Each player has a tray and a collection of letter cubes. The letter cubes cover the whole alphabet, and are designed in alphabetic order. Thus, there are cubes with letters A-F, J-L, M-R, S-W, X and Y. There are also two blank (wild) cubes. Players take turns selecting letters. A selected letter can be dropped anywhere within the 5×5 matrix. Thus, though each player is using the same letter, what they end up with on their boards will be different.
Though the two trays make you think of Battleship, Nerdy Wordy is a completely different game. Players get points for each word they make (from 2-5 letters long) and get extra points if they are able to make five-letter words on all 4 sides of the grid. Though the cubes store nicely in their respective trays, it’s not really a car game – as you need a surface on which to hold and sort your cubes.
The game can get very challenging. Especially if you count 2- and 3-letter words. And even more especially if you happen to be playing against a Scrabble player. The game can be made easier (scoring only 5- and/or 4-letter words), without disturbing the strategic interest.
The letter cubes, because they limit the letters that can be used, and because of the addition of two blank cubes, add great depth and interest to the game. For two word-loving players of equal skill, age 8 and up, the game will undoubtedly prove to be Major FUN.