Back to index of Scrabble pages by Donald Sauter.
Scrabble For Word Lovers suite - main page.
Scrabble II introduction.
Scrabble II rules.
It was created before the Nice Letter Distribution and Stretch Bonuses were implemented. Back then, Scrabble II words averaged about 5 letters; now they average about 6 letters. So, no matter how impressively Scrabble II stacked up against "regular" Scrabble in this old page, it would go a quantum leap beyond that now.
Special introduction for National Scrabble Association (NSA) members: Welcome! You may have come here because of the Executive Director's Report in Scrabble News #231, and another notice in #232. I very much liked the framework of the original article by John D. Williams, Jr., but there was quite a mix-up. None of my corrections were incorporated and the result was that hardly a single statement about Scrabble II (or me!) was completely right. You must have rolled your eyes in stupefaction upon reading that "two-letter words would no longer be acceptable"!
So, here is the relevant portion of the Executive Director's Report given again with my corrections, shown in blue, incorporated.
I'll be the first to admit that when it comes to the world's best game, I definitely have an "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" attitude. Donald, however, sees a game in dire need of "repairs." He believes that mindless, "connect the dot" plays of pintsized words have far too much weight. The over-riding concept of SCRABBLE II, then, is to move the game into a realm of much longer, fresher words. To that end, SCRABBLE II disallows all "mini-plays" comprised solely of two-letter words. To directly encourage the formation of longer words, SCRABBLE II features stepped bonuses. Playing with eight tiles, competitors receive a modest 20-point bonus for a 6-tile play, the standard 50-point bonus for a 7-tile play and an 80-point bonus for unloading your whole rack. Keeping things even fresher, Scrabble II puts to rest the timeworn tile distribution by randomly drawing a new batch for each game from a mixture of three standard tile sets.
Donald realistically understands that many tournament players will scoff at SCRABBLE II. But he is nothing if not confident. He believes they will become increasingly ashamed of their OH's and AH's, while kitchen-table players everywhere are slapping down sevens, eights, and nines. For now, he invites any top expert to come to his club to try out Scrabble II. To sweeten the pot, he's put up $5 in prize money ("while the supplies last!") on each game.
Donald has a handful of web pages promoting Scrabble II and comparing it with conventional, modern, tournament-style Scrabble. He cordially invites the curious and open-minded in our community to visit [You Are Here!]
by John D. Williams, Jr.
and Donald Sauter
Got it, guys? You have to beat me to collect the five bucks! :-)
And now, back to this page as it stood before the addition of the special introduction above . . .
North American tournament Scrabble players play, naturally enough, a form of Scrabble which I call "modern American tournament-style Scrabble", or "modern Scrabble", for short.
The Dover Scrabble Club (Delaware), on the other hand, plays Scrabble II, which is pure Scrabble with the straitjacket removed. A few small adjustments move the game out of the morass of the twos and threes and up into the realm of the sixes through nines. And we do it using a conventional dictionary and with no one ever scoring a point for an invalid word. No bluffing!
To help get the show on the road, I've moved the Scrabble II overview to an appendix at the bottom. You can easily find further discussion on other web pages of mine.
The U.S. National Scrabble Championship was held in Dayton, Ohio, in August 2009. The play-by-play for the "Table 1 games" for the 31 rounds of the tournament were posted on the internet. Presumably, Table 1 games are the games between the two players currently leading in the tournament.
Accordingly, I chose 31 games recently played in the Dover Scrabble Club for comparison. I thought it was fair enough to pick out our best recent games since we're going up against the best of the best. Keep in mind that none of us in the Dover Scrabble Club spends a minute of his life studying word lists.
Even though Scrabble players compete against each other in a game, I view the final Scrabble board as the product of a team effort of all the players. (In the Dover club, we prefer threesomes and foursomes.) What you see below are the words on the final boards, not the individual plays. An exception is in the category I call "Mini-plays of just Two-letter Words", where you see the actual plays. Scrabble II has high standards and does not allow these exceptionally mindless mini-plays.
