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Razzle» Forums » Reviews

Subject: Very Nice, Quick Two Player Word Game rss

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Frank McGirk
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Razzle is a surprisingly fun game. Essentially a souped up Boggle game, it works on all levels.

First the actual game board does an admirable job of mixing up the letters. There are six lettered cubes in a movable center tray that gets dragged across a series of bumbs in the board to flip them around. The instructions would have you just push the tray one increment at a time, but we found that giving a quick slide all the way to the end and then back to the desired position worked best, quickly, and even performing the old credit card machine cha-ching motion was a bit more satisfying as well.

Once the cubes have been jumbled the first person to come up with a four letter word (and quite often they are FOUR LETTER WORDS) wins the round and the tray approaches one notch towards the opposing players "end zone" (see recommend motion above)...whereupon a new set of letters "appears" and again the first person to come up with a four letter word from the letters wins.

In addition to being a game of speed and vocabulary, there is also the "challenge" option, which you can invoke if you don't think there is a word to be unscrambled from among the given six. Your opponent is then given 10 seconds (using the fastest timer ever) to come up with a valid word. If he does, he advances a notch; if not, you advance a notch.

Once you get the tray all the way to the opponents side, you score one point, and you can play up to ten (a 20 minute game took one of us to 7) using a scorechart on the side of the board.

Because of the constant, see-saw action--as it often takes many rounds before the tray makes it to an end zone for a single point--and the "challenge" rule, the game is lively and exciting.

Small groups could play as well, dividing into two teams.

We also talked about giving a bonus space for spelling a five letter word, or a massive 3 spaces for a six letter word. Additionally, the instructions suggest letting young (or slower) players win rounds for finding 3 letter words.

Even in a single game, you will find yourself repeating words, and while that might make the game lose some of its long term replay value the speed required in finding them is still important. And we were continually finding new words.

This is the kind of game that could be VERY lopsided based on the mental agility and vocabulary of its participants, but is a quick bit of fun for some similar minded people.

There are tons of cheap copies listed on Ebay to boot.


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Betty Dingus
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Austin
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I like the challenge part. The party game Last Word has that same rule -- if you can't think of "something in a city" that begins with J, for example, you can place a bet that no one will think of one before the (random electronic) timer buzzes.

I clocked this sand timer at just over 10 seconds. If your thrift copy is missing it's timer, look on another shelf for the Jumanji box that might be there. Its timer is 8 seconds, close enough.
 
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