Backgammon+ on Apple Arcade
I remember hearing about backgammon, way back, when I was a kid. It was some Jackie Chan movie something. It’s a game of patience and it’s a board game. In particular, Backgammon reminds me of the game we have in South India called “Aluguli Mane”, which is a variation of Mancala family of games.
Similar to Solitaire, this is one of those games that is part of the permanent collection on my iPad. It’s low stakes and every now and then, things can escalate in complexity real fast. Apple Arcade presentation of the game is bare bones and extremely simple. There are simple sound effects. The AI is extremely good, and will frustrate without going too far. The layout is simple with no fancy animations of winning screens.
There is a ‘how to play’ section but if you are new to Backgammon, you better learn the rules from YouTube or something and then come back. In my case, I like to learn from failing. I kept getting defeated by the AI until I understood the rules on my own, by watching the AI play. It was a fun experience for me. At first, I kept losing to it, and I was still trying to get a handle on the regulations.
Eventually, a few weeks and hundreds of defeats later, I caught on, and I was able to fight back. Despite the dull looking circles and plain board, the game is almost like a war. It’s like playing Civilization. Just as dull, slow but can get exciting if you are into this sort of thing.
I want to write more about this game and also this app. However, there is not much else to write. It’s a bare bones game. I would have liked if I had some features like change the board theme (like in Fruit Ninja), some colors for the pawns and better victory or defeat screens.
Yet, I believe, the simplicity is part of the game’s charm, and the app is keeping in line with that simplicty. As usual, Apple Arcade rules — no ads, no annoying in-app purchases which makes this the complete package.