Creating a trump card

sowpods-medJust like in ‘bridge’ (a card game), in scrabble we could sometimes have a trump card. And as with any other trumps, we just need to play it right. Now what are you going to do, if you have a rack and a board like this?

(1094) Blue: 196 +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ (1169) Red: 239sowpods setup advantage - tile

Holding the last Y, I made M10: PUNCH. Then my last Y became a trump card since it was the only letter that could ‘back-hook’ punch (PUNCHY)—reaching the upper or lower TWS. There was still one wildcard (blank) somewhere (either in the bag or already on Blue’s rack), but this was worth the risk (and it just so happened that my next move was 15L: DYNE).


Sowpods word: DA, GERT


Guinness, anyone?

In scrabble, in the whole timespan (careful guys, this ain’t yet a TWL term) of your scrabble life, how many times do you see some highly unusual games, let alone play them yourself? Frankly, I never give it much thought myself. Not before this game. It happened a couple of days ago. Look at the board. See anything strange?


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QUIZ – when time is running out

harderThis is a gift from a friend. I could not solve this, but maybe you could. We are the first player. Bag’s already empty. The clock is ticking. Last time to strike.

Find a bingo.

1st Player: 228++++++++++++++++++++++ 2nd Player: 290quiz harder end mustbingoTiles left: 0 – A C J N P (opponent’s)


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Don’t do the don’ts

mediumThere are things in scrabble—however legal, that we’d rather not do. Here are two of them, both involving giving the opponent unnecessary scoring boost.

(1276) Blue: 87 +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ (1242) Red: 49dontdothedonts

Red had just moved 8K: LUAU. This is reckless. Giving a TWS to your opponent like this is a big—and I mean Big, no-no. Just check out what Blue had got on the rack. With O4: ZETAS, Blue would kick an easy 87 pointer. Without throwing a blank, and it’s not even a bingo(!).

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Exchange – tug of luck

mediumScoring and keeping in touch with the dynamics of the board is important. But there are times when the only sensible thing to do is to make an exchange.

Look at the board (row-A in particular), and the tiles on the rack.

(1226) Blue: 287+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ (1236) Red: 267
2 xchange(Tiles left: 7 — E G I M NN OO P RR TTT)

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Using reminders

sowpods-easyA photograph is always a good reminder for it helps us remember things. But a reminder does not have to be something physical. Actually, anything at all (making sense or otherwise) will do. As long as it works, it’s good.

Are you unfamiliar with SOWPODS? Try learning these words, by using reminders.

a village in the Netherlands
Search and Rescue
Leave or Rescue
Only Rescuing Force (sorry, we don’t search)
to stoit = to bounce



(1347) Blue: 390 +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ (1450) Red: 346sowpods-01


The Bingo Line(s)

easyLove making a bingo? Then better make a habit of recognizing the bingo line(s)—area(s) on the board where we will have a fair chance to lay down a bingo. The idea of recognizing the bingo line beforehand (then make a mental note of it) is that we will quickly know where to look if we have a bingo combination on our rack.

As we can see, this board has at least seven bingo lines—marked by the yellow lines (you can add more if you wish, like row-L or column-3). Of all these seven, the (bingo) line on the first row (row-A) is the least flexible since it can only fit to a bingo ending with an A (to parallel the letter-B). Please notice that although an R can only be ‘under-paralleled’ by an E, row-K can still be considered flexible because we don’t have to start from right under the R (in this case, we can start from one square to the left—that is K7:, for instance).

Now look at the tiles on the rack. See any bingo? Where would it fit? (answer below).

(834) Blue: 188 +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++ (1273) Red: 1681 - bingo (place)_line

Righto! Sure we’ve got MAIDENS. Where to? (Hint: as we don’t have to start from right under the letter-R on row-K, we also don’t have to start from right above the letter-T on row-N).