Survey: There's a 1 in 10 Chance Words With Friends Will Get You Some Action

Illustration for article titled Survey: Theres a 1 in 10 Chance emWords With Friends/em Will Get You Some Action

We all know that the "social" space has changed the dating scene. Facebook has thrown all sorts of new tools and little wrinkles our way.


Now that the virtual hangouts have caught up with crowded bars as a place to meet a mate, social games are finding a new way to shine. Zynga ran a poll this week in Words With Friends, its super-popular Scrabble-like tile word game for phones and Facebook. Over 118,000 players responded, and of them, 10% claimed that Words With Friends had led directly to a hookup.

Break down that number, and there are over 11,000 folks whose tile draws were apparently very, very lucky indeed.


Words With Friends Players Get Flirty and Wordy With Valentine's Day Poll [Zynga company blog]

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Argh... I'm still sad that Words with Friends is eclipsing the infinitely greater Scrabble in the public consciousness. I had some fun with it, then began to realize that it ruins everything that matters in a Scrabble game:

(1) Terribly placed multipliers that kill the balance by allowing fairly frequent 100+ point turns (by overlapping with more than one word-multiplier).

(2) Accepts too many words, leading to nearly every odd 2- or 3-letter combination working (instead of sticking to something like the Official Scrabble Dictionary, and yes I own one).

(3A) The biggest offense, perhaps: it allows each player to just move letters around all they want and keep hitting "submit", so that you will eventually find a winning combination (especially given complaint #2).

(3B) Connected with prior complaint: since it lets you keep submitting until something "works", there is no longer any challenging your opponent. It's no longer a game about better vocabularies, creativity, and occasionally bluffing your opponent who you believe will fall for a false word. Now it's all about just fiddling with it until some crazy combination of letters is accepted for ridiculous point totals.

Conclusion: play Scrabble, on a board with some smart opponents, and never be tricked into believing that any of your Words with Friends skills will translate to the real game.