Guide for Scrabble Lovers everywhere
The world is made up of two different kinds of people: Those who love Scrabble, and those who could live their lives perfectly content never to play the game. I am squarely in the first group. I don’t know what it is about this simple game of cross-words that draws me so completely, but I can’t get enough. This guide is all about – you guessed it – Scrabble!
The basic Scrabble game
Players have a "hand" which consists of seven lettered-tiles. When it's your turn, you must lay some of those tiles onto the board such that you make a valid word, connected to at least one other letter already on the board. Think of a crossword puzzle - each word must touch at least one other word. Not just any word will do, though. They have to be legal, valid words. No proper nouns, no hyphens, nothing considered slang or foreign. Each letter comes with a point value. So the easily-placed vowels are worth 1 point whereas the Q and Z are worth 10 points. After laying your tiles, you pick new ones, to replenish your hand back to seven tiles. The board is a 15x15 grid, and certain spaces contain special point-boosters so that laying letters onto those specific spaces can cause letters (or entire words) to double or triple in score. Play continues until there are no more tiles left to draw, and either a player lays out their remaining tiles, or no one can make any more moves.
The rules and the scoring are fairly simple once you get the hang of it. Scrabble is a game that even young kids can play, and while they might not be able to come up with any but the simplest of words, this game is sure to do two things for them: Help their vocabulary and spelling, and provide hours of fun!
The Fancy-Schmancy Premier Wood Edition
The game is made from a beautiful stained wood with brass-toned highlights. The board, itself, sits atop a cabinet where you can store all of the game pieces and the accessories.
Of course the board swivels as most Scrabble sets, these days, come with a swiveling board. This is a nice feature, because when it's your turn, it's nice to turn the board so that the words are facing you. And, each space on the board has a raised border, so the tiles don't slide around. (I remember in the old days, the board was a flat piece of cardboard. No swiveling, no space-borders. So if you wanted to rotate the board, the pieces would likely go flying. Similarly, it was easy to accidentally knock pieces around when you're taking your turn, and everyone had to try to remember where everything was).
The accessories that come with this set are nice. There's a nice leather pouch to hold all of the tiles. The racks that hold your tiles are a definite upgrade in this set. The wood and brass racks look nice, and feel nice. And, they've added a metal "end cap" which serves two purposes. It prevents your tiles from slipping off the side of the rack and it helps prevent your neighbor's eyes from accidentally getting a glimpse of your tiles. This set includes a timer which I never use... I use the less official but more fun approach of yelling "ANY DAY NOW!!!!" when someone's taking too long to take their turn. There's also a book of score sheets and a pencil. Yes, that's right, they actually supply a pencil. Hey, they have to do something to justify charging an arm and a leg for the set, right?
Is all perfect with this set? No. Read the full review for more information.
No Friends? Play against the computer!
Scrabble for Windows
Thank goodness for Hasbro's Scrabble software! It works on Windows and Macs. Installation is a snap. Put the CD in the drive, and a menu will pop up. Choose install, and let it go.
When you first choose to play a game, a little video plays, while the software loads, then a very nice 3D board is displayed, and a menu of options appears across the top the your screen. The board looks exactly the same as a regular Scrabble board.
The game can be played with traditional rules, or with variations - it's up to you.
Read the full review for more information.
The Official Scrabble Dictionary
Since not every word is legal in a game of Scrabble, there's only one official way to resolve disputes. Use an Official Scrabble Players Dictionary. It's simple - if the word's listed, it's good. if it's not, then you're outta luck - take back your tiles and lose your turn.
Read the full reviews here for additional information
Other ways to play
The Folio edition keeps your pieces in place, instead of all over the car.
Read the full review here.
A junior edition of the game is recommended for little kids who are learning their letters, but aren't ready to try to build their own words just yet.
Scrabble Flash is a new, electronic game based on Scrabble.
Read the full review here.
The bottom line: I love Scrabble!
Copyright © 2000-2013 eBay Inc. All Rights Reserved