Major App Store Scrabble Update

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I have always been a fan of Scrabble. When I was a wee lad, I used to play scrabble with my grandmother. She hated to lose any game she played, but she let me win most of the time.

When iPhone 2.0 shipped, Scrabble was one of the first games I purchased. The 1.0 release was a great standalone implementation and that still stands across all releases.

Beyond a generally intuitive user interface with pleasant graphics, the game features great standalone play. The AI is well balanced, with difficulty levels that are quite nicely tuned. At the most difficult level, you have to play equally as defensive as offensive to be able to win.

The first major update added Bonjour based play. Great for playing against someone who you would likely be better off sitting in front of the real game. However, clearly the foundation had been laid for serious online play.

And with yesterday’s release, Scrabble’s online play is here. Electronic Arts added full integration with FaceBook. Once you log into FaceBook via the Scrabble game, you can easily browse available games, create new games, and join existing games. When creating or joining a game, there is a sort of “time span” hint available– should the players expect the game to take an hour, an evening, or days.

Not surprisingly, there is also an in-game chat. However, the chat does not offer any spelling corrections as doing so would mean that you could use the chat to cheat at the game!

When playing another human, the game adds a couple of in-game features not available when playing the computer. First, there is a dictionary which lets you look up words, but offers no suggestions. It also displays all valid two letter combinations, just about the only hint in the game.

Better, though, is the Teacher button. After any play, hitting the Teacher button first shows your play in red and then shows the optimal points play in green. The source of many a Doh! moment, but it will definitely improve my play over time.

Excellent stuff!

(Oh, and I did go on to lose that game. My opponent started the game with a 98 point, 7 tile play and, thus, it was catchup throughout. I did manage to briefly pull into the lead, but had a few Doh! moments late in the game that ultimately cost me the victory.)

I am finding that the game joining functionality seems a bit broken at times. It doesn’t consistently find available games and sometimes lists games that are already in play.



One Response to “Major App Store Scrabble Update”

  1. Topics about Games » Archive » Major App Store Scrabble Update says:

    […] MMO Clerks created an interesting post today on Major App Store Scrabble UpdateHere’s a short outlineOnce you log into FaceBook via the Scrabble game, you can easily browse available games, create new games, and join existing games. […]

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