If you've ever played Hangman when you were a kid, you would know how addicting it is. So, it isn't surprising that many of us have fallen to the call of the dark lords of Zynga and are now avidly playing their Hanging with Friends game every chance we get. Since there seems to be no cure in sight, the only thing left to do would be to start winning every game. Now, there are two parts to winning a game of Hanging with Friends. One, you should be a good guesser. The second one is that you should be a great word builder. The first one, guessing words, is what we'll be tackling today.
In guessing words, there's one thing that you should keep in mind. Shorter words will inevitably have high scoring letters while longer words will usually be made of the most common letters. This is purely psychological as people think short words with 4-5 letters are easier to guess if you use common letters like CAKE or PLATE. But with high value letters, they convince themselves that it'll be harder to guess. In addition, building along word is so much easier using common letters over high value ones like J, X, Z, and Q. And people invariably think that since the word is longer, it will be harder to guess. Another important fact that should never be forgotten is that the last vowel is ALWAYS shown before you start guessing. Some people forget this little fact and continue wasting chances by guessing vowels where there aren't any.
Keeping those two things in mind, you must first try to look at the number of letters and the position of the vowel you were given and try to see if there's another vowel hidden somewhere. Let's say you got a ??A??. Knowing that there aren't any vowels after A should tell you immediately that those two blanks at the end are consonants. The position of the letter A also allows for possible vowels before it. Words like LEASH and TOAST come to mind. Since E is the most popular letter in the English language, it's safe to use that as your first guess. Bear in mind though that you shouldn't waste all your guesses on vowels. If E and O don't amount to anything, move on to consonants. Consonants are your best bet in guessing the word anyway.
When it comes to guessing consonants beside each other, you'll have to think in terms of blended sounds. PL, FL, SH, ST, TR, CH, and the like are consonants that combine well together. And looking at ??A??, it's highly likely that the first two letters and the last two letters are blended sounds. The best guess you can make in this situation is an S and R as these are very common letters that also happen to blend well with many other letters. Most prefixes that frequently come up contain an R, L, and/or S. Frequently used suffixes, on the other hand, usually have a D, R, and/or N.
Once you've guessed some of the consonants and the vowels, hopefully, you'll have only one or two blanks left to guess. In this part of the guessing game, you'll have to use a bit of psychology again. Players often won't build a very common word that they feel would be easy to guess unless it's a long word. So, if you're faced with a short word, better start guessing with the unusual letters first like V, Z, X, etc. Of course, you'll also have to do a bit of "mind reading" with your opponent. By observing the type of words he builds, you'll have a better chance of "knowing" what word he's currently playing. If he seems the type to avoid playing high value letters, then your last guesses should be common ones.
Now that you know how to better analyze the guessing part of Hanging with Friends, you can be sure that you'll be winning lots more games. Just don't forget to always have fun!