I have been playing Words With Friends for a couple of days now and I think I’m going to love it. Words with Friends is a game that allows Android users and iPhone users to play a Scrabble-like game with each other. Finally we can play on the same playground together! It is similar to Wordfeud and your other Scrabble titles from Android in that it uses the familiar tiles and board.
In Words With Friends you start of with 7 letter tiles with corresponding point values and you make words with them. Players can earn higher scores for playing words across bonus areas with double or triple word and point values. I like that the board is bright and cheery, with a bubble-esque tiles to play with. Each time you load your game(s) , you’ll hear your tiles pop into place a silly bubble sound that puts a smile on my face.
Account settings let users edit their username, add your mobile number, email, and create/edit a password. At this time there is no option to add a profile or game picture at this time, something I’d like to see added later. Players can find opponents by searching for user name or play with a random player. It’s possible to chat with your opponent while you play which makes it nice to get to know strangers. There are push notifications to let you know when it’s your turn so you don’t have to keep the game running all day. I have noticed that these notifications are necessarily speedy, but I have no doubt it will improve with future updates.
I really like a feature called Pass and Play which lets you to take on someone locally, handing the phone (or tablet) over to your opponent. Your letters are hidden from them and vice versa! From what I can tell “player 2″ isn’t able to have their user ID entered, rather they are stuck with a generic name. Either way, it rocks. So even if your friend doesn’t have a Android or iPhone, for a moment they can be on the cool list and play the game with you.
One feature that it is missing here, but found in games like Wordfeud, is playing a “random board” with completely different (random) placement of bonus tiles. As of right now there isn’t a paid/donate version so you are stuck with seeing ads after each turn. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a great free app, I would gladly pay for and ad free version.
Overall, I think Words with Friends is going to be a big hit. I’ll enjoy watching it evolve over time, adding features with updates, presumably like we did with Wordfeud. I generally like the colors and cute factor of the game and find few gripes at this point. I would like to see the option to add words through a submission form , or maybe the option to allow a word from your opponents for one game.
Thanks to Zynga for making it possible for us to play on the same playground with our iPhone frenemies!