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Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

A stimulating game for the mind, do you go with chess, Scrabble, Othello, or backgammon?

Asked by Hypocrisy_Central (26783points) May 14th, 2012

Need I say anything more?

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52 Answers

Bent's avatar

Othello is my favourite but I can rarely find anyone who is willing to play it with me.

ucme's avatar

Chess is okay, but if a game lasts any longer than half an hour I have this urge to eat my own head.
Scrabble is fun so long as you play the “profanity edition”
Those others I don’t like, sounds like good times in the gents smoking room though.

Bellatrix's avatar

I can’t play chess @ucme. I have tried and I want to play but I don’t think I will ever be a chess master.

I like cribbage (any avid Fluther people who like cribbage and want a game one day). I don’t have anyone to play with and am out of practice so you will probably win!

I like backgammon, risk, canasta and our latest game is Carcassonne. My husband and I play that every Sunday.

ucme's avatar

@Bellatrix Let me give you a cultured crash course in the intellectual stimuli that is chess
The little horsey travels in an L shape, the bishop “goes” in all directions….no surprises there then.
You can of course signal your intents to submit defeat by means of throwing the pieces on the floor, in a similar fashion to that of a child throwing it’s toys outta the pram.

Bellatrix's avatar

I know all that smart arse :-), it is more the planning many moves ahead thing. I know how the pieces move.

stardust's avatar

I like to play scrabble occasionally. I’ve never heard of Othello before. We don’t seem too play it here. Does anyone want to give me a brief description of what it entails?

ucme's avatar

@Bellatrix You made me smile there….which can’t be bad.

JLeslie's avatar

I love scrabble, that is my game of choice, second would be backgammon. But as far as stimulating the mind, chess would be the more complex of all the games I would say. Needing to think several moves ahead. Scrabble and backgammon I am always thinking one turn ahead, sometimes two. I have played Othello, but only a few times, and I don’t remember it well.

Bellatrix's avatar

Can’t be bad at all @ucme. And a nice turnaround. Your posts very often make me smile.

rooeytoo's avatar

Backgammon, I have it on my laptop and on my iphone. Whenever I have to wait for something or have a spare minute I play it. My husband also plays but not with as much enthusiasm as I. I also love Pinochle and 500 Rum and play them on my laptop and phone too. I always wanted to play cribbage but never knew anyone who played and could teach me.

Bent's avatar

@stardust Othello is a kind of capture/territory strategy game. All the counters are black on one side and white on the other. You play on a grid by laying a counter in your colour in such a way that it traps at least one of your opponents counters between it and another of your own, in a straight line. Then you turn over all the trapped ones so they are now your colour.

digitalimpression's avatar


“Here”“ is a brief description of Othello. Oops. @Bent answered first.

If I must choose from these four, it’s scrabble, then chess. However, I prefer many, many things over all of them.

Bent's avatar

@digitalimpression The website explains it better than I did.

MollyMcGuire's avatar

I don’t really enjoy any of those games.

tom_g's avatar

Chess is the best game ever created. There is no luck involved whatsoever. However, a chess clock must be used.

Scrabble is fun, but there is too much chance involved for me to take it too seriously. Scrabble must also be played with a timer.

Backgammon involves dice, so it’s out.

I’ve never played Othello.

DaphneT's avatar

I’ve not done backgammon, nor succeeded at learning chess. Scrabble is good for vocabulary stimulation, but if you don’t try to use 5 or more letters every time you not stimulating much. Othello is a good pattern/strategy assessment game, but I have no one to play. The most brain stimulating would be to play them all, simultaneously against the maximum number of players. That should keep things lively.

cazzie's avatar

Scrabble. I am a word person. I also like Ticket to Ride for strategy.

zenvelo's avatar

The best intellectual game is Go.

Of the four listed, Scrabble is fun but backgammon is just easier, quicker, and more exciting.

Seaofclouds's avatar

I’ve played all of those before and tend to lean toward Backgammon and Scrabble more lately when looking for something to play online.

At home, I’ll get my husband to play Axis & Allies, Talisman, Risk, or a few of the other games we have. Once in a while, we’ll play card games instead. Uno holds a special place in our hearts.

wildpotato's avatar

Backgammon! My whole family is crazy for that game. I play it like a fiend, and study strategy a bit. I’d like to play competitively someday.

