A Guide to BBO
Updated: Aug 14, 2020
BBO (Bridge Base Online) is a wonderful and easily-accessible platform for bridge players of any level to hone their skills. There are tens of thousands of players online from all over the world and thousands of tables playing at any given time.
The first step is to create a free BBO account. Click the "Login/Register" button and simply fill in the required information. You do not have to fill in the optional information, and you can always edit your account later.
After checking the “I agree to the Terms of Service” box and clicking “Register,” please check the inbox of the email that you provided for a confirmation email. Once that is done, you can use your username and password to login to BBO and start playing!
As you might know, bridge is a card game that requires 4 people at a table, so if your friends are unavailable, you have the option of playing various games on BBO, ranging from individual games with robots to special lesson hands.
To access BBO's free robots, you can click “Casual” and then “Start a table with 3 robots.” Robots play very well, and have the added benefit of explaining all their bids (hover over a bid to see its meaning). If you want to play bridge with real life people, you can click “Casual” and then “Take me to the first seat available.” This will put you at a table with 3 other random people. As you progress in the game, you might start looking into tournaments, which can be found in the “Competitive” tab. And of course, a great way to improve at bridge is to watch more experienced players play. To do this, you can click “Casual” and then “Take me to an interesting table”. Alternatively, there are scheduled live broadcasts of high-level matches on the "Vugraph" tab, under which you can watch experts play live with commentary.
One of the best tools to improve declarer play is BBO's Bridge Master software, which can be found under "Practice". Bridge Master has 5 levels of difficulty and around 120 deals on each level. Each deal illustrates a particular concept, and if you cannot figure it out on your own, there is a detailed solution.
Of course, all of this is free of charge (with the exception of some tournaments). It would be a shame to not take advantage of a site like this which has countless resources at the tip of your fingers.
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