IMPORTANT NOTE: Words in red would not be acceptable in the Dover Scrabble Club. Generally, this means that the word is not recognized by the American Heritage 4th Edition. There is also a small handful of words now included in the American Heritage which I have specifically banished as Scrabble junk. See the appendix at the bottom.
Here, then, in a very easy-to-digest format, is a comparison of the 31 National Scrabble Championship 2009 Table 1 games vs. 31 recent, good games in the Dover Scrabble Club.
You be the judge and jury. Who looks like they're having the richest, most exciting, and most rewarding Scrabble experience? The champs who spend years of their lives memorizing gobs and gobs of funny little words? Or the regular folks pulling nice, long words from out of their own vocabularies? A quantitative comparison in every category sure seems to point to a much higher quality Scrabble being played in the Dover club.
Wouldn't it be exciting to see what the experts would do with Scrabble II?
Champs: (1) INTERVIEWS
Dover: (1) REQUESTING
Champs: (7) ALOPECIAS AVIRULENT DECAGONAL DOUGHTIER NOMINATED OUTRAISED VALORISED
Dover: (15) ATTACKERS BALCONIES DOUGHTIER ENDANGERS GASOLINES LENGTHIER LONELIEST PENETRATE RESTORING REWARDING SCRIBBLER TENDERING UNDAUNTED VITALIZED VOCALIZED
Note the funny coincidence of both of us playing DOUGHTIER. And while I don't intend for this page to be a review of the 2009 National Scrabble Championship, I can't resist remarking on my favorite play in the Table 1 games. In a close game, Nigel Richards played his last 5 tiles, _ACDE, through an existing GO and AL on the board to form DECAGONAL and go out! Wow!
Champs: (65) AMBOINAS ANIMATOR ATELIERS BARRANCO BIOPLASM BOLOGNAS CARDIOID CAREERED CHEWIEST COASTING COTTAGER COVERAGE DEMERSAL DENTILED DIASPORE EMPTIERS ENCAENIA ENCYSTED ENTODERM FANZINES FLEETING GUIDABLY HAUNTING IDENTIFY IGNORANT IMITATED INCREATE INDEXING INLAYING INVERSED LAUREATE LINDANES LINOTYPE MANITOUS MERIDIAN MESOGLEA MIGHTIER MINIVERS MOISTURE MOUSINGS NIDATION OUTRIVAL PLUMERIA POLENTAS RAREFIER REDIALED REWINDED RINGLETS ROUTEMAN SCOURING SERAGLIO SLITHERY SORICINE STALLING STATURES STERTORS TIMELINE TINGLIER TRENCHES TRINODAL TRISECTS TWEEDIER UNISONAL YEASTING YEASTING
