What is a chouette in Backgammon?

Backgammon players are always looking for new ways to enjoy their favorite game. If you happen to be more than two people in a room with only one backgammon set, you don’t have to wait until your pals are finished having fun. You can just start to play chouette.

Some of you may know that chouette is a French word that means owl in English. But what does that mean? Does it mean that you must play in the dark or while chasing rodents? Absolutely not, chouette is just a great way to enjoy backgammon with three or more players. Let’s learn how in the following lines. 


How do you play a game of chouette in backgammon?

To understand the chouette backgammon rules let’s make an example with three players, but the same principle applies if you are more. 

One player is said to be “in the box,” which means he will play alone against the two other ones.

Among the two remaining players, one will be designated captain. Usually, each role is determined randomly by throwing the dice before the first game.

When everybody knows his role, the game can start. The box man makes all the decisions alone while the captain and his teammates can consult on every move. However, in case of dispute inside the team on a particular move, the captain call is always final.

The box man and every player in the team have their own cube and can offer to double or redouble independently.

This means that if the box man offers a cube, the captain can refuse it, but the other members of the team can take it and keep playing. 

The box man stays there as long as he is winning. If the team wins, the captain goes in the box except if he dropped a cube earlier and is therefore not anymore in the game. In that case it is the remaining player in the team that goes in the box and another game is played.

All the points are noted in a backgammon chouette score sheet. When the players decide that the chouette is over, each player counts his points independently. The winner is the one that won more points during the whole session.

Usually, a game of chouette is played like a money game, with each point worth a money value. For example, you can decide that every point be worth $1. Your goal is obviously to stay as long as possible in the box to win a maximum of points because when you offer a double in the box, you offer it to every team member. Thus, if you win a gammon in the box with the cube at 2, you don’t just win 4 but 8 points (4 points x the number of team players who accepted the cube).

Chouette is a wonderful way to have a good time with family and friends and also a good opportunity to teach backgammon to beginners.

There is no online backgammon platform that offers chouette for obvious reasons. It is a variant that you have to play live, but it is a wonderful excuse to go out and socialize with new players.

Give it a try or speak to the members of your local club to see if they want to play a game of chouette with you. It’s great and it’s a good way to quickly improve your backgammon skills with more experienced players.

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