Shuffle the Letters in Wordsearch
Wordsearch is a board game for word lovers that, unlike most word games, has perfect information; that is, all information is available to all players all of the time. In fun board games such as Scrabble and Upwords, much of the information is hidden – either because tiles are face down in a draw pile or are on a player’s rack.
In Wordsearch there are no tile racks. The circular letter tiles are face up on the game board from the start. You place them randomly on their spots to fill all but 4 spaces in the center of the board.
Most Wordsearch tiles have a point value from 1 to 4. Vowels and the letter L have no value of their own.
To spell a word in Wordsearch, you must slide at least one tile to a new open spot on the board along a straight, unobstructed path. When you have finished moving tiles you will use in your word, they must spell the word in order along a given row, column, or diagonal.
Your score is the total of the point values on the tiles multiplied by the number of letters in the word. For example, the word BALL is worth 2 points for the letter B times 4 letters in the word for a total score of 8. The word JINX would be worth 9 points at face value times 4 letters for a total of 36.
Longer words are not necessarily the best scoring words, if they contain a lot of vowels and Ls. HELLO = 15 points. ZIP = 18 points.
Wordsearch ends when all the letters have been used, when no more words can be formed, or by consensus of the players when any remaining words would score zero points (e.g. ALL).
There can be a fair amount of down time between turns when playing Wordsearch. It rarely pays to plan ahead for your next turn, because – even with just 2 players – the board will change too much before it comes back to you. Also, players tend to study the game board quite a bit before forming a word, because there are so many options, which are not always immediately obvious.