Archive for May, 2010

The key to winning a scrabble game is to finish with the highest score when all the tiles have been laid down on the table – with emphasis on the phrase "to finish with the highest score." I said this because many players, mainly beginners, only try to come up with words regardless of the point-value. As a result, they may have laid all their tiles down but still score low at the end of the game.

As with most games, constant practice makes one perfect, or at least, better. In scrabble, however, you have to possess some tricks in order to win.

Work with the Q
The letter 'Q' is perhaps the most dreaded letter in scrabble, especially if it is not hooked with the letter 'U'. But did you know that there are 21 words that use a Q without a U? They are: FAQIR(S), QAID(S), QANAT(S), QAT(S), QINDAR(S), QINTAR(S), QINDARKA, QOPH(S), QWERTY(S), SHEQEL, SHEQELIM and TRANQ(S). Other words that may come in handy are QIVIUT(S), MAQUI(S), SUQ(S), UMIAQ(S) and BUQSHA(S).

Learn the X, J, Q and Z words
The letters X, J, Q and Z have the highest point-value. Ironically, beginners hate these letters. But if you will just study words that have any of these letters, not only you will have a higher score, you will also prevent your opponent from scoring a bingo.

Don't waste your S's
Surely, the easiest way to score is to add an S to an existing word on the board. This is good if you will land on a double or triple word score. But if you are just using S without any reason or simply because it is the first possible move you see on the table, you are just giving your opponent an extra move and at the same time, wasting a valuable letter. Play the letter S if the value yields to at least 10 points, lower than that and you are playing to lose. For example, ROLL is just 4 points. If you add S to make it ROLLS, it will just give you 5 points. But if the word is JUMP, adding S on a double word score space will yield to 26 points. Keep your S for a while until you can maximize its value.

Go Bingo Hunting
Another trick you have to remember is to look for prefixes and suffixes. The word PAIR can become REPAIR or PAIRING or even, REPAIRING. TAIL can be linked with RE- to make it RETAIL or RE- and -ERS to make it RETAILERS. Having the letters S, R, E, I, N and G can be very, very useful.

Learn the 2-letter words
When the board begins to get crowded and long words begin to lose their place, you start going for 2-letter words. But if your vocabulary is limited, you cannot simply invent words, right? QI, SO, TO, UP, OW, OX, XI, KI and HO are just an example. There are more. Learn them.

Keep your eyes on the board
The ability to spot scoring opportunities is one of the key elements in winning the game. Obviously, you can easily play your S, R and E if you want to score in a hurry. But as much as possible, combine high- or mid-value tile in your rack with colored squares on the board.

Family Board Games – Why are they Fun?

It is great to note that some families still take time to sit around after having a sumptuous dinner just so they can catch up with each other's lives. However, as it often happens, a lot of people are now leading a very busy lifestyle. The workers are pushed to attend to their errands and business presentations while the students are absorbed in their studies. This occurrence then lessens the quality time that they get to spend around with their relations.

True enough, the daily hustles and bustles of life steal the precious moments which have been once shared by a closely knitted family. But then again, there are some special events that prod them to sit, talk, and have fun. One of the best time killers is the family board games.

It goes to show that board games are twice the fun when they are played in teams which are nonetheless comprised of family members. Hours of enjoyment can be spent fruitfully so the secret to it is that of finding a perfect game that will fit the age groups of the players. If the older players will compose a team, it is best to have more advanced variants since that will be a lot more challenging. For the younger members of the group, beginners or mid level game variants are enough.

Suggested Family Games

With a number of available game boards in the market, you might find it hard to pick one that will be best for your family members. However, here are some suggested games that will bring more fun to your clan.

Clue. This is one that you may be interested to purchase. It is a game that sets the mood for the players acting as cops who are tasked to solve the crime committed by a culprit. Your aim is to uncover the identity of the criminal and the strategy used to pull the crime. A game of investigation, the players are allowed to take on the role of a man of justice. The adult game version is filled with more challenge while the version that is called Clue Jr. is best to be played by the younger children.

Monopoly. Another popular board game, it comes in several versions. The original variant fits the younger players since it features cartoon characters and other child-like topics. The game is henceforth about the typical scenario in the real estate which brings about buying and selling, collecting money and property, and banking.

Other fun-filled games for the whole family include Scrabble that measures the spelling, vocabulary, and reading skills of the players, Chess that gauges the strategic moves, Trivial Pursuit, Dominoes, Game of the Generals, and a lot more!

Bringing in Fun and Laughter

There is no doubt that the family board games bring together the members of the clan. Apart from the tons of laughter, fun, and conversations, people are able to spend some quality time and bring their relationship to a more personal level. In addition, these game boards are easy to track. They are sold by majority of the shops both online and offline.

You may take your pick and turn your family gathering into a more memorable event. After all, a busy lifestyle must not stop you all from enjoying the best time of your lives!

