Anyone for Scrabble?
2018 will mark the 80th year since Scrabble was first developed. An oft-quoted, yet still remarkable, statistic is that one in every two British homes has a Scrabble set (one in every three in the US). What's more, it still consistently ranks highly in the best-selling board game lists each year. Only Chess, Checkers/Draughts, Backgammon and Monopoly can rival it in terms of regular annual sales. Additionally, the classic Scrabble game has even been supplemented with numerous spin off versions in various formats. (I personally am rather fond of the 'Trickster' variant that adds a few nice little twists.)
Scrabble was always a game that we played as a family when I was growing up and one that I continue to play regularly now with my own family. Playing it so much (and with so many different groups of people), I began to want a way to track all of the results so that I could see how well I was doing overall. Did I win more games than I lost? Was I better against some players than against others? What was my average score in each of the groups that I played with? There was nothing that I found that would easily let me do all of this and so I set about creating an app myself. That app became Versus app. This post looks at how I use Versus to score and track all of my games of Scrabble.
Setting up the Game
The game settings that I use for Scrabble are detailed below (see 'Game Settings' image below). I've also added notes to explain my choices.
- Number of scoring Levels: 1 (I count each individual game of Scrabble as a match. If you play a 'best of' type match then you would need 2 levels here)
- Level 1 unit: Point / Points (As above, if you were using 2 levels you would need to add points and games)
- Count: Up (The scoring direction is upwards)
- From: 0 (The scoring starts at 0)
- Winner: Highest (The winner is the player(s) with the highest number of points at the end of the game)
- Scoring: Standard (This allows you to type in the score as opposed to using buttons for +1 or -1)
- Enable zero button: N/A
- Scoring range: Small (This setting is best for scores that are generally relatively small, i.e. under 50)
- Auto Advance: Yes (This automatically selects the next player once a score has been submitted. This makes sense for all turn-based games.)
- Hide scores: Yes (This keeps the running total hidden until the end of the game)
Setting up a Versus
Once Scrabble has been added as a game (and assuming all of the players that you play against have been added too), you can set up a Versus for each regular game of Scrabble that you play. For example, you may have one for a 'family' game and another for your 'monthly scrabble night' with your friends.
For each Versus add an appropriate name (i.e. ' Family Scrabble' or 'Monthly Scrabble Night') and an optional description. You would also select 'Scrabble' as the game, and select every player that might play in that particular Versus.
Scoring Scrabble using Versus
Now, whenever you play a game of Scrabble make sure you score it using the app (see 'Game Screen' image). As the weeks, months and years go by your full match history for all of the different games of Scrabble (and whatever other games you might want to log in Versus) will be recorded.
Not only that but clicking on any match result will take you into the detail of the scores so that you can see all of the individual points that each person scored in each game! (Check out the 'Game Points History' image below for an example of this).
Analysis of Scrabble results
Logging the results is great but Versus offers more than just that by automatically carrying out various pieces of analysis on all of the games that you play. It is this, I think, that is the real strength of the app and is what sets it apart from most of the other scorekeeping apps out there. For example, you can view:
- A comparative chart showing how many matches each player in each Versus has won
- A breakdown of all Wins, Draws and Losses for each individual Versus
- Details of each player's Average Points scored (and Total Points scored) in each Versus
- A breakdown of all Wins, Draws and Losses for Scrabble in general (i.e. an overview of all the Versus that involve the game of Scrabble)
- A breakdown of all Wins, Draws and Losses for Board Games in general (i.e. an overview of all the Versus that involve Board Games)
As an added bonus, all of the above statistics can be filtered by a date range so that you can see how the numbers change.
Check out the Analysis View and the League View images below as examples of the kind of data analysis that is possible within the app. All data can also be downloaded for further analysis elsewhere.
So, although 'Versus' would score a measly 9 points in a game of Scrabble, I think that as an app for scoring your games of Scrabble (and for logging all of your match results), Versus would definitely score 10 out of 10! Try it out and let me know if you agree.