Scrabble Tips and Tricks

Mehal Shah argues that Scrabble isn’t a game of who can get the best 6 letter words but a game of points and squeezing 2 letter terms into corners. Also, of frustrating your opponents. And cheating.

Mostly amusing and occasionally helpful. The “dirty tricks” toward the end may be fair game in tournament play but not in social play with your friends. Not if you intend to keep them as your friends, anyway.

via Jason Kottke

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. hln says:

    Well…yeah! Three-letter words, too.

  2. kth says:

    It isn’t cheating to make up words if the other player doesn’t challenge them, or to bamboozle other players into challenging words that you know are real. The “challenge” rule, that you have to forfeit a turn for a failed challenge, clearly encourages these kinds of tactics.

    You can play Scrabble in such a way that all words have to be routinely verified, and there’s neither a penalty for a failed challenge nor a reward for a successful bluff. But that’s a lot less interesting a game than the one delineated by the official rules, in which brinksmanship is equally important with the puzzle-solving skills.

  3. JNUrbanski says:

    This guy is amusing and entertaining but he lost me the minute he encouraged me to lie. Technically, it might not be cheating but if that’s what you need to do to win, then you’re not a true scrabble nut. You’re just a weirdo anorak who needs to mess with people at dinner parties.