What is Ruzzle?
Do you remember the game Boggle? There was a box with letter cubes that fell into little slots. You would shake the box and then after the cubes fell into the slots, you would remove the cover and try to find words. I liked it.
Now, various versions of Boggle are available online. One that I like is Ruzzle. It’s available for Droid, iPhone and iPad. You can play in English or any of nine other languages (this review is about the English version). There is a free version, or, for a small fee, you can purchase the full version, which has added features and doesn’t have ads.
Scoring in Ruzzle
The Ruzzle board has 16 letters in a 4 by 4 grid. Different letters have different point values, with rarer letters giving more points. In addition, some of the letters are marked “double letter” or “triple letter” or “double word” or “triple word” (there are more of these in later rounds) and these can be combined. For example, if you manage to include two double words and a triple word, your letter score for that word is multiplied by 2*2*3 = 12. You also get more points for longer words:
- 2, 3 or 4 letters: 0 length points
- 5 letters: 5 length points
- 6 letters: 10 length points
- 7 letters: 15 length points
- 8 letters: 20 length points.
and so on.
You can play Ruzzle in practice mode or you can play against Facebook friends or friends you make on the game or you can play against a random opponent. Games of Ruzzle are rated: When you beat someone your rating goes up and, of course, when you lose to someone, your rating goes down. Ruzzle uses a system similar to that used for rating chess: Beating opponents who have high ratings will increase your rating faster than beating those who have low ratings.
Some tips for playing Ruzzle
- Bonus tiles: In the first round of each game, there are relatively few bonuses. It is best to concentrate on making lots of words and using the higher point tiles. In the third round there are two double word tiles and one triple word tile in addition to letter bonus tiles. Use them! Depending on what letters they are and where they are on the board, you can often get lots of words that are 4, 6, 8 or even 12 times their usual value.
- The dictionary: Ruzzle uses a very expansive dictionary. One way to learn words that are in the dictionary is to look at the list of “all words” that Ruzzle offers after each round.
- Work fast: There is no penalty for trying words that are not legitimate, so it pays to work fast.
- Build words in steps: Many words are formed from smaller words and it can be easy to find suffixes, infixes and prefixes; other times an added letter changes the word. For example, you might see hat, hate, hater, haters, hatter, shatter, hatters and shatters.Doing this lets you enter words more quickly.
- Notice the location of S’s: By far the easiest addition to words is an S. So, when you see the board, notice where the S’s are.
Other features of Ruzzle
- There is a “high ratings” table for each language.
- There are a wide variety of “achievements” achievements, such as playing a certain number of matches, winning a certain number, making words of a certain length and so on.