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Letter-by-Letter Word Games FAQ

Letter-by-Letter Word Games FAQ

This is a resource of the mailing list.

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Compiled by Steffan O'Sullivan and Graham Toal

[This page last updated 5th October 2002 by Graham Toal. I've taken over maintenance of this page permanently. The original version of this page was To see why I'm working on this, wait until the page has finished loading (it's quite big now!) then flip to the section below on computer word games (especially if you are a word game programmer yourself) - Graham
The computer game sources section has been significantly reorganised]

This is an attempt to list the letter-by-letter word games that have been published -- called "letter-by-letter games", or "word-building games", to distinguish them from word games which use whole words, phrases, sentences, etc. Examples of the latter include Taboo, Guestures, Trivial Pursuit, and Charades; all of which can be considered "word games", but are outside the scope of this list. Instead, this list focuses on games in which the basic element is a letter, and words are built up from there. We will also not be listing traditional word games which can be played without special equipment, although many of the games here could also be played without the paraphenalia listed here (typified by Jotto, for example); To include pencil and paper word games would turn this project from a web page into a book! Similarly we will also be avoiding purely electronic word games (such as Jumble) unless they also have a board, card or tile component.

ScrabbleTM is probably the best-known letter-by-letter word game today. Many of the games below were invented to cash in on the popularity of Scrabble; but many of them pre-date it, especially the games using lettered cards and letter-dice, and one game in particular - Pressman's Wordy (copyright 1938) - may well turn out after a little detective work to be the original inspiration for Scrabble (copyright 1948).

The games currently listed are mostly from the USA with some from other English-speaking lands such as Britain and Australia, but submissions of games from other countries and for play in other languages will be most welcome. (Here's a good list from France that I haven't yet had time to go over individually) We hope to eventually document all aspects of a game, so that if you are going to buy one (on eBay, for example) you'll be able to check here and see just how many tiles or cards there should be before you buy a set with some missing items. We'll also be documenting the rules, when possible, so you can play on an old game whose original rules are lost. (Meanwhile, the Games Cabinet,, D'Antiques, and the AGPC (not online - photocopies by mail only) have a fine selection of rules, and John McLeod has a huge database of rules for card games. The site also has some advice for buyers. As, occassionally, do we.)

This list is not done yet - there have been an astonishing number of such games published. We'll continue to add any new submissions and corrections that are mailed to Steffan O'Sullivan and Graham Toal <>.

My thanks to the contributors (listed below), and to anyone else who responds to my plea to fill in either more game titles, comments, or both. Also thanks to external sites we've linked to, which may have a review or an image of a game. To keep the loading time of this page reasonable, I'm not placing any images inline within this page.

If you want to see my collection of images - which is unsorted at present - CLICK HERE

The games are in alphabetical order, and are numbered merely so I can easily see how many we've been able to list. If we give a date, it's the oldest date we're aware of; if we give a tile count, it's the highest tile count we're aware of - but beware, games may be older than we know or we may have info from boxes with tiles missing!

I've recently started adding some price guide information, basically just summarizing the prices fetched on eBay for the permanent record, before eBay forgets old sales. These are not to be taken with any authority. Anything you sell is worth what you can get for it. I've seen the very same game sell at times for $10 and other times for $50.

The latest major change to this page is to add some images of the games. A few words of explanation are needed here. The principle source of research for finding uncatalogued games is the online auction site, eBay. When I find a new game, I generally mail the person selling it and ask if I can use the image from their page. Usually they say yes with no strings attached. Occassionally they ask that I link to their auctions, which I'm happy to do in exchange. However most times I don't get an answer at all, which is a little depressing, though certainly understandable because many auction sellers aren't interested in what they sell - they get job lots from a house clearing when someone dies and sell everything off as fast as possible. It's a business. And I wouldn't want to put someone out who was trying to get some work done. So... although in life I'm generally very strict about copyrights and things of that nature, I have in these pages included some graphics from people from whom I have not had explicit permission. In those cases, I generally check their 'other sales' pages first, and if they are a specialist in word games, I'll include a link to it because no matter when you access it you'll probably find a word game. People who have only ever sold one word game however I don't generally link to as the word game will be long gone from the memory of eBay by the time you click on their link. In those cases I may out of politeness include a generic link to eBay, or have no attribution at all. If any ebay advertiser spots one of their scans here and is offended by this appropriation of their images, I will remove it immediately. My common sense feeling is that no-one is likely to object. I know I certainly wouldn't. Now that the page below is starting to get a pretty good coverage of what's available, new games are arriving more slowly than before and I have more time to pursue requests to include images. When I first started this page, I was adding 10 or 20 a day, and it just wasn't possible to track everyone down to ask their permission. On the plus side, we do have quite a lot of good pictures here :-)

So, without further ado, the games:

Letter-by-Letter Word Games

Compiled by Steffan O'Sullivan and Graham Toal

Quick index: [A] [B] [C] [D] [E] [F] [G] [H] [I] [J] [K] [L] [M] [N] [O] [P] [Q] [R] [S] [T] [U] [V] [W] [X] [Y] [Z]

