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Subject: Rules, please? Or at least a game summary? rss

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Justin Case
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This looks like it has a lot of potential to be a very interesting game. Could anyone please post some rules, or a summary of play? I'm intrigued by the idea of the black blocking dice, and if we even had an idea of how the game is played, it might be possible to migrate this to the Scrabble Express board and dice by adding some black dice of the proper size.

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Raymond Gallardo
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I finally got a copy of this game. First, some significant rule changes.

1. The first player rolls and uses *all 14* dice during his or her first turn. In subsequent turns, you use all letter dice that are not on the board!

2. You may only play words (a) that are a minimum of three letters long, (b) perpendicular to the word on the board, and (c) that share exactly one letter with that word. This means that you can't play a word parallel to another word, making a bunch of two-letter words, nor can you play an S to the end of the existing word (and optionally build a new word off that S).

Now for the black cubes. There are four of them and they start off-board.

1. When you remove the previous word, place black cubes adjacent to the shared letter. If all four black cubes have been placed, then move black cubes instead. Black cubes serve as blocks; no words may be played on them.

2. When it is impossible to play a word because the black cubes are blocking all possibilities of word formation (not because of a poor dice roll), then remove all black cubes. Continue your turn.

The black cubes dramatically improve the game. However, this version of the game comes with a board that is way too small.
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Justin Case
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Far out! I knew that someone would see that post sooner or later!

rayzg wrote:
However, this version of the game comes with a board that is way too small.

I kinda thought that might be the case just from seeing the photos of it. Based on your initial plays, do you think you would prefer the 9x9 or the 11x11 board from the Scrabble Express-type versions? I can't imagine that either of those boards would not be an improvement.


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Raymond Gallardo
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Gambiteer wrote:
Do you think you would prefer the 9x9 or the 11x11 board from the Scrabble Express-type versions? I can't imagine that either of those boards would not be an improvement.

I haven't actually played Scarabeo Express except several rounds by myself. As for Scrabble Express, I own Scrabble Roll 'n' Score, which is a truly awful version. (The board is a thick sheet of laminated paper coarsely folded in quarters. It will not lie flat ever.) Years before acquiring that, I made my own version of Scrabble Express by taking cubes from some generic crossword dice game and creating an 11x11 board. The 11x11 board is less frustrating than the 9x9 one.

I love the idea of Scrabble Express, but the inability of saving up letters for subsequent rounds and the limited places where you can add words make the game lacklustre.

I still have to try Scarabeo Express with letter dice with an English language letter distribution; the Italian one is totally off! (And my copy of Scrabble Roll 'n' Score is far away from me at this moment!)

One thing I forgot to mention about the board for Scarabeo Express: The centre square does not give any kind of scoring bonus.
 
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