Dover: (79) ABALONES ABSENCES AILERONS ANNEXING ARRIVALS AUCTIONS BAWDIEST BIRTHDAY CAFFEINE CHORALLY COTTAGES COUNTERS COURTIER CROOKING CRUDDIER DOOMSDAY DRINKERS ELEVATES EQUALITY EQUATING ESCAPADE EVERSION EXCUSING FATHERED FLANKING GAUDIEST GEOMETRY GRANDPAS GRENADES HAPPIEST HAUNTERS HEADLINE LAMENTED LATRINES LEGATION LOFTIEST MARAUDED MARKINGS MERMAIDS MILADIES MILEAGES MODERATE MUSICIAN NATIONAL NEEDLING NEOPRENE NOBILITY OPTIMIZE ORIGINAL OUTCRIED OUTFACES OUTREADS PATENTED PERJURES PINCHING PLANTERS PROBATED QUIETEST QUIRKIER RATIONED RECEIVES RELATION RELOADER RETAINER SAUSAGES SKIDDING SPOUTERS SUSTAINS SVELTEST SWEETING TAWDRIER TEXTURES THRASHED THRESHED TRAWLERS UNGLAZED UNSCALED URINATED VIBRATES
Champs: (75) ACYLOIN AFFIRMS ANGRIER ANNEXED ARENITE ARRIVER ARUGOLA BALDIES BEADIER BEDRUGS BOLSTER BONDAGE BORIDES BURGAGE CAJOLES CASERNE CLOQUES COLOURS CONIUMS CORDAGE DAUTIES DEGAMIS DEVEINS DILDOES EASTERN EUSTASY FELINES FLOTSAM FORELEG GIRDERS GODETIA GRIVETS GUSTOES HOSPICE INVADES IRACUND JUMPERS KAURIES LARGEST LAZIEST MIGRANT MODERNE MOLLUSC MONTERO OPAQUER PANDERS PEERIES PIGOUTS PILOTED PLAINER POACHER PRINCES QUETZAL QUINTAN REGALIA RELINES REPAVES REPINES REPOSER SAVORED SENARII SENDERS SEVRUGA SHIPPON SIEMENS SMITTEN SNOWCAP SORTING TEETERS UNLOCKS VENTAGE WAITRON WALLIES WHEEZES ZENAIDA
Dover: (153) ABORTER ACADEMY ACQUITS ADORING ADORNED AGONIZE ANNUALS ANOTHER ANTHRAX ARMREST ATTACHE AVAILED AVIATOR AVOIDER BAGFULS BALCONY BATBOYS BAUXITE BEDPANS BENEATH BLANKET BLONDES BOOGIED BOOZING BOVINES BROILED CARAFES CAVEMAN CHATTER COLONEL COSTING CRATERS CREDITS DABBLER DAMAGER DEAREST DEATHLY DEBATED DESTINY DIRTIER DIVINED DUALITY DUCTILE EARTHEN EDITING ELATION ELATION ELIXIRS EMOTING EMPOWER ENTROPY EQUATED EVADING EXPLAIN FADDIST FANATIC FEEDING FIXINGS FLATTER FLUTTER FORAGES GARBAGE GARGLER GASSIER GENUINE GIRDLED GLORIED GORILLA GRANITE GRAYEST GROWLED GULPING HOSTING IMBIBER INSPECT JUNIPER LIFTING LOTIONS LOTTERY MANUALS MASHING MOODIER MULLETS MYSTICS NECTARS NEEDIER NEEDILY NUGGETS OBELISK OBVIOUS OPERANT OPIATES OPTIMUM ORATING OUTDATE OUTFEEL OUTHITS OUTRODE OVARIAN PADDING PAGODAS PANTING PASTIES PEANUTS PEBBLES PERTAIN PLUNGES POUNCES POUNDER PREVENT RADICAL RADICAL REFINED REPLACE REZONED RHOMBUS ROMANCE SALUTED SAUNTER SCALING SEASIDE SECONDS SECURED SETTING SINGERS SLANDER SLATHER SMOKILY SOPPING SPOILED STAMINA TARMACS TASTIER TESTING THRIVED TINNIER TOPICAL TOTALLY TOTALLY TRACING TRAVELS TREEING TROTTED TROUGHS UNARMED UNBUILT UNVEILS UNWINDS VOMITED WARMING WAVELET WRITTEN ZESTERS
