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Basic Scrabble® Tactics

Here are a few basic tactical pointers that will help boost your score.

Optimize Each Play Using Bonus Squares

  • Look for ways to hit double- and triple- word and letter squares, which can make a big difference to how your play scores.
  • Try to place your highest-scoring tiles on multiple-letter bonus squares, especially if the same play will reach a multiple-word bonus square.
  • Look for "Hot Spots" where a multiple-letter bonus square can be scored both horizontally and vertically. An "X" on a triple-letter score "Hot Spot" will score over 50 points.

Look for "Bingos" that use all Seven Tiles From Your Rack

Whenever you can play off all seven tiles from your rack in one move, you'll score an additional 50 points for the play.

Keep the "Blank" and "S" Tiles For High-Scoring Plays

The flexibility of the blank is a very powerful aid to playing a bingo, so as a rule of thumb, you shouldn't use it unless it's part of a "Bingo", or otherwise helps you score "a lot" (40 points or so) more than you would otherwise.

Similarly, the "S" is the most useful tile (after the blank), so reserve it for bingos or plays that score 30 points of more.

Do The Math

After applying these tips, you may find yourself confused between several attractive choices. Always bear in mind that the player who scores the most points wins, so when deciding between two plays, add up what score each would achieve decide on that basis.