Because of its popularity, Scrabble has become slow-loading and quite bloated due to the many bugs that seem to have plagued it. This is one of the reasons why Words With Friends, a more simplistic mini-Scrabble clone came about. This gaming application was released way back in July 2009, and recently updated just May of the present year with exceptionally fast speeds and Push notifications that make it simpler to play that most.
Admittedly though, this gaming application has fewer features than other Scrabble-like games. One of its most notable difference is the absence of any online ranking system or in most cases, a leaderboard for players to compare their scores and ranks with. Players are often matched with random opponents unless they choose a specific friend they wish to play with. Plus, the player will have to register before he gets to play the game. Once done with the registration though, finding friends will prove to be quite easy.
Aside from the notable absence of any leaderboard, there are also no Facebook counterparts nor any moves history. The game also does not show a preview of what your score will be, and scores will be shown only after you’ve made your move. Some might find this annoying since it will take time to compute the possible point outcome, but others are sure to find it a good mental exercise and certainly not a waste of time at all.
But the fewer features aren’t the only differences present. Once a player starts playing the game, he is sure to quickly notice the differences of Words With Friends from the standard game of Scrabble most are already used to. There are still seven letters that are to be used to form words, but it will be evident that the board’s layout looks different from that of Scrabble’s. While the Scrabble board layout has four triple-word spaces, Words With Friends has eight. Also, a different combination and positioning of bonus tiles are presented. There is no in-game dictionary present, but there is a local dictionary which seems a bit unlike the one used in Scrabble available.
Despite its simplicity, or maybe rather because of it, Words With Friends is much more player-friendly as most may say. Its streamlined applications load real quickly and the rest are accessible and easy to use. Its user interface is undoubtedly well-designed and well-made, with polished details that seem quite clever to the naked eye; its animations are fast, snappy and incredibly smooth. Though there is an absence of a Moves History, there is a presence of Last Moved timers, which are updated in real time so players are immediately prompted if it’s their turn already, even when they leave the application open. Push notifications are also available to prompt the player to move; and though there is no stated time limit, the Push notifications easily compel the player to make a move quickly, thereby increasing the activeness of the application’s user base.
The game has its own drawbacks, and yet it has its own quirks as well. Even without the many additional superfluous features, with its simplicity and speed, players can indulge themselves in playing a good Scrabble-like game of Words With Friends version 4.02 for only $2.99.