Daily Archives: April 6, 2010

Scrabble to go wild with proper nouns

According to BBC News, Mattel is releasing a new version of Scrabble this July and changing the rules to allow place names, people’s names, and company names or brands to be played.

In other words: PROPER NOUNS GONE WILD. Buy it on DVD very soon. No refunds.

Coming from a family of hardcore Scrabblers (well, mostly my sister and I), I’m not ecstatic over this decision. It’s a game of words, small and big, used and rarely used, and throwing in names just makes it less…exciting. Throwing down QATS, fully knowing it’s a real word, and watching someone challenge it to no success is a great feeling. Skill-wise and intelligence-wise. However, no one is going to challenge TIM or NIKE. And pretty soon, mark my words, they will allow text speak, at which point Mattel will be wiped from the Earth via an army of robot monkeys.

For what it’s worth, PAUL scores me 6 points without any bonus squares, but my true birth name of ZYKLAX nets me a delicious 29 points. Still, I’m going to refuse playing by these new rules for as long as I can.

Achievement roundup from free Gold weekend

Well, the free weekend access to Gold features such as online gaming and social apps has come and gone. Mighty fast, too. Alas, between traveling and the Easter holiday, I only got to log on for one night. Boo. However, I did unlock some online-only Achievements, making good use of my time in that sense, but I would’ve liked more time to try other features. I’m still not convinced it’s worth paying for. Anyways, let’s see how I did, yah?

For Fable II, I quickly popped the game back in, earned something like 708,945 gold since I last played, and…gave a gift to a complete stranger. Ping! Didn’t really feel up to badgering people for Hero dolls though…


The Philanthropist (10G): A gift was sent to an Xbox LIVE friend. Aren’t Heroes nice people?

Then I tackled a round of deathmatch for Grand Theft Auto IV. I didn’t win or have a wonderful time, but I did manage to pop these two with ease:


Let Sleeping Rockstars Lie (10G): You killed a Rockstar in multiplayer.


Cut Your Teeth (5G): You were successfully promoted up a rank in multiplayer.

Lastly, I hit up SEGA Superstars Tennis, thinking this would be a cakewalk. It turned out to be more of an uphill climb. Online opponents are much tougher than the computer-controlled ones, always making me run left and right to hit the ball before they smacked it down hard and fast and far away from me. It took me a number of tries just to win a single ranked match, and I knew it’d be a long road ahead to winning multiple matches. Here’s what I was able to, er, achieve:


Top of the Tree (20G): Win a Tournament on Xbox LIVE


Space Channel 5 (10G): Watch a match on TV


Surf the Net (10G): Win a Match on Xbox LIVE

Don’t worry; I totally hate boring Achievement pics like the ones above, too.

So, in conclusion, six new Achievements unlocked for a total of 65G (not like that means anything). Not too shabby for one night of quick and rushed gaming. Until next time, free Gold access!