Scrabble Catch Phrase is the updated version of the classic electronic guessing game originally just known as Catch Phrase. I have no idea what it has to do with Scrabble but the game device is now a bold red and black and has new words. If you’ve never played Catch Phrase, now is a good time to start.
Using an electronic device, you are given words or phrases that your teammates need to guess. You can give verbal clues, gesture, make sounds etc. There are only three rules and breaking those gives the other team a point, which is recorded on the device itself.
- No rhymes (i.e. ‘sounds like berry’).
- No first letters (i.e. ‘both words start with C’).
- No parts or variations of the word (i.e. cannot say base or ball when the word is baseball).
When you turn the game on, a category needs to be chosen – Fun & Games, Entertainment, Everyday Life, The World, or Variety. There is a timer so you need to get your teammates to say the word/phrase as fast as possible. After getting it right, the device is passed to the other team. This continues as each word/phrase is guessed correctly, with the timer ticking faster and faster. The team NOT holding the device when time is up gets a point. Scrabble Catch Phrase requires at least four people (ages 12 and up), split into two teams. Whichever team gets seven points first wins.
Thanks to its portable size, we were able to bring it with us on vacation for a little family down time. At first, only my husband, 11-year-old daughter, and I were playing. We decided not to have teams or count points so the game was more relaxed and to adapt to our group. Also, if the clue-giver did not know the word/phrase or thought the teammates wouldn’t know it, they could press ‘next’ for a new one. We had just as much fun, if not more, focusing on clues and guessing without the competition.
My step-father started getting interested as well. He’s a pretty mellow guy so it cracked us up when he totally disregarded the timer finished and kept giving clues. I found out that I’m horrible at clues but excellent in guessing – who knew? My mom does not like games (and was determined not to play) but she did chime in with an answer here and there. Even if they don’t intend to, everyone ends up playing in one way or another…
Scrabble Catch Phrase is a great family game. Players of different ages and abilities will find it challenging yet enjoyable. Sometimes the whole ‘hot potato’ passing got frustrating and I would have liked a mute switch. For larger groups, though, this makes for some crazy friendly competition.
So pick up a Scrabble Catch Phrase for your next Family Guest Night. Don’t forget to get a pack of AAA batteries because you’ll need three of them to fire up the game. For more tips, check out Hasbro Game Night on Facebook and on Twitter at @hasbrogamenight.