Saturday, April 14, 2007

Gaming With Grandma - 14

My Mum, Grandma to our kids, dropped by this morning for her weekly visit. After a cup of tea, Maddie, Grandma and I sat down at the dining table to play some games.

First up this morning was the Bratz Passion for Fashion game. I don't enjoy this game but play it because Maddie loves all things Bratz at the moment. Maddie came 1st, having collected all four of her fashion accessories and made her way home, I was 2nd also with all four of my fashion accessories and Grandma was 3rd having collected only two of her fashion accessories.

After we'd finished, Maddie went off to play. Grandma and I sat down to a game of Scrabble. I'd previously downloaded the full 2 and 3-word lists off the Internet so I gave an extra copy to Mum to take home with her to study.

I borrowed a Scrabble dictionary from the library so we used that as our reference. I'm still considering which Scrabble dictionary to buy. Scrabble Australia states that all Australian tournaments are adjudicated according to the Official Scrabble Words International (OSWI) word list. OSWI is published by Chambers Harrap Publishers Ltd but may soon be superseded by an equivalent reference from Collins.

Mum went first after selecting a V to my X.

Turn 1 [Mum] DOG 10, [Me] HOLD/(O)H/(G)O 24

Turn 2 [Mum] (HOLD)S 10, [Me] Exchanged 6 tiles - kept the X

Turn 3 [Mum] RO(D) 4, [Me] FISHE(R) 20

Turn 4 [Mum] (GO)D 9, [Me] (E)X/X(O)* Challenged off

Turn 5 [Mum] (F)EW 10, [Me] TEXT(S) 20

Turn 6 [Mum] WA(S) 12, [Me] BOA(T) 12

Turn 7 [Mum] FAM(E) 13, [Me] (FAME)D/D(O) 16

Turn 8 [Mum] (D)UNG 12, [Me] MUSINGS/(GOD)S 72

Turn 9 [Mum] Exchanged 3 tiles, [Me] (M)INTY 28

Turn 10 [Mum] (F)AKE 16, [Me] POU(T) 12

Turn 11 [Mum] Z(I)P/(U)P 17, [Me] JA(W) 39

Turn 12 [Mum] B(O)LT 6, [Me] CO(A)T 24

Turn 13 [Mum] (JAW)S 15, [Me] (C)ANALIER* Challenged off

Turn 14 [Mum] (T)A(X) 10, [Me] RE(TEXTS)* Challenged off

Turn 15 [Mum] (FISHER)Y 16, [Me] NA(P)E 21

Turn 16 [Mum] (J)ET 10, [Me] (T)AR 9

Turn 17 [Mum] (G)IVER 13, [Me] LO(R)E 12

Turn 18 [Mum] CO(V)E 12, [Me] (R)EVUE 9

Turn 19 [Mum] Passed, [Me] ENUN(C)IAR* Challenged off

Turn 20 [Mum] Passed, [Me] (C)AIRN 8

Turn 21 [Mum] Q(I) 11, [Me] NE(W) 12

Turn 22 [Mum] (N)IL 3, [Me] U(N) 4

Turn 23 [Mum] (Q)I 13, [Me] (L)I 4

I had used up all my letters and Mum was left with 3 tiles, IRR, for minus 3 points. These points were added to my score. Final scores were [Me] 349 and [Mum] 219. I averaged 15.17 points per turn with 5 of those turns being non-scoring turns.

Highlight of this game for me was achieving my first ever bingo (that is, placing all 7 of the letters from your rack on one turn). It was MUSINGS. However, I only did it with the help of two blanks (the U and S) so I'm still looking to get a bingo with no help from the blanks.

Probably the most obscure words I played were EX, OH, UN and LI. Proof that being aware of legal two-letter words can really help your Scrabble game.

I had a few words challenged off. ENUNCIAR (one who enunciates?) was not legal. CANALIER
(as in, 'Venice is canalier than Brisbane') was also not a legal word. RETEXTS is also not a valid word. I was hoping for a SUB or PRE to add to TEXTS but the letters never came my way. Now these weren't intentional phoneys, I was just trying my luck to see if they were actual words.