  1. 1000 Namen von A-Z by Ravensburger
    See the
    web site [German].
  2. Academie by US Games Co., 1949
    A Word game with Wooden racks to hold cards. 3 minute timer, score cards, rules. Part of the "Cavendish Academie System Part 1." Registered U.S. Patent Office and Copyrighted in Great Britain and the Dominions. Cards have two letters on them, differing letters on opposite corners. Word point value table: For winning round with 1 word: 30, 2 words: 21, 3 words: 10; Plus Value of Words of 2-3 letters: 1, 4 letters: 2, 5:4, 6:7, 7:11, 8:16, 9:22, 10:30, 11:40, 12:52, 13:68, 14:90, 15-16 letters: 120. Extras: 3 of a kind: 15, 4 of a kind: 25, Two word couplets: 10
  3. Accent by Radio Printing Corporation, 1954
    No details of this game at all, not even 100% sure of the name. Radio Printing Corporation of Bridgeport, Conn. The game board looks Scrabble-like, but the point of the game is to play words which rhyme with something. Not sure what!
  4. Add a word, 1955
    Funagain Games [or maybe not. I have this one somewhere so if someone is looking for it, mail me and I'll type in the info from the box sooner than I might otherwise get around to...]
  5. Ad.dic.tion by Createk Inc, 1968
    Players attempt to form words WITHOUT completing them. The one who DOES complete a word is the loser. Bluffing is part of the game, but can be costly for the player whose bluff is discovered.
  6. Addiction by Waddington's House of Games, Bramalea (On), 1979
    Solo or with any number of players. The box contains 13 dice with scored letters on their sides (yet another
    Scribbage clone) and a playing surface consisting of a 5x5 grid and a dice chute.
    Each die is rolled and must then be placed in the grid; the object is to build words in the grid crossword-fashion; all words must be linked to score --any unlinked cubes at the end of the round are removed. Game is played in 300 points. [DUT] [SOS] Note that this is an interesting half-way house in the development of dice games. Until now, most dice games - even ones which required solutions laid out interlocking crossword fashion - we simply spilled on your table or carpet. This game constrains the solutions to a 5x5 board (which also forces a higher degree of interlocking than say a single 8 letter word intersecting a 6 letter word). In some way it is almost a miniature Scrabble. Note that the dice have point values, also like Scrabble. This is about as close to a hybrid of dice games and board games as you can get.
  7. Ad Lib published by ES. Lowe, 1975
    This appears to be a renaming of
    Scribbage in response to a lawsuit from the trademark owners of Scrabble.
    The faces of the 13 dice are: [V N U O C K] [Q A I F L G] [W V A D T E] [H R E N O T] [O W U M P Y] [A S X E B Y] [E R I S D BLANK] [D J N A R E] [Z A I F C E] [M P BLANK G E I] [S B N M U O] [A S E L T H] [O E L I R T]
    The scores on the letters are: A 1 B 4 C 4 D 3 E 1 F 4 G 4 H 3 I 2 J 6 K 5 L 2 M 3 N 2 O 1 P 4 Q 8 R 2 S 2 T 2 U 3 V 4 W 4 X 8 Y 4 Z 10 BLANK 0
    [poor quality image]
  8. Duplicate Ad Lib by E.S. Lowe.
    Variant of
    Ad Lib for two players. The version I have has each player with one's own gameboard and letter dice trying to make the highest possible set of scoring crosswords. Each player secretly records one's own play then, after shuffling the order of the letters, but not changing the positions of the dice, hands the gameboard to the opponent. Each player is trying to better the other's score using the same letters [AS].
  9. Ad Lib published by ES. Lowe, 1970
    This is NOT the dice game above. I have minimal information on this, but it appears to have a grid board (like Scrabble) and relief-cut letter tiles. (white on black)
  10. Administrative Waltz published by Ariel.
    This is a satirical board game about rising to the top of various bureaucracies (the military, politics, etc.) in the UK, but in some way it incorporates the making of words from letter tiles. [DB]
  11. Alfapet by Alga
    Swedish version of Scrabble
    Alga now no longer have the rights to Scrabble (which is now handled by JW Spear's in Sweden) so they have modified the game slightly and sell it under their own name. The new Alfapet has a 17x17 board. There is also a "Children's Alfapet" and now a "Kort Alfapet" (Card Alfapet - like Waddington's Lexicon)
    > From: o'
    > We were given a wedding present of the Finnish 'version' of Scrabble   
    > called Alfabet which is played on a 17 x 17 board with x4 Word squares   
    > and 8 letters on racks - maybe that's where your information came from? -   
    > I believe it is a popular game in Scandinavian countries. The tile   
    > distribution is fun when applied to English!!
    > Mike O'Rourke
    I believe this page contains an image of the Alfapet rack.
  12. Alfred's Other Game published by Selchow & Righter.
    This tile games is for 1-4 players, and is basically solitaire, whether played alone or with others. Each player has three areas: a place where tiles are laid out randomly at start, a place where completed words are spelled, and a place for leftovers. You form words from each line of six tiles - unused letters go to the leftover area, and can be reused later. Not a great game, unless multi-player solitaire is your thing. 114 hardwood letter tiles: 72 natural coloured and 72 stained dark brown. Bag. Score pad. By Alfred M. Butts, the creator of
    Scrabble. [SOS]
  13. Alpha Beta
    Instructions printed in Sydney, Australia. Crossword card game/word rummy. Cards have scores on them. Date unknown - probably 1930's plus or minus 10.
  14. Alphabet Soup by Dang Fun Games
    Spill the letters out of the oversized soup can the game comes in and make words faster than the opponent. Great Fun for kids. CONTENTS: 116 Letters, 4 Option Chips, Score Pad, & Rules
  15. Alpha playing cards
    Various games can be played with these alphabetic playing cards. (See also WhizORD and Slam!) [GT] [NEW: print your own free sample!]
  16. AlphaBlitz Wizards of the Coast -
    One of crop of family-oriented games by Wizards of the Coast. Two games in one: Alpha for two players, Blitz for 3 or more. Both use the same mechanism of using the letters shown on the table to form words; letters can be reused in the same word. At each turn one must play a card atop an existing pile: a new letter, or a Blitz cards which closes that pile for the rest of the deal. In Alpha, find as many words as possible; in Blitz you only can claim one word, but it must be longer than earlier words claimed that turn, and you get more points the more people go ahead of you (but you risk losing your chance if that length of word is claimed first). All reviews I've seen are enthusiastic. [BS] [Funagain Games]
  17. Alphabok by Springbok Editions, 1968
    From an eBay ad: "challenging new solitaire word puzzle"
    Alphabok, copyright 1968,1969. Springbok Editions.
    The directions are written on the box bottom. The contents are: playing board; 200 letter squares, which adhere to the playing surface; sorting platform; alphabok record book; 25 key phrases. The PLAY: 1. Select key phrase. 2. Spell out the phrase vertically on the circled squares on the playing board. 3. Build words from left to right using each letter of the key phrase as the first letter of each work. 4. Word Building may begin at any row. 5. When the first player finds he is unable to complete the words with the unused letters and must rebuild previous words by revisions, deletions and additions. The game is won when a word is built from each key letter and all 200 letters have been used. To WIN: You add up your score, depending on the point amount written on the letters.
  18. Alpha-Bug Soup
    Unknown details. Sounds like the
    Campbells Alphabet Soup game! See it at eToys.
  19. Anagrams
    There are more games out there called "Anagrams" than you can shake a stick at. We will be adding many more to these pages as we identify them. They are most late Victorian/early 20th C, before copyrights and patent lawyers reduced the number of essentially similar games.
  20. Ana Grams
    Green box, mottled pattern. Only text on box is "Ana Grams". Tiles have green letters on grey, with a Fleur-de-lys pattern in white on red on the obverse. (Or so I'm told, it looks to me more like a crown)
  21. Anagrams, or "Words Alive" 1800's?
    The box is 5 3/4" x 4 1/4" x 1 1/4" deep. It comes with the original instructions and the alphabet many times over on 1" x 3/4" card stock.
  22. Anagrams by Harter Publishing, Cleveland. 1935
  23. Anagrams by All Fair
    350 large letters. Anagrams, and other letter games. Two boxes for the same game from All Fair. One box has a large letter A on the cover, the other is a horizontal tricolor in blue, white and red.
  24. Anagrams by Playtime House Co, Rochester NY
    Cardboard tiles, green backs. Instructions.
  25. Anagrams by Russell Press Inc., Leicester, Mass
    Game No. 531. This game appears to date back to the 1930s, judging from the illustration of the family (and the clothes they wear) as shown on the box's cover. Box is approx 5in x 7in. Cardboard letters.
  26. Anagram by Oxford Games (modern)
    Designed by Finch & Scott. Based on an old and popular victorian game, Anagram is a fast and exciting word game for 2 or more players. It contains 90 letter tiles (with various points on each) which are picked up one at a time by every player until someone recognizes a word that can be made out of some or all of the exposed tiles -- the person then picks up those tiles and arranges those letters in front of himself to make a word. But it gets even better -- as the new letters turn up anagrams can be enlarged or changed -- the game ends at a time designated by the person who picks up the last tile -- new anagrams may be made and points won during that time by recognizing and claiming new words -- at the end of the game the person with the highest number of points wins.
  27. Cube Anagrams published by Parker Bros., 1899
  28. Anagrams & Letters published by Parker Bros.
    97 letter tiles - white letters on red plastic. Players in turn choose a tile; if the letter chosen can form a word the player keeps the tile. However, if not it is placed in the center of the game and is considered "up for grabs" to other players. Play continues until a player cannot add to his/her word and is forced to drop out. Last player left is the winner.
  29. Anagrams published by Milton Bradley.
    Game 4719. 360 wooden letters. Black lettering on yellow tiles. Thin serif old style face. [GT]
  30. Anagrams published by Milton Bradley.
    Game 4720. 200 wooden letters - black text on green background. Tile distribution: A 16 B 8 C 8 D 10 E 20 F 6 G 8 H 8 I 16 J 2 K 6 L 6 M/W 10 (Can't tell difference between M and W tiles) N 10 O 14 P 4 Q 2 R 8 S 10 T 10 U 6 V 4 W See above for M X 2 Y 4 Z 2
  31. Anagrams published by Milton Bradley.
    No copyright date anywhere and can't find the game number. Unfortunately my set is one short of 360, so I can't give a definitive tile distribution. My set has the following: A 37 B 12 C 12 D 14 E 42 F 8 G 12 H 12 I 35 J 4 K 8 L 11 M 7 N 14 O 32 P 6 Q 4 R 12 S 14 T 14 U 22 V 6 W 6 X 4 Y 6 Z 4
  32. Minstrel Anagrams by Cutler & Saleeby, 194X
    No info.
  33. Anagrams published by J Pressman & Co of New York
    Game #4031. Red letters on glossy cream-colored card (on face side anyway). One-page instruction sheet. Colorful green and red box.
  34. Anagrams published by Milton Bradley, 1939
    350 letters. "Letters for Cross Word Puzzles and Other Letter Games" Game #4306? 4308? (Difficult to tell from the scan I'm looking at)
  35. Anagrams published by "Major", an imprint of Miner Industries, Inc., 200 Fifth Ave, New York NY 10010, (c) 1979.
    a.k.a. "Anagram Games". Ages 7 and Up,".
    The leaflet is for Anagrams Set #1152 or #1153, which must differ only in tile pool size; this copy is marked #1152. It gives rules for Anagrams, Word Fun (building crossed words), Word Rummy, Word-Fun Solitaire, Word Dominoes, Snatch Words (the major difference from Anagrams seems to be that all players expose a tile at once), Word Ghost (the classic game, with tiles). Anagrams is the one-letter-at-a-time game with stealing that we know and love, plus scoring according to tile-values. The set came with 6 plastic racks stating "Transogram". This set comes with 216 tiles with lower-left-imprinted values, including:
        Splotch 8    
        A 16    N 14    
        B  4    O 16    
        C  6    P  4    
        D  8    Q  2    
        E 24    R 12    
        F  4    S 14    
        G  4    T 20    
        H 10    U  6    
        I 14    V  2    
        J  2    W  4    
        K  2    X  2    
        L  8    Y  4    
        M  4    Z  2
    Note the connection with Transogram - and the similarity to
    Word Fun from 1954; and note that the address is the same as for A.A. Burnstine (Kan-U-Go)! - GT
  36. Spelling and Anagrams 1930
    Game #1930? Instruction sheet has 1930 at the top which a seller claimed was the date but I suspect was more likely the manufacturer's game number. 114 wooden letter tiles. Box is 6.25in x 4.125in x 1.125in and has two children facing each other across a table. The boy on the left is saying "I love to spell words"; the girl on the right is saying "I love the anagram game". At the top of the box is the title "Spellinga nd Anagrams", "A-B-C etc 216 block letters". A sample game on the cover shows the words at/eat/heat/wheat being built up, giving some indication of the type of game. The instruction leaflet starts "Rules for playing the game of anagrams and other letter games". Sells for between $10 and $20 on eBay.
