We love board games in our house, and were thrilled to be sent a copy of Sproutword. It’s not so much as board game as it doesn’t have a board, any table will do. It is a fun, compact game that’s fun for all the family.
So, what is Sproutword? You can find out all about it on the website but as I was kindly sent a copy to review I’d like to tell you what I think about it.
Sproutword, The Word Strategy Game
Sproutword was invented by two eccentric Brits, Ian “Sprout” Neville and Dan “Gherkin” Richter.
Living in Dorset the natural beauty of the area was the inspiration of their colours for the game.
Stage One: Choose your colour
- Western Sunset Pink,
- Salcombe Sand Yellow,
- Chalk Meadow Green,
- or Dorset Sky Blue.
The little bags of letters are so delightful, it’s hard to choose. The next step is to decide who goes first and this is done by taking a letter from the bag and the the one with the lowest in the alphabet goes first. I did this with my son and he got A I got Z !
Then you select letters from your bag. If there is just two playing then you have 8 letters each, three players have 7 and four players get 6 each.
This is where the fun begins. Player one makes a word using any player’s letters. As the object of the game is to own the Sproutword, then it’s best to use as many of your own letters as possible.
The Sproutword is the longest word with more of one player’s colour in it than any other player. It’s not always the longest words, because sometime these words can have too many of other players colours in them.
This is from the game I played with my son. As you can see there are two 6 letter words, but one of them is a mixture of colours (vanity) and the other is all yellow (rescue.) In this case rescue is the sprout word and yellow is winning.
After the first player takes their turn they replenish the number of tiles used from their bag. Everyone’s tiles are always on display as any of the players can use them. If you use another player’s tiles, though, they cannot replenish until after they have taken their next turn.
I played the game with my son for about 40 minutes but once he put down the word Requesting (10 letters) I found it difficult to take back the lead and he ended up winning.
As you can see, some of the words have changed. That’s because you can change a word on your turn so long as it’s as long as, or longer than the existing word and does not displace any other word. Any players removed from play are put back in their owners colour bag and are not in use until drawn again.
The Game Ends when any player has no letters to replenish with. If the player has some letters in their bag they must replenish as fully as they can. The winner is the controller of the Sproutword.
We really enjoyed this game. It’s fun and easy to learn, but the mastering of the game is harder. Sharing each other’s tiles adds a depth to the game and it can become competitive. If you spot that your opponent can make a word you can use their letters which stumps them.
There is no adding up of scores, it really is whoever is control of the Sproutword throughout the game. You can write down words that have changed, and keep track of which ones are the longest, but you don’t have to.
The bags of tiles come in a cardboard box that’s easy to carry around so a great holiday game. The tiles are made from sustainable European forests and the colours are really pretty.
You can play along with the makers of Sproutword on their Social Media channels. More rules can be found on Youtube.
What do you think? Fancy a game?