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This is how we play Scrabble.
January 23, 2013 8:55 PM   Subscribe

We are delighted to present Scrabble enthusiasts everywhere with The Scrabble Player's Handbook, a definitive and free ebook on how to play Scrabble, written by a dozen of the best tournament players in the world. All twelve authors have competed in past World Scrabble Championships and have spent over a year combining their knowledge into this one free Scrabble resource. Definitive. Accessible. Free. What more do you need to know? [Website links to a 6.6 Mb PDF.]
posted by not_on_display (25 comments total) 42 users marked this as a favorite

 
You bastard. I'm going up for tenure this year.......

TENURES = TUREENS, RETUNES and ominously NEUTERS

also, note while the STRATEGY is good, the vocab is no good for the North American competitive scrabble world.
posted by lalochezia at 9:08 PM on January 23, 2013


Queue?
posted by Mblue at 9:09 PM on January 23, 2013


If you don't have the time to read 163 pages, this 5-minute presentation on fighting dirty in Scrabble is worth watching.
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 9:12 PM on January 23, 2013 [9 favorites]


Lox = liquid oxygen. I thought that lox was a fillet of cured salmon.
posted by unliteral at 9:12 PM on January 23, 2013


TILE TRACKING The action of keeping track of the letters played, and therefore noting the letters remaining. Most tournament players use a pre-printed sheet of the Scrabble letters to cross off during play.
I didn't know this happened.
posted by unliteral at 9:20 PM on January 23, 2013


This is how I roll.
posted by Mezentian at 9:22 PM on January 23, 2013 [4 favorites]


You hear these stories and you don't know if the stories are true, but somehow they bear repeating.

I heard about the family McClintoch, a family obsessed by Scrabble. So obsessed were they that when they died, their Last Will & Testaments always demanded that each one be buried to achieve a maximal Scrabble score.

Old lady McClintoch died first. Her name was Haddy. And she was buried, properly, like so
H
A
D
D
Y
Some years later, nephew Albert succumbed to the fever. They laid him to rest thus:
H
ALBERT
D
D
Y
Donald died during the Great War and the family plot looked like this:
H
ALBERT
D
DONALD
Y
The great tragedy is that Roland saw his chance and decided to take it. He was far too young for suicide. But he got a triple-word score.
posted by twoleftfeet at 9:54 PM on January 23, 2013 [8 favorites]


Roland should've challenged them for using proper nouns.
posted by pompomtom at 9:56 PM on January 23, 2013 [13 favorites]


My favorite Scrabble story is still Craziest, by Liz Dubelman.
posted by ceribus peribus at 10:36 PM on January 23, 2013


Lox = liquid oxygen. I thought that lox was a fillet of cured salmon.

It is, and I don't know why they define it, because LOX is an pseduo-acronym, which aren't allowed.

I didn't know this happened.

Oh, yeah. Tourney scrabble is head to head, so as the bag empties, you get a better idea of what tiles your opponent has, and when it does empty, you know what they have. There are times where this can win you the game, when you realize they have a bingo play that fits, and you play something, even something worth almost nothing, to block it.

When the bag is almost empty, you get a sense of the odds on a draw.

It also catches the occasional cheat who tries to pull out a fifth S.
posted by eriko at 2:28 AM on January 24, 2013


Excellent.

The book takes a few lines out to totally dismisses the official Scrabble app for iOS, which won't allow you to play against friends. What the hell are Mattel thinking of with that? What could possibly explain it?
posted by colie at 3:40 AM on January 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


What the hell are Mattel thinking of with that? What could possibly explain it?

I'm guessing that some Marketing guy said "but if we make it a perfect like-for-like simulation of Scrabble where people can play their friends, no-one will buy the physical boardgame any more!".
posted by EndsOfInvention at 6:19 AM on January 24, 2013


In one of the idiotic pieces of fiction I have written, I have two characters playing in the finals of the intergalactic Scrabble championship. Proper nouns are allowed. One of the characters is very pregnant. As she trails by a great deal with only seven letters left, she gives birth. She promptly names gives her child the first name of "Quyzyjix," and then plays his name for a double triple word score across the bottom. The 611 points (594 for "Quyzijix" itself, and 17 more for the word going down that she forms with the "y" earns her the victory.
posted by flarbuse at 6:23 AM on January 24, 2013 [4 favorites]


Uh oh. Kwyjibo on the loose! This page from the venerable snpp.com shows that Bart would have scored 152 points with that.
posted by not_on_display at 6:27 AM on January 24, 2013


The book takes a few lines out to totally dismisses the official Scrabble app for iOS, which won't allow you to play against friends. What the hell are Mattel thinking of with that? What could possibly explain it?

Apparently they've seen the light. (Linked to the ad-free version. A free version is also available.)
posted by BrashTech at 7:30 AM on January 24, 2013


She promptly names gives her child the first name of "Quyzyjix," and then plays his name for a double triple word score across the bottom. The 611 points (594 for "Quyzijix" itself, and 17 more for the word going down that she forms with the "y" earns her the victory.

I distinctly remember playing "Iquikoglyxozica" in an extremely questionable middle school Scrabble game. As I recall, the rule was the other player had to make up a definition or lose points.
posted by Foosnark at 7:31 AM on January 24, 2013


I remember traumatic experiences when I was little, playing scrabble with my grandma and older brother (even leaving the game in tears). Besides being younger and not having the vocabulary they did, it wasn't until much later that I realized part of the strategy of the game was to prevent other players from making good moves. I saw it as a cooperation to make the best crossword, while still rewarding the player who made the best words. I love the game now, but I'm actually prety hesitant to read about cut-throat strategies. I think they'll make the game less fun.
posted by spbmp at 7:51 AM on January 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


My friends and I like to play a variant of Scrabble in which one of the goals is to maximize the total score, not to minimize one's opponent's score.
posted by Ery at 11:05 AM on January 24, 2013 [1 favorite]


Lox = liquid oxygen. I thought that lox was a fillet of cured salmon.
>It is, and I don't know why they define it, because LOX is an pseduo-acronym, which aren't allowed.


It's (somehow) the verb describing filling the rocket with LOX.
Thus loxes, loxed, loxing.
posted by MtDewd at 12:01 PM on January 24, 2013


Our house game of Scrabble distains the Official Scrabble Dictionary utterly in favour of the Collins English Dictionary. No Proper nouns or otherwise capitalized words, no abbreviations, no acronyms, no slang or dialect words and no overly archaic words.

Of course, this does mean that I can't play any internet Scrabble game, since it makes me furious. Oh, well. I got FRENZY the other day with the F and Z on triple letter scores and the R making SPIKE into SPIKER, for a total of 71 points.
posted by HypotheticalWoman at 3:46 PM on January 24, 2013


This book has changed how I play now. I concentrate a lot more on rack management and trying to have a good leave, and it has certainly improved my game.
posted by unliteral at 3:48 PM on January 24, 2013


My friends and I like to play a variant of Scrabble in which one of the goals is to maximize the total score, not to minimize one's opponent's score.

Oooh. Cooperative Scrabble. I like it.
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 3:48 PM on January 24, 2013


I kinda would like to play scrabble with unlimited tiles and a borderless board. Any apps online that come close?
posted by not_on_display at 4:06 PM on January 24, 2013


not_on_display: http://wordsquared.com/
posted by schyler523 at 2:36 PM on January 25, 2013 [1 favorite]


schyler523: You win at the internet today.
posted by not_on_display at 4:06 PM on January 25, 2013


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