Whether you play Scrabble for fun, fame, or a prize, chances are you’ve employed some playing styles or tactics to win a game. There are a lot of Scrabble tips that can be applied, especially if you are the competitive type. Whatever your reason for playing Scrabble, you’ll surely find these Scrabble tips useful.
Hope to play first and play wisely
To determine which player goes first, a draw is made, and the one who gets a letter closest to A plays first. This entails much luck, but if you do get to play first, take advantage of the situation and make a play that can tip the game’s result to your favour. Even if there’s no guarantee of winning the game when you play first, the mere satisfaction of controlling the board initially can be a powerful feeling. An ideal move first move is to place a five-letter word directly onto the board’s center to block off the opportunity for an opponent to have a double-word score. Sometimes, placing letters vertically instead of horizontally can throw off other players. Whatever move you decide to make, ensure that it’s a powerful one.
Little can mean Big
Even two-letter words can make you score big time in Scrabble. Go beyond “at,” “in,” or “do.” Learn the other not so common two-letter words (there are more than 100), so you can use them when a double- or triple-score space becomes available. Aside from getting more points, you can also block an opponent from making plays in such spaces. Moreover, using the letter “S” can also turn a short word into a longer one by pluralizing it. A small one-letter difference can reward you big time.
Balance and Bingo
An ideal tile count would be 3 vowels and 4 consonants, and keeping a balanced rack can give you greater chances of using all seven tiles in one go (called a bingo). A bingo can greatly affect the outcome of a game as 50 bonus points are rewarded to the player who makes the 7-letter move. In addition, another way to keep your rack balanced is to use tiles with higher value as soon as possible: J, X, Q, and Z. A lot of 7-letter Scrabble words begin with these letters, hence, knowing different 7-letter words beforehand is a good Scrabble strategy. If, on the other hand, you find yourself with more vowels than consonants, fear not. There are also Scrabble words that are rich in vowels like “iodine” and “cookie.” The same goes when you have more consonants than vowels: there are words that have no vowels such as, “thy” and “rhythm.”
Passing your turn and swapping
In Scrabble, taking risks can also be a rewarding Scrabble strategy. Taking a gamble requires a lot of thinking and computing. Study the board and calculate the points you can get for possible moves you can make with your current letters. If the scores aren’t impressive, consider the way your opponent has been playing. What could be his or her next move? Are the words he or she has formed allow you to add a few letters to create higher-scoring ones? Would holding on to your current letters until your opponent has made his or her next move create potentially better opportunities for you? If yes, then passing your turn could be a fruitful gamble. The same goes for swapping your letters with your opponent – you don’t do it hastily. Ask yourself the same questions before exchanging tiles. Whether you’re taking a pass or making a swap, the trick is in knowing when to do either.
Go for the Hot Spots
One of the most used Scrabble tips is to use the board’s hot spots or bonus squares as often as you can. These are the colored squares that are either double- or triple-letter or word scores. When making moves, it is wise to also be on the defensive end. While it is a great scoring opportunity, don’t let your guard down when using the bonus squares. Be careful not to use words that starts or ends near those golden spaces because your opponent may see the advantage and grab it.
Practice and Improve
Cliché as it sounds, practice makes perfect, and it is one of the most important Scrabble tips. Having a Scrabble set isn’t enough; you should also find an opponent or opponents who are willing to practice with you. It is also advisable to beef up your vocabulary by allotting a few minutes every day for studying different lists of words and reading more. For some, utilizing a Scrabble cheat can help you learn more words and even possibly some techniques that can improve your gameplay. Overall, applying various Scrabble tips requires your willingness to learn more to become a better player.