Champs: (75) AERATE ASHORE AUTOED AWAITS BARKED BATTUE BERTHA BOARDS BUCKED BUTLER CECITY CLINAL CONGOU CREAMY DETOUR DICTUM DINGLE ELODEA EVADES EXODUS FAMILY FEAZES FLOOIE FRIGID GAPIER GILDER GRATIS HAWKER HOWFFS JOISTS KNIFED KRAITS LACUNE LOOIES LOPPED MIRZAS MISLIT OLEINE OLEINS OURARI PINYIN PLAITS POINTY POTAGE PUTTEE QUARKS QUINOA QUINSY RASHER REDIAL REELER REPAYS SWAINS TEATED TEDIUM THINLY TISANE TODIES TONICS TRANQS TRIPOD UNCLOG UNSEXY UPBEAT VERITY VETOED VETOES VISAGE VITTAE VOIDER WADDED WEIGHS WICKER ZEATIN ZINNIA
Dover: (103) ADJOIN AFRAID ASTUTE AUNTIE AVOIDS BLEARY BOOSTS BRANDY BRIGHT BROODS CANOER CENTER CHAPEL COUGAR CRADLE CRANKY DELUGE DEVOID DONKEY DUTIES EATERY EDDIES EMBEDS ENERGY EQUATE EQUINE EVINCE EYELET FARINA FAXING FEATER FELINE FIRING FLESHY FLOURS FONDUE FOUGHT GAMETE GAUGES GLAZED GOLDEN GRADER GRAZES HARKEN HEARTY INVENT JERSEY JOTTED JOUSTS LANCET LISTEN LIVENS LOAFER LOANED LOONIE MARLIN MASTER MINORS MULLET MUSKET NESTLE NIMBLE NIMBLY NUDITY ORANGE ORNATE PARKAS PEWTER PHOOEY PHOTON PLIANT PRONGS QUAKED QUARRY QUIRKY QUOTAS RANKLE RATION RATIOS RESIST RISQUE ROQUET SANITY SANITY SEDATE SEXIER SHAVED SLOWER SORDID SQUIRE STANZA STRIVE TAGGER TAXING THROAT VALUED VALVED VETOED WALLED WEAVER WIGGLE WINNER YANKED
Champs: (150) ACINI AFORE AGAZE ANILS ANTRE ANVIL AROID BARON BEACH BEMIX BLENT BLINI BOHEA BONZE BRAWN BRIEF BRINK BRITS BROTH BUNAS CAJON CLAMS CLIFT CONKS COOMB CORDS CREME DAILY DATER DELFT DEOXY DEVIL DHUTI DINER DOXIE DUPED ELEMI ELUDE EMBED EMEUS EMPTY EQUAL ERGOT ERGOT EXERT EXINE EXUDE FANGA FANNY FAUGH FELON FENDS FETAL FLIRT FOULS FRITH FUGIO GADDI GIRSH GLEYS GOOFY GREBE GRIPE GUIDE GUILT GURUS HAIRY HEAVE HELVE HIPLY HUMOR INANE INAPT IODIC IXIAS JAGGY JAGRA JEANS JETON JOLES JOLES JOLLY JOTAS JOWAR JOYED KILTY LOACH LOSER MATCH MAVIS MAYAN MAZER MEDIC MOLTO MORPH MOUCH NIFTY OKAPI OURIE OURIE OUTGO OVOID PAREU PREXY QANAT QUEAN QUOIN RANCH REINK REIVE RINDY ROILY ROILY SCRAG SCURF SNOOT SOBAL STOVE SWORN TAIGA TAXED TELEX TETHS TOTER TUMID TWEAK UMIAQ UNDID UNFED UNFIT VAGUE VATIC VEEPS VEERY VERTU VICED VIGOR VOGIE VOWEL WEEPY WEIRD WHIPT WILLY WIMPY WINEY WOKEN WOODY WOOER WOOLY WROTE