  37. Educational Anagrams by A.I. Root Company, Medina Ohio, 1930
    "Root Anagrams No. 46". 130 wooden letter-tiles. 60 page booklet with over 500 anagram and word puzzles by Milton Goldsmith.
  38. Anagrams - A Game of Letters published by McLoughlin Bros, 1903.
    Red box with a cherubic child on the cover. Black letters on white card. [GT]
  39. Anagrams published by Selchow & Righter, 1964
    200 tiles, build words from them. You can steal your opponents words if you can add one or more letters to make an anagram of their words. I like it. [SOS]
  40. Anagrams, Embossed Edition published by Selchow & Righter, 1953
    Game #79. 90 tiles. No copyright statement or dates anywhere on this set but lists it as 1953 and adds that the blocks are maple.
    The tile distribution is: A 7 B 4 C 3 D 4 E 7 F 4 G 4 H 3 I 7 J 2 K 2 L 4 M 4 N 4 O 5 P 2 Q 1 R 4 S 5 T 3 U 3 V 2 W 2 X 1 Y 2 Z 1
  41. Anagrams, Tricolor published by The Embossing Co., Albany NY
    Plastic Letter Pieces. Three different colored letters (Red, Blue, Yellow). Number 3302. Looks to be 1950-60's.
  42. Anagrams, Ivory Edition (Eyerest) published by The Embossing Co., Albany NY
    Game #3503. The 206 pieces in this set look *extremely* similar to those of the Selchow and Righter Embossed Edition. Box lid is attractive blue with red bands near the outside; bottom is red. Good aesthetics, nice font. Instructions have an ad for "
    Anex-a-gram" on the other side.
  43. Anagrams, Eyerest, Embossed published by The Embossing Co., Albany NY
    156 Wooden Letter Pieces. These black tiles with yellow lettering are 3/4" on a side - presumably for people with poor vision. Box is red with intaglio lettering which reads "Eye Rest. Anagrams. Embossed."
  44. Anagrams, Eyerest, Embossed published by The Embossing Co., Albany NY
    Game #3015. 90 black tiles with white lettering. Box is a washed-out green with dark lettering which reads "Eye Rest Anagrams For All Word Games Embossed."
  45. Anagrams published by Transogram, 1957
    Plastic tiles and 4 racks - again, trying to adapt Anagrams to be more Scrabble-like; 108 letter tiles (white letters on black plastic). Instruction book shows how to play 7 different games. [GT]
  46. Anagrams published by Transogram, 1963
    Plastic tiles and 4 racks - again, trying to adapt Anagrams to be more Scrabble-like; 160 letter tiles, 5 blank tiles, 4 racks. Instruction book shows how to play 7 different games. [GT]
  47. Anagrams published by Parker Brothers
    Game #324. 96 red plastic tiles. [GT]
  48. Anagrams published by Whitman, 1934
    Game no. 3004. The cover blurb "270 large letters on heavy board" doesn't mean it has a heavy board that you play on, it means the tiles are made of thick cardboard. [GT]
  49. Wood Anagrams published by Whitman, 1934
    Box says "165 letters". Black letters on white wood. Rule book. No other info. [GT]
  50. Anagrams published by Endless Games (modern)
    Currently sold at
    Black letters on wood tiles, like Scrabble tiles without the points. [GT]
  51. Anagrams published by Halsam
    90 embossed white on black wooden tiles.
  52. Anagrams published by Halsam
    180 embossed white on black wooden tiles. Blue box. Rules.
  53. Anex-a-Gram published by Embossing Co., Albany New York
    This is one of the earliest anagrams games I've seen that uses a board, and racks for the tiles, in the style of Scrabble. Unfortunately I do not have a firm date for this product, but it does appear to be 1930's. There's a chance this may be the first crossover from playing Anagrams on a table to playing on a set board. Board is 13x13 squares.
  54. Anagrams, Salem Edition published by Parker Brothers Inc, Salem Mass/New York/London
    3/4in tiles, black lettering on pale green (off-white?) paper glued to wood. Elegant box design. (blue with gold lettering)
  55. Annex published by Sterling Games Inc., 1986
    Playing board of 100 squares, laid out in "trails" with multiple intersections where the direction of words can change. Words may be spelled frontwards, backwards, up, down, and around corners. Contains 135 white tiles with colored letters, game board, 4 tile racks, and instructions.
  56. Auction Anagrams published by Parker Brothers Inc, Salem Mass/New York/London 1912
    "Parker's Famous Auction Anagrams (Trade Mark)" "A Remarkable and Skillful Game for Adults" Includes rules, colored numbered tokens, cards.
  57. Bali published by Avalon Hill, 1954
    Oldest box I've seen says "(c) 1954 I-S ULTD., INC. / 148 E. 38th New York 16, N.Y". Originally published by Avalon Hill before being purchased by Selchow & Righter (1972) when the word "Scrabble" was added to the name. Returned to Avalon Hill by 1980.
    Word building game similar to rummy where you build words as melds and they can be stolen with anagrams: you build columns of letters on a common area which are either words or word fragments; and, while other columns can be stolen, they are not rearranged as in Anagrams.
    Each player has a set number of columns of letter cards, and during his turn combines two or more columns (your own or others') into longer columns to form longer words or word fragments; empty columns are filled with single cards from the deck. Bali comes with two decks of 54 cards. Each card contains one letter of the alphabet except for the special "Bali" cards ,which are wild. Consonants are worth from one point to five points. Vowels are valueless. The wild "Bali" card is worth five points. To score a completed word, add up all points and multiply that total times the number of letters (cards) in the word. For example, take the word "taxman". T (1) + A (0) + X (4) + M (2) + A (0) + N (1) = 8. Multiply that by the six letters (cards) in the word and you get a total of 48 points for "taxman".
    Made The GAMES 100 in November issues of Games Magazine, 1983, 1984, 1985, and 1986. [RI] [BS] [DUT] [AS] [JB] Here is
    Bali in French and in German by Milton Bradley. [image]
  58. Bataille de Mots Croises (Crossword Battle)
    A French variant of Battleship using letters instead of ships! Read about it at
  59. Beyond Words
    The game begins with one letter in the middle of the board and builds from there. Vowels and consonants are color-coded so you can draw the appropriate one when you replace your played tiles. The game also includes some defensive strategy.
  60. Bible Spell-a-gram, 1961
    No info.
  61. Bild-a-word Educational Card & Game Co., NY 1929 (maybe first 1922)
    36 letter cards, and 70-off 5-point and 75-off 10-point small scoring cards. Letter-card distribution is: A 2 B 1 C 1 D 1 E 3 F 1 G 1 H 1 I 1 J 1 K 1 L 2 M 1 N 2 O 2 P 1 Q 1 R 2 S 2 T 1 U 1 V 1 W 1 X 1 Y 1 Z 1 Blockade (bull) 1 Blockade (policeman) 1
    Set contains rule book and a fold-out rule leaflet with the same rules on it. Rules are for 5 different games. [GT]
  62. Bits & Pieces published by Samuel Ward.
    Some of the dice sides have individual letters, some have letter combinations. Race against time. [SOS]
  63. Blockword by Waddington's
    Vertical rack like RSVP but grid is only five-by-five. Reviewed in Jan/Feb 1978 issue of Games Magazine. [JB]
  64. Board Script by Jumbo (Dutch)
    Blatant Scrabble rip-off.
  65. BoggleTM (& variants) published by Parker Brothers.
    Boggle has 16 dice in a 4x4 pattern (Big Boggle, later called Boggle Master, has 25 in a 5x5 pattern). Shake the holder, the dice settle into place with a single side up, and start the timer. You have 3 minutes to find as many words as you can. A word can be spelled by moving from die to die, orthogonally or diagonally, without hitting the same die twice. Each die can only be used once in spelling a given word, but may be used over and over again for each new word. Words must be a minimum of three letters. Very good game. The premiere issue of GAMES Magazine (Sep/Oct 1977) carried a review of Boggle, and it made the first GAMES 100 in the Nov/Dec 1980 issue. Big Boggle was reviewed in the Mar/Apr 1980 issue and began its virtually annual appearances in The GAMES 100 in Nov 1981. [SOS] [Funagain Games] [rules at the Games Cabinet] [play 'Jumbalaya' online] ]
  66. Boggle Master
    5x5 boggle. Green and blue box. More hard to find than Big Boggle. If you're lucky you can pick this up for $30.
  67. Big Boggle
    5x5 Boggle. Red box. One variant (1979) with "Challenge cube" which is a cube with more challenging letters on it (eg Q etc). (Similar box, but has yellow "FREE" stripe in corner). I've seen Big Boggle go for between $30 and $40, and the Challenge Cube version go for $50.
  68. Boggle Deluxe
    COLLECTORS BEWARE: Although the original 5x5 "Big Boggle" and "Boggle Master" are now collectable items (especially the latter), "Boggle Deluxe" is still available in the shops at retail, despite what some people are saying on auction sites. Although it is not the purpose of these pages to advertise, I can't abide to see people paying $70 for something that was bought the week before for $30 - so
    here's a link to at least one site still selling "Boggle Deluxe" at retail. Funagain Games below may also have it.
    One of the major toy chains dumped their leftover Big Boggle games through one of those outlet mall junk toy shops at $10 each, so if you're quick you may still get a bargain! (I did :-) ). If you're a sucker, you'll pay someone on ebay $40 for the same $10 game.
    Boggle Deluxe has an adaptor so you can reduce it to a 4x4 game if 5x5 is too challenging for you! [GT] [Funagain Games]
  69. Boggle Bowl
    Both players roll cubes on a table and try to score the longest word. The point value is determined by moving a pawn across a 9x9 grid and trying to trap your opponent in a low scoring corner. First player to 100 points wins. Play is a little more frenzied than regular Boggle, but the scoring makes the game kind of a mini-board game. Boggle Bowl made the GAMES 100 of Games Magazine in Oct/Nov 1987, although it wasn't called the "GAMES 100" that year. [
    Rules at D'Antiques] [JP]
  70. Body Boggle published by Parker Brothers.
    Weird cross between Boggle and Twister. Floor mat and cards.
  71. Boggle Jr Letters published by Parker Brothers.
    Looks more like an educational toy for children than the sort of spelling game we're interested in here, but I included it anyway just to keep the "Boggle" info complete. [GT] See it at
  72. Boggle Scratch Off by Play Bites
    Scratch-off cards where you reveal a boggle board. I don't have much info on this. It may have been a free promo with some other product. Each box has 6 cards and a keyring to use as a scratcher which is of the form of a boggle die.
  73. Boggle Scroll-o-matic Travel Game
    Apparently there is a "travel boggle": A really neat little game which scrolls the letters, comes complete with timer. Surprises me because standard boggle is pretty travel-worthy. I did also see a novelty "Boggle Keychain" that was a smaller boggle unit, but large enough to play real games with, which might be mistaken for a Travel Boggle.
  74. Thème Boggle
    Originally called "Coggle", this
    French game is a variant of Boggle whereby you have to make words using the letter dice which are in the domain of the subject (theme) dice.
  75. Buchstaben Suppe by Schmidt Spiele
    Alphabet Soup game in German. Small round plastic tiles, scooping spoon, soup bowl to hold the tiles. Looks very similar to the 1957
    Goomicus Alphabet Soup Game
  76. Buzzle published by Fanjos in 1994.
    This is the German rerelease of
    Runes. You can read all about it at the Spiel des Jahres site. [KM] [image] Designed by Bill Eberle, Jack Kittredge and Peter Olotka. [image]
  77. Buzzword by The Great American Puzzle Factory, 1995
    You roll a cup full of dice and put them on a Scrabble like board. Recent game (a few years). Not as good as it sounds. Reviewed in Games Magazine. Includes timer, score pads, gameboard and letter dice.
  78. By The Numbers by Milton Bradley
    This game is based on an unsold televison pilot by Desilu Productions. Players reveal letters from a gameboard containing thirty parts. When a player can recall having seen enough letters to spell a word of three letters or more, that player reveals the letters to win the game. A winning player goes on to the bonus round where the object is guess a secret six letter word by seeeing only sections of each letter that make up the word. [AS]
  79. Campbell's Alphabet Scoop & Spell published by Warren Industries, 1979
    Scoop piles of letters out of the Campbell's alphabet soup can to spell words. [SOS] Plastic letters in a plastic canister. Canister measures 5 1/2" x 5 1/2". Object of the game: Campbell's Scoop and Spell is a word game for 1,2,3, or 4 players. The play consists of forming words directly on a player's own colored place mat. Each player competes for high score by making as many words as possible with the letters scooped from the container. Includes 4 placemats, 216 letters, 4 scoops and 1 score pad.
  80. Catchword published by Games International, 1982
    "From the makers of UNO". Consonants on 54 letter cards, vowels on 6 dice, which are thrown anew each turn. Variations given. Incl. 6 player identification chips, and rules.
  81. Catchword published by Whitman Publishing, 1954
