Inquiring minds: Can you settle a Scrabble dispute?

Each week the staff at the Roseville Library answers more than 2,500 questions on every subject under the sun. Here are some of the most interesting ones they’ve gotten lately.

Q.    Can you settle a Scrabble dispute? I say that an opponent can challenge one word in a multi-word play. If that word is in the Scrabble dictionary then the play is good. My husband thinks that you must challenge the entire play--all the words that made up the player’s turn. He says if even one word is not in the dictionary, then the play is no good and the player loses his turn. Only after all the words are checked and found to be acceptable would the player get the points. Who is right?

A.     Not that we want to take sides in a marital argument, but it looks as if your husband has won the triple word score on this one. Here’s what the Official Scrabble website has to say on the subject:
Any play may be challenged before the next player starts a turn. If the play challenged is unacceptable, the challenged player takes back his or her tiles and loses that turn. If the play challenged is acceptable, the challenger loses his or her next turn. Consult the dictionary for challenges only. All words made in one play are challenged simultaneously. If any word is unacceptable, then the entire play is unacceptable. Only one turn is lost on any challenge.   (Library resources.)

Do you have a question for the staff at the Roseville Library? You can call them at 628-6803 or ask your question in person at the Information Desk, Roseville Library, 2180 Hamline Ave. Library hours are 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday and Saturday; and 1 to 5 p.m. on Sunday.


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