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Zag
Tired of his old title

Posted: Thu Jul 12, 2012 6:29 pm    Post subject: 1

I've been playing Wordox on Facebook recently.

Here is their 'How to Play' page, but I'll summarize.

Think of Scrabble in a 9x9 square.

Players take turns placing words, but they draw from a shared "rack" of letters, which is replenished to 6 letters for each player's turn.

All the letters you place in the same turn must be in the same row or column, as in Scrabble.

Letters are each only worth 1 point, and you only get the point if the letter is your color. Whenever you create or extend a word, that entire word is changed to your color.

(There are additional rules about stars and clearing the board, but they aren't significant for this puzzle.)

Example: Say I place LAKE as the first word. I now have 4 points.
 Code: L A K E

Next, you extend that like this.

 Code: L A K E S           U           M

You have stolen the word (all the letters are your color), so you now have 7 points and I have 0. If I play

 Code: L   I   F L A K E S   E         U             M

I now have 9 points and you have 2, because only the U and M are still your color.

I recently played in a game in which I made the word IN (as part of a side-by-side play). The opponent stole it to make FIN. I re-stole it with FINE, he made FINER, and I made FINERY.

 Code: I N  F I N  F I N E  F I N E R   F I N E R Y

What's the longest chain you can make, where a word is extended only by one letter (on either end) for each step and every step is a valid word?

Once we have several 9-letter submissions (which I'm sure we'll get), I'm going to ask who can show an the entire game played out with the most stolen letters. For example (using upper and lower case for the two colors):

 Code: a b

 Code: A B   S O

2 letters stolen
 Code: a b a   s o w

4 letters stolen for 6 total
 Code: a b a   S O W S         O

3 letters stolen for 9 total

Note that the whole thing has to fit in a 9 x 9 square, and the first word must include the center of the square.
ralphmerridew
Daedalian Member

 Posted: Thu Jul 12, 2012 7:27 pm    Post subject: 2 Is it legal to extend a word by more than one letter? (Could FINERY be extended to REFINERY?) Computer search found a bunch of 7 letter words that could be reduced one letter at a time to a single letter. It also found a 9 letter words that almost could be reduced to a single letter one letter at a time. (Solutions missing the 2 letter word or the three letter word were possible.) CROWING / GROWING were my favorite of the answers; most of the reductions were dropping the first letter, so the words were all unrelated.
Zag
Tired of his old title

 Posted: Thu Jul 12, 2012 7:58 pm    Post subject: 3 You can in the game, but then that's all you can place -- you can't also make a word going perpendicular. That's why being able to steal an entire word with only one letter is so valuable. For the purposes of the first question I am asking above, you have to extend only one letter at a time. For the second one, any legal moves are ok.
ralphmerridew
Daedalian Member

 Posted: Fri Jul 13, 2012 6:30 pm    Post subject: 4 Well, for 9 letters, the best answer is LEA LEAN CLEAN CLEANS CLEANSE CLEANSER CLEANSERS (with multi-letter adds, you can put "A LEA LEAN" or "A AN LEAN" at the start for an extra word.
DejMar
(Possibly a robot)

 Posted: Wed Aug 15, 2012 4:00 pm    Post subject: 5 Given that the words can be (1) no more than nine letters, (2) must begin with a word of a single letter beginning in the center, (3) with each new letter added a word is also created, there are not too many words that will actually be viable in the building of a nine-letter word. Many believe the only single letter words are A, I and O (though, others can argue that many, if not all, of the letters individually can be considered words). With the assumption that A, I and O are the only acceptable single letter words, the nine-letter words middle letter must be one of these three letters. Only working with one row, the following is one possible series of plays: A - one or any AT - in a particular place ATE - consumed LATE - former; occurring after an expected time ELATE - fill with high spirits RELATE - show a relationship; give an account of PRELATE - a senior clergyman and dignitary PRELATES - plural of prelate PRELATESS - a female prelate or wife of a prelate[/b]
Zag
Tired of his old title

 Posted: Wed Aug 15, 2012 5:26 pm    Post subject: 6 Excellent! I knew we'd find one (collectively). I wasn't expecting to start with a single letter word, not only because that is so limiting but also because I was assuming you'd be stealing a letter in a perpendicular word.
DejMar
(Possibly a robot)

Posted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 5:21 am    Post subject: 7