Dover: (130) ADAGE AFIRE ALOUD AMAZE ANKLE APACE AUGER AUTOS AVOWS AWASH BANJO BLAST BLIND BLOCK BONES BOWER BOXED BUDGE BURLY BURNT CATCH CAVED CHAIR CHAIR CHATS COWER CREED CREPT DATER DEITY DIGIT DIPPY DOZES DRANK EJECT EMPTY EQUAL EQUAL EXAMS EXTRA FAVOR FIBER FIBER FLUTE FOURS GLUES GNAWS GOOSE HAZER HELIX HONED HOVER HUMOR IMAGE JAWED JERKY JOEYS JOINT JOUST JUMPS LEFTY LEMON LYNCH MAXED MEALY MESSY MILES MINTY MIXER MONEY MOPED NEARS NEEDS NIFTY NINNY NOISE OGIVE OOZES PASTA PAYER PECAN PIETY PIVOT POETS POKED PRANK PRINT PROSE PROVE QUADS QUASI QUEST QUEST QUITE QUOTE RIVET ROUND ROUTS SCOPE SIRED SIZER SMELL SNEER SOOTY SOWED SPAWN SPOIL SPOOK SQUAD SQUAT SQUID TAXED TEPEE TOADY TODAY TOKEN TOQUE TRAIN VALES VEGAN VENOM VISOR VISOR VIXEN VOMIT WINDS WOMEN WOMEN WRING ZOOID
Champs: (178) AALS ABOS AEON AGEE AGUE AMUS ARIL AWEE AWES AXEL AYIN AZAN AZAN BARE BEDU BOTT BOYO BRAW BURP CABS CAVE CIGS CINE CLOP CLUB COFT COIF COWY DAME DAZE DELT DEVA DIET DINO DOJO DOZE DREG DULL DUNG EGIS EGOS ESPY EYES FADS FAGS FEEB FINO FLAX FLOE FOHN FOUL FUDS GALS GANG GETA GHEE GIRO GORE GURU HAEN HAPS HATE HOAX HOED HUNH IBEX IDOL INIA INTO IZAR JAGG JEAN JEEP JEFE JEST JIAO JIGS JILT JINK JOLE KAIN KEFS KIEF KITH KOHL LAWS LEAK LIMN LITE LOAD LOFT LOFT LOTA LOTH LUNK LUVS MARS MELD MELT MICK MITT NAIF NAOI NAOI NAPE NEVI NEWT NONE NOTA NOTE NURD OATH OKES OKRA OLIO OLIO OTIC PATH PEON PINE PLOT POOH PORN POUF PREP PULI QUIT QUIZ RATO REGS ROAM ROOM ROVE SLUG SOAK STAB SUNK SWOP SWOP TARO TAXI TINT TOEA TOKE TUBA TUBA TWAS VANE VEER VEIN VERB VETO VEXT VIGA VINE VROW VROW WAIL WALY WANY WANY WARP WAUL WAUR WAUR WAWL WEND WISE WOKE WORM WOVE WYND YETI YOWL ZAPS ZEES ZEKS ZONE
Dover: (134) ADIT AHEM AHOY AUTO AVID AVOW AXLE BOAT BOOS BUMP BUNK CAFE CAGE CAVE CITY CLAY CURE DAZE DOES DRUM EARN EKED EXIT FADE FATE FEAR FEET FLAT FLOE FLUX FOAL FOAM FOOT FURL FUTZ GAIN GIFT GLIB GNUS GOAD GORY GRAY GROG GROW HAIR HAUL HAZE HIVE HOBO HOER HOUR INNS JAPE JAWS JERK JINX JOLT JOWL JUGS JUKE JUTS KILN KNEE LAWS LIMP LOAF LOOT LOUT LURK MAID MAKO MALL MANY MENU NEXT NOVA OBIT OBOE OILY OOZE OUST OVEN PINT PITA POCO POOF POOR PUFF QUAG QUAY QUID RACK RAGE RAZE RITE ROOF RUIN RUNG SAID SNOW SOOT SUER SWAY TAXI TEMP TIFF TILT TOAD TOIL TONG TOOT VASE VIEW VOWS WAGE WAIF WAIN WAIT WALL WAYS WHAT WHIP WHIZ WING WORE WOVE YELL YOUR ZAPS ZEIN ZITS ZOEA ZONE ZONE
Champs: (243) AAL AAL ABO ABO ABO ADD ADD ADO ADO AHI AID AIM AIN AIN AIT AMP ANE ANE ANI ARC ARE ASP ATE AWE BAG BIN BIO BIO BOA BOD BOO BOW BOX BUS BUT BYE BYE COX CRY CUT DAL DID DIF DOE DOM EDH EFS EFS EFS EGO EME ERE ERE ERS ESS ETA ETH FAB FAG FEE FEE FEZ FOE FOE FOH FOP FOX FRY FRY FUB FUN GAD GEM GIN GOD GOO GOX GUT HAT HEM HER HET HEX HIM HIN HOE HUE HUP ICH IFS INN IRE IRK IVY JAB JAB JAR JET JEU