WordsWorth HD Review
iPad App
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WordsWorth HD Review

Our Review by Kyle Flanigan on March 23rd, 2011
Rating: starstarstarstarblankstar :: VOCAB TEST
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WordsWorth, a popular game mildly similar to Scrabble, is blown up to HD for iPad.

Developer: 99games
Price: $2.99
Version: 2.7.1

Graphics / Sound Rating: Rating: starstarstarblankstarblankstar
Game Controls Rating: Rating: starstarstarstarstar
iPad Integration Rating: Rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar
User Interface Rating: Rating: starstarstarblankstarblankstar
Re-use / Replay Value Rating: Rating: starstarstarstarstar

Overall Rating: starstarstarstarblankstar

The English language is a feat. The modern version alone is almost five centuries old, and there are over 400 000 words if you take into account variants of infinitives (for example: write can become writes, writing, writings, writer, writers, wrote). Considering it is spoken by some 1.8 billion people, each with differing levels of vocabulary, word games can always be fun. Scrabble is the classic.

But now there’s a new game in town, by the name of WordsWorth. It takes the “honeycomb concept” and amplifies it onto the iPad. The idea is simple: create as long a word as possible from any given “honeycomb” of letters. You can go up, down, left and right in any direction at any time, but the letters must link one after the other. And that’s where the creativity element comes into play.

99games, the developers behind WordsWorth HD, have implemented three game modes into their application: classic, timed and tumble. Classic is all points based, where each time you get a word your total point score goes up. Exceed a certain of number of points to succeed. Timed mode takes this a step further - you can only progress if you achieve all of the required points within a certain timeframe. Tumble is as it sounds: the letters come tumbling down, a-la Tetris.

The game is made more interesting with the incorporation of “special action” tiles. These include tiles that give you extra points when incorporated into a word, “wildcard” tiles that can be used as any letter, and “timed” tiles that have to be used within a certain amount of time or else the game ends. There is also a “scramble” feature which allows you to shake the iPhone to remix the tiles in case you can’t find a word. Doing so usually activates one or more “timed” tiles as a penalty.

Tom Hesser (148Apps) of WordsWorth for iPhone

As you play on and become more aware of the words around you and on your screen, the difficulty can be notched up. Minimum word size can be adjusted between 3 and 5 letters, the grid itself can be anywhere from 5x5 to 8x8 (proportional). An in-built adjustable timer delay ensures that the game is reasonably fast-paced, and a scramble per level can be adjusted from 3 to 0.

WordsWorth is Game Center achievements and leaderboards ready, meaning you can see how you rank against the rest of the world – or against your friends. Game Center makes it easier for friends to find each other if they want a challenge, and achievements add that extra level of competitiveness and difficulty into the game. You can challenge your friends through Game Center, over Wi-Fi or over Bluetooth. There are reportedly some 50 000 players of WordsWorth already, given its popularity on iPhone. 148Apps awarded it 4.5 stars earlier this month.

It’s a fun way to get your brain thinking, and to test your vocabulary. Personally, I’m not a huge fan of the much-hyped “bee” design – it’s a little too heavy for my tastes – but games should be about gameplay first. And WordsWorth HD has that down.

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iPad Screenshots

(click to enlarge)

WordsWorth HD screenshot 1 WordsWorth HD screenshot 2 WordsWorth HD screenshot 3 WordsWorth HD screenshot 4 WordsWorth HD screenshot 5
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