The Rising Popularity of Scrabble Board Game in India

Last Modified Monday, 19 April 2021 (20:27 IST)
Recent lockdowns intensified the growing market for board games throughout the country as citizens searched for respite from screens and new cultivated family traditions. Through this increase, however, the industry’s considerable prospects in India remain largely undiscovered. India provides rare potential for game developers to catch and potentially monetize their offerings in a vast market of over 1.3 billion citizens.
The global board games industry size was estimated at $13.1 Billion in 2019, expanding at a CAGR of 9 percent over the projected period 2019-2025. North America, followed by Europe, is the biggest market for board games, particularly strategy games like Settlers of Catan, which is extremely common. Asia-Pacific (APAC) is home to the fastest-growing sector due to the rising interest in China and Japan. India, too, has a quickly developing interest in board games with a market value of $45 million. But in a market where low-cost alternatives are a concern, there are very few options to choose from. Upcoming game developers aim to improve that.
Scrabble Word Finder's simplistic 15x15 square board, originally meant for fun, has gained a strategic advantage in the modern era. Unlike regular scrabble, which players can play for hours at home, professional scrabble has a time limit of 25 minutes for each participant. The rising success of the game can be seen in statistics, with it being played in 121 countries in 29 languages. Apart from the United States and the United Kingdom, Asian countries such as Pakistan, Thailand, and Sri Lanka have made significant progress in the game, hosting international competitions and exhibitions regularly.
 
The scrabble board has 100 alphabet tiles and checks a player’s problem-solving capabilities, reasoning, calculation capacity, risk control, time management, and memorization- which are all often necessary skill sets for achieving academic excellence or implementation of the place of work. The tactic is a critical part of playing the game and the decision making about whether to go for fewer points intentionally in one turn in the hope of heading for a more significant kill on the next turn or remaining happy by stopping the opponent from maximizing his/her ranking.
The ultimate goal of any scrabble player is to position a bingo term (using all seven tiles on the rack) since this earns a 50-point bonus on top of the world ranking. The Collins Scrabble Dictionary, which contains over 280000 words, is used as a reference point for validating phrases. Terms are inserted regularly to maintain the dictionary currently. A player may use an Unscrambler for reference when they are stuck in the friendly gameplay.
 
Scrabble has now captivated the attention of Indian youth. Indian students have consistently participated in the WESPA Youth Cup, a premier event for teenage scrabble players (aged nine to seventeen). Yash Potnis and Suyash Manchali represented India admirably in December 2019 with outstanding performances at the WESPA Youth Cup 2019 in Malaysia.
 
Yash finished seventh, the highest finish by an Indian in history, and 10-year-old Suyash captured the Under-12 World championship. Madhav Kamath of Delhi won the Under-10 Division. Surprisingly, all three guys learned the game from their parents, who are also enthusiastic Scrabble players with high scores.
 
Nowadays, the slogan is to begin early. Sherwin Roderigues of Mumbai, currently the highest-rated player in India and a multiple tournament champion, started his career as a child and finished in the top ten at the WESPA Youth Cup.
 
Madhav, a Delhi-based scrabble player, began memorizing tactics at a young age since it is an integral part of the game's analysis - with more than 280,000 real terms in the Collins Dictionary.
 
As of now, cities such as Pune, Delhi, Chennai, Hyderabad, and Bangalore have increased their game adoption. Scrabble, on the other hand, is not yet recognized as a sport in India. However, countries such as Nigeria, Pakistan, and Thailand have already recognized it as a sport. The increased foreign participation means that India's inclusion as a mind sport is not far off.