JIB JOB JOE JOE JOE JOT KAF KHI KID KOB LAD LAG LAP LAX LEZ LEZ LEZ LIN LIS LOG LOX LOX LOX MAE MID MIX MOW MUD MUN NAB NAB NAG NAM NAW NAW NAY NEE NIP NOB NOM NOR NOR NUN OBA ODE OIL OKA ONO ONO ONO ONO OOT OPE ORA ORT OUD OUR OUT OWE PEA PEH PEN PEN PEW PIX PSI PUB PYA PYA QAT QAT QIS QUA QUA RAJ RAN RAX REE REE REF REG REM RES REV REV REX RHO RIA RIN SAE SAG SEC SEG SHE SUQ TAD TAJ TAW TET THE TOY TOY TUX TWA TWO UKE UPO VAT VAU VAU VET VET VEX VIA VID VIE VOE VOE VOW VUM WAX WEB WHA WHO WHY WIZ WIZ WOE WOW WUD YAP YEA YEA YEH YOM YOW ZAX ZED ZED ZED ZEE ZIN ZIP ZIT
Dover: (125) ADO ADO ADZ AXE AXE BAD BED BOA BOX BOX COX COZ COZ CUB CUD CUD CUR DAD DOG DUH DUO EFT ERA ERA ERE ERN EYE EYE FED FED FEW FIB FIG FIG FIX FLY FOG GAB GAY GEM GOB HAM HER HEW HEY HUE IVY IVY JAB JAG JAM JAW JAY JIG JIG JOB JOT JUG LED LIE LOX LOX MAP MAW MEN MIX MOW NIB NIX NIX NOG NOG NOT NOW OBI OFT OHM ORA OUD OWE OWE PAT PEG PEG PEP PEW POI PUB QUA RES REV SEX SIX SOW SOX TAD TAN TAX TIN TIP TOG TOM TOO TOO TOT TOY TUX TUX UPS UPS VAN VAN VIA VIA WET WOW WOW WRY YAY YAY YIN ZAP ZIT ZOO ZOO
Champs: (411) AA AA AB AB AB AB AB AE AE AE AE AE AE AE AG AG AG AG AI AI AI AI AL AN AN AR AR AR AR AR AR AS AS AT AW AW AW AW AX AX AX AY AY BA BE BE BE BE BE BE BI BI BI BO BO BO BO BO DE DE DE DE DE DE DE DO DO DO DO DO ED ED ED ED ED ED ED ED ED ED EF EF EF EF EF EF EF EF EF EH EH EL EL EL EL EL EM EM EM EM EN EN EN EN EN EN EN EN ER ER ER ER ER ER ER ER ER ES ES ES ES ES ET ET ET ET ET ET ET ET ET EX EX EX EX EX EX EX FA FA FA FA FA FA FA FA FE FE FE GO HA HE HE HE HI HI HI HI HI HM HO ID ID ID ID ID ID ID ID IF IF IF IF IN IN IN IN IN IN IS IS IT IT IT IT IT IT IT JO JO JO JO JO JO JO JO JO JO JO KA KA KI LA LA LA LA LA LI LI LO LO MA MA MA ME ME ME ME ME MI MI MM MO MO MY MY NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NE NE NE NE NE NE NE NE NE NO NO NO NO NU NU OD OE OE OE OE OE OF OF OF OF OF OH OH OI OI OI OM OM OM OM ON ON ON ON ON OP OP OP OR OR OR OR OR OS OS OS OW OW OW OX OX OX OY OY OY OY OY OY OY OY PA PE PI PI PI PI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI RE RE RE RE RE RE RE SH SI SI SI TA TA TA TA TA TA TI TI TI TI TO TO TO TO TO TO UH UH UH UH UH UM UM UM UN UN UN UN UN UP US UT UT UT UT UT UT UT WE WE WE WE WO WO WO WO WO XI XI XI XI XI XU XU XU YA YA YE YE YE YO ZA ZA ZA ZA ZA ZA ZA ZA ZA ZA ZA
