Ken Larsen's web site - How I configure and use eXtremeGammon (XG) 

eXtremeGammon is regarded by many world class players as the best software to improve your backgammon skills.  Here's how I configure and use it:


1.0 Basic Settings







Check each of the following:
  • Confirmation
  • Auto Move
  • Auto Roll
  • See move
Select Expert mode instead of Simple mode.


Options => Board Configuration

  • Game Board:  Granite
  • Your checkers: Red
  • Your Opponent checkers: Pine Wood

  • Coordinates Color:  black

  • Checker speed:  24

  • Check "2d Board"

  • Check "Display Coordinates"

  • Check "Change with turn"


Options => Settings => Main Settings

  • Number of Moves Shown:  10
  • Uncheck "Auto-Save every N Minutes"
  • Select "Display Normalized Equities"
  • Check "Use Performance Rating"
  • Save Games:  Always Prompt when closing


Options => Settings => Game

Set each Analyze level to World Class.


Options => Settings => Mode

Preset Mode: Free Mode

6 Options => Analysis Analyze Mode:  World Class
Search Interval:  Gigantic
Bear-off Database:  15 checkers over 6 points
Match Equity Table:  Kazaross XG2.met


Options => Board Orientation

Select "Bear off on the right"

8 Options => Settings => Path
  • Saved games:  \My Documents\My Pictures\XG
  • Saved Imported Games:  \My Documents\My Pictures\XG

9 Layout

Check each of the following:

  • Evaluation
  • Toolbar
10 Layout => Panel

Check each of the following:

  • On the right
  • Large
11 Players => Create Profile Add your name. 


2.0 Playing a 5-point match against XG


I play 5-point matches against XG in the following manner:





Click File => New => Match  This will cause a "New Game" popup window to appear.


On the Game Type page:

  • Check Match

  • Check Backgammon

  • Set Match Length: 5

On the Players page:

  • Set Computer Level to XG Roller+.

On the Options page:

  • Set Game Mode to Tutor Mode.

On the Clock page:

  • Click on ABT settings

Click on Ok to start your match.

3 Play your 5-point match against XG.  In Tutor Mode, XG will immediately warn you of each move it disagrees with.  This instantaneous feedback is highly valuable.


At the end of your match, return to the start of game 1 by clicking on Game => Start of Match or pressing Ctrl-Home.

5 Use the large red triangles/arrows at the bottom left-hand corner of the screen to single step through your errors.  Better still:  Review every single one of your moves.  This will affirm your correct moves ... some of which you may have guessed at.  You should even review the moves made by XG.  That would really accelerate your learning.
6 Optionally add comments (Game => Add comment) to each error.  If you don't know the reason why the XG move is better than your move, say so in the comment via "???".
7 Optionally take screen shots of your errors using a tool like ScreenHunter,  
8 Optionally save the XG file itself by clicking on File => Save As and putting it in a folder of your choice.
9 If you have made any errors that you don't understand, get your local expert to explain them to you ... by emailing him/her your XG file  They can add their comments and email it back to you.  Understanding the reason for your errors is the key to improvement. 
10 Periodically review the screen shots of your errors.
11 Periodically review your XG player profile by clicking on Players => See Profile Results.


Ken Larsen's home page

Durham/Chapel Hill Backgammon Club