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Scrabble Needs a New Scoring System

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the and-anagram-generator-detection dept.

Math 202

innocent_white_lamb writes "A researcher says that some letters are over valued and some are under-valued in Scrabble, due to recent changes to the lists of allowable words. Z and X are now much easier to play and should be worth less, while U, M and G should be worth more than they are now. Joshua Lewis wrote a program to re-calculate the value of each letter to better reflect the current usage. The co-president of the North American Scrabble Players Association says that he often hears criticism of Scrabble's scoring system, but any change would bring about 'catastrophic outrage'. A spokesman for Mattel says that they have no plans to change the game."

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202 comments

Public Outrage? (5, Funny)

ButchDeLoria (2772751) | about a year ago | (#42606991)

What are they gonna do, send them a letter?

Re:Public Outrage? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607111)

Nothing because literally nobody gives a flipping fuck.

News for bored idiots, stuff that never mattered to anyone relevant.

Re:Public Outrage? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607407)

Yes. But not a U, M or G, since those aren't worth enough.

Why not just version the Rules? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607003)

Why not just version the Rules? Original, 2012, etc? MTG has new decks come out, new rules come out,old cards removed new added... they did fine (relatively).

The language changes... so should the rules.

Re:Why not just version the Rules? (5, Funny)

Mike Buddha (10734) | about a year ago | (#42607055)

Scrabble: The Collectible Tile Game!

You bring your own tiles and devise a set that gives you optimal word options. And the loser is banished from the land of Dominaria.

Re:Why not just version the Rules? (2)

kelemvor4 (1980226) | about a year ago | (#42607273)

Scrabble: The Collectible Tile Game!

You bring your own tiles and devise a set that gives you optimal word options. And the loser is banished from the land of Dominaria.

Just imagine the black market revenue from counterfeit tiles!

Re:Why not just version the Rules? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607543)

If someone uses proxies, do they just write the letter on the board?

Re:Why not just version the Rules? (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year ago | (#42607667)

Mostly because nobody plays MTG anymore. WoTC destroyed that game.

Re:Why not just version the Rules? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42608503)

Well MTG is "yesterday's" new for sure... but the point is that you can have different variations of the "Official" rules that account for stupid stuff like a living, changing language. New words, different letter usage patterns, etc.

I didn't think a Car Analogy worked, so I picked something else nerds should at-least be familiar with.

TL;DR (2)

TemperedAlchemist (2045966) | about a year ago | (#42607021)

Mattel has come out with a statement today denouncing logic, reason, and fairness.

FUCK THE GUN-GRABBERS (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607161)

Speaking of logic and reason, fuck the gun-grabbers. I'm going to join the NRA and buy a Bushmaster AR-15 with 2 100-round drums of ammo to show my support for our second amendment. Shit happens. You keep calm and carry on, or you flail your arms like a pussy and ask big brother to ban everything you don't agree with -- which is what happens when America's once proud youth are raised as politically-correct pussies.

-- Ethanol-fueled

more serious threat to our children (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607487)

They already have banned peanut butter in nearly every kindergarten and in some elementary schools. PEANUT BUTTER!

Re:FUCK THE GUN-GRABBERS (0, Offtopic)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year ago | (#42607687)

Why are you buying a pussy gun? Real men own an AR-10 or AR-50.

Re:FUCK THE GUN-GRABBERS (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607749)

...seriously? That's the sort of tenuous, grasping-at-straws discussion hijack the rest of us would come up with when we think we're JOKING about Stupid America's gun fetish.

Q: How many NRA members does it take to screw in a light bulb?
A: More guns.

Re:TL;DR (2)

Kijori (897770) | about a year ago | (#42608403)

That's not a fair summary.

What they have said is that they won't be changing the scores because there's a significant disadvantage (people being unhappy with the lost nostalgia) and not much of an advantage, since having a couple of over- or under-valued letters doesn't make much difference in a game with so much inherent luck.

Mattel? (4, Insightful)

mark-t (151149) | about a year ago | (#42607025)

Scrabble is Hasbro IP.

Hasbro and Mattel are two *ENTIRELY* separate companies. Rivals, in fact.

Saying that Mattel has no plans to change the game is like saying that Microsoft has no plans to change the iPhone.

