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Scrabble is one of my favourite games in real life so to be able to play it on my iPhone was a really fun option for me. I actually got an invitation to play from my mum of all people as you can link up to play with friends on this game which I think is a really nice option.
The app was just over a pound if I remember rightly which was quite an ok price I thought for a fun game like this. It's a bit confusing to get started and sometimes I have lost a game right in the middle when I am playing other people. Obviously if you are not on the wi-fi at the same time as someone else they will take their turn and then it is stored for you next time you log back into your game. Sometimes after a few turns I have gone back in and my game is just not there which is annoying but we just start again. It is more fun though when both of you are online and you can play back and forth. There is a chat option at the bottom of the screen which I don't use often but tend to just write, "nice word" or something like that if my competitor has played a good word. You can also play against the computer but I never really play this game, preferring to play real people.
The board comes up and looks like the regular board and from the look of it all the squares are the same with the same values, etc. What I really love about this electronic version of the game is that it does all the scoring for you, you don't have to worry about any of that. That is the part I find the most boring in real scrabble so to have that option out of your hands is great. You start out with your tiles and then, and this is the funnest part in my opinion, if you shake your phone it will shuffle the letters for you. I always shuffle as sometimes you look at your tiles and cannot see a word at all but after a quick shuffle it may give you a different perspective and all of a sudden a word pops up in your mind. There is also a shuffle button at the bottom of the screen that you can press to shuffle them too. The tiles are really realistic looking and have the letter count in the right hand corner as well so it almost makes you think you are playing real scrabble.
Once you have decided on your word you can use your finger to drag the tiles into position and this is quite easy if you are used to a touch screen phone and the workings of it. On the bottom of the screen as well as the shuffle button there is also an exchange and best word button. Exchange obviously allows you to change one of your tiles if you want to. The best word option is a good one as it works out the highest scoring word out of your current rack of tiles.
I have to say I find it quite easy to "cheat" on this game depending on what your definition of cheat actually is. There is a dictionary option where you can put all your tiles in there and it will search for a word for you so in a way this is not really using your own brain but when I play against my mum she is so good that I need this option to actually find a word that will get more points than her last word.
When you get to the end of the game it will tell you who the winner is and then give you the option to start another game which I always do. THis is a fun app and if you like scrabble one that I recommend.
==Scrabble iPhone Edition==
I am one of those sorts of people that need to be kept constantly busy and can never just sit and watch TV or sit or the loo without something to occupy my mind. For this reason I have a ton of game apps on my iPhone which are mentally challenging and ones that I can't seem to put down.
The Scrabble for the iphone was something I was keen to get straight away especially as I have had it on my previous two phones I have owned and I am such a big Scrabble fan. I tend not to pay for most of the games on my iphone but for Scrabble I was happy to pay the £1.40p that Apple were asking for it.
The app was downloaded within a minute or two and I was able to play a quick game straight away. The rules of this game as opposed to playing on a proper board do not differ at all and playing the computer is often more easy than you would have thought and the majority of the time I do beat the computer!
The options of the game play are easy to access from the initial Scrabble page and this is where you choose to have the music on or off or indeed to change the music to your own library tunes. There are other options such as SFX level and game tips which you can choose to either be on or off. The game tips only appear at the beginning of each new game and are more help about how best to use the game on your phone. A good tip was that if you shake your phone your tiles will be shuffled for a better look at possible words that can be created.
Once you have selected the play mode from the small picking list it will take you to another screen where you are able to choose from quick play, custom play or multiplayer WiFi. I can honestly say that I have only ever used the quick play due to the fact that there is no one else I could play on the WiFi at home and I find the settings that make up the quick play game pretty good.
When playing the game verses the computer I always get to go first which can be a real bonus especially if I come up with a word where I use all the tiles up and get the 50 point bonus for using all 7. There is also the option to pass my turn or to have the "Best Word" aid which will use my tiles in the best possible place for my turn of the game. There are 5 hearts under my score which represent these cheat turns and more often than not I won't use them as I see it as defeating the point somewhat.
The game is a real addictive one and in my mind far better than the board game as it can be taken anywhere and everywhere (even the toilet) and you don't have to have someone to play with as the computer is always willing to have a game or two!
The set up of the app is well done and even a total novice at these sorts of things will be able to find there way around the game without any trouble whatsoever.
All in all I can't really fault this app and find that it is well worth £1.49p to have on my iphone and for that reason I feel that a top score of 5 out of 5 stars and a high recommendation is well deserved!
I do hope that this has been of some help/interest to you
Many thanks for taking the time to read.
Playing games has always been a very sociable affair, especially in my family. We have washed down many a family Sunday lunch with a bottle of wine or a cuppa and a family game, more often than not of scrabble, which has traditionally been played with between two and four people.
Now as we move further into the twenty first century, progress has taken us from this friendly, sociable environment into a realm where we can play these classic games entirely alone with nothing but the iphone for company. So what better game app to go for, than Scrabble for the iphone?
So what is Scrabble?
