After Barcamp SG, we stayed up til 7am playing a variation on scrabble where you ditch the board and one person turns up randomly chosen letters while everyone tries to make the currently showing letters into words of a minimum length (say 3). You can use any of the pool of letters shown to alter your or any other players' words; however 1) you must use all the letters in the already played word (no cherry-picking letters), and 2) you must form a semantically different word (plurals or tenses are equivalent to the existing word, so as long as the word root is the same you can't play it).

While an addictive game, play breaks down into formation (making short words from the pool of unplayed letters) and theft (where you take another players word, add letters from the pool, and form a new word). Theft provokes the negative super-reaction (perhaps part of the addictiveness?), and causes less energy to be spent on formation, and more on theft. Analogies to financial crises may not be without merit. ;)

Since formation-heavy players get constantly pillaged, how do you make the game cooperative and rewarding? Depending on what supplies you have around:

  1. Roll a die to take the word?
    A potential thief might get caught trying to steal, and would forfeit their new word if they rolled a 1,2, or 3
  2. Put house pieces on words?
    Everyone has markers (like carcassone) and when they make a new word, they put their house on the word, so people participate in word value appreciation
  3. Have a scorer?
    In addition to having a tile-turner, have a scorekeeper who tracks points for word generation