Wednesday, May 23, 2012

What's the Word on the Street? Fun!

The Review Crew's Take on
WORD ON THE STREET

# Players . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2-10 (or more)
Game time . . . . . . . . 20-30 minutes
Set up . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 minutes
Luck . . . . . . . . . 7. . .Strategy
*Interplay . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9.8
Visual Appeal . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
Component Quality . .. . . . . 9
*Replayability . . . . . . . . . . . 8

*See "How we Rate" for a definition.

It's nice to have a few go-to, large-group games in the closet. Word on the Street is one of ours. Think of this game as a sort of cross between Capture the Flag and Scrabble. (Now there's an interesting mix.) Two teams face off against each other in an attempt to capture letter tiles before the other team steals them away. The tiles--nice sturdy ones, by the way--are set up down the middle of the board--a nice sturdy one, by the way--which resembles a street. During a turn, each team is given a category and a minute to shout out corresponding words, choose one of them, and pull the matching letter tiles toward that team's side of the board. Once a tile is pulled completely off, it's captured and is out of play. The first team with eight captive tiles is the winner.
There are no vowels in the game, so our favorite word, humuhumnukunukuapua'a, doesn't always work well, but we keep trying it anyway. (That's the state fish of Hawai'i, if you didn't know.)
One of the things we like about this game is that everyone can get involved, and it's not always the wordophiles who come up with the best ones. It's quick to play, although capturing the last few tiles can become a real tug-of-war.
The opposing team is free to shout out misleading words to befuddle the other. Mayhem ensues,  usually the enjoyable kind. And isn't that what you want for a memorable reunion or holiday gathering?

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