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  LOGOLOG
a weblog of wordplay by Eric Harshbarger

W4H4A1T1 G2A1M3E1?

Yesterday I went out to some yard sales and found an interesting item. It appears to be some version of Scrabble, but I could not find a reference to it with a search on BoardGameGeek (although maybe I overlooked the link among all the versions of the game). It's certainly not Scrabble Sentence Cube Game (an old copy of which I have in my collection of game relics).

The game pieces, as I bought them, I doubt are complete (some of the letter-dice I picked up off the floor, there was no Scrabble branded box or lid, no instructions). I'm pretty sure it's an 'official' Scrabble product though. The letter dice have values exactly matching traditional amounts.

The plastic 'board' is a molded grid of only 11x11 cells. The center one is slightly different than the surrounding ones. Nothing denotes bonus spaces (Double Word Scores, or the like). There are only 72 letter cubes (but again, some might be missing). The same letter appears on each face of aparticular cube, so the 'dice' seem not to be for randomization, but rather simple it fit well in the plasic grid.

My best guess is that this is some sort of 'travel' version of the game. Maybe the grid was placed over a paper with special bonus square markings?

If any readers have further information, I'd love to jear about it (leave comments below). The small images on this page are linked to slightly more detailed pictures.

-- Eric

P.S.: Well, about 5 minutes after posting this entry, I more carefully perused Boardgame Geek and discovered the game's identity. It is Scrabble Brand R.S.V.P. Three Dimensional Crossword Game from 1958. Evidently 84 letter dice came with the original, so, as I suspected, I'm missing a few pieces.

[20 April 2008]
   
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Comments about this article:
Over the years I've found several of these, and always with complete letter inventory, surprisingly. One of my whimsical collections is a giant brandy snifter full of such letter cubes--along with Perquacky and Boggle cubes. I've got another snifter full of all different kinds of dice. The things that people collect, eh?!

Posted by: Tom


 
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