71 of 72 people found the following review helpful
Educational, but not really a game.,
= Durability: = Fun: = Educational:
This review is from: My Word Box (Toy)
I bought My Word! because of three reasons. One, I was an English teacher at the time, and thought it would be helpful in my classes. Also, it was produced by Out of the Box (2001), who makes some very fun, easy-to-learn games. Thirdly, it was designed by the great Reiner Knizia. So I bought this inexpensive game and tried it out with my classes, and with my friends.
The verdict? It was a great, great game in my classes. With my friends, however, it did not do so well. Some liked it, some didn't, but it hasn't been asked for since. Allow me to discuss the game a little more, starting with how it's played...
My Word consists only of a deck of fifty-six cards. It's also helpful to have a scrap of paper and pencil to track each player's score. The deck of cards is made up of thirty-nine cards that have one letter on them. The cards are divided into two, with the letter written on them from both directions, so that players on both sides of the table can easily read the card. Fourteen cards are similar, but have pairs of letters on them, such as "IT", or "SH". The remaining three cards have question marks on them - two with a single question mark, and one with two question marks. They are used as wild cards. One player is chosen to be the dealer, and then each player takes a turn after in clockwise order.
On a turn, the dealer takes deck of cards and shuffles it, then begins to place cards face up on the table. The dealer can place the cards anywhere they choose and at any speed they desire. As the dealer lays out cards, players search the cards to see if they can find any words amongst the letters on the table. Words must be formed from three or more cards, must be able to be found in a standard dictionary, and can be formed in any order. When a player sees a word, they must shout out the word. If the dealer hears the word, they pause the game and check to make sure the word is legal. If the word is legal, the player who shouted it out gets all the cards used to make the word. If the word is NOT legal, then every other player gets a free card from the table. The dealer can never call out words during his deal.
When the last card is dealt, the round immediately ends. Each player receives one point for every card they have gotten, and scores are noted on the paper. The next player becomes the dealer, and the game proceeds until every player has been the dealer once. Point totals are tallied, and whichever player has the most points is the winner!
Some comments on the game...
1). Components: All the game consists of is the deck of cards. The cards are of good quality, but since they are the only component in the game, I think they should have been of better quality (a minor quibble). The box with it's plastic insert is more than enough room to hold the cards and fits well on a shelf (it's the same size as all OOTB small games). One thing did nag at me when playing the game. The simple fact is that I could easily make this game. All one would have to do is make a deck of cards with letters on them. Of course, quality components are always a plus, there's just not much here.
2). Rules: As with every OOTB game, the rules are simple, short, and easy to learn and play. No matter what, I had each game I taught up and running in less than a minute.
3). English teaching: This game was superb for teaching children spelling games. And, unlike some educational games, there is a bit of fun in this one. I found this game a very useful tool in the classroom.
4). Fun factor: But while there may be a bit of fun, there's not a lot of fun. People who are slow spellers will absolutely hate this game. It requires a quick eye and fast spelling. At least Scrabble and Crossword Pyramids allow the player time to think. If a player is slowly thinking of a word to spell, and other players grab the letters first, it can be intensely frustrating to some. I enjoyed the game, but I was in a very distinct minority.
So, after this short review, I would have to say that I would recommend My Word! to those who like spelling games. If you have children who need to learn spelling, or are a teacher, this is also a fun, valuable teaching tool. But for game night? Sadly, I'll have to pass.