Damn.... my bad for not RTFA... (5, Informative)

mark-t (151149) | about a year ago | (#42607095)

Okay, yes. Mattel *DOES* make Scrabble... but only *outside* North America.

Considering the second-last sentence in the summary just mentioned the "North American Scrabble Players Association" right before Mattel, I trust you can understand my confusion. The article clarifies the point by noting that Mattel make Scrabble in Europe.

Re:Damn.... my bad for not RTFA... (2)

lolococo (574827) | about a year ago | (#42607309)

...but only outside North America
er, doesn't that encompass, like, the whole rest of the world?

Re:Damn.... my bad for not RTFA... (1)

mark-t (151149) | about a year ago | (#42607363)

Yes it does.... but the summary just finished mentioning the North American Scrabble Player's Association, and then suddenly mentions Mattel without offering any indication that the context was being switched.

Re:Damn.... my bad for not RTFA... (2)

godrik (1287354) | about a year ago | (#42607961)

What? You RTFA? I thought I was browsing Slashdot. Somebody must have hacked my DNS...

Re:Mattel? (2)

brian1078 (230523) | about a year ago | (#42607105)

Mattel owns Scrabble outside of North America (US & Canada). Hasbro owns it within.

Re:Mattel? (1)

mark-t (151149) | about a year ago | (#42607147)

Yes... got that. Thanks. The summary explicitly mentioned the "North American Scrabble Players Association" before bringing up Mattel, and without any indication that they were switching contexts. The article is more explicit in this regard, and is clearer.

Re:Mattel? (1)

larry bagina (561269) | about a year ago | (#42607165)

It's a little more complicated than that. Mattel has worldwide-rights...but in the US/Canada Hasbro has the rights.

Re:Mattel? (1)

mark-t (151149) | about a year ago | (#42607243)

Got that. Thanks. My confusion was from the following sentences in the summary (emphasis mine).

The co-president of the North American Scrabble Players Association says that he often hears criticism of Scrabble's scoring system, but any change would bring about 'catastrophic outrage'. A spokesman for Mattel says that they have no plans to change the game."

The article is clearer on this point by explicitly pointing out that Mattel is the distributor for Scrabble in Europe, providing sufficient context to understand why Mattel would be mentioned with regards to Scrabble after only just mentioning North America.

Re:Mattel? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607203)

It looks like Hasbro and Mattel both manufacture Scrabble, according to the omniscient* Wikipedia [wikipedia.org]. Hasbro has copyright in the US, while Mattel has copyright everywhere else in the world.

*sarcasm

Re:Mattel? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607235)

Oops. It looks like someone else pointed this out before I finished typing my post. Please disregard.

Re:Mattel? (1)

kelemvor4 (1980226) | about a year ago | (#42607461)

It looks like Hasbro and Mattel both manufacture Scrabble, according to the omniscient* Wikipedia [wikipedia.org]. Hasbro has copyright in the US, while Mattel has copyright everywhere else in the world.

*sarcasm

Those companies may own a copyright but scrabble is actually manufactured in China. The only thing I found surprising is that the packaging was still made in the US and hadn't been outsourced as well. Source: http://www.cbsnews.com/2100-202_162-589970.html [cbsnews.com]

Re:Mattel? (1)

alphatel (1450715) | about a year ago | (#42607767)

Saying that Mattel has no plans to change the game is like saying that Microsoft has no plans to change the iPhone.

I see... plans within plans. I see two Great Houses -- House Atreides, House Harkonnen -- feuding... I see you behind it.

Re:Mattel? (2)

Sulphur (1548251) | about a year ago | (#42607853)

Scrabble is Hasbro IP.

Hasbro and Mattel are two *ENTIRELY* separate companies. Rivals, in fact.

Saying that Mattel has no plans to change the game is like saying that Microsoft has no plans to change the iPhone.

Are you sure?

It doesn't matter (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607037)

It is a game, the iportant thing is that everyone is playing by the same rules. Sure, if you were to develop scrabble today, it might be nice to adjust the values of the letters to reduce the element of chance in the game, but now there is insufficient reason to go and change it. It woudl still have been ok if every letter had the same value.