Dover: (167) AB AB AD AD AD AD AD AD AD AH AM AN AN AN AR AR AR AR AR AS AS AS AS AS AT AT AT AW AW AX BE BE BE BE BI BI BY BY DO DO DO DO DO DO ED ED ED ED ED ED EF EF EF EF EF EF EF EL EL EL EL EL EM EM EM EM EM EM EN EN EN EN EN ER EX FA FA FA GO GO GO HA HA HE HE HE HE HI ID IF IT IT LA LA LA LO MA ME ME ME ME ME ME MU MY MY MY MY MY NO NO NO NU NU OF OF OH OH ON ON ON ON OR OR OR OR OR OR OR OS OW OX PA PA RE RE RE RE TA TA TA TA TA TA TI TI TI TO TO TO TO UH UM US US US WE WE WE WE XI XI XI YE YO YO YO
Champs: (325) VALORISED BIOPLASM ENCAENIA GUIDABLY PLUMERIA REWINDED ROUTEMAN TRINODAL UNISONAL ACYLOIN ARENITE ARUGOLA BALDIES BEDRUGS DAUTIES DEGAMIS GODETIA IRACUND KAURIES OPAQUER PEERIES PIGOUTS QUINTAN SHIPPON WALLIES ZENAIDA CECITY FEAZES FLOOIE GAPIER HOWFFS LACUNE LOOIES MIRZAS OURARI TRANQS AGAZE BEMIX CLIFT COOMB CREME DEOXY DHUTI DOXIE EMEUS FANGA FAUGH FUGIO GADDI GIRSH IODIC IXIAS JAGRA JETON JOLES JOLES JOTAS JOWAR KILTY MAYAN OURIE OURIE QANAT REIVE RINDY SOBAL TETHS UMIAQ VOGIE WILLY AALS ABOS AGEE AWEE AYIN BEDU BOYO CIGS CINE COFT DEVA DINO FEEB FUDS GIRO HUNH INIA JAGG JEFE JOLE KAIN KEFS KIEF KITH LOTA LUNK LUVS MICK OKES RATO REGS VEXT VROW VROW WALY WANY WANY WAUL WAUR WAUR WAWL WYND AAL AAL ABO ABO ABO AHI DIF DOM EME ERS FOH FUB GOX HET HUP JEU KAF LEZ LEZ LEZ LIN LIS MAE MUN NAM NAW NAW NOM OKA ONO ONO ONO ONO OOT OPE PEH QAT QAT QIS RAX REE REE REG REX RIA RIN SAE SUQ TET UPO VAU VAU VID VOE VOE WHA WUD YEH YOM ZIN AA AA AE AE AE AE AE AE AE AL BA BO BO BO BO BO DE DE DE DE DE DE DE ES ES ES ES ES ET ET ET ET ET ET ET ET ET FE FE FE HM JO JO JO JO JO JO JO JO JO JO JO KA KA KI MM MO MO NA NA NA NA NA NA NA NE NE NE NE NE NE NE NE NE OD OE OE OE OE OE OI OI OI OM OM OM OM OP OP OP OY OY OY OY OY OY OY OY PE QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI QI SI SI SI UN UN UN UN UN WO WO WO WO WO XU XU XU YA YA YE ZA ZA ZA ZA ZA ZA ZA ZA ZA ZA ZA
Champs: (57) AD/ZA/ID AX/ZA/EX AY/AI/YA EF/BE/EF EF/RE/EF EX/ET/XI EX/OE/EX EX/OE/EX FA/FA/AS HE/UH/ME ID/XI/ID JO/JO/OW ME/OM/AE MO/ME/OD OF/JO/IF OF/JO/OF OF/OD/FA OM/BO/UM OR/JO/ER OR/WO/ER OY/BO/AY QI/QI/IN UN/UM/NA ZA/ZA/AL AB/AB BI/BI DO/ED ED/YE EF/IF JO/JO OY/OP QI/AI QI/HI QI/IF QI/MI QI/OI QI/QI QI/SI UT/UT XI/QI ZA/FA EN HO IN IT LI MU NU OR QI QI QI QI QI QI QI UH
Dover: (never happens)
Stepping through the games play by play and counting up the turns in which the experts played an invalid word or made a mini-play, we find that 42.1% of their plays (327 out of 777) would not even be allowed in the Dover Scrabble Club.
