Forum Thread: Scrabble game help

playing scrabble currently with a buddy of mine and we're down to the last. I have six tiles and he has 2 tiles. He has 410 pts and I am on 393 pts. What would be my best play in this situation. I have seen some that give me 23, 26 pts but they are just not enough to offset the amt he will gain from spelling out his hand, and taking pts from my remaining tiles. Let me know when you can guys.

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4 Responses

Tough situation you've got yourself in.

There aren't many moves for you, and you're right (as far as I can see), you can't go out on this turn. So, you've got to make the right move so the other player doesn't win with the final adjusted points.

The score is 410 to 393, you're losing.

If you play LIGHT on the SE of SEREIN (spelling LIGHT, SH, and ET), then you would get 18 points, bringing your score up to 411. Still not enough to win, considering your opponent has an F and N tile. After that, I only see two options for the other player to go out, spelling FIN and FUN for 6 points each.

That means you just lost by 7 points.

Another option is to go with TITHE (the first T on RICE, second from DELTA) for 23 points, also spelling TRICE. But then you still run into the problem of your opponent going out, this time with the 6-pointed FUN and the 14-pointer FEN. So… still no luck.

The only hope you have is stalling for another turn.

Playing HUG on the U in CURD stops your opponent from going out on the next turn with FUN. Then he/she's got a chance to get 10 points (I think) with the F. Which brings the score to 420 to 400, your turn. Now, you've got the upper hand, where you can go out with TITLE with the T in DELTA (also spelling TRICE). This gets you 17 points, bringing it to 420 to 417. Now, take in account that N he/she has, and you still lose by 1 point.

What? Damn.

But wait…

What if instead of playing HUG you played a less valuable (strictly by points on one turn) LUG? That would give your second turn more points on the DWS. So, it would go down like this:

YOU = 393
THEM = 410

YOU - L(U)G for 4 = 397
THEM - Either F(UN) or (RE)F for 10 = 420

YOU - TI(T)HE for 23 = 420
THEM - N tile remains


YOU = 422
THEM = 420

Of course, this all depends on whether or not they block you instead of simply putting down the F for the max 10 points. But I figured most would go for the max points, hoping that you can't get over 20 points on your next turn.

This is something that's really hard to plan out. But if you've got the time, it's worth it, because you would win this game!!!!

My word you were right in every aspect. I took that last route you laid out and won the game 421-419. I see you just made a small mistake with the final score calculation. My problem is that for some reason I was reading his last two tiles as A and N as oppose to F and N. Apparently I was missing an A on the table somewhere. Much thanks for pointing this out though. Im going to ensure Im more vigilant when in these close situations. Much thanks again.

Glad I could help. These puzzles are fun for me! In such a close game, it's always worth further examination at the end. There might even have been another way for you to win!

As for the end score calculation, when I don't let the app do the scoring for me, or am not playing a game with more than 2 total players, I usually use competition scoring methods, in lieu of casual.

In casual Scrabble, you subtract the leftover tiles from the player with tiles remaining and then add those points to the player who went out. This is how the Scrabble app scores, too. This is because it makes it possible to calculate the end scores when there are more than 2 players in the game.

However, in competitions it's more favorable to just leave the score alone for the person with tiles remaining and just double the total amount of points left on his/her rack, giving them to the person who went out. Basically, it's quicker to adjust one score rather than both.

But this obviously doesn't work with more than 2 players, which is why the app and generic board game instructions adjust all players' scores, so there's no confusion.

So, 422 was just adding 2 points to your score, while leaving the loser's at 420. But in the app, it would subtract one from their score and add one to yours, for the score of 421 to 419, which is what you got.

Oh I did not even know about that. I guess im still a scrabble neophyte even though I've been playing for 15+ yrs.

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