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Learn how to play Scrabble in 10 minutes

Scrabble does not only test your vocabulary vastness but also requires you to strategize in order to end up with more points than your opponent. One of its big appeals is that it is very easy to learn but hard to master. To see how this website assists you in the process of mastering Scrabble, take a look at our examples page.

Premise

You have a bag of exactly 98 tiles with imprinted letters, 2 blank tiles and a 15x15 tiles game board.

First you need to determine the order of play. Each player draws a tile from the bag and the less the distance of the letter from the beginning of the alphabet the higher they rank in the order. Blank tiles take precedence over 'A'. If two or more are tied, simply redraw or play a brief game of rock-paper-scissors.

Next, each players draws 7 tiles and conceals them.


Gameplay

The players take turns. Each turn, you fill up your tile rack to have 7 in total. Additionally, you can do one of the following:

Important: The blank tile can represent any letter and is thus very similar to a Joker in Rummy.

Scoring

You yourself have to claim for which words you want to receive points for. You earn points for each letter in the words, with less common letters such as 'Q' being worth more than others:

Tip: Q words are especially rewarded. Take a look at some of them and their point values.

Premium fields

There are certain fields yielding an increase in points, but only when newly placed tiles cover them:


Scoring example

|-------------|
|      n      |
|     cars    |
|      m      |
|      e      |
|-------------|

In the example above, the player appended 's' to 'car' and perpendicularly placed 'name' while re-using the letter 'a'.

The player receives 6 (cars) plus 6 (name) times 3 (TLS bonus) = a total of 24 points.

Challenge a score

If you haven't played anything yet, you can challenge the previous player's score by pointing out words you think are not valid for Scrabble in your region (there are differences in US and UK versions, for example). The challenged player then looks them up.

Because of the risk involved in challenging a score, Scrabble can also be a mind game of trying to deceive your opponents by e.g. placing a natural-sounding fake word or a very obscure word you know is valid.

Tip: Check a word's validity by entering it into our search.

End of game

The game ends under one of the following conditions:

The players now have to reduce their total score by the sum of all the tiles' values left in their rack (similar to Rummy). If a player has no tiles left ("going out"), the other players' sum of all their remaining tiles are added to this player's score.