Options abound when it comes to choosing a backgammon set.
We grouped our picks by the following categories:
If you already know what you are looking for jump ahead by clicking any of the categories of backgammon sets we listed above that you are interested in.
If you are new to the game, thinking about upgrading, or looking for the perfect gift and would like to know more about backgammon board options…read on!
Let’s first talk about size and portability.
Table top material
Budget Backgammon Sets
Our pick in the budget backgammon game board sets category may come as a surprise, though in todays day and age it shouldn’t!
The best buy for a budget set is going to be found on used goods platforms like Etsy, Facebook marketplace, Let Go, and Offer Up . You should absolutely be able to find a decent quality set using one of these options that will definitely be better than the cheaper sets found on Amazon or in the big box stores. In our experience there are generally a couple sets available in most areas.
If you are not into buying used stuff from strangers online and would prefer to just pick up an affordable board from a retailer, this set is sure to get you a good bang for your buck.
Tabletop Backgammon Sets
Just as with a nice chess board, many people like to leave a nice table top backgammon board out for both decoration and to play. Often the boards which are left out permanently tend to be rather ornate, with high quality checkers and dice. As would be expected, the higher the quality the higher the price tag is generally going to be. If you don’t have much experience with backgammon, you will likely be blown away by how expensive some sets can get.
Tabletop sets are one of the categories that we could write a whole article about on their own. Here are our picks for the low, middle, and high end tabletop backgammon game board sets:
In the lower end price range we like this nice all wooden set that we could see sitting out on a table in a cabin or rustic game room.
For a middle tier option, we like this game set by Crisloid, which is pretty dramatic step up in quality and construction from our basic tabletop board selection. This set includes a cork game board which is a very unique option, the sound and action of the dice on this board is awesome. You genuinely feel the level of quality and craftsmanship when playing with one of these backgammon sets.
Classic Brown Tournament Tabletop found on Crisloid’s website:
Travel Backgammon Sets
The travel category is very diverse, and provides backgammon players with a number of uniquely thought out options. Creativity definitely shines in this category; from magnetic, to miniature, roll-up sets and more! In reality all you need to play backgammon is a set of stones, dice, and something that resembles a board. Some game developers have really run with that idea, and have come up with some pretty cool game sets. Here are a few of our favorites:
Roughly the size of a paperback book, this set is our standard style travel favorite. The checkers are magnetic, the board is a very nice feel velour, and the design in general is quite handsome.
These really cool roll-up style boards make us think back to our nomadic ancestors who played this game as far back as 5,000 years ago. Presumably the majority weren’t carrying around leather bound attache cases back then, though we have seen some early examples of stone and wood tabletop sets. We believe more than likely a lot of ancestral sets were made of a piece of stitched animal hide and a bag of stones, which is basically what these roll-up sets offer.
The combination of an affordable price and quality feel of this set make this one a travel set no brainer. The zipper pouch is a nice addition to keep everything where it should be. The bar is a bit understated, but even a mildly experienced backgammon player shouldn’t take too much of an issue with that.
We can’t help but make note of this higher end roll-up set offered on Etsy. Exceptionally high quality construction across the board, the really unique standout on this set are the leather clad metal checkers. If only the finest travel set will do, this would be the one!
Leather Backgammon Sets
Leather is obviously one of the categories that you can get as crazy as you’d like it to be. From basic “Pleather” to exotic hides, there are many options in this category. There are even companies out there who will make a custom game set specifically for you to your specifications. Of course, the price is going to be commensurate with the quality of build and rarity of the materials used.
Our first pick in this leather backgammon game set category is this reasonably priced one available on Amazon. We absolutely love the color combo they went with on this set, and the quality and feel of this board for the price is almost impossible to beat.
Another affordable, yet sharp looking set, is this one offered on gammonvillage.com. Like our other reasonably priced selection it offers a “leatherette” finish, rather than one of genuine leather, but the overall feel is very nice. Another striking color combo on this set, partnered with quality game pieces makes this a great unique game board pick.
15-inch deluxe camel backgammon set found on Gammon Village
As mentioned above, the leather sets have the ability to really get out of control when it comes to quality and rarity of materials. While the prices can get pretty steep, these sets are perfect for the discerning backgammon player who wants a unique statement game set that you don’t see everywhere.
There are many really cool high end leather backgammon sets we like, so be on the lookout for an article specifically for leather sets from us in the near future!
Luxury Backgammon Sets
Ok, this is a fun one, and let us tell you right now…Opulence abounds and you can truly feel the impeccable quality of these sets! There are obviously many fit and finish options here, and again another category that justifies its own post.
Crisloid is synonymous with high quality luxury boards. They have been making backgammon game sets since the middle of the 1900’s, and consistently put out a top notch product. Known for their unique use of cork on their boards, they are easy to spot when in a crowd. Here is one of our favorites:
Restoration Hardware is probably not somewhere you would have considered looking for a luxury backgammon board, but wow have they put together a sexy looking set. Trimmed in Italian leather, unbelievable wooden inlays, and leather wrapped chrome metal checkers. Yeah, we want to touch it too!
This show stopping Italian leather backgammon set is found here on Restoration Hardwares website:
Wood Backgammon Sets
There are so many options when it comes to wooden boards, for instance: Species of wood, inlays, grains, stain colors, varnish sheen, etc. Not to mention, there a large corporate board makers as well as individual craftsmen selling their wares on sites like Etsy and Amazon Handmade.
This is a tough category for us to narrow down into just a couple of picks, particularly since we are a bit partial to the warmth and feel of a high quality wooden board. We decided to go with one really fun and quirky pick, and its alter ego!
We like this unique set by Remember, it’s just too cool for school! We knew we had to have it on our list somewhere and the wooden board category is a great fit. It could also earn a place in the winners circle in unique, fun, and creative categories. The outside of the board is just as lively as the inside!
It is a bit tough to find, but check it out here on the Museum of Modern Arts website:
On the other end of the spectrum we have this beautifully masculine Wenge wood set from Gammon Village. It is high quality at an affordable price, and the color combination of the inlays are really striking. The bottom line is, if you are looking for a wooden set, you are going to be hard pressed to find a better bang for your buck. They have other color combinations as well, so definitely worth taking a look:
Vintage Backgammon Sets
The old saying “They don’t make them like they used to” rings true even for backgammon sets. Whether you are just looking for a conversation piece, or just love the nostalgia of a vintage set, these are undoubtably cool sets to own. This is one of the categories that you are really going to have to spend some time searching for what you want, and you may have to get creative in your search.
A great place to start is going to be Etsy.com ,Ebay, and the Facebook marketplace, probably in that order as well. We prefer to check Etsy first on things like this simply due to the crafty handmade type crowd that frequent the site. Ebay is the worlds marketplace, so you never know what you are going to find on there. The Facebook marketplace tends to be rather run of the mill, but worth setting up a notification to see when new boards pop up.
There are some really neat one of a kind backgammon sets out there. People have made them with all types of materials, colors, finishes, checkers, etc. Take some time looking around if you feel like you are wanting something truly unique.
Here are some neat ones that we have come across: