How to Win at Boggle: A Mind Map

Click to view a larger version

Click to view a larger version

This week’s class project was a lot more involved than past weeks’. We had to create an autobiographical infographic, and in doing so use the principles of design we’ve learned in class, including hierarchy, balance and unity.

I had a lot of different thoughts about what topic to choose: something travel related about the around-the-world trip, the past year, or packing; something about me an Evan, maybe a comic strip based on the books I created about everything we did up until he left for Budapest; something based on this blog, going over its stats, my posting trends, or how it relates to my social networks… The list went on and on. One idea that kept nagging me, though, was how to win at boggle.

I’ve been good at Boggle for a while now. I’m not quite sure how it started, but I think it has something to do with me enjoying playing online in college. From there, I realized that I could beat just about anyone I played in real life, and a lot of the people I played against online. I could just see the words in a certain way that made sense, and I could create some really long word lists because of it. I played about a week ago with my parents and their friends, and again I came out the winner in every game, playing against people who consider themselves Boggle fans, so I thought it would be interesting to try and explain what I see.

So I created a Boggle board that spelled out “Win at Boggle” along with a few extra letters filled in, played the game (I didn’t time myself), and then annotated the list with tips on how or why I wrote down certain words. To create the final piece, I decided to go into the more important elements of the game, including some notes on strategies and other tips for winning.

The piece is all done by hand with various pens and colored pencils — something just felt right about doing it by hand since it’s a game you play by hand.

It was hard trying to get everything balanced, in the right place and colored properly in one shot. I created pieces of the final composition in a notebook and transferred them with tracing paper to color in, but it was still tough since I couldn’t change anything once it was down and in pen.

In class, it was well received. People didn’t even realize that I did it by hand from a distance, and nobody else did anything on games. There were some great projects in class, though, including a beautiful watercolor and pen map of a neighborhood, an Egyptian-style accounting of all one person’s pet’s deaths, and a flow chart of someone’s workout cycle.

2 Responses to “How to Win at Boggle: A Mind Map”

  1. James says:

    I’d like to see a clear copy of the above picture of your work on this page. I tried zooming in but it’s not clear. Great job in any case!

  2. Francine says:

    Try this link to open it without the lightbox: it’s pretty high res

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