Hello, my fellow gamers. If you are anything like me then you probably grew up playing spelling games to help you with grammar. Word games have helped me through my adult life with my writing. I will say I love a good spelling game like Scrabble or Words With Friends.

Now a lot of these games can be found in app form on iOS or Android which is cool. However, I love playing the actual physical versions of these games. I also love the many variations of these spelling games like Dirty Words, Bananagrams, or Bali.

Well, my buddy Scott knows my love for these types of games along with my love of retro gaming. So while he was out on his weekly expedition through Thrift shopping he picked up a game called Scrabble Ipswich. He brought it to Beyond the Board & we broke it out.

Now Ipswich is a pretty cool draft variation of classic Scrabble. Scrabble Ipswich is for 2-4 players, published by Selchow & Righter in 1983, & plays in under an hour. In this interesting variation of the game each player receives a game board. Then each player, starting with the master player, will draw out fourteen letter tiles from the bag. Then players can decide if they want to trade in tiles at a negative two points per traded tile. Once everyone draws tiles & trades then a ten minute timer is set & away each player goes with their spelling.

In the center of the player board their is the main line that goes all the way across. Two vertical lines are found on the left side of the board & one small line runs through the top. Each player must start their first word through the central line of the board. IMG_20151013_142510742

As each player builds their word they will score bonus points each time they reach one of the diamonds on the board. The two vertical lines, along with the main line & the short line form a box. If a player happens to be able to fill this box in they will receive an additional bonus of twenty-five points.

Once the round ends & the scores are tallied then each player will decide to keep four letter tiles. Now for the cool part; then the player boards rotate clockwise. Pretty interesting, right?

Okay, so when this is finished then each player will draw two more tiles & will again be able to trade in tiles just like in the first round. all this continues to happen until five rounds are finished. At the end of the fifth round there should be twenty-two letter tiles used by each player.

Now each player doesn’t have to use every tile. We found that was very difficult to do. It can be done, but it is really hard. Scrabble Ipswich was really fun to play. Another retro game I would love to get my hands on. Great learning game. So keep spelling, keep learning, & game on!

-Christopher Richter

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