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17

It's definitely situational, and I wouldn't call myself "great", but I have traded in tiles before, for a number of reasons -- I'm behind, and I have a hand full of either all vowels or all consonants (usually all consonants) I'm one letter away from a bingo, and I've calculated that I have a good chance of drawing that letter. For me, using or ...


16

Like you said, the center tile counts as a Double Word Score tile, so whoever plays first gets double the points. That is an official rule. The second and third rules mentioned are house rules, and are not supported in the Scrabble rules. The second rule would possibly prevent you from hitting one of the adjacent Double Letter Score tiles unless your word ...


15

Yes, most definitely. A good write up on exchange strategy can be found in Joe Edley's book Everything Scrabble, pg. 89 and following. Tournament players do exchange significantly less than they did when Everything Scrabble was first written, since the recent (well, not that recent any more, 2006) addition of QI and ZA to the official Scrabble lexicon have ...


14

The board layout - the positioning of the bonus squares is different. Words With Friends: Scrabble: Also, the distribution and points scored for the letters in Words With Friends is slightly different to Scrabble. For example, B and C score 3 points in Scrabble, but 4 points in Words With Friends.


12

Every dictionary has words that would be considered "ridiculous" in it. You can choose to have an arbitrary subset of ridiculous words, but that doesn't really improve the situation any. Most of these are in every reasonably-sized dictionary anyway (e.g. how do you feel about ZAX?). There are a small enough number of 2-letter words that you can ban them on ...


12

Sounds like 4 stowaways from a game of Kismet, which was Yahtzee with green, red and black spots on dice.


10

Learning and retaining a bunch of words is easy; any basic flashcard system can help you do that. However, all those fancy Scrabble words you stuff into your brain won't help you win any tournaments unless you can get them back out again on demand. The tricky part isn't retention, it's recall. Now, ideally, you want to start learning new words when you're ...


9

LittleBobbyTales is correct about the tournament rules. Beyond what he has said, (in tournament rules) if the first player for one reason or another accidentally does not make their first play across the center tile and then hits their clock (signaling the end of their turn), the second player has the option to point this out and make the first player ...


9

According to Hasbro's rulesheet the fifty point bonus is added to the word score after all the letter and word multipliers have been taken into account.


9

You can check for yourself at the Official Scrabble Dictionary. According to that site: za is a legal word lez is not (Keep reading) Words With Friends uses the Enhanced North American Benchmark Lexicon with a few additions per their website. ENABLE is a public domain word list for use with word programs. Thanks to @thesun's research it is obvious ...


9

Apparently there is enough of a concern, because according to the latest tournament rules: Tiles that can be distinguished by feel are not permitted, except as deemed appropriate by the Director for players who are blind. In addition, to keep players from swapping tiles with adjacent games: Adjacent games should not use identical tiles. My finger ...


8

From the official rules: All tiles played in any one turn must be placed in one row only across, or one column only down the board. As you know, it is perfectly fine to score for multiple different words you made on your turn, but only if you made them from tiles played that turn. Since any tiles played on that turn must be in a single row or column, ...


8

There is a good detail on Scrabble Bingo's on the Wikipedia page here. Bingo is a game where each player is issued a card with numbers. A caller calls out numbers drawn at random and the player will cross of numbers on their card. The first person to have all of their numbers crossed off will shout out Bingo! So there is a parallel between this game where ...


8

Answer: A solution that doesn't change the rules of the game is to provide all players with a list of all valid two-letter words. I have tried this methodology and it works fairly well for equalizing the playing field which is part of the subtext of the question. Explanation: One of the underlying problems of your question is the line between casual ...


7

Slang words are 100% allowed in Scrabble - well, as long as they've been around long enough to have found their way into the dictionary. The idea that slang is in some way verboten in Scrabble is mysteriously widespread among casual players I've run across. I defy them to find that prohibition in the actual rules! "Za" is a fairly recent addition to the ...


7

Short answer: HO is used rather often. LEZ, ABO, GOY are the next most common. Methodology: I have a database of about a million games played on a popular internet Scrabble server played under the standard Tournament Word List. I scanned this for all uses of offensive words. Roughly 360,000 of the 27,000,000 moves used a word from the expurgated list, or ...


