Previously, we’ve looked at double-Ls and their advantages and drawbacks. Today we scope out what carrying a double-O in your coffee can bring to your game. Bold type indicates words we created.
In general, splitting up vowels distributes them more evenly throughout a puzzle and prevents too many consonants from clumping together. But some combinations like EA, EE, or OO can be worth the cost. Above and at top on an iPad, we did lose the bottom half of the spill to consonant overflow with looser play, but still managed 280 points.
No style points
The double-O played roles in a bunch of words we don’t even know, but we’ll take it. Putting the ED and S beyond the L (and the ER beyond the upper left S) did elicit plurals, comparitives and past tenses for score-boosting. But we weren’t completely sold on the upside. A solo O or E would at least have let us write a tiny bit more down below.
Solo and yet so high
Next, we rolled up a formidable 377 in forgoing the license to spill the double-O. The upper-right O actually came late (ish) as we were hoping for something like testing or resting. But the NG still gave us song and bing. We often find ourselves making words like elite, as they allow for things like retile.
This run of letters actually provided lots of chances to double things up. The only one we really went for was the LL. The SS was really just a plural point grab (2 stores, 4 elites, etc.). So the chance for jeer or jesting went by the boards, but trolled kept the nascent heckling theme alive. With a convenient crystal ball, potentially there would have been derision, dissing, booing, sneering, needling, noise, noodge, zinger, boor and goon (and editor?).
Finally, this 275-point effort was what Blu Yonder did with the same letters as the game above. Blu opted for the double-O, but lost out by getting a double-E stuck next to it. Ribstones, we found, are ancient Viking monuments carved in the shape of an animal’s rib cage. Testoons, aka testons, are old European coins. Nobody beats Blu for obscurity. Or, often, conspicuous missed opportunity.