November 27th, 2007

Yesterday we talked about Facebook and games. That got me thinking about… well, Facebook and games. Personally, I’m a fan of Scrabulous, the Facebook version of Scrabble. Dedicated Heroine Sheik readers will know from my old Joystiq column (or just my general air of word-dorkiness) that I’m a Scrabble lover, born and raised. Ah, the rush of triple word scores! One of the crowning achievements of my newly acquired adulthood has been beating my mother at Scrabble. Take that, person who raised me.

Anyways, Scrabulous has done some interesting things with the game I know and love. Firstly, it now lets you play Scrabble with friends across the world, not just across the kitchen table. I may be living in France, but I can still kick my friends’ Scrabble asses back in New York. Another thing Scrabulous does: allows for pondering time. One of my least favorite parts of real-life Scrabble (like, where there’s a proper board and tiny wooden squares that inevitably disappear in the carpet) is waiting for the other guy to decide his move. Because Scrabulous happens move by move–like Chess by mail–you could sit around for days before deciding, “To hell with it. I’m just going to play ‘cat.’” Then again, Bookworm Adventure is just as kind to the impatient word dork, plus it comes with badass literary RPG moves.

The last thing Scrabulous does–and this is the thing I’m finding I really dislike–is it makes each Scrabble game take forever. Normally, I get pretty competitive with my word choices. But when a game goes on for literally months, it’s hard to care anymore. Then there’s the fact that if you don’t play your turn every few days at the least, your friends are sure to get peeved. Scrabble goes from being fun to being a nagging little Facebook chore.

What about you, fellow Facebook user? Thoughts on Scrabulous? Other squishy inter emotions? Oh, while you ponder, consider these awesome, totally homo-erotic ads for the national French Scrabble tournament.

Tags: Facebook, social networking, web-based games

10 Responses to “Not Quite Scrabble, Not Quite Fabulous”

  1. Scott Jon Siegel Says:

    I love that picture.

  2. Bonnie Ruberg Says:

    I also love the male counterpart. Sure they’re fighting, but they’re also blushing :).

  3. Scott Jon Siegel Says:

    Yeah, I like the girl one more. Not sure why. Maybe I’m just confused.

  4. Bonnie Ruberg Says:

    Or maybe you’re just a boy. You’ve got all those squishy boys feelings.

  5. Poppy Says:

    I love Scrabulous, but I have to have a bunch of games with a bunch of people going to be at all satisfied. Yahoo’s Literati also lets you play wit anyone, and it’s live, and you can watch each other play the tiles… but it’s just not as fun. Can’t score huge points with ridiculous words like ZA and QI and QAT in Literati.

    If you’re cool with it, I’d love to add you as a Facebook friend and play Scrabulous with you. :)

  6. Bonnie Ruberg Says:

    Sure thing, Poppy. Does Literati use a different Scrabble dictionary? One of the advantages of any internet Scrabble game I forgot to mention is you can sit there with the Scrabble dictionary open and test out your crazy words, which–at least in my house–you could never get away with in normal Scrabble.

  7. Scott Jon Siegel Says:

    I think more people need to have cybersex while playing Scrabulous (using the app’s messaging function, of course).

  8. Bonnie Ruberg Says:

    I think that sounds… slow. But the idea of cybersex by mail is kinda fun :).

  9. Poppy Says:

    It does seem to have the same dictionary, if you can stick with it long enough to find out. I just couldn’t … get past the fact that someone was watching me test out if my tiles formed a word, and it was even my friend watching!

    I’ll add you now (under my real name :).

  10. Bonnie Ruberg Says:

    Hooray for Scrabble buddies :).

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