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Scrammble Players' Feedback

Since the Scrammble Games were introduced in the Holidays of 2003, we have received a lot of feedback from players. Most comments are positive and heartwarming, encouraging us to promote these games world wide. We are also grateful for a few criticisms and suggestions for improvements. These improvements have been made. Before we construct a formal players' forum like the one in MWSearch, we will post the players' feedback on this page. No full names are mentioned to protect privacy and students safety. The following are comments we received. (Repetitive or similar comments are omitted, for instance, we have received more than a dozen 'I like the game'.  Most comments are directed to Scrammble Word. So 'the game' usually means Scrammble Word, otherwise, Scrammble Poker, Scrammble Majong, etc are specifically mentioned):

Lots of people responded: "I like the game."

Marina, mother of two children 11 and 14, bought the game for her children and all her nephews and nieces said: "Scrammble is a great game for children."

Elaine, with background in Law: "I love this game and my brother is crazy about this game. He just loves to compete with Julie in this game."

A sixth grader, friend of J: "I first don't want to play, then when I saw J playing it so well. I begin to like it. Now I like it very much."

Rosemary, an elementary school teacher: "Scrammble is a good game. you should write the rules simpler so kids can read and understand them easier."

Two players, unrelated, Jeff (Financial Advisor) and Rose (School Teacher), both commented: "you could make the cards smaller, we need a big table to play it on." MWSearch's response: "The usual poker card size was selected so that the same set could be played as Scrammble Word and Scrammble Poker. We now have a new design with the cards about half the size of the regular poker cards. They can be played on a small table. Generally, a deck of Scrammble cards has 136 letters which can be scrambled into 20-30 words in a game. A rectangular small card table can accommodate them if you overlap the cards in a word slightly."

A teacher introduced the game to a principal in an Elementary School in Westchester, NY, the Principal said: "I like the game. We will consider buying it." 

The following are comments from Reach program students (fifth graders) in an Intermediate School when they played in a group (MWSearch Note: unfortunately not all comments were captured. If anyone has comments not included here, please feel free to send to us):

Reach Teacher: "I think the unique feature of Scrammble game is that it captures the players attention all the time. The players must engage in thinking and playing every second. This is a good game for school teachers to use in class, to get students' attention to learn vocabulary, spelling and math."

Eight students played as a group, it happened to be four boys and four girls. Some of them are Scrabble players. They elected to play boys versus girls. They set the minimum word length to be 3 letters. As the game began, the girls were leading as much as 15 points but soon the boys caught up by doing more 'Scrammble' than just making new words out of the opened cards. Boys then overtake the girls more than 10 points. Under pressure with time running out, one girl took one of the words boys claimed and scrambled it into a new word.  This made the scores very close. The last word, the girls made was a high score word, JACK. (see students' comments below) The girls won by a few points. Of course, if more time is allowed to play, no one can predict which team will win. They made lots of comments before, during and after the game. A number of them commented on their experience on Scrabble. The following are partial recall of their comments:

" I like word games. I play Scrabble. I would like to try Scrammble. The name is cool."

"I like Scrabble. What I don't like Scrabble is when you have a good word, you don't have a place to put it."    

"I like Scrabble. I like it when I can make triple word score."

"What I don't like Scrabble is the pieces get moved a lot." Someone commented: "You can buy a board with holes for tiles to fit in so they won't move."

"I have not played Scrabble. I like Scrammble. It is fun to play."

"Oh, I don't like Scrabble when I have a good word ready but someone spoiled my plan with a short word."

"I like Scrammble. You don't need a board to play the game." Someone followed: "Scrammble will be a great game to play on vacation. It is easy to carry."

"Smaller cards would be better."

"I like this game. You don't have to wait for your turn to play. I have to concentrate to win."

"We should make the rule, if you can use a regular letter you can't use the wild card." MWSearch note: "The student was referring to the situation; there were N, J, K, and A in the open then came along a wild card. one of the boys claimed THEN (THE was one the words the Boys team had won earlier) and a split second later, one of the girls claimed JACK (using Wild as C, JACK is a high score word because J and K have high points. note: jack is not a proper noun, proper nouns are not allowed.). Then one of the boys said, they intended to use the wild as N to make THEN out of THE. Then the girls can not make the word JACK without the wild. Finally, the teacher resolved the situation that the Boys got THEN using the regular N and the girls got JACK using the wild card. This word had helped the girls team; they eventually won. According to the inventor, this situation has never occurred to him in his plays. So thanks to the Reach students, this shall be included in the Scrammble rule book."   