Mum reckoned she had pretty bad tiles so my wife, Deb, assisted her during the last few turns. My wife had remembered me telling her about QI (Chinese life-force) being a legitimate 2-letter word and helped Mum out with that and a couple of other words. That was fine with me as I'm always pleased when Deb displays an interest in games.

My low-point of this gaming session was the amount of time I took on my moves. The game lasted a couple of hours which is unacceptable. I was just trying too hard to look for bingos and make the highest scoring move I could each turn. I truly suffered from analysis paralysis most turns. I've made a vow to decrease the time I take on moves and will be timing myself in future.

It will be interesting to see if Mum's game improves next week after she's had a chance to peruse the 2 and 3-word lists.

So, this evening, having noticed my wife's interest earlier on, I asked her if she'd like to share a bottle of wine with me over a game of Scrabble. I was pleased when she accepted, however she would only play if I promised it would be a quick game. She'd seen how long my game with Mum had taken.

So, after the kids were in bed, we opened a bottle of wine and sat down to our game. I got one of the 3-minute hour-glass sand timers from my game of TAMSK to ensure I didn't take too long on my moves. We agreed that if either one of us had not commenced to put down a word by the time the sand had run out then that person forfeits their turn.

My wife went first after selecting an I to my O.

Turn 1 [Deb] GAG 10, [Me] TWE(A)K 13

Turn 2 [Deb] WI(T)S 9, [Me] HEAL(T)H 24

Turn 3 [Deb] F(A)N 12, [Me] TWEAK(ED) 15

Turn 4 [Deb] N(E)VER 16, [Me] (R)AID 10

Turn 5 [Deb] OVER(T) 16, [Me] CRA(V)ER 19

Turn 6 [Deb] MAULE(D) 13, [Me] W(A)NT 33

Turn 7 [Deb] (H)OLE 14, [Me] *Timed out - Forfeit turn

Turn 8 [Deb] DOO(R) 10, [Me] *Timed out - Forfeit turn

Turn 9 [Deb] ZOAR* Challenged off, [Me] MIN(E)/(O)N 8

Turn 10 [Deb] (R)OAR 5, [Me] *Timed out - Forfeit turn

Turn 11 [Deb] I(L)L 6, [Me] *Timed out - Forfeit turn

Turn 12 [Deb] F(L)Y 17, [Me] T(A)B 14

Turn 13 [Deb] I(T) 2, [Me] (M)ENU 8

Turn 14 [Deb] Q(U)IZ 22, [Me] (QUIZ)ES 24

Turn 15 [Deb] (Z)IP 28, [Me] JOTS/(ZIP)S 37

Turn 16 [Deb] (J)UMP 24, [Me] DOSE/S(QUIZES)* Challenged off

Turn 17 [Deb] (T)ENT 5, [Me] S(P)A(T)E 21

Turn 18 [Deb] B(RAID) 8, [Me] *Timed out - Forfeit turn

Turn 19 [Deb] (B)RAG 8, [Me] (G)OOD 8

Turn 20 [Deb] Y(O)U 12, [Me] AX(E) 10

Turn 21 [Deb] Q(I) 13, [Me] A(I) 6

Turn 22 [Deb] (A)C* Challenged off, [Me] (ON)E/E(R) 5

I had used up all my letters and Deb was left with the C tile for minus 3 points. These points were added to my score. Final scores were [Me] 258 and [Deb] 247. I averaged 11.73 points per turn however 6 of those turns were non-scoring turns. It was a very close game and highlighted for me that I really need to improve my ability to anagram quickly. I think I'll continue to use the 3-minute hourglass as a guide to reducing the time I take to make my moves.

A pleasant evening of gaming with my wife and a good bottle of wine.


Friendless said...

So you play that a word is successfully challenged stays off? I think the rule at the club I play at is that you just have to play a different word.

349 is a good score but 2 hours is too long for a game. Games at the club are 50 minutes, and if you go over you miss out on your cup of tea. Yeah, it's HARSH.

I can't find anywhere for Deb's C. I have the Scrabble dictionary on my Palm. If you have a Palm I could beam it to you.

Ozvortex said...

No Palm I'm afraid, but thanks for the offer.

Yeah, the way we've been playing is that if a word is successfully challenged it stays off and you effectively lose your turn. I think this may be a tournament rule that I've decided to incorporate.