    May or may not be same as above. From an ebay listing: This is a neat older board game titled CATCHWORD. It was copyrighted in 1954 by Whitman Publishing, Racine Wisconson. The game has the item number 5628-98. The game has the original price tag that reads B M $1.00 The board is similar to a Scrabble board but has various colors on some of the squares and letters from the word CATCHWORD on the board also, to use during play. The board and the instructions are decorated with the same emblem as on the front of the box, the Knight on a Horse. The box measures 8" x 15 1/2".
  82. Chain Letters published by NBC/Hasbro, 1969
    See review in the gamepile
  83. Chessword published by Waddington's House of Games, 1972.
    Played on an elongated chessboard where the white squares have the alphabet on them, and using only the non-pawn pieces. Each player tries to maneuver any one of his pieces onto the letter he needs for his word, whilst preventing the opponent from doing the same. [DUT]
  84. Des Chiffres et des Lettres
    French version of Countdown Contains two games, the Letters Game ("Le mot le plus long") and the Numbers Game ("Le compte est bon").
  85. Click-a-word by Clicker Inc., Brockton Mass. 1961
    To play you spin to get beginning letter and number of letters in your word. Flip White timer for most players and Black timer for the leading player. Click out your word. Add numbers across bottom windows to get your word score. Two eggtimers, clicker, replacement parts order form.
  86. Clock-a-word by Topper Toys, 1966
    Plastic toy combining a timer and a one-armed-bandit which shuffles 9 letters, which you then use to find the longest word before the timer runs out. Should have 4 differently-colored keys. Often used ones don't.
  87. Clusters unknown manuf.
    Educational game. From the blurb: "This exciting word building game includes 98 plastic tiles in ten bright colors representing the most common letter groupings of the English language. Unique two-tiered tile holders provide up to four players with work spaces to create their own words in preparation for play. Tiles include double vowels, diagraphs, blends, silent letters, and more. Word games are a great way for children to learn to spell and read."
    See it at this
    home-schooling site.
  88. Code Wort by Parker
    German description.
  89. Coggle
    Thème Boggle.
  90. Comana
    The Phenomenal Game of Phraseology, for 1 to 8 players ages 12 to adult, Comana Ent. Ltd. 1985 (Anagram-style word game?)
  91. Countdown published by Piatnik (Austria)
    Designed by Frederic Leygonie, 2-6 players aged 10+, pub March '97. Make words by playing letter cards: longest wins. I think could be based on the extremely popular British TV word game, whose guests have included many world-famous Scrabble players. (If not then there are two word games called Countdown!) [PE] [GT]
    Also available in French as
    Des Chiffres et des Lettres.
  92. Crazy Bomb
    Swedish word game. Spell words against the clock to stop the bomb exploding.
  93. Criss Cross by David Mair.
    German word game.
  94. Cross Cubes published by Baron Scott.
    19 letter cubes, 6 black cubes to use as blanks, as in crossword puzzles. Place the black cubes first, then shake the letter dice and start a timer. [SOS]
  95. CrossCheck published by "Products of your imagination" (or TSR?), 1985
    A crossword game, something like
    'Swoggle, but here you are actually answering clues. [DB]
    Write answers to cross-word style questions on an erasable 19x19" board, to create a chain of words to your home square. 2-4 players. Contains board, 10-sided die, pencil, 3 adult and 1 children's question books.
  96. Cross-o-grams by American Newspaper Promotion Corp. 537 South Dearborn Street, Chicago, ILL, 1932
    A card game similar in style to Scrabble (and many other card games of the period). It is
    suspected that Alfred Butts may have played this before he invented Scrabble.
    Within it are two side-by-side piles of very small cards (each about 1.5 x 2.5 inches). There are 54 cards (52 + 2 jokers), with a letter on each card and a value of either 10, 20, 30, 40, or 50, with each joker worth 100. [The Q is actually a "Qu" card " render the card more playable," say the sage instructions. Some excerpts:
    "There are two Joker cards in each deck which may be used by the holder for any letter he himself designates. During the same game, the joker continues to represent only the letter originally designated."
    "The dealer distributes one card at a time until each player holds twelve cards....The player at the left of the dealer begins the game by placing on the table, in the center, a word of three or four letters....If the player is unable to form a word, he must draw a card from the top of the pack in the center of the table, and must then await his next turn."
    "The new word must include one or more letters of a word previously played on the table...." A sample layout was provided:
            D      A
            U      T
            CAB PASS
            T ATOM
    [Not too shabby for 1932!] 
    "Proper names, abbreviations and foreign words are not allowed. Players may use the dictionary as a means of settling disputes. If a word is querstioned and is not found in the dictionary, the player must take back the word and lose his next turn. If the questioned word is in the dictionary, the one who disputed it must lose his next turn."
    Game variations are provided, including AN-O-GRAMS ("...a fascinating new variation of the old parlor game") which, coincidentally, includes in one of its examples the word SCRAMBLE.
  97. Cross Up published by MB, 1974.
    "The competitive crossword game." Lucille Ball appears on the box. Oddity: everything inside the box (equipment, instructions) spells it "cross-up" *with* a hyphen, but the outside of the box has it everywhere as "cross up" without a hyphen. Divide the 108 letter cards into six roughly equal piles and turn them all face up. Players take turns selecting one of the letters shown, and everyone has to write it down somewhere in his 5-by-5 grid. Then score for words across, down, and diagonal, like a word search. [JB] [
  98. Crosswise published by Wise Guys (James McKay Morton), 1989.
    Not to be confused with Jim Homan's
    computer game of the same name, this is a multi-directional complex large-board scrabble-like game.
  99. Crossword published by MB, 1978.
    Nearly identical to
    Scribbage. [AM] Also available in French (though probably not much different except for the box?)
  100. Crossword published by Herbko, 1997
    Funagain Games
  101. Crossword Anagrams by the Embossing Co., Albany NY.
    Game #405. "A word-building game for two to four players". "It keeps both Yound and Old Spellbound". This is the old game of anagrams placed on a board. The packaging and the board layout STRONGLY suggest that this is post-Scrabble and a deliberate attempt to look like Scrabble. To compare a possible pre-Scrabble version of Anagrams that uses a board, see
    Anex-a-Gram. Four tile racks (red, yellow, blue and green). Instructions printed in box lid.
  102. Crosswords by JRS Games, 1987
    Funagain Games.
  103. Crossword Bingo published by Skor-Mor/Samuel Ward.
    240 letter tiles. Words must be formed before you can place tiles on bingo cards. Timer, simultaneous play. [SOS]
  104. Crossword Cross Word Cards by Russell Manufacturing Co., Leicester Mass, 1935
    Volume VI in the "Big Little Card Game" series. 47 cards, 2 1/2" x 1 5/8" (i.e. small format). Scores on cards as for game below. Includes Free Letter card. May be only 47 cards? 48? Small pink box. Includes instruction sheet.
  105. Crossword Letter Game by Russell Manufacturing Co., Leicester Mass, 1938
    Common crossword card game style with no special rule variants. 96 cards. Letter scores are: A 8 B 4 C 6 D 4 E 8 F 2 G 2 H 6 I 8 J 2 K 6 L 6 M 6 N 6 O 6 P 6 Q 2 R 6 S 6 T 6 U 6 V 4 W 6 X 1 Y 2 Z 1 "Free Letter" 0
    Card distribution is: A 6 B 3 C 4 D 3 E 8 F 2 G 3 H 3 I 5 J 4 K 2 L 4 M 4 N 4 O 5 P 3 Q 2 R 5 S 5 T 5 U 4 V 2 W 3 X 1 Y 2 Z 2 "Free Letter" 3
  106. Crossword Lexicon published by Parker Bros., Salem, MA, Ney York, 1935, 1937.
    This is basically the same as Waddington's
    Lexicon, below. The game was originally published in Britain, and so the US sets (with a 1937 copyright date on the manuals) boast "Over 4,000,000 LEXICON Sold in England"! I believe that these were published for many years after 1937 so collectors should note that the date on the manual (the only date anywhere in the set) may be misleading.
    This game comes in two boxes, one red and one blue. They are otherwise identical. The cards are also in red or blue. I believe there are some games that you can play with two sets together but I don't have any info about rules for these.
    The distributions of cards are: A 4 B 1 C 2 D 1 E 5 F 1 G 2 H 2 I 3 J 1 K 1 L 3 M 2 N 2 O 3 P 1 Q 1 R 3 S 3 T 3 U 2 V 1 W 2 X 1 Y 1 Z 1 Master (wildcard) 2.
    The cards also have point values, like Scrabble tiles: A 10 B 2 C 8 D 6 E 10 F 2 G 4 H 8 I 10 J 6 K 8 L 8 M 8 N 8 O 8 P 8 Q 4 R 8 S 8 T 8 U 8 V 6 W 8 X 2 Y 4 Z 2 Master (wildcard) 15.
    The 1939 box has slightly different artwork from later boxes, recognisable from the thinner font face on the box. Manual and cards look the same. [SOS] [GT]
  107. Cross Word published by Jaymar, 1953
    Contains directions,
    board, 119 tiles, 2 joker tiles, 4 wooden racks, score pad and 4 letter distribution cards. Another approximate Scrabble rip-off.
  108. Cross Words National Games Inc, West Springfield, Mass
    Game #5010. Scrabble lookalike, but sufficiently different board layout to avoid a lawsuit. There is no copyright and no date on the box. Rules are printed inside the box lid. Very similar to
    Skip-a-cross in quality - cardboard board, cardboard tiles. The letters have no point values. Letter frequencies: A 9 B 3 C 3 D 5 E 12 F 4 G 2 H 4 I 9 J 2 K 2 L 4 M 4 N 7 O 9 P 2 Q 1 R 7 S 6 T 8 U 6 V 1 W 1 X 1 Y 3 Z 1 Blanks 4 (Total 120). Mild deviation from Scrabble: instead of playing on the center square to start, you must place three tiles over the center square and its adjoining neighbors. Scoring: 1) 5 points for each letter played, 10 points on own color square [Each player chooses one of the four colors before playing (red, green, blue and yellow)], 5 times dice throw on any cross square, 10 times dice throw on cross square of own color. 2) Any word over 5 letters gives player 50 points bonus (i.e. he must place in one turn at least 5 letters) 3) Letters left in rack at end of game count 5 points against score. 4) Challenges count 25 points for or against according to findings in dictionary. [GT]
  109. Crozzle published by Cadaco.
    Paper in special holders (4) form crossword frames. Letters are drawn one at a time, and all players fill their own in at the same time, one letter at a time. Try to have the most words when the puzzle is full. Incl. 4 pencils and score sheets. Instructions on underside of box.
  110. Crypt-O Manufactured for Development Products Corporation-West Orange, NJ by Newark Paper Box Co.. 1955
    Crypto hidden word board game. Included in this game is the board, 52 letter cards and 7 clue cards.
  111. Cue by Lowell Toy Mfg Corp, approx 1950.
    Solving the code is your 'CUE' to excitement and challenge in this stimulating word game! CUE is a fascinating game for 2,3, or 4 players based on the solving of secret codes or cryptograms. Includes: 10 master code cards, a large plastic "Master Code Breaker," 5 Special dice, a dice cup, blank pad of paper, instructions, and a code book containing 200 phrases in secret code and their solutions. [From an eBay ad]
  112. Cue Me! Manufactured by The Games Gang, Author Frank Thibault.
    The game contains a six-sided die, with the numbers 1-4 occupying four of the sides and an asterisk (*) on the other two sides. Upon rolling the die, the clue-giver correlates the number on the die to the number on the game card. There are five words on each card. If you roll a 1, the word will be a person. If you roll a 2, the word will be a place. If you roll a 3, the word will be a thing. If you roll a 4, the word will be an event. If you roll an asterisk, you can choose to try the asterisk word (generally much harder but worth more points) or you can choose to do any of the words, one through four. Once the word is decided, you are free to tell your partner or team how many words it is and whether the answer is a proper noun. The clue-giver then rolls four 12-sided dice, which have a letter on each side (except one side on two of the dice, which contain an asterisk for a wildcard letter). The object now is to get your team or partner to say the word on the card using clue words that begin only with the letters you rolled. And you can use each letter only once. For instance, if the word is apple, and you roll A, T, F, and W, you can say, "Fruit William Tell Arrowed." Then you must be silent and allow your team to guess. No other clues or pantamime is allowed. The clue-giver can re-roll the dice twice more, giving new clues with new letters. If the next roll is D, J, R, and P, the clue-giver could say "Johnny planted red delicious." But the clue giver doesn't need to use all of the letters. Once the team guesses, the clue-giver MUST ROLL AGAIN. Only one guess per roll, or three guesses total. The team gets two minutes. It is a very challenging game that tests your vocabulary and diction skills.

