OFFENSIVE SCRABBLE. Over the years, our family Scrabble games have become more and more like NBA All Star games—all offense, no defense. We had already moved in that direction by a tacit agreement not to take into consideration whether a play would open up a triple word score possibility for another player. We also gave—in contrast with the current trend for professionals—warm praise to a player who opened up an area of the board. We adopted a rule where everybody had 8 tiles in their rack, but continued to give a fifty point “bingo” bonus for a move using 7 letters. Then we acquired a version of the game called “Superscrabble” which had a bigger board, and some bonus squares which multiplied a score by four times rather than three times. We are now experimenting with permitting trades of letters if it would help make a “good” word.

It’s more fun to make “good” words and have high scores.

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