Friday, November 23, 2007

Optimizing Scrabulous

Today was not a good day to game. Sadly I was feeling too ill earlier on to snuggle up to my 360 and projector and get some gaming in. Too ill to partake fully in a Thanksgiving meal. Urgle.

I did, however, play some Scrabulous moves. And I contemplated some notes from various discussions I've had with others about how I optimize the Scrabulous gaming experience.

The first rule of Scrabulous is to have many games going at once. I find that the magic number is between 5-7 games. Depending on the play patterns of my opponents, I find that usually this ends up in at least one move every couple of hours during the week which is about right. More plays = more fun, but with one player per hour or two I am satiated even if it means that one or two of my opponents have taken a day or two to make a move.

The second rule of Scrabulous is to nag people without nagging them. Usually I use my Facebook status to do this. I'll often tag on a non sequitur sentence to my status that mentions Scrabulous. It can either be a direct challenge (if I'm having a competitive game with a friend) or a more general "Jason is feeling a little tired. But not too tired to finish up his Scrabulous moves for the day".

The third rule of Scrabulous is to try and play as many different people as possible in order to discover similarly matched and passionate players. I want to play against people who will hit the "rematch" button as soon as the game ended because it was an exciting ride.

One improvement I'd love to make: Introduce a handicapping feature into the game. I'm not sure how this would work (I haven't really thought it through) but I think this would make it more likely that some of my less skilled friends would continue to play me because the matches would be more competitive. I did some initial research and contacted a club in Scotland to ask them about their handicapping system -- we'll see what my investigation yields.

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