Gameday First Play – Qwirkle

A tile laying puzzle game…

…Scrabble for those who can’t spell?

Qwirkle has been called “Scrabble for people who can’t spell”. The play is much like Scrabble. “Words” in Qwirkle are made with rows or columns of blocks sharing either a common colour or a common shape (but not both!). No block may be duplicated in a “word” (e.g., you can never have a row with two yellow circle blocks). You score 1 point for each block “letter” in the “word” and a bonus of 6 points if you can make or complete a “word” with all 6 shapes of a single colour or all 6 colours of a single shape.

We drew 5 tiles each when in fact you’re supposed to draw 6 tiles but oh well…

Qwirkle Tiles

Each has a colour and symbol. You place any number of tiles on the table as long as they share the same colour OR a unique shape.

On your turn you can add block(s) to the grid, score them, and draw replacement blocks.


All blocks must be added to the same row or column
And all blocks in the line must share the same shape or colour without any duplicates

Then you score…

Adding to an existing line scores 1 point for each block in the line
Get a 6 point bonus if complete a line of 6 blocks all with the same colour or shape

Then draw back up to 6 tiles.

Qwirkle Board

You can ditch tiles back to the supply and draw back up but this costs you a turn.

When the tile supply runs out play continues until someone empties their hand, giving them a 6 point bonus and the game ends.

Highest score wins.

It’s a nice abstract when you’re trying to place tiles in places that score two lines to maximise your placements.

I’m not sure we were playing 100% correctly and I’m sure experienced players will look at the image above and point out a few mis-placed pieces…

Overall though it was enjoyable and wasn’t too slow with 6 players. One I might pick up.

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