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Common Words With Friends Complaints (and What to Do)

frustrated woman playing words with friends

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Many Words With Friends players love the game and understandably so. As one of the world’s most popular word games, WWF is convenient and super fun. You can play a game just about anywhere, including on your phone, tablet or computer. There’s a lot to like! At the same time, Words With Friends complaints have highlighted a number of shortcomings and frustrations too. How can you overcome these common complaints about WWF?

Words With Friends Complaints About Guessing

One of the most common complaints about Words With Friends has to do with how the game is played in the first place. In the traditional Scrabble board game, just like the physical Words With Friends board game, you really need to think about your move before you lay down your tiles. You need to be sure that the word you want to play is valid and legal.

The digital version of Words With Friends, on the other hand, tends to reward random guessing. That’s because you can take a “trial and error” or “brute force” approach to your move. You can move your letter tiles around on the board until the indicator changes from red to green, indicating a valid move. You can “guess” until something works. 

Challenge in Scrabble Instead?

With the traditional Scrabble game, players can “challenge” an invalid word. With Words With Friends, invalid moves cannot be played in the first place. So, they cannot be challenged either. For purists, WWF alternatives like Internet Scrabble Club may be more appealing. On that website, you configure how challenges work, including penalties for invalid words. 

Valid and Invalid Words

Even with “guessing” and “trial and error” complaints aside, Words With Friends complaints about what words are and aren’t allowed are very common too. The Words With Friends dictionary can be inconsistent. Some words that you think should be valid can’t be played. Similarly, some words that you think should be disallowed can be played. 

Some examples include proper nouns and abbreviations, which aren’t technically allowed. But, there are many exceptions. “Japan” is a proper noun, referring to the country in Asia. However, “to japan” is a verb, meaning “to add a dark, smooth and hard gloss to a metal object.” There are also a number of nonstandard and slang words you can use in Words With Friends that aren’t valid in Scrabble.

words with friends game play words with friends game play

Check Your Words First

The best way to confirm valid and invalid words is to use our handy Words With Friends cheat tool. It’ll unscramble your letters to form words and, in the process, verify what words you can play in your favorite word game. 

Creepy Chat Messages From Strangers

Words With Friends has a sexual harassment problem. Unsolicited messages in dating apps and on social media platforms can be very troubling already. Because Words With Friends has a built-in chat function, some individuals use it to flirt (or worse) with other players. Most often, it’s male players who are hitting on their female opponents. 

They may “compliment” them on their appearance or ask if they are single. When ignored or otherwise dismissed, these strangers can get angry, turning to verbal abuse and sexual harassment. 

Play With People You Know

You can always block and delete these kinds of players. The best way to avoid these types of encounters is to refuse all random games altogether. Play only with people you actually know.

Boiler Room Romantic Scammers 

The creepy players described above may come with unwelcome sexual advances. However, broadly speaking, they are still “real” people. There is a whole other category of WWF player where their objective is not sexual in nature at all; it’s monetary. These scammers are looking for personal data and, in many cases, actual money. 

These scammers also take advantage of the “chat” function in the game, but they often try to move the conversation off the platform as quickly as possible. They’ll ask to talk on Google Hangouts or via WhatsApp. These “romance scams” typically start off on false pretenses. They may say they’re Americans working offshore. Or they may pose as US military deployed overseas. 

In truth, they could be boiler room operations, with multiple scammers working together, playing multiple “games” at the same time. One Oregon woman was scammed out of $137,000! An Australian woman fell “in love” and sent her scammer $260,000. Some scams involve proxies, like asking for Amazon gift cards or other items of monetary value.

boiler room romantic scammersboiler room romantic scammers

Protect Yourself From Scammers

The strategies and tips for avoiding these types of “romance scams” on Words With Friends are exactly the same as avoiding other types of online scams. 

  • Research online. If the person’s social profiles don’t match up, they’re probably not a “real” person.

  • Never send or lend any money to someone you don’t know.

  • Do not click on suspicious links or open suspicious attachments.

  • Never reveal personal information to strangers online, particularly credit card details.

  • Exercise extreme caution when dealing with anyone you’ve met online. Be skeptical and remain vigilant.

Mobile Game Freezes or Gets Stuck

Most people would reasonably expect that when they play a game, it actually works. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case with Words With Friends. The game freezes or gets stuck sometimes. Some common Words With Friends complaints that fall into this category include:

  • Inability to play a word after placing the letter tiles

  • Winning a Solo Challenge but not getting credit for the win

  • Getting stuck in a Solo Challenge that won’t progress normally

How to Fix a Frozen Game

If you encounter any of these sorts of problems, refer to our guide on what to do when Words With Friends freezes up. The solution is similar to what you should do when a Words With Friends Solo Challenge gets stuck. Worse comes to worst, deleting and reinstalling the app on your device usually works.  

Words With Friends Login Issues

It’s one thing if the game freezes while you’re in the middle of playing it. It’s another issue altogether if you’re having trouble logging into your account. This is true whether you create a separate account or you sign in with Facebook. Multiple users have reported login issues, sometimes on the computer, sometimes via the mobile app. As a result, the game can fail to load properly.

Play Words Classic

One solution is to try a different version of the game. The same account applies, carrying over the same active games and friends lists. If you’re having trouble with Words With Friends 2, try Words With Friends Classic. It’s available for both iOS and Android devices. If you’re encountering problems logging into WWF from Facebook, try signing out and back in to Facebook.

If the frustration is too much, you can always delete your Zynga Words With Friends account. This would mean you’d need to start fresh, though, so proceed only as a last resort. 

Missing WWF Games Won’t Load

Similar to when your game gets stuck or you’re having trouble logging in, there have been several Words With Friends complaints about individual games failing to load. You know you started a new game with your bestie yesterday, but now it’s not showing up in your list of active games. What gives? 

Fix the Sync Issue

A common reason why your Words With Friends games aren’t loading properly is that your account has gotten out of sync for whatever reason. This is particularly relevant if you play both via Facebook on your computer and via the mobile app on your phone. 

What you may need to do is log out of your account and then log back in. This should hopefully force a refresh. You can also try a different browser on your computer. 

How to Contact Zynga Customer Support

Still fed up with these issues? Want someone to listen to your Words With Friends complaints? Better still, do you want someone to actually do something about them? One step you can take is to contact Zynga’s customer support. You’ll find it under the “help” section in the app’s profile section. 

Or, if you want to try something totally new that’s also familiar, you might consider giving a go with Scrabble GO. Take note of some of the key differences between the two games, including board layout and available game modes. Then, get in there and play!


Michael Kwan is a professional writer and editor with over 14 years of experience. Fueled by caffeine and WiFi, he's no stranger to word games and dad jokes.

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