Multiplayer Scrabble Review

If you like Scrabble, you'll enjoy challenging people all over the world to a game.

Across America, secreted away in hallway or bedroom closets, are innumerable stacks of traditional board games. Monopoly sits atop Life, which sits atop Sorry!, which sits atop Trivial Pursuit, forming a memorial to analog gaming that passes from one generation to the next. Given that these games are so pervasive--PC versions of almost all of them have been on the market for years--it's only a matter of time before they all make the leap to the wireless gaming world. Jamdat's Multiplayer Scrabble has stolen a march on some of the other titles, cleverly incorporating multiplayer gaming, an online dictionary that verifies words, and solo and face-to-face options into a very enjoyable mobile edition.

Multiplayer Scrabble faithfully replicates the original board game. While a mobile phone's screen is too small to allow you to view the entire board at once, you can zoom in and out to look for a good spot for a word. Since there's no time pressure to make a turn, you can plan out your move and then use the easy interface to move letters from your current supply to the board. Once you are ready to submit a move, the online dictionary verifies that your move is legal and you score points. If you attempt an illegal move, you lose your turn.

It's simple to play online. You must create an account to set up matches, and you can opt to browse through the available opponents, invite a friend to play, or wait for someone to join your game. Since it might take a while for a person to complete a move, you can quit the Scrabble application and wait for your turn; Jamdat's server sends you an SMS message to alert you when your turn has come. You can participate in up to 10 games at once, which lets you keep the Scrabble action flowing hot and heavy. On the downside, games can take forever as hours pass between moves. Still, the SMS messages let you play the game at your own pace--Jamdat did a smart job in allowing the players, rather than the game's structure, to dictate the pace of play.

If you're antisocial or want a complete game of Scrabble without needing to find someone willing to play at a breakneck pace, you can always opt to play a computer opponent. Scrabble offers Maven, a challenging AI opponent with multiple levels of difficulty. On beginner, I could beat Maven only about half the time. The tougher difficulty levels were simply beyond my (admittedly weak) Scrabble-fu. If the machines ever do rise, and their proclamations are peppered with words like pulchritude and dialyze, we'll know where it all began.

The pass n' play option lets you challenge a friend in person. Similar to the game mode of the same name from Jamdat Bowling, pass n' play allows you to take a turn, score it, then hand the phone over to a friend for her turn. This mode does not access the online dictionary. Instead, it simply scores words whether they are legal or nonsensical. This cuts down on connections to the server, but it would be nice to have the option to check words.

If you like Scrabble, you'll enjoy challenging people all over the world to a game. That's really what everything comes down to for this title: It lets you play Scrabble without getting in the way. There's no reason you won't like this game if you're at all interested in word games.

Multiplayer Scrabble faithfully replicates the original board game. While a mobile phone's screen is too small to allow you to view the entire board at once, you can zoom in and out to look for a good spot for a word. Since there's no time pressure to make a turn, you can plan out your move and then use the easy interface to move letters from your current supply to the board. Once you are ready to submit a move, the online dictionary verifies that your move is legal and you score points. If you attempt an illegal move, you lose your turn.

It's simple to play online. You must create an account to set up matches, and you can opt to browse through the available opponents, invite a friend to play, or wait for someone to join your game. Since it might take a while for a person to complete a move, you can quit the Scrabble application and wait for your turn; JAMDAT's server sends you an SMS message to alert you when your turn has come. You can participate in up to 10 games at once, which lets you keep the Scrabble action flowing hot and heavy. On the downside, games can take forever as hours pass between moves. Still, the SMS messages let you play the game at your own pace--JAMDAT did a smart job in allowing the players, rather than the game's structure, to dictate the pace of play.

If you're antisocial or want a complete game of Scrabble without needing to find someone willing to play at a breakneck pace, you can always opt to play a computer opponent. Scrabble offers Maven, a challenging AI opponent with multiple levels of difficulty. On beginner, I could beat Maven only about half the time. The tougher difficulty levels were simply beyond my (admittedly weak) Scrabble-fu. If the machines ever do rise, and their proclamations are peppered with words like pulchritude and dialyze, we'll know where it all began.

The pass n' play option lets you challenge a friend in person. Similar to the game mode of the same name from JAMDAT Bowling, pass n' play allows you to take a turn, score it, then hand the phone over to a friend for her turn. This mode does not access the online dictionary. Instead, it simply scores words whether they are legal or nonsensical. This cuts down on connections to the server, but it would be nice to have the option to check words.

If you like Scrabble, you'll enjoy challenging people all over the world to a game. That's really what everything comes down to for this title: It lets you play Scrabble without getting in the way. There's no reason you won't like this game if you're at all interested in word games.

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Multiplayer Scrabble More Info

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  • First Released
    released
    • Mobile
    If you like Scrabble, you'll enjoy challenging people all over the world to a game.
    7.5
    Average Rating6 Rating(s)
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    Developed by:
    Jamdat Mobile
    Published by:
    Jamdat Mobile
    Genre(s):
    Puzzle