10th Proficiency Test – Round 6 @ LAS Vegas Open

The Las Vegas Open was held from November 14 to 20, and the 10th Backgammon Proficiency Test was conducted on the morning of November 18. This is the second time in 11 years since the first test was held here.

Giant #1 Masayuki Mochizuki, a.k.a. Mochy, administered the test and 9 players took it, joined by Giants #14 Steve Sax. The following day, Steve gave a lecture on reviewing for the test takers.

The results for the 10 participants are as follows. As expected, Steve Sax did very well. His score puts him in second place overall at this time. Overall scores can be found here.

Rank Total score Total errors Name
1 41 679 Steve Sax USA
2 28 3292 D. K. USA
3 22 3442 Julius High USA
4 20 3353 Mark Danburg-Wyld USA
5 19 4671 J. G. R. Canada
5 19 5000 B. O.
7 16 5342 John Banks USA
8 14 4576 Marianne Bowen
9 13 4886 L. L. USA
9 13 5073 Al Piran Canada
Total 10 Ave. 20.5 Ave. 4031

Thanks to everyone who took the test in Las Vegas, and thanks to Steve for the lecture. We are very happy to announce that the total number of participants for the 10th test exceeded 100. Thanks to all of you for your support!

(日本語) 第10回バックギャモン検定 – ラウンド5 @ 王位戦2022

長雨とともに季節先取りの寒さが到来した10月ですが、バックギャモン王位戦 の初日を迎えるとそれまでとは一転、気持ちの良い秋晴れとなりました。今年の王位戦の会場となった住友不動産大崎ガーデンタワー11Fのサミー株式会社での開催は今回が初めてです。

そして今年の王位戦は、8日10時の「バックギャモン検定」からスタートしました。受検用の部屋はとても広くてきれいな会場を用意していただきました。

参加者は、会場での受検が2名、オンライン受検が3名で合計5名となりました。

結果は、西川清一さんが40点で現時点での暫定2位、片上大輔さんが38点で暫定4位となる好成績を収めました。そして片上さんは今回の王位戦で優勝し、連覇を達成しました。おめでとうございます!

受検者5名の結果は次の通りです。

Rank Total score Total errors Name
1 40 1035 Kiyokazu Nishikawa Japan
2 38 1232 Daisuke Katagami Japan
3 26 3146 Y. U. Japan
4 25 2507 Satoshi Ozaki Japan
5 18 4285 Y. Y. Japan
Total 5 Ave. 29.4 Ave. 2441

現時点での全体のスコア一覧は こちら から確認することができます。

会場から新幹線が見下ろせる素敵なロケーションでおこなわれた今回の王位戦ですが、中上級の枠を取り払ったトーナメント、自作ボードの展示企画、バルーンプレゼント、似顔絵コーナーなど、これまでにない新しい試みもたくさんあり、非常に盛り上がった大会ではなかったでしょうか。大会スタッフの皆さま、ありがとうございました。

10th Proficiency Test – Round 3 @ 53rd World Championship

On Friday, July 29, the 10th “Backgammon Proficiency Test” was held for the first time in three years at the 53rd Backgammon World Championship in Monte Carlo, Monaco. Michihito “Michy” Kageyama, who presented an original seminar two days ago that was very well received, ran the test.

Our test is now in its 10th iteration this year, and here in Monte Carlo for the 7th time since 2014 (see 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019), while Zdenek Zizka is participating for the 6th time and G.C. for the 7th time! It’s thanks to enthusiastic supporters like them that we have been able to keep it going. We are very grateful 😉

Here, a total of 24 players took up the challenge, including four Giants: John O’Hagan, Zdenek Zizka, Wilcox Snellings, and Marc Olsen (also the organizer of the 53rd BGWC). And all four of the Giants scored very well. In particular, Zdenek and Wilcox both took the time to take the test in spite of their hard schedule, as they were still in the Championship Main at the time. In the end, Zdenek ended up with a runner-up finish in the Championship Main. Congratulations!

The results of all 24 participants are as follows.

