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How to win at Bananagrams, Words with Friends and Scrabble

The Words That Will Help You Win Every Game

We’ve all been there. You’re head-to-head with someone you’re desperate to beat, but you can’t find the words you need to win. They’re able to ‘squeeze’ (26 points) out words like ‘chutzpah’ (27 points) while you’re just about managing to ‘spell’ (7 points) a lowly ‘cat’ (5 points). It’s frustrating, but the good news is that with a few pointers you can up your game.

Here are some pro tips to help transform your ‘cat’ into a ‘jellyfish’ (22 points) - words to help you win every game of Bananagrams, Scrabble or Words with Friends. Although Bananagrams (our favorite) doesn’t rely on points in the same way as Scrabble or Words with Friends, it does rely on making use out of tricky letters like ‘q’, ‘x’, ‘v’ and ‘z’ (worth a lot of points) so this advice works for all three games.



Memorize Two Letter Words 

I’ll start with the most important tip – memorize as many two letter words as possible! They’ll help you use up tricky letters and allow you to combine two words more easily, giving you more room in Bananagrams and lots of points in Scrabble and Words with Friends.

Here’s the list to remember – make sure to at least remember ‘qi’ (doesn’t need a ‘u’), ‘ax’ (worth 9 points) and ‘za’ (it’s common to have a spare ‘a’).

  • AA, AB, AD, AE, AG, AH, AI, AL, AM, AN, AR, AS, AT, AW, AX, AY
  • BA, BE, BI, BO, BY
  • DA, DE, DO
  • EA, ED, EF, EH, EL, EM, EN, ER, ES, ET, EW, EX
  • FA, FE
  • GI, GO
  • HA, HE, HI, HM, HO
  • ID, IF, IN, IS, IT, IQ
  • JO
  • KA, KI
  • LA, LI, LO
  • MA, ME, MI, MM, MO, MU, MY
  • NA, NE, NO, NU
  • OD, OE, OF, OH, OI,OK, OM, ON, OP, OR, OS, OW, OX, OY
  • PA, PE, PI, PO
  • QI
  • RE
  • SH, SI, SO
  • TA, TE, TI, TO
  • UH, UM, UN, UP, US, UT
  • WE, WO
  • XI, XU
  • YA, YE, YO
  • ZA


Remember the Top Point Scorers

The top word you could theoretically spell out would be ‘Oxyphenbutazone’ which could earn you a whopping 1,788 points – winning all word games ever played. However, here are a few more realistic top point scorers/tricky letter users to keep your eyes peeled for:

  • Bezique – 29 points
  • Cazique – 29 points
  • Exequy – 25 points
  • Fuzzy – 29 points
  • Hamzah - 22 points
  • Jukebox – 31 points
  • Jazz – 31 points
  • Jazzy – 34 points
  • Jazzily – 37 points
  • Muzjiks – 33 points
  • Quaff – 21 points
  • Quaky – 21 points
  • Whizz – 28 points
  • Zax – 19 points
  • Zaxes – 21 points
  • Zombify – 27 points
  • Zyme – 18 points


Learn Common Prefixes and Suffixes

This is useful for a few reasons. First, it allows you to find the version of a word that’ll give you the most points. For example, take the word ‘play’.

  • Play – 9 points, 4 letters used
  • Playful – 15 points, 6 letters used
  • Playfulness – 19 points, 11 letters used

Second, it allows you to spot opportunities to hijack your opponent’s words, giving you more points! Here are the most common prefixes and suffixes to run through:

-ED, -ER, -ING, -LY, -ENT, -IEST, -FUL, -ITY, -NESS, -CY, -AL, -TION, -ITE


Do a Scan for Easy Targets

A great tactic for winning all three word games is to be on the hunt for easy targets – words that you can add one letter to, gaining you extra points in Scrabble and Words with Friends and saving valuable time in Bananagrams.

Here are some to look out for:

‘car’ – can be made into ‘card, ‘cart’, ‘carp’ etc ‘lush’ – can be made into ‘plush’, blush’, ‘flush’ etc ‘line’ – can be made into ‘incline’, ‘headline’, ‘online’ etc ‘cat’ – can be made into ‘vacate’, ‘catfish’, ‘categorize’ etc And many more…

Good luck in your next word game! With these tips we’re sure you’ll find the words to win every game.

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