Playing Words with Friends is a great way to keep your brain sharp. It’s not just fun, it really helps you learn new words and improve your spelling. And the best part? You can play anytime, anywhere!
It’s always a challenge to find the words and make them fit in the grid. You can use up all of your turns without getting any letters on the board and it might not be worth it, or you could get lucky and win with just one letter on the board. Here are some tips for playing Words with Friends that will help you win more games.
Learn the best words to use
If you want to improve your Words with Friends game, the first thing you need to do is learn what words are the best ones to use.
A good idea is to start by learning all of the three-letter words – but be careful with words that have two letters and then a “Y” or “I”. This can spell a word that’s not in our list of three-letter words. If you’re unclear about whether or not a word is a valid 3-letter word, check out this list at Word Detective.
Another idea is to try using five letter words and six-letter words when possible – this will help you win even if the board contains more difficult words. Plus, people playing against you might be limited to only using three- and four-letter words.
Use online tools
If you want to improve your game, one thing to do is use online tools that can help you. There are websites that have word lists and they’ll tell you how many words are on the list and what the point values of those words are. One of those tools can be found at unscramblex.com and you can test it out before your next game. Other tools like Unscrambled Words allow you to enter a set of letters, and then show you all the words you can create. For example, entering BART will present 14 different words you can create from those letters. It’s also a good idea to use those at first before trying more complicated things like looking up definitions.
But, be careful though, because you can get too wrapped up in those tools and start playing with words you are not familiar with. This can make your friends become aware that you’re using online tools and accuse you of cheating.
In short, you should use online tools from time to time but not rely on them too much.
Use three-letter words
If you want to improve your score and get better at the game, it’s a good idea to keep a list of all the different three-letter words and their point value (if one exists). Try memorizing them instead – that way you’ll always have access to the values without having to look up the word on an online tool. You can use that information in strategy as well when deciding what letters you should eliminate first.
Give smaller points some time
If you’re just starting out playing Words with Friends, then don’t worry so much about trying to win or even trying not to lose by going over the allotted number of turns.
What you want to do is rack up points by using words you know are worth several points, and make sure that you don’t go over the turn limit at any time. That way, when you run into a difficult word (or if your opponent uses one), it’s more likely that you can still get credit for it even though the turn limit has been exceeded. This will be useful when playing with people who have very high scores and therefore use longer words more often. Even though smaller point values like “ed” or “red” might not be as good as their multi-point counterparts in most cases, they’re still worth something – so go ahead and use them! You’ll find that these easier words will allow you to get more points from the board than your opponent, even if he’s at a higher level.
Learn those tricky words that slide right by
You need to master those words that slip by – the ones you almost put in because you’re pretty sure they’re valid or at least close enough, but then you check them and they aren’t actually on the board. You get a big fat zero for those. Learn which ones have commonly used combinations and what their most common definitions are-words like “wry” (which has nothing to do with Wile E Coyote) can be reduced from 12 points down to 6 if you know that it’s a synonym for “ironic”.
And learn the ones that are used all over the place but sound like they were made up last night by a dyslexic wizard. The two most notorious words in this category that spellers have to contend with are both from Star Trek (Klingon and Romulan). They’re just tough to remember if you don’t know them already because they look nothing like any word you’ve ever seen before. But once you know what they mean, there’s no excuse not to use them.
Avoid the dictionary habit
Some people like to use dictionaries when they play and that means looking up every word they don’t know. This is okay but if you’re doing that, it’s better to do it away from your opponent so he or she doesn’t realize you are using a source other than your brain. This leaves you open to making a mistake when using the word without knowing what it means, and also takes time away from the board if you’re using a paper dictionary. If you’re looking up words in the middle of your turn, consider going back and playing more strategically so that you don’t have to do that anymore.
Picking the first word
The game begins with your opponent picking the first word and you have two options. You can either play a crucial word that your opponent needs to make his or her best score or you can try to build up some points yourself by playing a less important word. The latter is known as “throwing away” any point so it does not count for or against you.
There is a fair bit of strategy in deciding what to play first. If your opponent is trying to use all five tiles, then it’s worth using up one of those tiles immediately as you will have only four choices left. You may even be able to take advantage of this by playing a word that uses two of the remaining tiles. The downside of picking your first word too early is that you could miss a good opportunity later when you need to play an important word that gets rid of one of your opponent’s letters, leaving another good tile for you.
Words with Friends is a game that requires both strategy and skill. You need to learn the best words to use, how to give smaller points some time, when it’s better not to play at all for a few rounds so you can save your letters for later in the game, which three-letter words are most important (you never know what will show up on the board), and how to make sure you’re always trying out those difficult words. The more of our strategies you employ, the better chance you’ll have of winning!