Big Boggle is similar to regular Boggle except it uses a 5x5 matrix and all the words must be of length 4 or greater. Big Boggle is currently only available at the Qnet site.
The Gameshow Hosts
The scoring and questions are controlled by a 'bot, which is an independent C
program designed to work on the IRC. The Boggle bot is always called
BogBot or Bog for short. A player submits a word by saying Bog,
<answer>. <answer> is a word you have
found in the board.
Where to Play Boggle
There are six different places where you can indulge your need to
play Boggle. One of the newest game sites is on GalaxyNet, a set of
about 30 machines networked together. GalaxyNet is a young network
aiming to be one of friendliest places for IRC that you can find. You
can access GalaxyNet from the server irc.galaxynet.org.
The newest network for the games is StarLink, organised originally by a group of women. StarLink differs from many other IRC networks in that it does not allow any sex or software piracy channels. This is still a relatively new network, but quite friendly and reasonably free of lag. You can access a StarLink server at tasman.worldweb.net. New players to Boggle might consider starting on StarLink or GalaxyNet, as they are much smaller and tend to be friendlier than the EFnet.
The most common location is on the group of IRC machines known collectively as the EFnet. Most client software for the IRC comes with a list of EFnet server sites to which you can connect. An example of an EFnet server site is irc.bu.edu. EFnet tends to be quite crowded, lagged, and prone to netsplits.
An alternate group of machines form a network known as the Undernet. On the Undernet, netsplits, hacked channel operator privileges, and such like are relatively uncommon due to the structure of the network. Your same client software for EFnet will also work wonderfully well for the Undernet. Some common Undernet sites are ca.undernet.org or us.undernet.org.
A standalone machine exists at irc.qnet.com for playing the games. Qnet never has any netsplits or hacked ops and the lag tends to be rather evenly distributed across the player base. This is currently the only site running Big Boggle. This site, the Undernet, and EFnet are maintained by Mach.
You're not sure which network you're on? A quick and easy way to tell is by using the /lusers command. If it comes and reports to you that there are over 25 000 users connected on 70+ servers then you're connected to the EFnet. If there are fewer than 30 000 but more than 15 000, you are likely on the Undernet. Qnet never has more than 70 people online at a time and a /motd will tell you that you are on Qnet. GalaxyNet does not usually have a lot of people but it will report that there are several people connected to x number of servers, where the number of servers is under 30. To change servers, type /server machine_name, where machine_name is something like irc.ucdavis.edu or irc.qnet.com.
A Description of the Game
You will be presented with a grid of letters, and you must form words
which are at least 3 letters long, created out of adjoining letters.
Letters may not be reused. Note that it is valid to move across
As an example, in the board:
a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o pThe following words are valid:
Most people prefer to play a version of Boggle that is a little more challenging, saving the three-letter words for times when they are playing alone. If you see several people on the Boggle channel, chances are that they will want to be playing with words of four or more characters each. We did introduce a 4+ version of Boggle, Big Boggle, but this only runs at one site. Until it is more widespread, please respect the wishes of the majority.
Scoring for Boggle is relatively simple. You score 1 point for each 3-letter word. For each additional letter, add one more point to your score. Thus, for example, if you find the word fab in the above matrix, you score 1 point for fab. If you find mink, you score 2 points, and so on.
Common Problems Encountered While Playing
Q) The board doesn't line up correctly.
A) Make sure you type:/set continued_line + /set indent offNote that these are the default IRC settings. In general, if the board is "off by a character" you can set continued_line to nothing or to + or to ++.
Q) I *still* can't see the board properly.
A) Try (on GalaxyNet/StarLink) bog show long board instead. Q) The board scrolls off the screen. What can I do?
A) The best solution is to use IRC windows. You need VT100 emulation to use this feature (you have VT100 if your screen has an inverse bar at the bottom of the screen above where you type). With multiple windows, you can /msg bogbot to show you the board in one window which won't scroll, while you play in the main window.
Type: /window new - create a new irc windowType /window kill to destroy a window.
