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I like to play a game called Words With Friends, which is a freenium version of Scrabble. I thought it was however functionally the same. However, I've just seen that Zynga, the creators of the game, have released a boardgame version.

Here is a picture:

Picture of the Words With Friends board game

How does this compare to Scrabble? What are the differences?

19

The board layout - the positioning of the bonus squares is different.

Words With Friends:

Words With Friends

Scrabble:

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.

  • 1
    One also wonders if WWF-the-board-game is to be played with the online version's somewhat aggressive naughty-words filter, or if the full dictionary is in effect :) – Affe Oct 31 '12 at 19:00
  • 5
    Also, the values of some of the letters are more with WWF than of Scrabble. – Aaron Morris Oct 31 '12 at 23:04
  • 3
    This is also a very interesting article which helps explain why the boards differ and how Words With Friends avoids a copyright infringement lawsuit from Hasbro. latimesblogs.latimes.com/technology/2008/07/… – Tapan Zee Nov 6 '12 at 17:22
  • Also the name doesn't evoke the Scrabble trademark, which was an issue for Scrabulous – Omar Kooheji Nov 12 '12 at 12:56
11

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)       (1,10)
K       (1,5)       (1,5)
L       (4,1)       (4,2)
M       (2,3)       (2,4)
N       (6,1)       (5,2)
O       (8,1)       (8,1)
P       (2,3)       (2,4)
Q       (1,10)      (1,10)
R       (6,1)       (6,1)
S       (4,1)       (5,1)
T       (6,1)       (7,1)
U       (4,1)       (4,2)
V       (2,4)       (2,5)
W       (2,4)       (2,4)
X       (1,8)       (1,8)
Y       (2,4)       (2,3)
Z       (1,10)      (1,10)
Blank   (2,0)       (2,0)
  • every -ing bingo just became worth an extra 2 points! – Jontia 22 hours ago
3

Another difference, that actually has a bigger impact on strategy, is that the BINGO bonus (the bonus for playing all 7 tiles in one move) is reduced from 50 to 35.

Together with the placement of the bonus squares (see above) often allowing quadruple letter words and 9-time scoring letters (12 if placed also in both directions), you can sometimes score higher by good placement rather than bingos.

2

Here is a link.

If you cannot access that page, let me explain it below:

The Scrabble grid looks like this: (P for red cells, B for pink cells,
T for blue cells, and D for light blue cells.)
P--D---P---D--P -B---T---T---B- --B---D-D---B-- D--B---D---B--D ----B-----B---- -T---T---T---T- --D---D-D---D-- P--D--(B)--D--P --D---D-D---D-- -T---T---T---T- ----B-----B---- D--B---D---B--D --B---D-D---B-- -B---T---T---B- P--D---P---D--P The Words With Friends board looks like: ---P--T-T--P--- --D--B---B--D-- -D--D-----D--D- P--T---B---T--P --D---D-D---D-- -B---T---T---B- T---D-----D---T ---B--(-)--B--- T---D-----D---T -B---T---T---B- --D---D-D---D- P--T---B---T--P -D--D-----D--D- --D--B---B--D-- ---P--T-T--P--- Letter Distributions: (S=Scrabble, W=Words with friends) Letters ? A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z S count 2 9 2 2 4 12 2 3 2 9 1 1 4 2 6 8 2 1 6 4 6 4 2 2 1 2 1 S score 0 1 3 3 2 1 4 2 4 1 8 5 1 3 1 1 3 10 1 1 1 1 4 4 8 4 10 W count 2 9 2 2 5 13 2 3 4 8 1 1 4 2 5 8 2 1 6 5 7 4 2 2 1 2 1 W score 0 1 4 4 2 1 4 3 3 1 10 5 2 4 2 1 4 10 1 1 1 2 5 4 8 3 10

Other differences:
- Scrabble uses the OWL2 dictionary, while Words with friends uses ENABLE.
- BINGO (using up all seven tiles from your hand) gives you 50 points on
S, while 35 points on W.
- S's center square is a Double Word Square, while W's center square is regular.
- On Mobile S Apps, they show your score for the whole game. But on the W app, they don't.

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  • The Scrabble grid looks like a large X, while the W grid looks like an O. – Scratch---Cat Sep 14 at 4:20
  • What are OWL2 and ENABLE? Online dictionaries? – Jontia 22 hours ago
-4

Words with Friends is often referred to as the advance version of the Scrabble. The main differences of the two game is that Words with Friends can be played online with friends wherever they are. It also has a feature wherein players can even chat with each other while playing the game. In this article - http://ezinearticles.com/?Tips-on-How-to-Play-Words-With-Friends&id=7125844, you would learn more about Words with Friends and how it differs from Scrabble.

  • 1
    I'm referring to the board game version. Not the electronic version. – Pureferret Nov 10 '12 at 17:39

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