Rank Total score Total errors Name
1 42 906 John O’Hagan USA
2 40 806 Wilcox Snellings USACosta Rica
3 38 1247 Zdenek Zizka Czech
4 34 1711 K. H. Germany
5 33 1671 Marc Olsen Denmark
6 31 2847 Stephan Hartmann Germany
7 30 1793 G. C. Italy
7 30 2332 Geert Van der Stricht Belgium
9 27 2232 Johan Huyck Belgium
10 24 4276 M. W. Ireland
11 23 3595 Peter Hallberg Denmark
12 21 3295 Pavlos Hatzinikolaou UK
12 21 4018 Ian Anderson UK
12 21 4290 Ray Lightbourn Bahamas
15 20 3888 Kaspar Basse Denmark
16 19 4315 Anis Samaha Lebanon
17 16 4109 (Anonymous) UK
18 15 3714 Nicole Coleman UK
18 15 4571 (Anonymous) England
20 14 4975 D. V. USA
21 13 4651 Gigi Goyette USA
22 12 4707 George Forsyth UK
23 11 4407 Brenda Rosen UK
24 9 5325 (Anonymous) USA
Total 24 Ave. 23.3 Ave. 3320

If you have never taken our “Backgammon Proficiency Test” and are interested in it, here are the advantages of taking it:
1. you can measure your backgammon skills
2. you can find categories in which you have weaknesses
3. you can understand the key ideas of backgammon by reading the commentaries

In particular, the commentary booklet written by four world-class professional players, Masayuki “Mochy” Mochizuki (Giant #1 2019-2020), Michy (Giant #2), Kazuki Yokota, and Hideaki Ueda (Giant #27), is really worth reading. I believe it is worth the money to know the thoughts of these professionals on positions that come up many times in real games. For more information, please click here. If you have the opportunity to take it in the future, I hope you will.

And for those of you who took the test this time, thank you very much! 😉 It is our pleasure if you enjoyed it. You can see the current results for all participants of the 10th test here.

Finally, we would like to express our great appreciation to Marc Olsen and Arda Fındıkoğlu for their cooperation in advance despite their busy schedules.

10th Proficiency Test – Round 2 @ Swedish Open 2022

On July 2, the second day of the Swedish Open 2022, Michihito Kageyama aka “Michy” ran the 10th Backgammon Proficiency Test. This is the second time it has been held here since 2019.

This year’s Swedish Open was very successful and the number of test takers grew to 14. They were mostly veterans with more than 10 years of experience, and perhaps because of that, Johan Moazed and 4 others scored very well over 30 points.

The results of the 14 participants are as follows.

Rank Total score Total errors Name
1 32 1675 Johan Moazed Sweden
1 32 1835 P. J. Denmark
3 31 1665 Alain Babillon France
3 31 2392 Martin Barkwill UK
3 31 2450 Catalin Bucur UK
6 29 2902 Nevzat Dogan Denmark
7 28 1956 Johan Norberg Sweden
8 27 1891 P. K. Sweden
8 27 2271 S. H. USA
8 27 2359 Peter Karlsson Sweden
11 24 3579 Torkel Haugødegård Norway
12 21 3954 (Anonymous) Sweden
13 17 4003 Joakim Tengstrand Sweden
14 14 4485 Gitte Andersen Denmark
Total 14 Ave. 26.5 Ave. 2673

Thank you very much for participating! 🙂

The full results to date can be found here.

10th Proficiency Test Starts @ Backgammon Festival 2022

In May, with a pleasant breeze blowing through the green leaves, the JBS Backgammon Festival was held for the first time in three years, having been canceled last year and the year before due to the effects of a new type of coronavirus infection. The Backgammon Proficiency Test, which had been suspended, also returned for the first time in three years.

Continuing from the previous test, this year’s test production team was also made up of the strongest lineup. They were Mochy, Michy, Kazuki Yokota, and Hideaki Ueda.

In order to alleviate congestion at the venue, we have set up a system that allows online testing. From now on, backgammon tests will be held at the same time as the venue, and people from all over Japan will be able to take the test. This is great news for those who have always wanted to take the test but could not make it to Tokyo.