One thing that can be said for the champs, their boards ooze with vital force!
Champs: 411 Twos + 243 Threes → 654 Shorties/1205 words = 54.3% Shorties
Dover: 167 Twos + 125 Threes → 292 Shorties/907 words = 32.2% Shorties
Note well: over half of the words on the boards of the best Scrabble players on earth are two- and three-letters. Can there be any wonder why there is no appreciable audience for Scrabble played at the highest level?
Champs: 75 Sixes + 75 Sevens + 65 Eights + 7 Nines + 1 Ten → 223 Long Words/1205 words = 18.5% Long Words
Dover: 103 Sixes + 153 Sevens + 79 Eights + 15 Nines + 1 Ten → 351 Long Words/907 words = 38.7% Long Words
Champs: 4581 letters/1205 words = 3.80 letters/word
Dover: 4361 letters/907 words = 4.81 letters/word
Or, you may find it more striking to consider the average number of words on the final board:
Champs: 39.3 measly, flea-bitten words on final board.
Dover: 26.6 good, honest, upstanding words on final board!
So the Dover Scrabble Club plays words about one letter longer, on the average, than the North American champs. Put another way, our words average about 26.6% longer! The mind boggles at what the champs could do if they kissed the funny little stuff goodbye, and stepped up to . . . Scrabble II!
The Dover Scrabble Club (Delaware) plays Scrabble II, which is pure Scrabble with a few very small, very natural, long overdue fixes which rescue the game from the army of outlandish midget words which have taken over Scrabble in the decades since the game was invented. The game has been broken wide open, but, otherwise, all the strategies remain the same. In a nutshell, Scrabble II is . . .
Moreover, we use a conventional dictionary, the American Heritage Dictionary 4th Edition, to further keep our boards from looking like Greek or Martian. The American Heritage is probably about 75% as inclusive as the Official Scrabble Players' Dictionary (OSPD), but it has more words than you'll ever use, in life or in Scrabble. You've seen in this study that, by not having some weird little word to get you out of each and every jam, you are nudged into playing longer, more respectable words. I urge you to consider a conventional dictionary. A smaller, more refined word set in Scrabble has just the opposite effect to what you would think.
. . . is any of the following:
1. Give it a try!
2. Give it a try and report back!
3. A quality Scrabble II program placed prominently on the internet. I'll pay reasonable programming costs!
4. A dear, old benefactor to bankroll a Scrabble II tournament with the largest ever cash prizes for a Scrabble tournament (which would still only amount to chicken change!)
In moving up from the second to the fourth edition of the American Heritage a few years ago, I found a few words were added which I couldn't bear fouling up my Scrabble boards. While I was rejecting those words, I took the opportunity to "retire" all the Hebrew letters (letters aren't words; Hebrew is foreign) and a few old-timers, including AZO and ZOA, which never pop up in real life and which have long since worn out their welcome on the Scrabble board. See my Dover Scrabble Club rules page for a list of charges against the condemned:
AA AE JO PE QI ZA
AZO DEX DIS HOS IGG JEE MEM SUQ TAV VAU VAV WAW ZAG ZIG ZEP ZOA
May they rest in peace.
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