Re:It doesn't matter (2)

treeves (963993) | about a year ago | (#42607303)

"It would still have been [much less interesting and fun] if every letter had the same value."

Fixed it for you.

Re:It doesn't matter (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607413)

the iportant thing is that everyone is playing by the same rules

On the contrary, the "iportant" thing is that everyone is trapped in the same walled garden.

Re:It doesn't matter (4, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | about a year ago | (#42607565)

But would you really want to reduce the element of chance? People like to play poker because although you will lose to a poker pro over time, you can sit down with the world's best poker player and win some hands, while with chess you'll lose to Magnus Carlsen 100 out of 100 times. Making it a pure skills-based game is only fun for the one with the best skill, assuming fun should have anything to do with games.

Re:It doesn't matter (2)

Sperbels (1008585) | about a year ago | (#42607649)

It is a game, the iportant thing is that everyone is playing by the same rules.

No it's not. There are a limited number of each letter. If one letter becomes easier play, and there's only one of that letter, then the person who drew it gets an unfair advantage.

Re:It doesn't matter (3, Insightful)

pclminion (145572) | about a year ago | (#42607725)

The problem is when the values are WAY off. Then the outcome of the game strongly depends on the letters drawn by the player and much less so on the knowledge of the player. For instance, if all letters were worth 1, but E was worth 10, then it would be purely a game of who draws the most E's, as it is simple to come up with words including that letter.

why does it have to be level? (1)

goombah99 (560566) | about a year ago | (#42608097)

In poker, you have the same chance of getting a 2 and King, but the king is more powerful. On a GO board not every playable square is equally strong. Why should scrabble make it so the letter composition of your word is neutral? some letters can be more valuable than others. One can account for this in strategy. makes the game richer not off kilter.

Meanwhile... (1)

Servaas (1050156) | about a year ago | (#42607057)

a random nobody from the Netherlands said "some researchers are over valued and some are under-valued in Real Life."

Flattening the scoring (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607093)

This was brought up during an NPR interview the earlier this week and I agreed with the mentioned counterpoint. While it makes logical sense for a rework of the scoring system, it's effectively flattening it and removing some of the strategy around the unpredictability of the game.

Regardless, Mattel has already gone on record (I believe) stating it will keep the scoring as is.

Re:Flattening the scoring (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607747)

I agree. Nerfing the high point letters in scrabble would be like nerfing home runs in baseball. Sure they have an outsized impact on the game relative to their frequency (home runs are more common than triples), but the key point is that a game should be interesting not that things should strictly be rewarded in proportion of their difficulty.

Re:Flattening the scoring (4, Interesting)

Sarten-X (1102295) | about a year ago | (#42608593)

There are three ways to play Scrabble.

First, there's the novice's strategy. Pull letters from the back, make a word on the rack, and figure out where it can fit. At this level, the game is purely a contest to see who has the biggest vocabulary.

For intermediate players, recognizing words scrambled on the rack is easier, and perhaps even memorizing common anagrams is a viable means for improvement. Multiple options are planned, and bonuses (including making multiple words) figure into the decision.

Experts use the letters more as a means to control the board, under the assumption that their opponent has perfect tiles to use opportunities open to them. The game is less about words, and more about controlling what options the other player has available. A low-scoring word may be the best option if it means that future plays will be better. The whole playable dictionary is memorized, and anagrams are recognized naturally. This is not to say that words are unimportant, but rather that the game is more of strategy than chance for experts.

Whether a particular letter actually matches its distribution means practically nothing to the really competitive players. The score total of each play, though, is something these players have spent years refining.

Source: One of my in-laws is one of the top 5 Scrabble players in his state. I know exactly how poorly I play... and I had a cheat sheet and help.

a friendlier game than scrabble... (3, Informative)

doug141 (863552) | about a year ago | (#42607141)

is Upwords. Scrabble can get adversarial with the rules on challenging a word. Upwords lets you challenge a word without fear of losing your turn. Also, you can play just fine with a more limited vocabulary due to the nature of play. If you are playing with kids or just want a more amicable game, try it.

Re:a friendlier game than scrabble... (1)

GodfatherofSoul (174979) | about a year ago | (#42608499)

My parents play scrabble a lot and here's their house rule. You can challenge a word, but if you're wrong, you lose a turn. If you're right, the other player has to withdraw the word and loses his turn. They usually have a challenge dictionary they bust out for the game.