On the other hand, the bad news is that the venue was filled up early in the registration process, and due to a combination of inadequacies in the registration process, many people were not able to take the test. We sincerely apologize for this. As a temporary measure, we have decided to hold the on-site test on the afternoon of the day of the Backgammon Festival and the online test two days later on the last day of the festival. We will try to improve the situation in the future by negotiating for a larger room, having a staff member guide the participants to the reception desk, and conducting online registration in advance.

The results of this event showed that there were 30 testees, the average score was 22.1, the average total error was 3,341, and the average error per incorrectly answered question was 119.8. The top scorer was Kengo Nakasuka, followed by Naoya Kihara. The results of the first round of the 10th Backgammon Proficiency Test are as follows:

Rank Total score Total errors Name
1 37 1418 Kengo Nakasuka Japan
2 31 1699 Naoya Kihara Japan
3 28 2182 (Anonymous) Japan
3 28 2875 T. I. Japan
5 27 2110 Ryo Matsuura Japan
5 27 2411 Takato Tsushima Japan
5 27 2909 Kensaku Okatani Japan
5 27 3082 Kazuhiro Saito Japan
9 26 2620 Hiromichi Sugimoto Japan
9 26 3283 Y. N. Japan
11 25 2554 Naoki Chiba Japan
12 24 2792 Ryunosuke Shibano Japan
12 24 3524 Hirotaka Katou Japan
12 24 3903 (Anonymous) Japan
15 23 2948 Hiroyuki Kawakami Japan
16 22 3829 (Anonymous) Japan
17 21 3099 (Anonymous) Japan
17 21 3212 Yuuji Ogura Japan
17 21 3326 Hideki Takeda Japan
20 19 3994 H. K. Japan
21 18 3366 A. Y. Japan
21 18 3371 Shigetomo Nagata Japan
21 18 3908 R. U. Japan
24 17 4764 T. I. Japan
25 16 4213 Ryutaro Ozawa Japan
25 16 4223 Masahiko Nakajima Japan
27 14 5087 (Anonymous) Japan
28 13 4015 A. H. Japan
28 13 4962 T. S. Japan
30 12 4550 N. K. Japan
Total 30 Ave. 22.1 Ave. 3341

As is my customary comment every time, the Backgammon Proficiency Test is not only about good or bad scores, but also about the world’s best quality as a collection of questions, and it is no exaggeration to say that “the strangeness of the questions” and “the explanations by the world’s top professionals” are the selling points. We hope that you will take our test as a chance to review your current situation and strengthen your skills without worrying about your score.

Thanks to your support, the Backgammon Pertification Test has entered its 10th season. The total number of testees has reached 1,215 so far. We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you who have supported our test. We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has taken the test.

We are off to a great start this year. Thank you very much. We are planning to hold the backgammon tests all over the world again this year. We will keep you updated with the latest information through this blog and our SNS. The next round 2 will be held at Swedish Open 2022.

「バックギャモン検定」がついに書籍化!2021年3月に販売開始

今回は、コロナ禍の暗い雰囲気を吹き飛ばすビッグニュースを二つ紹介します。

ひとつはバックギャモンだけを専門に取り扱う出版社「ゴールデンポイント出版」の設立、そしてもうひとつは第一弾となる書籍『バックギャモン検定1』の出版です。

『バックギャモン検定1』キャンペーンサイト(2月から予約受付開始)
https://sales.goldenpointpublishing.com/

近所の書店や図書館で「囲碁や将棋の本はたくさんあるのにバックギャモンの本は少ないなぁ」と感じたことはないでしょうか。

そんな状況を打開すべく、「バックギャモンの本をもっとたくさん増やしたい!」とバックギャモン専門の出版社を立ち上げ、「ゴールデンポイント出版(Golden Point Publishing)」の出版社登録が完了したのが2019年の6月でした。

「ゴールデンポイント出版」という名前の由来についてはギャモンプレイヤーならピンと来る方が多いと思いますが、「ゴールデンポイント」とは相手側の5ポイント(相手のゴールから5ピップ離れた位置のポイント)すなわち自分側の20ポイントを指すバックギャモン用語です。ゴールデンポイントの名付け親である Paul Magriel(ポール・マグリエル)によると、バックギャモンにおいて最も重要なポイントとされており、その名の通り黄金のような価値があります。そこで我々も、黄金のように価値のある本を世に出していきたいということでこの名前を付けました。