    I believe the following is the point scale:
    8 points for a "one-on-one" (one-word clue, correct answer).
    4 points for getting it on the first turn (with more than one word as a = clue)
    3 points on the second turn
    2 points on the third
    2 bonus points if it was the asterisk word
    I'm not sure how many spaces are on the board, but it's a very simple layout. The first one around wins. There are also squares where both (or all) teams get to guess at the clue-giver's clues, but we have never played with them, so I'm not really sure how they work. Anyway, it's a great game, and VERY addictive. It just so happens that, as far as I'm concerned, my brother owns the only copy known to man. I NEED a copy of the game. [JT] (I'll pass any offers on to Jim who contributed this review! - GT. By the way this doesn't strictly match our criteria for inclusion, but then there are a few others such as "Chain Letters" that are borderline as well. It was such a good review I thought I'd include it anyway)

  113. Decrypto by Armand Jammot
    (Armand Jammot is the originator of
    in this French game you uncover your opponents letters by a complex process of triangulation (on a hex grid). See also the French game Bataille de Mots Croises and the English game Decypher.
  114. Decypher by Pressman, 1982
    "The word game where your logic and deduction lead to your opponent's destruction! For word game lovers and strategists alike! Combine the skills of deduction and logic to outwit your opponent and win!" Two players, ages 8+. Two sets of letter tiles and a board that consists of four 5x5 grids separated by a screen (two grids per player). You apparently fill your grid (like a crossword?) and try to deduce the contents of your opponent's grid. Sounds like a cross between Scrabble and Battleship. [DUT]
    See the French games
    Bataille de Mots Croises and Decrypto.
  115. Diabolo from Klee
    Funagain Games.
    Matthew Gray informs me: The Reiner Knizia game "Diabolo" was just republished in the US under the name "My Word!" and "My Word! Junior" by Out of the Box games.
  116. Dial'n Spell by Milton Bradley Company
    May be more of a children's education toy than a game.
  117. Diamino made in France
    This is a box of 63 small wood tiles that have the letters of the alphabet on them and a small number up in the corner. I have no idea how this is played, but looks like some sort of Scrabble or word game/domino mix. Box says Diamino, Marque & Modele Deposes-Brevete. SGDG France & Etranger. Made in France. Box is 7" long, 3 1/4" wide and about 1" tall.
    [From an ebay advertisement]
  118. Diamino Chinois made in France
    "Chinese Diamino". An attempt to make a crossword game on a hex grid. Has 12 wild-cards to make it easier. Read about it at
  119. Diamino Duo made in France
    As the editor of
    this review says, "What a lack of imagination!". Has a few small rules that make it different enough from Scrabble to avoid a lawsuit, but why bother?
  120. Dictionary Please by Eric G Clarke, 1954
    Made in Portland, Oregon. 180 letters, bag, dictionary. 4 tile racks, score pads, note pads, rules. Find highest scoring word from a draw of 10 letters.
  121. Dig by Parker Bros, 1959
    Players use wands with a gummy end to dig out words from a pile of letters. Money and cards feature the Monopoly Man. Gummy wands liable to dry up with age. [AS] [GT]
  122. Dig-It published by Cadaco.
    378 letter tiles, many cards with a subject printed on each. Deal out subject cards, players simply dig into the common pile of letter tiles, spelling words relating to their subject. [SOS]
  123. Dirty Words
    Variation on Scrabble Word Cubes. 23 word cube dice, timer and instructions.
  124. Dixit published by Waddingtons, 1983
    For 2-4 players aged 8-adult. This is a fast moving, thought-provoking word game involving crossword style word making. This game includes a Collins Minigem dictionary to act as a referee and add ingenious twists to play.
  125. Dizzy Spell published by Gabriel, 1978.
    The board is 5x5 with holes which are initially covered with reversible O/X pieces, all on the O side. Then a card with letters which align with the holes is inserted in the base. The first player uncovers two letters, making sure his opponent sees them too, then replaces the plugs, X side up. Play continues with the players alternating. After the third pair of letters has been revealed, each player may guess a word every turn. To do so, announce the word, then expose the letters (from the Xs) in the correct order. If correct, the player keeps the pieces removed and those letters can no longer be used. If incorrect, remove 2 points from the guesser's score. Once all letters are X side up, continue the process but flip the pieces back to the O side. Play continues until all the pieces are back to the O side or both players decide to give up. Score 1 point per piece. Reviewed in Games Magazine in the Jul/Aug 1980 issue. [DUT]
  126. Double Dare from Milton Bradley, ca 1900
    "Game of Words and Sentences". 295 (?) letter squares (brown backs), instructions for 4 games. [
  127. Double Eagle Anagrams from McLoughlin Bros, Ney York, NY, ca 1890.
    326 (?) letter squares. Rules for 10 games. There is a similar set called the "Golden Eagle" edition, with fewer letters.
  128. Double Talk from Continental G.I.
    Race to form two four-letter words. Reviewed by Games Magazine in Feb 1985. [JB]
  129. Double Quick by Winning Moves, 1999
    Funagain Games. Also available from etoys. Word game with a time limit.
  130. Duoword
    Duoword is a progressive new word game, produced in Australia, that combines attacking strategies with creative word building skill. With 14 letters to play 2 words each turn, the word potential is enormous! Score by counting the number of letters in the words played and apply the bonuses/penalties that are covered. Extra Word Bonuses entitle the Player to refill to 14 letters and play an Extra Word during that turn. It is not uncommon for Players to use 14 letters or more during a turn. Making words has never been easier. Educational entertainment for the whole family. Played on a unique circular board with 112 MAGNETIC letters, suitable for 1-4 Players aged 10-100+
    DUOWORD(R) is also a fascinating solo puzzle. A quality Australian product.
    Web site [RF] (You can tell this blurb was written by the author, right?)
  131. Educational Game of Words by Crosley.
    Two Decks Per Package. The game consists of four sets of consonants (21 cards per set) and five sets of vowels (5 per set). Two to four players for one deck. For more players add another deck. For ages 5 and older. This will describe only one game that can be played: Separate the vowels from the consonants. Shuffle vowels. Deal each player 5 vowels. Place surplus vowels on table face down. Shuffle all consonants. Now deal each player 7 to 12 consonants. Place surplus consonants on table, face down. There is no need to hide cards from other players. Try to spell a word from your set of cards. Only one play for each turn. Player can draw a card from top of deck by placing a card under the deck (one exchange per play). Keep consonants and vowels in separate stacks. A player gets one point for each letter in a word. A player gets a point for each letter added to a previously spelled word. Game is over when only one player has cards but has no play. Player with most points wins the game. Example: JOY = 3 points; JOYFUL = three additional points. Crosley Products, Hampton, Florida.
  132. Escape from Elba from Cheapass Games.
    This is a board game in which the players are insane asylum inmates, trying to escape. (You each believe you are Napoleon and the asylum is Elba, where Napoleon was exiled in 1814.) In order to escape, you need to collect cards with letters on them and spell various words - you can also use them to spell weapons during the game to help you fight. [SOS]
  133. Eureka published by Amigo Spiel (Germany)
    Designed by Haim Shafir, 2-6 players aged 10+, pub April '97. A word is hidden in the mechanism, players roll dice to enable them to open flaps, revealing letters. When they guess the word they score the values of the closed flaps. [PE]
  134. Flamboozle from Pad Games
    Cross between Probe and Battleship, came with pads of game sheets. Reviewed in Games Magazine, July 1983 [JB]
  135. Flip A Word by Smethport Specialty Co, Smethport PA 16749
    Game #234. This is designed like a pinball machine, you pull back a flipper and it rolls balls into letter slots. The back opens for cardboard letters.
  136. Fluster Parker Bros 1973
    (same box size and style as the rest of the series:
    Grapple, Boggle and Razzle) "Strategy counts as players call out letters and try to make them into words. Using your special game pad, you"ll form words vertically or horizontally, using every angle to protect your words and block opponents. Score the most points fo rthe best placed words and you'l be the winner." Game pads consist of two 5 x 5 grids, each box numbered randomly from 1 - 25. Players grids are different from each other. Players take turns calling out a letter and a number (or a blank space and a number). Players then write the letter in one of the boxes with that number. Players score points for the number and length of their words. A nice quicky when you're sitting around the living room. [MS]
  137. Foil published by 3M, 1968.
    Players score points for forming one or more words from the hand of letter-cards they're dealt. They then scramble the word(s) and show it (them) to their opponents. The latter score bonus points for unscrambling the word(s) within one-minute. [DUT] Cards. Timer. Directions. [
  138. Foresight aka 4Cyte: 1967, Milton Bradley.
    "The Smart Set Word game". (Twin Set Table Model) Each player tries to score points by making 3 to 6 letter words on the game "square". The players, alternating, choose each letter as it is used. [DUT]
  139. Foresight
    Packaged version of the game which the book "The Way To Play" calls Crosswords. Players alternate calling out letters. Each playing the letters in one's own six-by-six grid. Players score for coming up with the longest possible words in the six rows, six columns and two diagonals. [AS] (This may be the same game as above
  140. Four Letter FRENZY
    Card version of Mastermind? See comments on
    Lingo. [image]
  141. Foursight
    I used to play Foursight when I was young. Players have a Battleship-like scoring grid. Each player in turn consciously chooses a letter, then each player adds that letter to his hidden grid. Evil. Plays like a word version of Take It Easy. [FB]
  142. Four Letter Words published by Lakeside, 1975.
    Using a 4x4x4 3D tic-tac-toe board, players try to make four letter words. [DUT]
  143. Gallows
    Cheap plastic version of Hangman. "The Classic Game of Words to Keep You in Suspense!"
  144. Gemini
    Danish card game.
  145. Glossa
    French card game that is a cross between a word game and poker. Has some chips for betting with.
  146. Go Gin by Ideal, 1968
    Maybe similar to Word Rummy?
  147. Gold Medal 7 Word Games 1940?
    Instruction booklet for Anagrams, Word Ghost, Word Squares, Word Ladders, Word Dominoes, Word Bee and Word Maze. Looks similar to one of the
