Word Derby?

May 3, 2013 | | Add a Comment

Word DerbyHave you ever experienced the thrill of attending a derby and cheering for a bet? A derby is, of course, a sporting event that usually involves teams from the same town or city. Many sports have derbies – basketball, ice hockey, baseball, swimming, and any form of racing. Now what do you get when you merge a racing app with a word game? Word Derby!

As one of the more recent word games for iPhone, Word Derby is quickly gaining much popularity due to its colourful graphics and various features. So what exactly is Word Derby?

The goal

Word Derby allows you to play with up to three other players. You are presented with twelve letters from which you should form words with. The points you earn per word propels your horse forward. The faster you can come up with a word, the better. Forming words quickly is actually better than coming up with long words, although combining both can significantly affect the result of the race. The player who reaches 200 points or crosses the finish line first wins the game and gets the derby trophy.

Word Derby letters

Just like Scrabble and other word games, the letters in this game have certain point values. Less frequently used letters such as J, Q, and X have bigger values, while the most common letters are usually worth a point each. So aside from creating words quickly, you also have to consider the values of the letters you use.

All jockeys receive the same set of twelve letters as well as the same locked first letter. For example, the locked letter is “D” so the word they should form must begin with it. The word can be as short as four letters and as long as eight.

Word race

Since this game is half a racing app, aside from racing against time, you also have to race against your opponents – other jockeys. How far you move on the race course depends on the length and value of the words you form.

Point Bonuses

There are three ways to receive bonus points: the timer, multipliers, and bonus tiles.

There is no time limit for forming words; however, quick word making lets you receive bonus points. If you are able to form a word within 50 seconds, you can receive 1-5 extra points, depending on your speed.

There are 4 multipliers in Word Derby: double and triple word and letter spaces. There is one allotted space for a multiplier in every rack. Therefore, it is wise to create words that are long enough to reach that space. In addition, if it is a double- or triple-letter space, if you can, make sure that the letter that falls on that area has a high point value to maximize your score.

You can earn tickets every time you play Word Derby. You can use these tickets to purchase one bonus tile per turn. A bonus tile allows players to choose any letter to complete a word. It functions like the blank tiles in Scrabble.


Word Derby features four power-ups: bomb, boost, hint, and catch up.

If you can’t form a word that begins with the locked letter, you can use the bomb power-up to remove it and replace it with any letter of your choice.

If you simply want to get bonus points, use the boost power-up. Using it will make the boost machine spin and stop on a bonus point amount, which will be then added to your word score.

There will be times when you can’t seem to form a word or there are just too many word options. During these times, you may want to use the hint power-up, which gives you the four best word choices you can form from your letters. The word you “touch” will be automatically played.

When one of your opponents is nearing the 160 flag marker, use the catch-up power up to well, catch up. This power-up cannot be used once the leader goes beyond the 160 mark.

Other information

You can make bets when playing Word Derby as long as you are up against random opponents. The tickets you earn are used to make wagers. You can bet up to 200 tickets during each game.

You can play up to 20 games simultaneously.

Another fun feature of Word Derby is that you can chat with your opponents, so this can also be a good way to communicate with friends.

Lastly, aside from making wagers and purchasing power-ups, you can also use your winnings to unlock new characters.

Word Derby is definitely one of the word games for iPhone that should gallop its way into your hands!

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