Charlie, a banker: "I see a lot of potential in the Scrammble games. Scrammble Poker is intriguing. I don't know much about Majong, for what I read, Scrammble Majong is very interesting. You should write more detailed rules and publish them as a book." MWSearch Response: "Dr. Chang has written rule books. We welcome publishers to contact us."

JM, a third grader: " I don't like people steal my words. Grown-ups can't take words from kids."  

Alex, 4th grader: "This is the coolest game I ever played. I can play hours."

Students at the Chess class: "Can we play Scrammble after a chess game? Please, Please."

A Chinese Majong expert with 50 years of playing experience now residing in the United States: "Scrammble Majong is very good. It has the same rules (as Chinese Majong) and I can learn English with the game." 

Elementary school teacher: "You must introduce this to schools, write to the principals. This is a simple game to play and to teach but students can learn a lot, both in language and math."

Game inventor after watching a bunch of game inventors playing Scrammble at the New York Toy Fair, said: "This is a great game, Can I buy one now? I don't have cash with me, can I trade one with my game on the shelf?"

A lady chief information officer of a non-profit organization at an all evening tennis party watching a few people playing Scrammble and said: "This is a great learning game. Can I get my son Kevin, 12 year old to play?". After Kevin played the game, she purchased the playing set for him that evening.

A lady from a Scrabble Club: "Scrammble is too challenging for me. I will stick to the Scrabble. However, I do think Scrammble game should be included in our club. Some people do like the fast pace and competition."

John: "I am wowed by the Scrammble games. But you need to make the instructions simple to follow, although my children do seem to master the games quickly except perhaps Scrammble Majong and Scrammble Bingo. They like the Scrammble Poker very much (especially Texas Holdem). Congratulation to you for making these games available to them and me. We enjoy them."

LM: "The Scrammble Games are great. It is amazing, so many interesting games can be played with the set. The Scrammble Puzzle is especially interesting. It is different from crossword puzzles. It emphasizes word vocabulary. It would be great for teachers and students to play in classrooms."

Daniel, nine year old, at a game workshop: "Scrammble is a cool game. Mr. Chang, did you invented it? I wish I could invent games like this."

Julia: "At first I was intimidated by the Scrammble cards, it seemed to be very complex and so many game names are on the cards. After reading the instruction cards, I began to understand that the game rules are all familiar like the popular games. You should emphasize that so people know Scrammble Poker uses all familar Poker rules, Scrammble Majong uses all familiar Majong rules, etc."

Ray, a 6 year old, watching two kids playing a Scrammble War game: "I know how to play the regular 'War' game, it is just a luck game. I need to know words to play this 'War' game. I have to memorize cards. It is too hard for me to play now. I can play the game next year when I will be 7." 

More feedback to be posted..........

Some suggestions made are: 1. make the cards smaller so it can be played on a small table. 2. provide a score sheet so scoring can be done faster. 3. Mass produce the magnetic set so it will be lower in cost. 4. You need to hire a marketing firm to market this great product.

More suggestions: 1. The inventor ought to patent these games. 2. The inventor should write a book about these games since there are so many ways and games to play Scrammble; it would be useful to have a book dedicated to them. 3. Perhaps the inventor should offer classes to teach the school teachers about how these games can benefit children in vocabulary, spelling, math and strategy. 

Feedback received after two Somers Intermediate School classes played Scrammble Games as two teams (24 students per team) against each other: "This is really a great game for learning vocabulary and math. The kids liked the competition......The Scrammble Bingo needs a little more explanation. Once the students understood the rules, They really dived into the game." 

Casey (3rd grader) of Bedford Elementary School: "This is the best after school program in our school. I like Scrammble Games.... I can play with 5th graders, older kids and my parents."

Middle School language teacher's feedback after attending Dr. Chang's seminar, Make-A-Game Pedagogy, sponsored by the Northern Westchester Putnam Teacher Center: "These word and math games will do well in our school. I would like to invite Dr. Chang to our school to offer a workshop."

Parents of Mahopac school children after attending Scrammble Playshop and Scrammble Game TV Show: "This is the best thing happened to our kids. They just love the Scrammble Games and enjoy very much to play the game in the TV studio."

A 4th grade student playing Scrammble for the first time in the SIS Reach class (a class for advanced students), after a few minutes into the game, said: "This is a cool game. Where can I get it? I want to buy it." These remarks just warm Dr. Chang's heart.  

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