Rabble rabble! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607171)

Rabble rabble rabble!

Do I score the subject too? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607419)

rabble = 10 points. 30 points for triple word score.

See these letters as 'bonus' and 'penalty' (5, Insightful)

G3ckoG33k (647276) | about a year ago | (#42607173)

Many games have these, 'bonus' and 'penalty', and Scrabble appears to be one of them.

It is part of the game and Mattel has no reason to change their rules.

Re:See these letters as 'bonus' and 'penalty' (1)

maxwell demon (590494) | about a year ago | (#42608517)

Do the letters have different values for the versions sold in different countries with different languages? For example, there are many more words with Y in English than in German. So one could argue that for German versions, Y should be more valuable than for English ones.

If they don't do such language adaptions, there's no reason to adapt specifically for the English language. Indeed, it might even be that the current values are the result of some averaging over different languages, so no language has a big advantage or disadvantage.

It's a game (5, Insightful)

Overzeetop (214511) | about a year ago | (#42607185)

If you don't like it, go get yourself some wood putty and a sharpie and make the letters whatever value you damned well please.

Re:It's a game (1)

RedHat Rocky (94208) | about a year ago | (#42608219)

Or better yet, get youself a 3D printer and start selling alternate letter sets today. Like right now. Watch the IP issues.

I'm attempting slightly funny here, but the sadness is which part of the make money plan above is the hard part. No, it ain't the time or actually making the letters.

Something else to do (0)

PhreakinPenguin (454482) | about a year ago | (#42607271)

I can almost say this with certainty that the guy figuring out Scrabble letter values would contribute to society far more doing something else with his time.

Re:Something else to do (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607393)

It probably took all of a week, and it got him some publicity.

Re:Something else to do (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607505)

I would be interested to know if the tiles have different scores for non-English versions like Welsh or Hawaiian for that matter.

Re:Something else to do (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607965)

In Welsh, scoring is determined by how many 'y's you can put in a row within a word.

Re:Something else to do (1)

YttriumOxide (837412) | about a year ago | (#42608549)

I would be interested to know if the tiles have different scores for non-English versions like Welsh or Hawaiian for that matter.

Haven't seen a Welsh or Hawaiian version; but yes - international versions do have different scores for the letters as well as a different count of letters (and sometimes of course, even totally different letters) to accommodate the differences in the language.

For example, Z is worth nowhere near as much in German scrabble, as Z appears fairly frequently in German.

After typing my reply, I wanted to double check the values, and came across this [wikipedia.org] in my Google results.

Scrabble...? (5, Funny)

snarfies (115214) | about a year ago | (#42607283)

What is that, some kind of ripoff of Words With Friends?

Re:Scrabble...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607755)

They also copied the board game http://www.hasbro.com/games/en_US/shop/details.cfm?R=2AF67016-5056-900B-10AB-B53826132C53:en_US . You know it is one thing to make a software clone but you would think the board game would be safe. ;)

Re:Scrabble...? (1)

N0Man74 (1620447) | about a year ago | (#42608069)

When Christmas shopping, I saw a "Words with Friends" board game. I turned to my girlfriend and said, "It's like the board game Scrabble, but online, and then taken offline and made into a board game."

My days of reading Slashdot are nearing an end.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607329)

My days of reading Slashdot are nearing an end. This used to be a website for hand-selected news that had value. There are thousands of websites that post, post, post, post, post all day. Slashdot was nice, I even keep it on my iGoogle, because it presented a trim selection of important pieces of news.

I'm sure this is said every day, and wah wah wah, who cares, but it's disappointing to see a web site I love dumb themselves down.

This is a message out of love, not hate.

The CRISIS! (1)

houbou (1097327) | about a year ago | (#42607369)

This is SERIOUS people! This topic should be next in line with 'are we eating too much garlic as a people' :)

Re:The CRISIS! (1)

Sperbels (1008585) | about a year ago | (#42607709)

Sorry, is this the wrong kind of nerd news story? If only slashdot had some kind of system where the users could decide what stories to show.

