Do you want to win at Scrabble – well it’s not just luck, or even just having a great vocabulary. There’s plenty more to it and we’re going to show you these secrets below.
Tip #1 – Do not set up triple word squares for opponents
There are eight triple word squares around the board’s perimeter -usually shown in orange and marked ‘TW.’ Place a word on either one of these, and you earn triple points. Make any word with good (3-4 point) letters like F, K, M, or P and earn a very good score. Use a J, Q, X or Z on a triple word square, and you could earn some mega-points. However, it is vital to ensure that you are the one who does this and not your opponent. So be careful around these parts of the scrabble board. Avoid setting things up, so your opponent has an easy time using triple word squares.
Tip #2 – Use triple word squares every time you get the chance
Following the principle behind tip #1, never pass up an opportunity to use triple word squares. Sure, it is ideal to use triple word squares with big point tiles, but don’t pass up the chance to use them even if all you have are cheesy one point letters. Make sure that you use them even if all you can put on there is a 2-letter word. Also, use them even when you know you can earn more points with bigger words elsewhere on the board. If you pass up the opportunity to use a triple word square when it first appears, your opponent(s) could play it when their turn comes, and chances are they’ll have a 10-point tile like an X or a Q to put there.
Tip #3 -Watch for BINGOs
In Scrabble, you earn a 50-point bonus if you make a word using all tiles (7) on your rack. This is known as a “Bingo.” Interestingly, not many Scrabble players know this – how sad! When playing Scrabble, your main goal should be to try and get at least a single bingo in each game you play. That’s why it is vital that you try and save up your blank tiles – do not go wasting them on other words during the first half of your game. If you own both blank tiles, then you’re almost guaranteed of earning a bingo. Play all the other letters until you get five that you can use with your blanks to create a 7-letter word.
As the game progresses, the board will start getting a bit crowded, making it harder to play larger words. At that point, do not make the mistake of holding onto a bingo and passing a turn in the hopes that you will find a spot to play later. Any moment you pass without trading any tiles, it is a dead giveaway that you are looking for a place to play a bingo. If your opponent notices that, they will probably do everything they can to make sure you do not get to do so. The same applies for you – if you see that your opponent is passing turns and isn’t trading any tiles, then start playing two-letter words. Do not leave any openings for big words to intersect your play.
Tip #4 – Avoid intersecting words, instead do your best to overlap them
Most novice scrabble players think only of intersecting their word with those on the board. What they don’t know is that you can get more points by overlapping other words with two or more tiles. For instance, look at the words FIG and HOLED above – both are overlapping the word FAZED and by two letters. In such a case, try overlapping a word by at least two letters, and if possible, three letters. Overlapping a word by four letters is almost as lucky as making a bingo. Doing so will rack you up some serious points, and this is an especially useful trick to get more than 10 points even if your rack is filled with 1 point letters.
Tip #5 – Try and save big point tiles for use on triple letter or double word squares
When two players are evenly matched, the player with the best letters (the big point letters like J, Q, X, and Z) will most probably win the game. However, that will require that the player makes the most of these tiles. As such, avoid using big points letters unless you are using them on a double word or triple letter square to earn more points. However, when your back is on the wall, and don’t have too many options, then play them. If the game is about over then play them anywhere, you can to get rid of them since you do not want them counting against you. Tip number 6 will help you implement this tip.
Tip #6 – Have a good knowledge of the two-letter word list
Using two-letter words has been mentioned twice now – to block triple word squares and to keep opponents from making a bingo. Having a good knowledge of the two-letter word list will also come in handy when following tip #4, that is, overlapping words. The two-letter word list is particularly useful for playing big point letters like J, Q, X, and Z.
If you are the kind of player whose brain does not retain things very well, then consider memorizing the most useful ones like ZA, QI, XU, and XI. Knowing these four words alone can help you earn some serious points during gameplay – and can save your skin in the event the game is coming to an end, and the scores are very close. Though the board is congested, it shouldn’t be that hard to find an open vowel that you can take advantage of to get rid of these big point letters. You don’t want the game ending with such letters on your rack. If you want some extra help then this unscrambler can help.
Tip #7 – Learn different ways if using a Q even without a U
If you are not that lucky – having plenty of Us on your rack only to get a Q when you have none, then consider memorizing a couple of words that have Q in them but which do not need a U to make a word. You have already learned one such tip in tip #6 above – QI; but for your sake, here are a few more for you to master: FAQIR, QAID, and QAT. The good thing is that the internet has more comprehensive lists of words containing Q that you can learn. However, if you are the kind of person who finds it hard to remember long lists, then memorizing the little list of Q words above will do you well, especially considering that you can double them to 8 words by adding an S to each.