Tips for the Game of Scrabble Content from the guide to life, the universe and everything

Tips for the Game of Scrabble

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You know the story; it’s the holidays and the sun is shining... well, in a perfect world it would be, but fortunately someone invented the game of Scrabble to help us get through those miserable days.

The Scrabble board consists of 15 squares across and down. Geometrically placed bonus squares when played upon multiply letter scores, word scores, or both. The game starts with 100 tiles, seven to each of two to four players.

Players take turns in placing words on the board, the starting word must touch the centre square and all subsequent words must touch at least one letter already played in crossword style. If a player plays all their seven letters in one turn a bonus of 50 points is achieved on top of their word score.

The great thing about Scrabble is that someone with a lesser vocabulary can easily outdo a more learned word opponent with just a few tactical tricks up their sleeve. The following are a few pointers:

  • Don't open up bonus squares for your opponent making high scores with little effort possible. Also, pounce on any such opportunities presented or block their usage.

  • Make good use of any S or blank tile, always pluralise one word and make another with your S. Try and utilise blanks to form seven letter words thus picking up a 50 point bonus.

  • Plan for seven letter words where possible by hanging on to the letter combinations '-ing', '-ier', '-iest', '-est', '-ed', '-ate'.

  • Obtain a good knowledge of obscure two and three letter words, especially those containing the letters Q, X, J and Z, and arm yourself with a few ‘Q’ words not requiring a U, like 'qintar' which is the monetary unit of Albania.

  • The end of the game is vital; keep an eye on your opponents number of remaining tiles and plan to go out first thus obtaining the combined score of their remaining letters.

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