Cruiser's avatar

Chess is to my by far the most challenging and requires far more forward thinking than all the other games. I think the most mentally stimulating of the bunch. As far as sheer brain power, I think scrabble rivals chess in that you are tasked to think of an recall an entire dictionary of word combinations with placement strategies not unlike chess. I like scrabble and one of these days I WILL beat @JLeslie dammit! ;)

filmfann's avatar

I love all three, but I i will go with backgammon. Given the option, though, I would go with maj jong poker. I suck at it, but I enjoy playing.

JLeslie's avatar

@Cruiser LOL. I think you have, haven’t you?

Cruiser's avatar

@JLeslie No…0–5 and you currently have a 40 point lead with no letters remaining. :(

SomeoneElse's avatar

Scrabble and backgammon are my favourites.
Chess I have tried and failed at.
Othello is one I have never seen/played.

sydsydrox's avatar

Honestly, I’d say chess. But scrabble is my absolute favorite. I’ve never heard of Othello (I’ll look it up) and I have no idea in the world how to play backgammon.

gailcalled's avatar

I love to play bridge and Scrabble and Trivial Pursuit.

muppetish's avatar

Scrabble, though I am surprisingly not that great at it. Chess is fun, but I am worse at it. I have neither played Othello nor Backgammon. I guess this translates to me favouring games that I am good at against games that will stimulate my mind..

Hypocrisy_Central's avatar

(Thinking I want to take @JLeslie down in a game of Scrabble.) @JLeslie Sooooo…...what is your personal best (Scrabble score wise)?

Coloma's avatar

I love Scrabble, never played Othello and Chess is too strategic for my more right brained orientation. lol

blueiiznh's avatar

I like and play all of those and more, but Chess all the way for my vote.

FutureMemory's avatar

I love Scrabble.

@Hypocrisy_Central I think my best score is 442.

JLeslie's avatar

442! I don’t know my best.

When I was 8 years old I joined a Scrabble tournament at the resort we used to stay at in the Catskills. Many of the people there were grandparents and grandchildren. Well, long story short the final game was between the known “expert” player and myself. I won by 8 points.

2davidc8's avatar

All of the above are excellent mind-stimulating games. Only one person mentioned bridge, and it is my favorite of all the ones named. Othello bears much similarity to an Asian game called “Go”. I find chess to be the most difficult of all. The rules are simple enough to learn, but it is very hard to get good at it. For those who love chess, there’s also an Asian version which is equally challenging.

And to the above list, let me add a nice little game called Mancala. Try it. You might get hooked. Oh, and if you find that chess takes too long or is too hard, there’s also checkers.

Coloma's avatar

My grandma taught me to play Canasta when I was 7. Beat the pants of of her every time. Woe was grandma, she used to just shake her head in disbelief. lol
I was not invited into the big old lady Canasta games when the gin & tonic was flowing, those old gals were downright ruthless and I’ll always remember summer nights at grandmas, she and her old pals in the screened porch hustling. A lot of pissed off little old ladies. haha

Cruiser's avatar

anybody for a stimulating game of rock, paper, scissors??

SomeoneElse's avatar

@Cruiser I’ll challenge you to Roshambo and you will no doubt win, as I should really be with @Coloma‘s grandmother hustling on the porch.

Cruiser's avatar

@Bellatrix Not all bad as I will now challenge you to a game of skipping stones on the river!! ;)

Cruiser's avatar

@SomeoneElse I will take your challenge of a game of Roshambo and you can have Coloma AND her grandmother on your team as long as I can have @Bellatrix‘s and her rocks on my team!

Bellatrix's avatar

Look at how far I skipped my rock.

Ready with my rocks for the challenge.

I think we hijacked @Hypocrisy_Central‘s thread.

Anyone for a game of conkers.

Keep_on_running's avatar

I love Scrabble the most. I used to play it with my dad all the time growing up.

Paradox25's avatar

Chess, by far. I’m not really into backgammon or scrabble that much. I used to like playing Othello on my old Nintendo system, but I didn’t know that game was still popular, or out on another system, because I likely would have purchased it again.

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