How to cheat at Scrabble (and get away with it)

Have you ever wanted to CHEAT AT SCRABBLE and get away with it?

No, we’re not talking about ways to cheat at WORDS WITH FRIENDS — Web Watch has already covered that.

We’re talking about how to cheat at the Scrabble board game, the one with the actual tiles and fabric pouch that you play at the kitchen table on Saturday nights with some friends and a nice bottle of wine or two?

Well – Web Watch has a way for you to CHEAT at Scrabble, and make it a legitimate part of your gameplay.

Super Scrabble
Super Scrabble

Now we know what our Web Watch readers are saying — cheating at these classic board games is wrong.

We agree with you — we recall a game of Scrabble we played with someone who whipped out an electronic crossword puzzle solver while in the middle of their turn, as if it were no big deal.  When we challenged them on it, we were told “oh, but I’m not looking up anything with my letters in it.”

Needless to say, that was the last game of Scrabble we played against them.

So what’s the key to cheating at ScrabbleYou lay out all the cheating rules in advance, and you let everyone play by the same cheating rules… but make it cost them, dearly.

Here are the official rules for the SCRABBLE FOR CHEATERS competition that pitted Scrabble-loving teams (including some celebrities that you may have heard of) against each other, with proceeds from the competition going to charity.

Ah – there’s the key.  Cheaters have to pay for their ability to cheat, and what better way than to give that money to charity?  The more you want to cheat, the more money you have to pay:

  • $50: use a foreign word
  • $50: tile exchange from the bag during your turn (as opposed to in place of your turn, per the official rules)
  • $75: use a proper noun
  • $75: steal a look at your opponent’s tile rack
  • $100: trade a tile from your rack with a tile from your partner’s rack (because you’re playing on teams, this is an option)
  • $100: make any tile in your rack a blank
  • $100: add 10 points to any single tile’s value. Very useful on those Triple-Letter or Triple Word scores
  • $150: Trade a vowel in your rack for any available vowel of your choice that’s still in the bag
  • $150: Add the letter Q, X, or Z from your rack to any word on the board. It doesn’t matter that the resulting word doesn’t exist
  • $200: Use the Internet for 2 minutes to look up anything you’d like
  • $250: Force your opponent to remove their just-played word from the board, replace all their tiles, and lose their turn
  • $500: Play any combination of letters.  “If you can pronounce it and provide a definition, then it qualifies as a valid Scrabble word.”  Don’t like this rule?  Remember that money talks, and jrfzqir walks.

Like these rules?  Feel free to replace the dollar amounts shown above with articles of clothing or sexual favors.  Hey look – we just invented SCRABBLE FOR LOVERS!