General information

INFO: A word to play is in CAPITALS. Letters already on the board are shown as the S here: WORM(S). Premium Score squares: DL = Double letter: TL = Triple letter: DW = Double Word: TW = Triple Word. The blanks have no score letter on the Top right! A bingo (using all 7 of your letters) gets +35.
Useful word lists are in the first post "ALL MY TIPS. This is the post to read first" and on some other posts. I welcome comments and suggestions.
Had a great play, score or a move you think should have been allowed? Take a screen shot and post it somewhere (Picasa?). Send me the link.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Are they cheating?

How to tell if someone maybe cheating:

Play with them.

Watch what words are formed.

With words that are very unusual, take the letters used, including those already on the board and put them in a word finder. See how many words are formed and the likely score from some of the other obvious ones. If there is only one word of that length make a note. Score 1 to 5 (likely to be with word finder 5, unlikely 1)

Watch for similar plays and do the same.
Likely to be with word finder 5, unlikely 1

Look for a higher scoring placement with some or all of those letters.
A good player who scores a Bingo + 40 instead of a Bingo + 72 with the same letters has made a bad play, especially if the play is nearby. An expert does not get excited, he thinks then plays. A cheat uses a word finder, gets excited and does not understand the finer points of play so misses a better score. So could have done better 5. Not better 1

Use of ‘S’ and ‘Blanks’ Was their use really needed or not?
Not really needed 5. Needed 1

Leaving premium squares available. Did they leave a TW or DW square at the beginning or end of the word? And could a letter or more now be added to elongate that word?

Yes 5 no 1

Chat with them and ask about that play. Why leave the DW square at the end? What if I had an ‘S’? If they chat like an expert then 1 if not 5

If their score is say 15 or more then the likelihood, except with a very expert completion player, is that your opponent is using a word finder.

Remember an expert will probably will do several things.

Use unusual words
Use Premium squares to their advantage
Not leave you the chance to score high.
Not waste letters.
When they have a bad rack of letters they will still score well.

Remember a cheat will probably will do several things.

Use unusual words
Does NOT use Premium squares to their advantage
Leaves you the chance to score high.
Wastes letters.
When they have a bad rack of letters they will score small.


  1. This is decent guide for most people that are cheating with only word descramblers. However, there are other, more power cheating tools out there that will be completely undetected by the last 4 out of the 5 things you check for. For instance there is an iphone app called scrabulizer, which is probably the best(worst) cheating tool I've ever seen. It allows you to snap a screenshot on the board in WWF (hit home button plus lock button on iphone/ipad) and then when you load that photo into the scrabulizer app, it will analyze the whole board (and your rack) and tell you what the highest scoring play is. So therefore a player cheating with such an app would not be missing TW or DW plays. Also, scrabulizer can also be used for scrabble, and when it analyzes a scrabble board, it will even give you and option to sort the plays by overall strategic value instead of points (basically you could beat a world scrabble champion with this app). But that option is not available for WWF, so at least you won't have to worry about cheaters knowing the best overall strategic plays.

    Also, this app will give you a list of all the play in order of score which you can tab through, so a clever cheater could even scroll down until he found a "reasonable" word to play, so as not to give away his cheating by playing an unusual word. In other words, unfortunately, I find that when playing against random opponents, there is no foolproof way to detect cheating besides talking to them and trying to judge if they are really as good as they are playing.

    As a side note, the scrabulizer app is a pretty cool piece of software, and I find it is legitimately useful without cheating, to improve your learning. What I sometimes do is snap screenshots of especially tricky boards, and then later, after the game is over, I go back and load some of them into the app and see if I made the best play or if maybe I could have done something better with what I had. I try not to use the app mid game, because even if I have already made my own play, I may still have some of those letters left or may get them again later, and the app may unfairly point me to a future move. Sometime I can't wait to see if my play was the best one available, so I have a personal rule that any play I see in the app can't be used in that game at any point.

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