Re:The CRISIS! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607933)

At least give credit to Lewis Black..

Re:The CRISIS! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607957)

This is SERIOUS people! This topic should be next in line with 'are we eating too much garlic as a people' :)

The guy in the next cube is eating too much of *something*. He smells like death.

If you completely balance the system... (2)

OrangeTide (124937) | about a year ago | (#42607385)

Then it seems like you eliminate possible strategies. What's wrong with leaving a bit of strategy to the game where decisions you make are based by biases the rules create?

'catastrophic outrage' (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607399)

Really? 'catastrophic outrage'? People really need to get a grip. It's like calling someone a Nazi for minor offenses.

And Beyonce can only sing 3 notes (1)

gelfling (6534) | about a year ago | (#42607451)

We need to redefine 'music' as those 3 notes. Oh wait, stop allowing all those crazy bullshit words in Scrabble in the first place. Qi? Really?

Re:And Beyonce can only sing 3 notes (1)

tippe (1136385) | about a year ago | (#42607515)

Whoa! Settle down, it's just a game! BTW, is this an example of "catastrophic outrage" that scrabble players are apparently prone to, or just regular outrage?

Re:And Beyonce can only sing 3 notes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607919)

de?
ka?
qi?
za? za, really? fuckers.

No it doesn't (2)

curty (42764) | about a year ago | (#42607479)

It's just a proposal, not a requirement.

Even Joshua Lewis, inventor of the new system believes the traditional valuations can make the game more exciting.

"You're really lucky if you pick an X because it's over-valued and unlucky if you pick a V. So if they were to re-do the values of the tiles that would reduce the level of luck.

"That might be desirable in tournaments but it might not be as good in casual play where you want the less skilled players to have a shot periodically at beating the more highly skilled players."

Source: The "British Media" [bbc.co.uk]

Re:No it doesn't (1)

YodasEvilTwin (2014446) | about a year ago | (#42608015)

That's BS. I'm not the greatest but I have also never been beaten by a shitty Scrabble player. All it does is make it impossible to determine whether my dad is better than me without tracking our games, playing a statistically significant number of them, controlling for conditions, etc. :P

Rethinking the value of Scrabble tiles (3, Informative)

stuckinarut (891702) | about a year ago | (#42607563)

Original Joshua Lewis (the researcher) blog posting: Rethinking the value of Scrabble tiles [useost.com]

I've developed an open source package called Valett for determining letter valuations in word games based on statistical analyses of corpora. In addition to calculating the frequency of each letter in a corpus, Valett calculates the frequency by word length and the incoming and outgoing entropy for each letter's transition probabilities. One can then weight these properties of the corpus based on the structure of the game and arrive at a suggested value for each letter..

So? (2)

sootman (158191) | about a year ago | (#42607587)

News flash: EVERY OTHER GAME has scores that are roughly, but not exactly, aligned with their probability. It's part if the game. Baskets in basketball have 3 values: 1, 2, and 3 points, for the entire court and all circumstances. A dartboard has dozens of scores possible with nearly NO relation to the probability of hitting one. It's what makes the game what it is and it's what leads to different strategies.

Not a huge impact on experts? (0)

Sowelu (713889) | about a year ago | (#42607637)

Players who study all the insane crazy words can play Zs and Qs wherever they want anyway, players who don't will never be able to. And at the highest levels of the game, individual letter values don't matter all that much anyway because people are always getting those nutty "use your whole hand" bonuses.

I generally play with a non-scrabble-fanatic judge instead of a dictionary to determine word correctness. Sorry, "Qat" is not a word.

Re:Not a huge impact on experts? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607849)

It's a word I use on a daily basis in conversation.

Not everyone is an ignoramus.

Re:Not a huge impact on experts? (2)

gary_7vn (1193821) | about a year ago | (#42608353)

Yes, it is, it's used in English magazines, newspapers, and orally. You just used it. Usage is what makes a word a word. I suppose instead of saying glacier, you say "a big piece of ice thingy". Even your abigail would know that.

Fischer Scrabble (2)

RedHackTea (2779623) | about a year ago | (#42607641)

Give them random values! Simply have a list of all of the letters, roll some die, write the numbers down next to the letters, and badabing badaboom.