/bind ^I next_window - That's carat-I, not control-I!
Tab will now switch windows.
An inverse ^^^ denotes the active window.
Use tab to select the upper window.
/join #boggle - Join channel in the upper window
Use tab to select the lower window.
/msg bogbot show board - Shows board in lower window
Use tab to select upper window, play!
2) Boggle can be switched between 'hard' and 'easy' modes. Hard mode is defined as a game where all words must be at least four letters in order to count. "bog hard mode" issued during the course of a game will cause BogBot, if in 'easy mode' to only allow 4+ letter words in the following games. 'Easy' mode allows players to use 3-letter words and can be activated by using the 'bog easy mode' command.
3) Boggle has 2 sets of statistics. One set, the 'indy' set is generated when a player plays a Boggle game alone. A 'group' set is maintained for games involving at least two players. In addition to the regular scores and wins (for both types), BogBot also stores the percentage of words found. "bog show top indy percentages" will show these for single-player games, etc.
4) BogBot shows all words found by the 'bot and by the players. It is not restricted to only 256 characters or so. In addition, the bot will only display words that it found itself in excess of 4 letters, regardless of the mode of the bot. This is to encourage the '4+ letter culture.'
* help This provides the current list of commands to which BogBot will respond. This command might be disabled due to people flooding the 'bot with help requests.
* show board Sends a private message to you with a copy of the current board in play. This board is all on one line and works with IGM and 80-column text-based IRC clients.
* show long board Send a private message to you with a copy of the current board in play. This board is sent one line at a time and provides an alternative for those who don't use IGM or can't get the regular show board to work. * show scores Displays the current points accumulated by the players for the current game.
* show top wins Will send you the list of the 10 players with the greatest number of wins. On StarLink/Galaxynet, this list is of the top ten high scores generated while playing with at least two people.
* show top scores Will send you the list of the 10 players with the greatest number of points in a single game. On StarLink/Galaxynet, this list is of the top ten high scores generated while playing with at least two people.
* show stats nickname Will send you a summary of a given user's number of wins and highest score.
* show top indy scores On GalaxyNet/StarLink, this command shows you the top scores generated while players were playing alone. * show top indy wins On GalaxyNet/StarLink, this command shows you the top number of individual wins.
* show top percentages On GalaxyNet/StarLink, this shows the ten players who have found the highest percentage of possible words while playing against other players.
* show top indy percentages On GalaxyNet/StarLink, this shows the ten players who have found the highest percentage of possible words while playing alone.
* free channel Will remove +m, +i, +s, or +k modes in case the channel gets stuck in one of these modes.
* hard mode On GalaxyNet/StarLink this instructs the bot to no longer accept 3-letter words as of the next game.
* easy mode On GalaxyNet/StarLink this instructs the bot to once again accept 3-letter words as valid answers of the next game.
People are granted operator status on EFnet/Undernet/Qnet by Mach (email@example.com). For GalaxyNet/StarLink/DALnet, you need to contact Eingang (firstname.lastname@example.org). Usually, operator privileges are granted to people who have played the games for awhile so that their behaviour can be evaluated.
We do not find it amusing if people are constantly asking us for operator privileges for the games. Being an operator is not just a status thing, it is also a responsibility. If you just want to be an operator because you think it is cool, please do not even bother to ask. In fact, in general, operator privileges are granted automatically to people deemed capable of assuming the responsibility for managing the channel.
We cannot stress the importance of operators behaving appropriately. With so many games running, it is impossible for the game administrators to monitor all the channels all the time. As such, we rely on the operators to enforce the rules, particularly the rules regarding language and conduct on the channel. The games are designed to be family-friendly. If you are an operator or would like to be an operator, please be sure that you are also committed to this.
If you think someone is abusing their operator privileges or perhaps using them to cheat, please feel free to contact the appropriate game administrator with details of the problem.
