“H” Backgammon Terms

Terms that Start with “H” Letter

There are - 22 - terms.

Half a Roll

One of the two numbers on a pair of thrown dice.

Half-Crossover Method

A pip counting method devised by Douglas Zare. See this post and this article.


An artificial advantage given to a weaker player in an effort to equalize the chances of winning. Some popular handicaps are: (a) the weaker player gets to go first; (b) once during the game the weaker player gets to reroll if he doesn't like his roll; (c) the weaker player gets to start the game owning the cube; (d) the weaker player gets to start the game with a strong roll such as 5-3, 4-2, 6-5, or 3-1.

Hara-Kiri Play

A play which exposes blots for the purpose of recirculating the player's checkers; also known as a suicide play.


One player against another player for money.

Heavy Point

A point (1) with more than three checkers on it.


A side bet between two players prior to competing in the final rounds of a tournament designed to protect the loser from going away empty handed. For example, two players competing for a $10,000 prize might agree beforehand that the winner will pay the loser $2,500. See this thread.


To move to a point (1) occupied by an opposing blot and put the blot on the bar.

Hit and Cover

To hit an opposing blot and then continue on with the same checker to cover your own blot.

Hit and Split

To hit a blot with one number while splitting your runners with the other number. The hit provides protection for the advanced split checker, making it less likely the opponent will be able to point on it.

Hit Loose

To hit an opposing blot and while leaving your own blot(s) in danger of a return hit, particularly in your own home board.

Hit Off the Edge of a Prime

To hit an opposing blot sitting on the front edge of a partial prime to keep the blot from escaping.

Holding Game

A strategy used when you are behind in the race and your opponent has escaped his runners. You make an advanced anchor on the opponent's side of the board and hold on to it as long as you can with the idea of hindering the opponent from bearing in safely. Compare: Back Game.

Holding Point

The defensive point (2) you control when playing a holding game, usually the opponent's four-point, five-point, or bar-point.

Holland Rule

[Named after Tim Holland, who proposed the rule.]  An optional rule in match play that was popular in the 1980's but is now rarely used. After the Crawford game a player may not double until at least two rolls have been played by each side. See post by Kit Woolsey.

Home Board

The quadrant containing your one-point through six-point. It is the last quadrant your checkers move to before they are borne off. It is also the quadrant your opponent must use to enter any of his checkers sitting on the bar. Your home board is also called your inner board or inner table.


The number of plies played in each trial of a truncated rollout. A rollout that is truncated after 10 plies has a 10-ply horizon.