Scrabble players are left speechless by the game’s new words
They don’t say “yeehaw!”
Scrabble pros told the Post they were upset at the addition of more than 500 new words to the game’s official dictionary and resented that newbies – like yeehaw (15 points) – are doing little for them or the sport.
“Additions to the word list have no effect on the game itself, little effect on gameplay, and very little effect on the players who have to learn them,” snorted former world champion Joel Sherman. “I don’t see anything…this will have even a small fraction of the gameplay impact that the additions of QI and ZA had years ago,” Sherman added.
The new additions have garnered a lot of attention, but several players said it will be months before the North American Scrabble Players Association, whose own word list governs the competitions in the States, has finished scrutinizing this group for competitive play.
Scrabblers also noted that many “new” words aren’t all that new, such as dumpster (13 points), which was previously considered a trademark rather than a generic word for a trash can.
“Dumpster has been a word in our dictionary for a long time,” said top player César Del Solar, 38. “I think it’s gotten general enough that Merriam-Webster [added it].”
The 500 new options range from industry jargon (Fintech, 15 points) to cuisines (the spice Zaatar, 15 points) to niches and obscure (Hogsbane or Giant Hogweed, 17 points).
“I think we need to learn a new set,” sighed Fran Shaw, 78, who thinks the new additions are coming “too fast” after the last update in 2018. “They added Jedi? Hey.”
Scrabble officials found that some of the new words, like the old-fashioned “yeehaw,” were spoken more often than written and simply overlooked.
“The gold standard for editing dictionaries has always been written evidence,” said Peter Sokolowski, an editor at Merriam-Webster who helped select the new additions. “So a term like yeehaw that we all know from our childhood and from movies and TV was something you heard. You haven’t read it that often.”
But not every Scrabble expert is welp by the new terms (another newbie, 9 points).
“There’s a lot of cool words in here,” said Stefan Fatsis, 59, “Word Freak” author and competitive Scrabble player, noting that the slang term “fav” will be a lifesaver for anyone who likes the pesky, clunky want to drop letters “v.”
“I found these updates delightful,” he added, “because they reflect the endless march of the English language.”
“Some of my favorites are Zonkey and Zedonk,” said Del Solar, referring to the terms for donkey-zebra hybrids. “They look fun, they have Zs and everything.”
With mail wires.
https://nypost.com/2022/11/19/scrabble-players-are-apoplectic-over-games-new-words/ Scrabble players are left speechless by the game’s new words