Channel Rules (For Everyone)
Thousands of people have played our games, from countries all around the
world, at many different times of the day and the night. In order to make
sure that everyone has a good time, we have formulated the following rules
which lay out guidelines for proper behaviour from all the users of our
game channels. With so many games running, it is impossible to
monitor all the channels all the time. Therefore, we rely on the operators
to enforce the rules, particularly the rules regarding language and conduct
on the channel. The games are designed to be family-friendly, which means
we do have restrictions on language and content, for the comfort and
enjoyment of all.
Channel operators are users entrusted to maintain order on the channel as well as to correct errors and notify the administration in the event of errors or mishaps. If you think someone is abusing their operator privileges or perhaps using them to cheat, please feel free to contact Eingang with details of the problem.
If you find yourself in a position where you are being verbally attacked, flooded, or otherwise harassed, please ask the offending party to cease. If they fail to cease, make use of the /ignore user@host -all command to ignore any message, public or private, coming from them and report to the problem to one of the game channel operators. Do not bother to respond to the person.
If you have a fight to pick with another user, please do it off channel or in private messages. Respecting other people means letting them enjoy the game without being subject to any personal problems you might have with other users. This would, of course, include any slights aimed at people on the basis of the colour, religion, sex, or age.
The profanity rules do not constitute a violation of the American Constitution regarding free speech. The rules for free speech only apply to printed materials and areas of public congress. With these games, the administrators are inviting you into a private space and therefore are exempt from the rules regarding free speech. If you find their rules intolerable, you do not have to visit their "home."
We recognize that, at times, the game can be extremely frustrating. We would like to suggest that you make use of the following fun and clean expletives to express your displeasure: Krunk! Aaaargh! Ack! Wok?! Eep! Krunkola!
Finally, if you have any complaints or questions about the channel guidelines, please contact one of the channel operators first and then one of the game administrators (See the game FAQs for information on contacting game administrators). We do want the games to be enjoyable for everyone.
It happens occasionally that a word is not found by the 'bot in the board. More often than not this is because of a failure in the 'bot. If you believe it is because the word is not included in the word dictionary, please send some e-mail to Eingang. Please note that proper nouns should properly be excluded from the dictionary as they are not valid for the game of Boggle.
As of June 1st, 1997, StarLink/GalaxyNet bots feature a new dictionary. This dictionary is 105, 000 words and excludes proper names, acronyms, abbreviations, and Roman numerals. With so many words, it's unlikely that your word isn't in the dictionary.
For a problem with one of the operators or with users on the channel, please send e-mail to Eingang including the names (user@host & IRC nickname) of the participants, details of the problem, location of the problem, and any actions that have already been taken.
More information can be obtained from their home pages. Mach's home page is located at http://phobos.cs.ucdavis.edu:8001/~mock/. More information about Eingang can be found at http://www.interpac.net/~eingang/.
Contacting the Authors
Mach's e-mail address is mock@irc.
qnet.com. Eingang's e-mail address is email@example.com.
Gigi44^ has slaved over her editor and her paint programs to bring the GalaxyNet and StarLink game players the "Ein-Gang Pages", in which you can find pictures and short paragraphs about all your favourite players. The page is located at http://www.geocities.com/TimesSquare/Realm/1936.
Eingang moderates an on-topic mailing list devoted to the games on her networks. Announcements of upcoming tournaments, machine problems, game upgrades, new games, etc. are sent to this list. To subscribe to the mailing list, send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with "subscribe ircgames" in the body of the message. To unsubscribe, send an e-mail to email@example.com with "unsubscribe ircgames" in the body of the message.
Sker has provided us with a bang-up script to help make your game playing easier when you're using a UNIX-based IRCii client. This script simplifies play on #riskybus (and variants), #acro, #chaos, and #boggle! Check it out at http://www.dimensional.com/~sker/game4irc.html!
For Windows users, check out Dwight Duensing's IRC Game Machine (IGM), which provides an interface to all of our games. (His WWW page seems to be missing so the latest version here in .zip file format is stored here at http://www.interpac.net/~eingang/Games/Information/igm.zip.)
If you have a page or resource that should be added here, contact Eingang!
Michelle A. Hoyle
Boggle/Big Boggle FAQ, updated February 19th, 1998