A word or two about Scrabble’s app

Aug 31, 2009
Games

Hasbro’s app version of Scrabble has brought my favorite board game into the digital age. With several modes of play (solo, against the computer, via Facebook, across Wi-Fi, or by passing the phone) there’s a way for everyone to get in on the fun. Using the iPhone’s dragging technology, players tap and drag letters onto […]

Hasbro’s app version of Scrabble has brought my favorite board game into the digital age. With several modes of play (solo, against the computer, via Facebook, across Wi-Fi, or by passing the phone) there’s a way for everyone to get in on the fun.

Using the iPhone’s dragging technology, players tap and drag letters onto the board, which then auto-zooms into your playing area. You pinch and pull to move the game board around and shake the device to shuffle your letters.

I could see this app being a great time-occupier for children on a long car trip, but its $4.99 price tag will turn many people off. Its whopping 9.3 MB file size takes up space and makes for a super-slow initial load time. This is especially annoying if you have to duck out of the game to check e-mail or reply to a text. Another issue: My battery drained much faster while Scrabble was running.

The biggest downfall of Scrabble’s app is its questionable dictionary —Zen is not an acceptable word, apparently — and the computer often spells words that I can’t find in any other dictionary. The app won’t let you play words not in its dictionary, which takes away the fun of trying to sneak in made-up words when you’re playing friends.

Starting a game through Facebook was simple: Log in to the social site, select the game type and name your opponent. Notifications are then sent to that person that a game has begun. The update time while playing an online opponent is pretty fast, too. Facebook mode also offers a usable dictionary, a “teacher” feature that shows the word you should’ve spelled after you’ve taken your turn, and a chat function.

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Scrabble is a fun app with a few kinks, and by playing on your iPhone you don’t have to worry about losing any of those little tiles.

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