Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978



Handmark Scrabble

Handmark Scrabble

Spring 2002 Software
Ages: 8 & Up
Manufacturer: Handmark, Inc.
Price: $29.99
Platform: Palm OS
Review:
Did somebody say vocabulary builder? Well, as games go, whether on the kitchen table or on the Palm Pilot, Scrabble is hard to beat for developing rich and smart vocabularies. And this top-notch handheld translation? It's just literally hard to beat.

The interface makes playing easy: Using a drag-and-drop to move letter tiles to the game-board spaces, players can play against each other, against other handheld users (up to four players), even against the computer (beginner, novice, intermediate or expert skill levels). A built-in 100,000-plus word Official Scrabble Player's Dictionary is included. Games can be saved at any point to complete later, and they're automatically scored, so never mind the counting.

Two modes make the games either family-style loose or classic tournament rigid. For the real beginner who draws a blank, the friendly mode has a "suggest move" option for advice on your next play. You can even view a replay and summary of the previous game. Most electronic versions of popular classic board games offer an insignificant edge over the actual game, except that players can play on their own. But this one plays intuitively, and it passes the mark as a learning tool. For Scrabble fanatics with handhelds, the word on this game is good.

Don Oldenburg   ©2002 Parents' Choice
A former feature writer and consumer columnist at The Washington Post for 22 years, Don Oldenburg is the Director of Publications and Editor of the National Italian American Foundation, in Washington, D.C. He regularly reviews books for USA Today and is the coauthor of "The Washington DC-Baltimore Dog Lovers Companion" (Avalon Travel). The proud father of three sons, he lives with his journalist-author wife, Ann Oldenburg, in McLean, VA.

Look for this product at:
Handmark, Inc.
http://www.handmark.com
Book Stores
Major Retailers
Specialty Stores
Amazon.com
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B00005YWOR/parentschoice-20

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