6

Yes, you score it twice as long as the double/triple letter/word tile was covered up by your current play. From the rules: When two or more words are formed in the same play, each is scored. The common letter is counted (with full premium value, if any) for each word. (See Turns 3, 4 and 5 in the Scoring Examples


6

As xiaohouzi (little monkey?) said, "bingo" comes from the game of Bingo. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the word "bingo" comes from the word "bing" for a pile of something. In this case, presumably, it would be a pile of coins that you win for getting the right pattern on your card. The word "bing" is an old-fashioned word but still in use in ...


6

The word legality rules of Quiddler appear to be slightly more relaxed than those of Scrabble - according to Wikipedia, capitalized adjectives such as "Iraqi" and "Scottish" are acceptable in Quiddler, where to the best of my knowledge they still aren't in Scrabble. Archaic words, by contrast, have always been allowed in Scrabble. Again per Wikipedia: ...


6

Speaking as a bit of a two-letter word aficionado, I like the nonsensical colourfulness of the competitive Scrabble player's vocabulary, but given that you don't... there is absolutely nothing stopping you from using a (relatively) small and concise dictionary, of the kind that you can buy for cheap at any bookshop. These dictionaries are guaranteed not to ...


6

Duplicate scrabble Is a form of scrabble that is highly normalised and the standard form for competitive play in French. It can involve an arbitrary number of players who are not "competing" on the board, but only to find the highest score.


6

I'm not a Scrabble expert, but to me it looks like you are going about this the wrong way. Your stated goals I learn for sure which words sound like words but really aren't so I don't play them. I become a better challenger. Part of the game (at least in tournaments) is to be able to recognize when your opponent has played a bad word. From my ...


5

The tile distribution is different, as are the tile values. Scrabble WWF Letter (#, Value) (#,Value) A (9,1) (9,1) B (2,3) (2,4) C (2,3) (2,4) D (4,2) (5,2) E (12,1) (13,1) F (2,4) (2,4) G (3,2) (3,3) H (2,4) (4,3) I (9,1) (8,1) J (1,8) ...


5

You could have a house rule that you can only play a word if you can give (a reasonable close version of) the definition. That would eliminate the problem of players who memorise the word lists, but still leaves you with a general problem that somebody with a larger vocabulary will play a word his opponent hasn't heard of. I don't think that's soluble: ...


5

I play Scrabble with kids all the time, I think the same concepts would work nicely with an ESL opponent. To me handicapping by points (opponent starts with 150 or 200 points or whatever) does nothing to make the game more fun for either player. What does work is allowing my young opponent all the time they need for each turn - I get timed, they get all of ...


4

In addition to the comments made by other users, it should be noted that the ENABLE+ list used by Words with Friends and the North American Scrabble tournament lexicon, the Official Tournament and Club Word List, 2nd Edition (OTCWL2) are practically identical for the vast majority of words used casual, beginner, and intermediate tournament play. The most ...


4

Here's a nice picture of a Spanish tileset that I found: http://gtoal.com/wordgames/details/spanish/ That page links through to the FISE webpages (Federacion Internacional de Scrabble en Espanol), where it is claimed that as of 2009: El diccionario oficial de Scrabble es la versión 1.0-2003 (edición electrónica) del Diccionario de la lengua española ...


4

There are two well-known Scrabble AIs. One is the commercial Maven which is made by Atari and bundles with most official Scrabble versions. The alternative is called Quackle and is free open-source and of comparable strength.


4

I searched Changes to the Box Top Rules, 1949 - 1999 and found the following clarification was made in 1953: 1953: If a word is formed that covers two premium WORD squares, the score is doubled and then re-doubled (4 times letter count), or tripled and then re-tripled (9 times letter count) as the case may be. Nowhere in the rules was there any mention ...


4

I like Ryan Cavanaugh's suggestion of eliminating all/most 2 letter words. The board game Upwords does something similar to this by requiring that when changing a word (upward), you must use two tiles as a minimum. You probably should blacklist all 2-letter words, and their 3-letter plurals, or at least the high value ones. JO, KA, KI, QI, EX, XI, XU, ...



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