 The official circuit of the 9th test ended. Total number of participants is 130.