Scrabble is a word game, it is usually played on a board with lots of squares on it and 100 tiles each with letters on and a score for each letter ranging from 1 for common letters like vowels up to 10 for the Q and the Z as they are more difficult to use. Some of the squares are coloured and this indicates double or triple letter or word scores. The idea is simple you take it in turns to make words that must interlink with words that are already on the board, with the first word down going through the star in the centre of the board, whoever scores the highest wins.
Scrabble for iphone
Scrabble for iPhone costs £1.19, it is also available for iPad and with the limited experience that I have playing it on my Mum's iPad it seems the same but I can't guarantee that.
As you open the app you are faced with the usual options the only 3 of which are related to the game:
Play - gives you the choice of Classic game, where you play against the computer in the normal method.
More EA Games Well they have to try and sell you other aps don't they?
Options The usual turn the sound off kind of thing
Statistics These are actually quite interesting as they show you your highest scoring game, best word, how many games you have won etc.
Tell a friend Another chance for EA games to increase their bottom line
Help Not much going on here really, it's Scrabble and very intuitive to play
Playing the game you have three options:
Quick Play which is the regular game
Custom Play allows you to restrict the game to the number of points scored or the number of rounds.
Multiplayer WiFi which honestly is a waste of development time, you all have to be connected to the same WiFi network to be able to play this so unless you are playing with your next door neighbour and both use the same WiFi you might as well just play with a proper board, other than the fact it does the adding up for you.
Playing the game
I will concentrate on the regular game here, as all of the other options are variations on the same theme.
It opens with a random tip about some of the features of the app, then goes straight to a full screen board and your tiles at the bottom. On the ipad the full size board is ok, it's quite viewable on the iPhone it's horrid, like looking at a check dress pattern, you can however zoom in very easily by double tapping on the board and a second double tap brings you back out again.
You play your word by dragging the tiles to from the rack to the board, this is a pain, I would far rather tap the letter then then the position on the board. It also doesn't always land where you would want it to, this isn't a huge problem if it is a single letter, albeit a little annoying, but it does get more irritating if you have misjudged the position of your word, on a regular board you would just push all of the letters along, here you have to move each letter individually, I don't think it is too much to ask to expect them to have developed a system whereby you can adjust the whole word along one or two squares.
The app assumes that you are going to start, if you want to go second you have to skip a turn, so it duly warns you that you won't get any points. When it is its go, it tries to make out that it is thinking by showing you a couple of cogs turning.
At the bottom of the screen there are four little icons, the first a little letter bag showing how many letters are left and you click on it if you wish to forfeit a go and exchange your letters. The second shuffles the letters on your rack. The third is a best word option indicated by a heart, you can use this three times within the game and the computer calculates the highest scoring word you can get, useful if you know there is a 7 letter word there, which attracts a bonus of 50 points. The final icon is if you wish to pass and can't think of a word, I have only used this one at the end when the letters are running out.
The dictionary, half of the fun of Scrabble is arguing the various spellings within the dictionary with your friends. The number of times my Gran tried to persuade us that sapphire is spelt with one 'p' I lost count of, but she NEVER misspelt it when it came up in crosswords or quizzes. The iPhone's scrabble dictionary is odd to say the least, it uses all the standard Scrabble two letter words, which is fine if you are used to it, which we are, but really annoying if you are not. It will happily allow abbreviations, which are forbidden in Scrabble but it will not allow proper nouns, which although I agree with this refusal, they did change the official rules surrounding this a little while ago as I remember them mentioning on the radio the Jedward would now be an allowable word. However anything slightly crude is out, so you can't have the seabird 'shag' which is a member of the cormorant family and there are some very obvious everyday words that it doesn't allow, and being a computer, you can't argue with it.
The game I would say, for any self-respecting Scrabble player is not possible to lose. The computer thinks mathematically and doesn't have a clue about thinking tactically. It will therefore happily set you up for every single treble word score, even giving you a conveniently placed vowel to use, great if you have the Z or X. It will use its U if it gets the highest calculable score, not caring that the extra couple of points it may have got for it are lost when it has to take 10 points off the score at the end because it has picked up the Q, that has happened so many times you'd think it would learn but it's not built like that.
Playing the game is really quick, whereas the average post dinner with liqueurs game usually lasts 30 - 40 minutes, having no one to chat to, or joke with, or having to wait for your opponent to move, it only takes about 5 minutes to complete a game.
Choosing my star rating for this app is actually quite difficult. If I'm waiting for something like the kids to come out of school, it's quite nice to have a quick game. There are however lots of little annoyances with the game, the dictionary being weird, the fact that it doesn't give you an intelligent game and even little things like the tiles not moving perfectly smoothly. But it does what it says on the tin, it gives you a game of Scrabble for those moments in your life when you are Billy no mates and just want a quick game and the niggles are not really deal breakers. So I've decided to go for a generous 4 as for £1.19 it's quite good value for money and I'm certainly not in any rush to delete it.
Thank you for reading
Digbycat aka MaryanneH