『バックギャモン検定1』キャンペーンサイト(2月から予約受付開始)
https://sales.goldenpointpublishing.com/

それから足掛け1年9ヶ月、気の遠くなるような数々の作業を乗り越えて、記念すべき書籍第一弾『バックギャモン検定1』がいよいよ3月に刊行されます。

2011年からスタートしたバックギャモン検定は、これまでモナコやラスベガス、コペンハーゲン、イスタンブールなど世界中の大会で累計1,200名を超えるプレイヤーが参加する一大イベントになっています。バックギャモン検定の書籍化はファンからの要望も多く、このたびようやく実現することができました。書籍化にあたっては、解説を全面的に書き直し、過去の受検者のデータから問題ごとの難易度や自己分析の目安となる情報などを追加して、約100ページのボリュームに仕上げました。



『バックギャモン検定1』キャンペーンサイト(2月から予約受付開始)
https://sales.goldenpointpublishing.com/

本書の購入特典として、自分の得意分野や苦手分野を簡単にチェックできるように、オンラインで PDF の成績証(下図参照)を入手できるサービスを用意しています。



その他の詳しい情報については下記のキャンペーンサイトをご確認ください。他の検定についても順次、バックギャモン検定シリーズとして書籍化の準備を進めており、コレクターズアイテムとしても価値あるものになっています。なお、今回の『バックギャモン検定1』は 2018 年に実施した第8回バックギャモン検定をベースにしていますので、過去に受検したことがある方はご注意ください。

『バックギャモン検定1』キャンペーンサイト(2月から予約受付開始)
https://sales.goldenpointpublishing.com/

ゴールデンポイント出版では今後、バックギャモン検定以外にもさまざまな種類のバックギャモン書籍を続々と刊行していく予定ですので、ぜひご期待ください。また、バックギャモン検定と同じように海外展開も計画しており、日本から世界のバックギャモン界をリードしていくようなクオリティの高い書籍を作り上げていきます。最近では UBC(Ultimate Backgammon Championship)WBIF オンライン国際チーム戦 で日本人プレイヤーが世界を席巻し、日本のバックギャモンのレベルの高さが海外からますます注目されています。こういったことも今後の海外展開の追い風になっていくと考えています。

この一年、正直めちゃくちゃ大変でしたが、最高の本に仕上げられたと自負しています。今後とも、バックギャモン検定およびゴールデンポイント出版をよろしくお願い致します。

9th Proficiency Test – Round 7 @ Ouisen Tournament

The 26th Ouisen Tournament, which was supposed to be held last October, was postponed due to record-sized typhoon No. 19, but the event was finally realized with this three-day holiday from February 22. However, this time, the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare called for self-restraint of unnecessary and urgent meetings in order to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus infection (COVID-19). Cancellation has also become a concern.

In practice, though, it seemed that the number of participants was slightly reduced, but thanks to the efforts of the tournament staff and the care of the participants, the championship was successfully completed. This test is scheduled for the morning of the first day of the event, with highly motivated players participating.

The venue was Sunpearl Arakawa, Arakawa City for the first time.

The results of this test are as follows.

Rank Total score Total errors Name
1 31 2337 Kouichi Koizumi Japan
2 30 3001 Daisuke Katagami Japan
3 25 3570 Akimasa Kaneyori Japan
4 18 4836 Takato Tsushima Japan
Total 4 Ave. 26.0 Ave. 3436

As the shogi player Katagami, who has taken our test many times, said that “this time is the most difficult so far,” the average score of the 9th test was about 2.5 points lower than the previous one. We need to examine this factor later.

After the Ouisen, the next round was scheduled for the Nordic Open 2020 in April, but the Nordic Open itself was canceled due to the spread of COVID-19. So, this has become the last round. The total number of participants in the 9th test was 130. A list of all current participants’ scores can be found here.

As a result, the number of test takers exceeded 100 in all tests from the 1st to the 9th. The total number of examinees so far has been 1,215. We would like to take this opportunity to thank all the participants. Thank you very much 🙂