Board games are said to exist to give fun and also to enhance one's verbal skills, knowledge on trivia, quick mind, and creative thinking. They do make learning twice the fun. In fact, there are also special variations of games that are meant to be played by children of varying ages. Through all of these varieties, there is one type which can enrich you spiritually. Christian board games are also available and are specifically designed to help you grow ecclesiastically.

The knowledge about the Bible is held to be very important since it plays a major role in the formation of an individual. If you do place much value on your faith, then it is time for you to play this sort of game too.

Strengthening Your Bond with God

Sure enough, there are a lot of ways on how you can enhance your spiritual growth. You may attend Bible readings, Sunday school, read Biblical materials, go to church regularly, attend praise and worship, and many more. However, it will not hurt you to try a valuable game that may serve as a supplement to your usual practices, right?

Playing the Biblical related game boards is another way that can strengthen the bond that you have with God other than spending much of your time in playing trivia games or those that only focus on the improvement of your creative thinking and verbal skills. This does not mean though that they are not of equal importance but the religiously affiliated games are the ones that will lead you towards the fortification of your faith.

A Glance at the Early Bible Games

The popularity of the Bible games can be traced back to the later part of the 1890s when the Decker Partners commenced the game with the name Bible Characters. This then served as a catalyst because a lot other versions came forth. Among them include the Bible Game of Facts, Places, and Events; Bible Authors, and the Bible Boys. The market for the Bible games started to expand although some people may have never taken time to consider them.

Innovative Bible Games of Today

These days, there is a myriad of board games that follow a religious pattern since they are meant to stir the player's Biblical knowledge. The company called Apples to Apples has a special game edition that tackles on the word association regarding the Bible. Included are the Biblical characters, events, places, themes, and many more.

Another game is called the Mad Gab which is also very interesting. The players have to sound out a phrase that is comprised of randomly selected words. The members of the team should correctly guess it and say the phrase in proper order. Those who already have a profound knowledge about the Bible as well as those who aim to enhance their familiarity always welcome to play. The game can furthermore encourage the players to take more time in learning the Word of the Lord.

Christian Bible games also include strategies and trivia questions. DVD and CD as well as online games are also available these days. More so, educators likewise suggest the integration of the games into the teaching methodologies to stimulate the children to harness their relationship with God in more ways than one.

So why not improve your spirituality and expose your young children to this scheme as well?

Choosing Board Games for Kids

No matter which board game you choose, among hundreds available in the market today, you will surely get a run for your money as they all have certain benefits that are helpful in kids' learning development. However, just like most kids toys, selecting which board game to buy for kids must depend on certain factors.

Age
Finding a board game that is suitable for the kid's age is the most important thing you must consider. As with most toys, board games for kids indicate age recommendations such as 3+, 6+, 12+, etc. When in doubt, age recommendations are a good guideline to follow. Take note of choking hazards as well. Many board games have small pieces that can be dangerous if swallowed. But you should not limit your choices based on the age that is printed on the board.

It is advised to look for games that will enhance the learning experience of your kids. For example, preschoolers should play something that teaches basic math skills or something that deals with shapes and colors. The game doesn't have to be highly intellectual to be educational. Most board games for kids have very simple rules, are very easy to play and yet, can be very helpful in the learning process of kids.

For kids in grade school, choose something that is more challenging – a game that involves basic logic and strategy. Word games that improve vocabulary and language skills would be a big help to their development. Games such as Yahtzee, Scrabble Jr., Boggle and Upwords are winners.

Choosing board games for teens can be difficult because they are more preoccupied with other activities. However, if they show interests, choose things that are more complex and require strategic skills such as board wargames, monopoly, scrabble and chess.

Here are some game boards for kids with age recommendations:

Chutes and Ladders (Snakes and Ladders) – ages 3 and up
Candyland – ages 3 and up
Sorry! – ages 6 and up
Hungry Hungry Hippos – ages 3 and up
Cranium Cariboo – ages 3 and up
Cranium Hallabaloo – ages 4 and up
Cranium Balloon lagoon – ages 5 and up
Cranium Cadoo – ages 7 and up
Qwirkle – ages 6 and up
Oodles of Doodles – ages 10 and up
Mouse trap – ages 6 and up
High Ho! Cherry-O – ages 3 and up
I Spy Eagle Eye – ages 5 and up

Interest
Aside from age, another factor you should consider when choosing board games for kids is the interest that they have. Many board games have themes, often based popular television shows, movies, cartoons and comic books. Kids love it when they receive a toy or a game that is based on their favorite characters. Think of Sponge Bob, Dora, Little Mermaid, Batman, Spiderman, Pokemon and Harry Potter. These characters are often applied on classic games. They cost more but they are a sure hit on kids.

Price
The old adage, "you get what you pay for" applies to buying board games. Take note that quality and playability comes with a price so if a particular game can be played repeatedly for the years to come, it will be worth extra bucks. On the other hand, short-lived games, particularly those that are designed for kids from 3 to 8 years old, will not last very long and are not worth much investing on.