    Transogram sets. Wooden letter tiles. Each tile appears to have a small number at the top center. Could this be the first time that scores were put on tiles?
  148. Goomicus Alphabet Soup Word Game by Alphabet Soup Company, 1957
    Four colored playing surfaces, a bowl, a scoop, instructions, three original score sheets and many red and green letters and "goomicus" pieces. The pieces look almost identical to the more modern German game "
    Buchstaben Suppe".
  149. Got a Minute published by Selchow & Righter
    Seven cubes with red letters (no point values) are encased in a clear 3x3x3 cube & with a minute sand timer. You have 1 minute to find as many words using the 7 letters. [RI] This game later had the "Scrabble" name prepended to it and was renamed
    Scrabble Got a Minute". The original can be seen here.
  150. Grabitz--by the company who makes UNO.
    Not a super game--players are dealt cards. These make up words that have one of the letters from "Grabitz" in them. Different point values are given for better hands. (I'll try to send a better rules update--this one has made it to the back of the closet in a hurry!) [JP]
  151. Grapple (Parker Bro 1973)
    Haven't played it, seems a lot like
    Foil. From back of box - "Players compete to outguess each other in this crazy mixed up word game. Everybody chooses his own secret word, assembles the letters and scrambles them before showing the other players. Can you find a word in the mixed up letters? You have to be quick, your opponents are looking for it too." [MS] The tiles have no scores on them. Letter distribution is: A 6 B 2 C 3 D 4 E 9 F 3 G 2 H 3 I 6 J 1 K 1 L 3 M 2 N 6 O 6 P 2 Q 1 R 7 S 6 T 7 U 3 V 2 W 2 X 1 Y 2 Z 1
    There are also 5 numbered tiles, [10], [20], [30], [40] and [50].
    At least one set also came with 5 blue plastic racks for storing letters on, a la Scrabble. (Mine had none - may be different set; or may be lost!) [GT] [Lost your copy of the rules?]
  152. Grid Word published by Waddingtons.
    Cards with two letters on them, must be played with other cards to make four-letter words. [SOS]
  153. Le Jeu de la Guerre des Mots
    See under
    Le jeu de la Guerre des Mots.
  154. Hangin' Harry
    On a recent stroll through "Toys'R'Us" I spotted a cheap plastic hanger pack version of "Hangman" called "Hangin' Harry". However when I got home I wasn't able to find it on the web anywhere, including at the
    Toys'R'Us web server. I'll watch for it next time I'm there and make a note of who the manufacturer is.
  155. Hangman published by MB.
    An old paper and pencil game revived with hardware: each player's word is kept hidden from the opponent - simultaneous classic hangman, basically. [SOS] When a player missed, a dial on the case showing a hangman was turned adding another "body part" until you were hung. The only problem is there were far too many misses allowed (something like 12). At least one version of the box is classic 70's design with Vincent Price on the cover (1976). [RI] [GT] See a modern version at
  156. Head to Head published by E.S. Lowe (1972) / MB (1974).
    This game was the successor to 1970's "
    Ad Lib," using the same 3-D plastic letters and a similarly designed board.
  157. Hearts published by MB (old).
    Actually tracked this down recently in an eBay auction where it is described as a 1914 copyright from Parker Bros. May be two versions. Two throwing cannisters, 6 wooden lettered dice, rules. On the back of the box is a list of other Parker Bros games. Object is to spell the word "hearts".
  158. Intersect 90 by Family Games.
    A card game using cards with 1-4 letters on each (the more letters on the card, the more it's worth). Players form a word (word 2) using cards from their hand and one card from the previous word (word 1). The previous player scores for all cards in word 1 except the one used in word 2. [PS]
  159. I-Qubes by Capex, 1948
    Seven 5/8in bakelite dice with single letter on each side, three sides in red, three sides in black, one WILD in black and one WILD in red. Maroon leather case (4 1/2" x 7/8" x 5/8") with snap has I QUBES stamped in gold on top. Instructions copyright 1948. Manufactured by CAPEX Co., Inc. 615 South Boulevard, Evanston, Ill. Distributed Exclusively by M.WILLE, INC. 225 Fifth Avenue, New York 10, N.Y.
  160. Inword by Milton Bradley, 1972
    Trivial game of guess the missing letters. Somewhat like the US TV show "wheel of fortune". A complete game comes with original box inserts, game instructions, 5 "magic slate" work slates, 5 marking instruments for slates, a ton of words coded, a decoder, and a spinner.
  161. Jack Straws by the Electric Game Co. Inc., Holyoke, MA 1953
    A strange hybrid anagrams game that is also somewhat like 'Operation', where you remove letters from a tin can with metal tweezers that are connected electrically.
  162. Jago by Speak/Apex, Author Alex Randolph
    "Jago", combining interesting game mechanics, is a refreshing change from the large mass of crossword-puzzle-games. The game definitely shows the hand of the grand master of game design - Alex Randolph. A player may put down words on the game board until the letters of his colour are a majority on the gameboard. A cleverly constructed timer, which increases the time potential of the enemy for each minute that ticks by, prevents all too long thinking pauses. It is especially efficient to go hunting for the words of the enemy. If you manage to change their meaning by adding your own letters or by exchanging some letters against letters you own, you may change the colour of the whole word. Thus you not only decisively increase your letter-domination of the board, but in one stroke the enemy also suffers grievous losses.
    Contains board, 110 tiles, 2 letter racks, tile bag, 1 minute timer, timer board and rules. Made in Canada
    (Hans-Ulrich Schneider)
  163. Jarnac published by Chieftain in Canada, 1977
    Also published in France by a different company - here's a French review of the game which is VERY popular in France. Possibly more so than Scrabble. An outstanding and heady Anagrams game in which two players build words on individual boards but have the option to steal letters from their opponents. Superb scoring system. [MT] My favorite word game. [BF] Contains 2 non-slip JARNAC gameboards, 144 non-slip letter tiles & 1 letter tile bag and the rules.
  164. Jigsol published by Perigames, 1985
    This unusual word game uses hexagon-shaped letter tiles to form words (no board). Includes a huge pile of cardboard letter tiles, a timer, two letter "dealing tubes", and an illustrated rule booklet. Designed by Eric Whittler. (There was an article about the game in the Ann Arbor News on 27th May 1987.)
  165. Jitters published by MB, 1986
    Jitters has 12 dice with letters and 20 cards with crossword patterns. Start the (noisy) timer, turn over a card, throw the dice, and then use some or all of the dice to form a word pattern that matches the card. If you're stumped you can reroll all the dice. When you succeed, you have the choice of stopping the timer or turning another card and rerolling. If the timer goes off by itself, you lose credit for all the cards you finished that turn. Some of the patterns are easier than others. The harder the card, the more points it's worth. Play ends when the score reaches 250. Package includes timer, cup, writing pad and instructions. Reviewed in Games Magazine in the Aug/Sep 1987 issue, and made the GAMES 100 in the next issue. [DW] [GT]
  166. Jotto published commercially in 1956/1957 by The Jotto Corporation, later Selchow & Righter.
    Basically Mastermind with letters - an excellent game, especially while waiting for your food in a crowded restaraunt - you just need two pieces of paper and two pencils.
    Here are the rules as I learned them. [MK] [SOS] Actually this game goes further back. In my youth it was called "Bulls and Cows" and you were awarded a "Bull" for a correct letter in the correct position, and a "Cow" for a correct letter but in the wrong position. Old word gamers sometimes rail against versions which give both pieces of information, as they're much easier than the variations where you are told only if the letter is correct but not if you had the position correct too. Note that traditionally you must play actual words as your test; a variation where you can play *any* letters at all is considered way too easy for word-gamers, though it is roughly how the traditional mastermind game with coloured pegs works. [GT] [image]
  167. Jotto by Endless Games (contemporary)
    These guys are on the net now. Check the
    manufacturer's page. See also Amazon.Com.
  168. Juicy Words
    Looks almost identical to "
    dirty words". May be a repackaging to help it sell better. 21 dice.
  169. Jumble by Cadaco (contemporary)
    Despite what I said in the introduction, it looks like Jumble should be included here because there is a board game version as well as the electronic one: See
    Cadaco for details - gameboard, 110 letter tiles, plastic letter tray, sand timer, 6 letter tokens, bonus sleeve, scorepad, pencil. [GT]
  170. Jumble Plus - "That Scrambled Word Game"
    And breaking my own rules again, I've decided to include "Jumble Plus" because although it is essentially a pen and paper game, this version uses letter tiles and a board for you to place your solutions on. (The problems are pre-printed sheets of anagrams that you have to solve)
  171. Jumble by Cardinal, 1975
    Maybe I'm going too far now. This is a pencil & paper game with preprinted cards and a little holder to stand them in.
  172. Kan-U-Go published by Porterprint. 1934
    Players make words from the cards in their hand, adding them to what's on the table in crossword style. If you can't go you pick up a card, first to get rid of all their cards ends the hand. Score is values of cards left in hand, which count against you. Games ends when someone reaches 100 points and player with fewest points wins. Similar type of game to
    Crossword Lexicon, and indeed they have pulled the same trick as crossword lexicon of having complimentarily-colored boxes (one box is red with a blue stripe; the other vice-versa). There are both red and blue sets of cards but there doesn't seem to be a fixed rule as to which box they go with.
    It's interesting to note that as time goes on with these games, the cards get smaller and smaller as they converge on the cardboard tile format of the old Anagrams games and eventually mutate into the small tile format we know and love from Scrabble. Kan-U-Go is practically Scrabble without the board. There are 60 cards including the two "Kan-u-go" wild-cards: Frequencies - A 4 B 2 C 2 D 3 E 4 F 2 G 2 H 3 I 3 J 1 K 2 L 2 M 2 N 2 O 3 P 2 Q 1 R 3 S 3 T 3 U 3 V W 2 X 1 Y 1 Z 1 Kan-U-Go (wild) 2; Scores - A 10 B 5 C 6 D 5 E 10 F 5 G 4 H 7 I 10 J 2 K 2 L 6 M 7 N 8 O 10 P 7 Q 2 R 5 S 10 T 6 U 3 V 2 W 7 X 2 Y 2 Z 8
    Although it was originally listed here as being published Waddingtons in 1937, my copy says "Sole Proprietors PORTERPRINT Ltd, Leeds England" and has a copyright date of 1934 at the back of the manual. [image]
    Here are the rules from a British edition. Note there is also a US edition with a rule book copyright 1937 by T.G. Porter (Printers) Ltd., Leeds. It was distributed by A.A. Burnstine Sales Organization, 200 Fifth Avenue, New York.
