GTM #205 - WordSpiel
by Elizabeth Mackness

This wonderful new year brings a WORDiful new game! Set Enterprises launches WordSpiel: Where the END…is just the beginning! WordSpiel was created by Marsha Falco, the inventor of SET, Five Crowns, Quiddler, Karma, and SET Dice.

Here’s the Spiel.

WordSpiel is a simple yet dynamic game that everyone enjoys. Be the first to get rid of all 10 of your cards by making words. Each turn, simply start your word with the last card played. Just like the name, WordSpiel, Spiel uses the S from WordS. Word size doesn’t matter, but ending with a tricky letter can really challenge your opponents. Each word spins off the last, so the game will never be the same twice! WordSpiel combines wit, words, speed, and a bit of strategy. This game creates a frenzy of fun as players try to find their best word in 60-seconds or less. You can use the timer or take your time, just be sure to put your best word forward!

Why did you call it WordSpiel?

Deciding on the name of the game was both the best and worst part of the game design process. It created a competitive game of its own between Set Enterprises’ employees, Marsha, and everyone’s friends and family. Marsha and her team spent countless nights stringing together every word they knew trying to find the perfect fit. She wanted the name to follow the rule of the game, so it could double as an instant explanation of how the game works. The competition was on...who was going to be the one to find the perfect name — one that follows the rule of the game, that everyone could agree on, and wasn’t already used for another product. Sounds simple, right?

The start of the name was definitely the easier half. Most everyone agreed starting with “WordS” was the right direction since it’s a word game. The ending of the name was more of a challenge. Many three, four, and five letter words were tried, but “Spiel” won the prize when the similarity to Marsha’s maiden name was revealed (which is “Spieler”, which means “player” in German). So WordSpiel won, becoming the name of the game. Now, Marsha, a player from the start, can spiel all about it!

Evolution, Development, Improvement…

While play-testing WordSpiel, Marsha decided that starting a word with only the last card played wasn’t enough. She wanted more options, so the rules evolved, allowing players to go back as many letters as they wanted. Now, if a player played the word “FUN,” the next player could use the N to make “NO” or go back to the UN to make “UNITE” or they could use the entire word, FUN, and make “FUNNY” by simply adding NY. This new flexibility broadened the playing field, challenging players to find their best outcome. This improvement on the rules also had a beneficial side effect. Now, letters like D and S can get you to the finish line by simply adding them to the end of the previously played word.

WordSpiel is a great game for a diverse group of players — everyone loves this game. With very little setup required, it’s a perfect gateway game that can be as short or as long as you want. Five rounds are recommended, but if you have more or less time, you can pick the number of rounds — making it an easy game to play anywhere, anytime.

Also NEW for 2017…

In addition to launching WordSpiel, Set Enterprises also released the Second Edition of The Quiddler SHORT Word Dictionary. The First Edition, which was only available in Quiddler Deluxe, was such a huge hit that, by popular demand, the Second Edition was released and made available for individual sale. Now you can get just the dictionary, or two, or three.... The Second Edition also includes additional words that players submitted over the years, offering even more ways to dominate Quidder’s most words bonus. The Quiddler SHORT Word Dictionary includes over 10,000 two, three, four, and five letter words. It’s organized the way you play — alphabetically and by the number of letters per word, making it the perfect companion to Quiddler. But don’t be fooled — despite its name, this dictionary is a great accessory for ANY word game and essential for all word game enthusiasts!

Want infinite fun for years to come? You can check out Set Enterprises’ full line of games at www.setgame.com and stay up-to-date by liking Set Enterprises on Facebook at facebook.com/Set.Enterprises. Want see how WordSpiel is played? You can find videos at youtube.com/setenterprises.

After receiving her BA from University of Arkansas and MFA from Boise State, Elizabeth Mackness traded her life of teaching & publishing for a career in marketing & video production within the gaming community. A gamer as far as she can remember, Elizabeth was excited to be a part of the ongoing conversations within the tabletop community every day. Elizabeth currently lives with her wife and Samoyed, Mishka, in Arizona.