One Change Good, Two Changes bad? (3, Insightful)

MDMurphy (208495) | about a year ago | (#42607679)

I can see the point made by people wanting to change the scoring. The initial letter/point associations were made based on the number of tiles in the bag and the frequency of use at the time. The "official" rules have changed by virtue of the allowable words. With new acceptable words added the letter frequency changed as well.
If new words are added (or subtracted ) , to keep the game the same, then eventually the letter scoring would also need to change if the desire was to keep the game from changing. Changes were made for non-English versions, with different distribution of letters and point values:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scrabble_letter_distributions [wikipedia.org]

So if English has changed since 1938 it's not outrageous to suggest a new distribution/scoring mix. Desire to keep the game "the same" is also understandable, but that would require using a 1938 dictionary and not allowing new words. ( Nope, can't used "quark" )

Re:One Change Good, Two Changes bad? (1)

Convector (897502) | about a year ago | (#42608081)

Quark may still be allowed. It also refers to a type of fresh cheese [wikipedia.org]. However, it might be considered a German word, in which case it's still invalid. Also I have no idea when it was first produced, but likely before 1938.

Re:One Change Good, Two Changes bad? (1)

MDMurphy (208495) | about a year ago | (#42608373)

I was thinking the subatomic particle. I should have gone with transistor, but wanted to use my "Q"

Re:One Change Good, Two Changes bad? (1)

gary_7vn (1193821) | about a year ago | (#42608385)

Quark was coined by James Joyce in Finnegan's Wake, which was serialized in 1924 and finally published in 1939. But I take your point.

Who cares? (1)

Lumpy (12016) | about a year ago | (#42607705)

news flash: Play the game with your own rules. I have been doing that with risk for 2 decades now. Most everyone that has tried my ruleset likes it a LOT better than the stock rules.

Re:Who cares? (1)

CrashNBrn (1143981) | about a year ago | (#42607883)

Where are these rules? :-) One of my favorite Risk games was Risk II on the PC.

Basic Risk rules are flawed for sure, even if all you consider is the value of retaining certain "continents" per round.

Re:Who cares? (2)

coinreturn (617535) | about a year ago | (#42608417)

My favorite rule is blank replacement. If you have the letter a blank was played as, you get to swap it on the board and take the blank into your rack.

C and V!!! (2)

GeoSanDiego (703197) | about a year ago | (#42607719)

His methodology could be enhanced. Letters C and V should be bumped up as well since the fact that they cannot be made into 2 letter words often makes them less useful and harder to play.

Re:C and V!!! (1)

coinreturn (617535) | about a year ago | (#42608401)

His methodology could be enhanced. Letters C and V should be bumped up as well since the fact that they cannot be made into 2 letter words often makes them less useful and harder to play.

I've been saying that for years. Really, it comes down to the two-letter words. I've noticed that Words with Friends uses a different scoring, perhaps in an attempt to fix the perceived problem.

Just shut up and play the game. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#42607745)

Good god. Honestly now, how much of a life do you have to lack to put a story out about the scoring system in scrabble needs to be changed?

Its just a board game, if you dont like it then dont play it. This is as stupid as bitching that monopoly values need to be reassesed due to the current housing market value of a street or the decline of the american dollars value.

I remember a friend once said... (2)

Jack9 (11421) | about a year ago | (#42607943)

A perfectly balanced game is not a game. It's a function.
There's little value in making scrabble more abstract. Good on Mattel.

Mattel (2)

RazorSharp (1418697) | about a year ago | (#42608283)

It would be wise for Mattel to change the values because then Scrabble enthusiasts everywhere would have a reason to buy another Scrabble board/chips. It would make for a nice cash grab and they have this research as a nifty excuse for doing so. My parents play Scrabble a lot (they're retired) and their set is at least thirty years old -- it's been around as long as I can remember. Even if they didn't upgrade, someone in the family would be quick to get one for them as a x-mas/b-day present.

Make your own damn rules! (1)

gary_7vn (1193821) | about a year ago | (#42608295)

If the players agree, any arbitrary point value can be applied to the letters. There are already several unofficial variant rule sets out there, so, you know, just do it if you want, and don't if you don't like it. Now I am off the cwm to play a tune on my crwth.
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