The Added Thrill of a Doubling Cube

Backgammon may be played double-time. When we're sure of our standing and we want to add thrill and hasten the game we opt for the backgammon doubling cube. Here's how we use this daring option.

A doubling cube is like a die. It is six-sided with numbers on the sides from 2, 4, 8, 16, 32, and 64. Note that the numbers are a sequence of sums when we add the previous numbers to themselves. We add 2 to itself is 4, 4 to itself is 8, 8 to itself is 16, and so on.

So, if we feel lucky, before we throw the dice we challenge the opponent to a double. This means we double the risk or stakes. If the opponent takes it, we up the risks. And next time around, the opponent will have the right to declare a double. We throw the dice and the result is raised to the power of 2.

If the opponent declines our challenge, we win. The opponent may also opt to re-double, if the opponent feels doubly lucky. But seldom does this happen, although the number of times we may double is unlimited. The usual case is that the opponent accepts the challenge and the risks are doubled.

There's also a move called "beaver" where we re-double and still even take the cube. Another is the "raccoon" used against a player who beavers the cube. It is a re-double to a re-double. But the backgammon doubling cube is used by the beavering player.

Let's say we double the enemy 2 points. The opponent takes it and with 4 points beavers the cube. But we're sure about this so we raccoon to 8 points. This way backgammon becomes too risky and the players will feel the accompanying excitement. But this is not for the novices to trek on. With doubles this risky and challenging only pros should be undertaking this in a game.

In some games there's an "automatic double." In this setup the doubling cube keeps adding value as a double dice result occurs. So when a player decides to double, the value has considerably increased by certain increments through the game and begins with a high value. This adds thrill to the game through a gradual upgrading of the risks involved.

The backgammon doubling cube is a way of increasing the pace of the game and the amount of risks. Thus, it also injects a tremendous amount of thrill at the table.