The following is an example of the final grid and a series of possible plays to accumulate a total of 254 points between two players:

aTeLeRpSsAtOtoNeArSrFaLpSeEaAiDaRtIDsAeMcAiPuMsRaSoYsErNrElOnEiRf

 Code: ELAPSE AR R_FA_RIDE ATONERS_M _ARENA_AI PRELATESS _OS_CAMPS START_U_L I_I___SOY REDONE_F_

 Code: A.............1   AT..........2 ATE...........3   LATE........4 ELATE.........5   RELATE......6 PRELATE.......7   PRELATES....8 PRELATESS.....9   AR..........2 TAR...........3   TARO........4 TAROT.........5   TO..........2 TON...........3   TONE........4 ATONE.........5   ATONER......6 ATONERS.......7   ORE/AR......4 FORE..........4   AFORE.......5 LA............2   LAP.........3 LAPS..........4   LAPSE.......5 ELAPSE........6   RAT.........3 RATA..........4   IS..........2 ID............2   TA..........2 TAR...........3   TART........4 AI............2   AID.........3 AFORESAID/OS..8   FA/PAN......4 PANEL/ARE.....5   AM/EM.......3 ACT/CAM.......4   AS..........2 AI/IS.........2   ASP/CAMP....5 EMU...........3   MIS.........3 CAMPS/MISS....7   ERRATA/RID..8 AD............2   EMUS........4 SO............2   SOY.........3 START.........3   ED..........2 RED...........3   ARENA/ENACT.9 AR............1   REMISS/RIDE.7 REMISSLY......8   REDO........3 REDON.........5   REDONE......6 SIR...........3   ERA.........3 OF............2       ===============  ============== ............129..+..........125
Zag
Tired of his old title

 Posted: Thu Aug 16, 2012 11:10 am    Post subject: 8 Whoa! Holy cats! More exclamations of surprise! That's incredible work, and way higher than thought possible. I wonder if you are going to inspire someone else to try to beat it, or if you've cowed everyone. Also, remind me never, ever, to play Words With Friends against you. (Actually, I'm kidding about that. If you want to friend me on Facebook and challenge me to a game, I'll be glad to accept the drubbing that it is obvious you'll give me.)
DejMar
(Possibly a robot)

 Posted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 5:53 am    Post subject: 9 Still using only Scrabble acceptable words, I was able to push the envelope to a shared accumulation of 288. I should have saved the grid even though I had decided I didn't want to post the series of plays.
DejMar
(Possibly a robot)

 Posted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 6:00 am    Post subject: 10 What I do find interesting is the word pyramids that are possible without anagramming each step. Besides PRELATESS I found the nine-letter word RELAPSERS. A LA LAP LAPS LAPSE ELAPSE RELAPSE RELAPSER RELAPSERS Do you know of any other sans anagram-step pyramidic words?
Vagrant
Daedalian Member

Posted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 8:37 am    Post subject: 11

 DejMar wrote: The following is an example of the final grid and a series of possible plays to accumulate a total of 254 points between two players:

Except that in Wordox the first play in a corner clears the board and it starts over afresh.

Also, when you 'steal' a letter (or letters) from your opponent they lose the point(s) for the 'stolen' letter(s) as well so it doesn't accumulate the way Scrabble does. In your example, when Player 1 plays PRELATESS, Player 1 would have a total of 9 points (+ 2 star bonus points) and Player 2 would have 0 points.

Star bonus points are only collected by the player who places a letter in the corner to clear the board.
Zag
Tired of his old title

 Posted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 2:34 pm    Post subject: 12 He was solving the puzzle I described above, which was only loosely based on Wordox.
DejMar
(Possibly a robot)

 Posted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 2:37 pm    Post subject: 13 Yes, I erred in scoring. Stealing words, steals points. Using most of the somewhat filled grid, I had supplied, playing one letter at a time, it is possible for the first player to score 50 points with the opponent scoring no more than 6. This, of course, ignores the special squares. After some research I found that a play in Wordox is a minimum of two letters. Of course, Zag asked for a series of one tile plays. In a 2-player game, the object is to be the first player to reach 50 points is the winner. Therefore, theoretically, the largest score one can achieve in the actual game without using one of the four corner squares is 59. It would seem possible from the given rules that a play may end with no possible further plays available. Thus it may be possible for one to have a score of 49 versus 0 and NOT win. As I refuse to download a Facebook game app, I have no idea how this situation is actually handled in the game. I do realize there is a timer. How this affects the game in scoring is unknown.
novice
No harm. Pun intended!

Posted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 3:33 pm    Post subject: 14

 DejMar wrote: In a 2-player game, the object is to be the first player to reach 50 points is the winner. Therefore, theoretically, the largest score one can achieve in the actual game without using one of the four corner squares is 59.

Surely you can get more than that by finishing with a long vertical word that steals several long horizontal words.
DejMar
(Possibly a robot)

 Posted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 5:43 pm    Post subject: 15 You are correct. I have not tried to figure out a series of plays that could arrive at it, but assuming none of the two players have 50 points, one could play a long a set of tiles in one row or column that could steal the opponent's played tiles and add to that player's own total to an amazing total of 68 points. That would require forming and having formed two 7-letter words and seven 9-letter words in rows across and the same number in columns down. Assuming one player also scored all 16 bonus squares and the corners were able to receive plays too, One player could net 70 points plus all the bonus points and TWO corner special squares. Does scoring two corners in one play count the bonuses twice?
DejMar
(Possibly a robot)

 Posted: Sat Aug 18, 2012 6:03 pm    Post subject: 16 Another error. I am only human. Less corners the total possible is 77. With two corners included in one play, 79.
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