    A later edition (1960's?) says 'For 2 to 7 players. Made in England by Jarvis Porter Limited, Leeds' [PE] [GT]
  173. kan zen from Landmark Games
    A small ad in the Mar/Apr 1979 issue of Games Magazine (and even smaller ads in the following three issues) called it a "word game." No review nor indication of how to play, though. That first ad said "the perfect word game -- for those who love action as well as words." [JB]
  174. Keep Quiet published by Kopptronix.
    Letter dice with the manual alphabet for the deaf on them. One game is crossword-style, another longest word. Timer and dice cup. Just like Scribbage et al but with alternative alphabet. (Makes me think there ought to be a version of Scrabble like this...)
  175. Keep Quiet Reword published by Kopptronix.
    Cards are played four or five at a time to make words, then words can be partially covered up to make new words, as in Up Words. The cards have the English alphabet on the reverse side of manual alphabet. [SOS] Not to be confused with "
  176. Keyword published by Parker Brothers, 1953.
    Crossword game similar to
    Scrabble with the added gimmick of getting bonus point if you can spell your randomly drawn word. Each letter is 5 points unless played on your color, in which case it's 10 points. There are also keyword squares, which are worth +20 points. And keyword cards, which are turned over one at a time until claimed - if you spell the keyword, claim the card which will add 50 points to your score at the end of the game. The board has four colors of squares, mostly clumped together in each of the corners. I have fond memories of this game, as it was my grandmother's favorite game, and I played many times with her while growing up. The 88 tiles (one ebay ad said 90?) are wooden, with white lettering on a black background, reminiscent of domino tiles, and actually very much like the tiles from Anagrams Embossed Edition or Anagrams Ivory Edition. Also includes four Scrabble-like wooden letter holders. (Here is frequency info from an incomplete set: A-6, B-1, C-3, D-4, E-11, F-3, G-2, H-2 (should be 3?), I-7, J-1, K-1, L-3, M-2, N-6 (should be 7?), 0-6, P-2, Q-1, R-6 (should be 7?), S-5 (should be 6), T-6 (should be 8?), U-3, V-1, W-1 (should be 2?), X-1, Y-2, Z-1, with 2 extra blanks, (they have been written on). 89 pieces in all (should be 96?)) [SOS] [AS] [GT] [image] There is also a nicer maroon box version of this which looks more 'up market' and may be designed to look deliberately like the early Scrabble boxes. This edition has black lettering on white tiles - also more Scrabble-like.
    See also the French version, La Clé
    Note also an edition "manufactruedin England by John Waddington Ltd" dated 1953 also. Box has a copyright "Parker Bros, Inc., Salem Mass, USA" Contents look identical to US edition. Much nicer box art, IMHO.
  177. Knock-on-Word: Xanadu Leisure
    Prince Kansil reworks
    Montage by replacing the color tiles with letter tiles. [AS] [PJK]
  178. Kontrast published by Matthews & Marshall.
    112 cards - empty hand by spelling words. [SOS]
  179. Kort Alfapet Swedish
    Card Alfapet (Kort Alfapet)
    The card and travel version of Swedens most popular word game (Alfapet), is based on the idea of creating words out of the letters on the cards. One of the most successful card games in Sweden, the game provides hours of fun in a simple way. For 2-4 players, Age 9 and up, Playing time about 30 minutes. [Rules in pdf format]
  180. KumKom by ???
    Another Scrabble rip-off from Thailand, although unlike "Crossword Game" I think this one is played in the Thai language.
  181. Kwip by Playbox, 1978
    French word game in the style of Drafts (Checkers).
  182. La Clé 1954.
    Keyword in French. Brought out the year after the English version. Read about it at
  183. La Roue de la Fortune
    French version of "Wheel of Fortune".
  184. Last Word published by Milton-Bradley, 1985.
    A 10x10 board is loaded with tiles, randomly. Players then walk their piece across the board, picking up tiles as they go, trying not to become stranded. On your turn, you get to pick up an entire word, so this goes pretty fast. The board is treated as wrap-around (toroidal continuity), which keeps the edges from being traps. Bonus points for isolating an opponent and for being the last to pick up a word. 2-4 players.
    Contents: Board, 92 letter tiles, 4 blank tiles, 4 coloured pawns. Instructions. Reviewed in Games Magazine in Jan 1986. See
    image and description [DUT] [GT]
  185. Leapin' Letters by Parker Bros, 1969
    I didn't have the game myself, but I remember both it and the TV commercial for it, which fortunately gave a very detailed description of the game (ah, those great old days of TV game spots that ran 60 seconds and didn't have to rely on a lot of animation or special effects to get you to take notice...)
    The object of Leapin' Letters was for each player to obtain the plastic letters necessary to spell a nonsensical word printed on the player's card. These letters were drawn from the lid of the plastic container the game was in. If a player drew a letter that he/she didn't need, it was placed into a plastic device which catapulted it into the air when a lever was hit, and any player who needed the letter to complete their word would then try to catch it as it came down. First player to complete their word won.
    BTW, you may have noticed a small "MG" logo in one of the bottom corners of the front of the container. That meant this game was a creation of Marvin Glass and Associates. Mr. Glass, who died in 1975, was a toy and game inventor who created some of the most ingenious and elaborate plastic device-driven games of the 1960s and early 1970s. It was he who created all three of Ideal's Rube Goldberg contraption games (Mouse Trap remains today) as well as their now-highly-sought-after Mr. Machine, Odd Ogg and King Zor toys, Milton Bradley's Time Bomb, Operation and Mystery Date, and Golferino by Hubley, plus countless others. His designs were a perfect fit for Ideal, which specialized in big plastic games. Sadly, nothing made today matches those great games of yore from my youth. Thank heaven for eBay. [DJ]
  186. Lecardo, made in Britain, by Leo Marshall
    A hybrid word game, playing card game, and domino game. There appear to be two 'lecardo's - an old one and a modern one; the modern one can be seen at
    their recently updated web site. I haven't yet contacted the author of the modern one to confirm that the two are related, but I suspect they are.
    In the older set, there are the two main games, Lecardo Farmers and Lecardo Football, plus four other games. Also on the rule sheet are two 'playing boards', which I guess you are meant to somehow copy onto cardboard. The game also includes a sheet of money counters to be used with the Farmers game. There are 55 cards with three values on each card. At one end are the standard playing card values and three jokers. In the middle are domino pictures, descending in value from 9:9 on the Ace of hearts, thru 9:8 on the Ace of Spades, 9:7 on the Ace of Diamonds, 9:6 on the Ace Clubs, 9:5 on the King of Hearts etc.....down to 0:0 on the third joker. At the other end is a letter. Aces have As, Kings Es, Queens Is, Jacks Os and 10s Us. Then in the same descending sequence there are three Hs, Ls, Rs, Ss, Ts, Ws, one B, C, D, F, G, J, K, M, N, P, Q, V, X, Y, Z, and two symbols on the last two jokers. The domino value is also reproduced numerically. [Cookie]
  187. Le Jeu de la Guerre des Mots
    French game which is a cross between a military strategy game and a word game. tactics is more important than vocabulary.
  188. Le Mot le Plus Long
    The "Letters Game" from
    Countdown, French version. This, Scrabble, and Jarnac are the three staples of French wordgaming.
  189. Le Pendu
    French version of "Hangman".
  190. Letra Mix by Schmidt Spiele
    Described as a "Scrabble-style dice game". Almost certainly another Scribbage variant. Includes 13 dice, cup, timer and instructions. There's also a
    Norwegian version.
  191. Letre Deck 1978
    The side of the box says "Create your own exciting card game". Contains 50 cards with letters & 2 Wild Cards. Each card measures approx. 2.5" x 3.5"
  192. Letres
    Another Word Rummy?.
    Description here.
  193. Letter-Bags invented by Alexander Millar.
    "A Word-Making Game For Any Number of Players on an Entirely New Principle". No date, but the printing style is somewhere between 1900-1940 is my guess. The box reads "The Late Alexander Millar" so I presume this was published posthumously.
  194. Letter Grams by Milton Bradley, 1938
    Yet another of the many cross-word card games of this era. Cards have scores on the corners.
  195. Letter Perfect publisher unknown.
    84 letter tiles, 8 spelling cards, boards. This is really a children's educational spelling toy, and may not be appropriate to these pages, but although it is for 4 and up, the board and number of tiles suggest it could be adapted for play by adults too, or at least older children, with a bit of ingenuity. So I'll leave it in.
  196. Letter Pile by Schaper, 1974
    Stylized letters are printed on clear plastic cards. Players gather the letters of their secret words into stacks; opponents try to guess the words by examining the lines and curves on the pile of overlapping cards.[BB2] 4 colored plastic letter holders & base, 60 transparent letter tiles, 1 clue pad, 1 timer, box insert.
  197. Levenger Crossword Dice
    Seven dice. 4 sides have letters, remaining two sides are wild. Leather carrying case, unusual game box.
    From the
    Levenger web site:
    The object of Crossword Dice is to obtain the highest score in an allotted amount of time. Each player throws all seven dice and tries to create words, horizontally and vertically. The game can be played by groups or as solitaire. It's fun to play for short periods of time, or it can be a long-running game between partners. You can play it almost anywhere without requiring the space and time commitment of Scrabble® or crossword puzzles. It's good for teaching children, too. The buttery yellow dice are packed in a eather case, which makes it great for traveling. The game comes with easy-to-understand rules and is small enough to keep in a pocket or purse. We recommend you buy more than one because you may want to enjoy giving a few away. The leather case measures 4 5/8” by ¾” by ¾”. The Dice are 5/8” square. Gift boxed.
  198. Lexicon published by Waddingtons.
    First published in 1933, this game uses cards, crossword fashion. Cards left in hand when someone goes out count against you - low score wins. Combine two sets to play with up to eight. [SOS]
    Actually I have this one somewhere although I can't find it at the moment. What I do remember though doesn't agree with Steffan's recollection: I'm sure it was played as a one-dimensional game, not a crossword game. Here's a web page, recording an "
    anagrams" game, which is pretty much identical to my recollection of how Lexicon played. It may have been both, with different sets of rules being published at different times? The most recent package I've seen is dated 1968. See also Crossword Lexicon [GT]

