He's pulling you in, but there is no escape now. He has the lead, and it's your move. Consider it carefully. If you don't play it right, the kid will win, and you will wallow in freakish misery forever.
Your letters are on the rack at the bottom of the picture. It's your move. Can you salvage the game . . . and your pride?
Have you made your play? How many did you score? Twelve? Thirty? Sixty?
Not bad. But did you realize that, with the board in front of you, you could have scored FOUR HUNDRED AND SIXTY EIGHT POINTS with one word? That's right--468!!!
Now scroll down to see this amazing word placed so expertly on the board, and consider carefully your profound inferiority to my brilliant Scrabble powers.
QUIZZING, baby. QUIZZING. (Yes, QAT is a word, too.)
You, dear reader, have been humbly instructed this day by the Scrabble Master, as has our innocent young player. You might want to record this event for your posterity, though you shall surely never forget it as it has been seared into your soul.
As for the boy, I have taken him on as my young apprentice, and am teaching him the ways of the Scrabble Force. There are always two. I fear one day he may rise in rebellion and usurp my supremacy, but for today, I have reasserted my dominance, and the student has not yet become the master.
Explanatory Note: I play way too much computer Scrabble, as you can probably tell. Grant loves to play with me, and he actually has a good rudimentary understanding of the rules and strategy. "Put it on the red square, Daddy." Sometimes we'll get the real board out, and move the letters around. He gets to pick whatever letters he wants, and thus he usually spells JOY or GRANT or MOM or DAD. The above example was not a real game, but an attempt to create the highest scoring word possible. I think you could tweak things here or there and pull a few more points out, but basically this word in this situation is as near to Scrabble perfection as you can humanly get.
But seriously, I am GOOD. Sometimes I dazzle myself with my own brillance. I can defeat the "Advanced" level on the computer nine times out of ten, and my average score per game in 347 points. Most games now, I will use all of my letters on one word at least once and get the 50 point bonus.
What are my secrets? Glad you asked:
- I have discovered the higher level of game strategy, and I do not go for the fanciest or most obscure or most creative words. Rather, I go for points, baby, points. Every time. Relentlessly. Points are my only guiding star. The flashy words will come, but never at the expense of points.
- You must master the small words, like "AA," "OE," "UT," "XI," "JO," etc. There are hundreds of these small obscure words in the Scrabble dictionary, and you must learn them all in order to maximize your playing opportunities and word combinations.
- Never make a play that does not include at least two words, or words in at least two directions. This way, you double your points everytime.
- Play defensively. Do not leave a triple word space wide open for your opponent to exploit. If you must, play a lower scoring word on this space in order to prevent your opponent from using it.
- Make your high-point letters work for you (X,J,Q,Z), but don't hold onto them at all cost, or it will hamper the rest of your game. Get rid of them in a fairly quick manner. Take your points, and get on with it.
- Your mid-range letters should do the heavy lifting. Use your H, P, K, W, and Y wisely, and get them on double or triple points spaces every time. (But get rid of V quickly. It's a very hard one to utilize.)
- Finally, you must learn to EXCHANGE. I cannot overemphasize this. (Well, actually, I guess I AM overemphasizing this, just like pretty much everything else in this post. But you must understand, Scrabble is a big part of my life and I have invested many hours at great personal sacrifice to my wife in order to acquire this knowledge.) If you have a rack full of vowels and low scoring letters, then pull the trigger, dump your rack, and start fresh. You can't win unless you're playing with mid- to high-points letters, and you will be better off taking a one round zero than in trying to score points with AAEIURS.
I hope you found this post as invigorating as I have. We all must seek for our greatness in life. I happen to have found mine on the Scrabble board.
Four hundred and sixty eight points? Sometimes I amaze even myself.
You're welcome. :)