    UPDATE: Finally... my memory was not wrong. The Lexicon I remember playing in Britain was not a crossword game, but was indeed played in a straight line, somewhat like paper and pencil games such as Ghost. Here are the rules to the French edition, which are very close to what I remember of my British edition bought somewhere around 1980. [Confirmation here!] Aha! I have at last aquired a copy of Waddington's Lexicon, and indeed the rules are as I remembered.

  199. Lexicon with tiles published by Waddingtons.
    A variation on the card game above. Four players round a square tile rack - not so much a board, just a common place to lay your tiles while working on them. 1970's.
  200. Leximania published by ???.
    "An educational and challenging word and letters game!"
  201. Lewis Carroll's Chess Wordgame published by Kadon.
    Played on a chess board, each player starts with a letter in each of his first rank squares. You try to spell words on your fifth rank, moving letters one at a time as if they were queens. You may not stop on your fourth or eighth rank, but may move to your sixth or seventh, in an attempt to block your opponent. Despite the name, it's actually by Martin Gardner, based on a brief mention of the idea in one of Lewis Carroll's notebooks. It's okay - neither great nor bad. [SOS]
  202. Lingo published by Lingo Games.
    Words are built on a 5x5 grid, any direction, even diagonally. [SOS] This is not to be confused with a game called Lingo which is a version of Word Mastermind for 5-letter words, where you get 5 chances to find the hidden word - they look very similar. I have only seen the latter on web pages, don't know if it is a physical game or not. It seems popular in some European countries and in particular, the Netherlands. I did come across a note that said that the game in the Dutch "Lingo show" was similar to a card game called "Four Letter Frenzy". This implies that Lingo is a TV game show in the Netherlands, explaining its popularity and the number of online clones of it I have seen.
  203. Lingo published by All-Fair (EE Fairchild Corporation, Rochester 2, New York, USA), (c)1938.
    This is a blatant Scrabble rip-off - or more likely, a rip-off of the licensed Scrabble clone
    Skip-a-cross, because the production values, coloring, contents etc are almost identical. The board has the word "lingo" written one-letter per square in various places, and you score extra points for playing the letters of "Lingo" on their own squares. Also extra points for playing words conforming to a fixed list of themes: animal, mineral, vegetable, fruit, tree, bird, insect, clothing. Similarities to Scrabble: double score for first word. Two wild-card tiles with a "Joker" image on them. Tiles have a score in the corner - the upper right corner that is. Red squares: double letter value, Yellow squares: triple letter value; Blue squares: double word total; Purple squares: triple word total.
    The set also contains two blank tiles that can be used in case any letter tiles are missing. The tile distribution is: A 10 B 2 C 3 D 3 E 13 F 3 G 3 H 4 I 10 J 1 K 1 L 4 M 3 N 6 O 9 P 2 Q 1 R 6 S 5 T 6 U 4 V 2 W 2 X 1 Y 2 Z 1 Joker 2. The points values are: A 1 B 4 C 2 D 2 E 1 F 4 G 4 H 2 I 1 J 8 K 8 L 2 M 2 N 1 O 1 P 4 Q 9 R 1 S 1 T 1 U 2 V 4 W 4 X 9 Y 4 Z 10 Joker 0
    The 1938 attribution is not from the board but from the AGCA Collectors Site
  204. Lingo published by Centaphrase Society, 1916
    623 Heed Bldg., Philadelphia PA.
    AGCA site also has a reference to another game called "Lingo" which is neither of the ones above. The reference to it can also be found here.
  205. Lingo, M&B Games
    A correspondent writes:
    I'm trying to find out more about a game which I have been playing since the late 1970's but which quickly disappeared from the shelves here in Ireland. It is called Lingo and was distributed by M&B Games. It is a Scrabble type game but with absolutely no board. The letter tiles click together and are held in a hard plastic shell which is ingeniously designed to separate them again as they are pushed back into it. The game is truly simple and brilliant and can be played anywhere with minimum of fuss. Two or more players simply make up words from a central pool. Letter tiles can be moved around by other players who can 'steal' your word by adding one or more new tiles from the pool. Far superi