Wordzor Help

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This is the help content for Wordzor, also accessible through the game's Online Help button in the Options menu.

Contents

Overview of Wordzor
Options
Starting a game
Playing Wordzor
Bombs
Tricks
Helpful tips

Overview of Wordzor

Wordzor is a word game developed for the Google Android platform and is currently supported on the T-Mobile G1. There are two versions available in the Android Market: Wordzor and Wordzor Lite. Wordzor is the full version that contains all of the features. Wordzor Lite is a free demo version that has limited features.

The basic idea of Wordzor is that you are presented with a grid of random letters. You need to select adjacent letters to create words. The letters must be to the top, bottom, left, or right - no diagonals. Once a valid word is found, the word is removed from the board and the letters above it drop into place. New random letters are added at the top. You earn points for each word based on points for each letter and the length of the word.

Which way is "down" and "above" depends on how the phone is held - Wordzor uses the phone's orientation sensor to determine how you're holding it. You can rotate the phone in any of 4 directions to decide which way letters drop.

The letter dropping is important because of bombs - bombs show up sometimes when you clear out words, and you need to remove them from the grid before the counter gets to zero. The way to clear them from the grid is by getting the bomb to the bottom row.

When your score gets to a certain point, you move to a new level. There are a few different ways the game can end, depending on the game type you're playing, but the two ways all game types will end is if a bomb gets to zero or if no valid words can be found on the board.

Options

There are just a few options available in the Options menu accessible from the opening screen.

Enable word hints

This option turns on the "hints" feature - if you go 15 seconds without finding a word, "Hint?" will show up on the top of the screen. Touch that, and the first letter of a valid word will be selected for you. If that still doesn't help you see a word, try randomly selecting words starting with that tile. The dictionary included with Wordzor is extensive and includes slang terms from almost every English speaking country in the world.

Show gameplay tips

This option turns on the popup tips that show up when something happens in the game. For example, the tips that show up at the beginning and the one that shows up when you first see a bomb. These can get annoying, so after you see them once you probably want to turn them off.

Change background

There are a few different background colors available, pick one you like. If you have any suggestions for one you'd like to see, send us an e-mail.

View high scores

You can view the high scores for each game type here. You can also check out the longest and highest-scoring words discovered. This is for bragging to your friends.

Reset high scores

You can erase the stored high scores with this option.

Online help

Online help takes you to this page you're reading now.

About

About shows some information about where Wordzor came from, as well as some copyright information.

Starting a game

From the opening screen, you can resume a game (if you were playing one before) or start a new game. If you start a new game there are several options you can set.

Name

This is an identifier that was most likely given to you by your parents or other adult authority. You can make one up if you like.

Difficulty Level

There are three difficulty levels: Easy, Medium, and Hard. The difference between them is the distribution of vowels and consonants. Easy has the most vowels. I'm working on changing this because easy isn't easy enough.

Game Type

There are five game types available:

  • Normal - The standard mode of play. At the end of each level, you get a new set of random letters. The game ends when a bomb gets to zero or there aren't any valid words on the grid.
  • Timed - There is a timer that counts down every second. If the timer gets to zero, the game is over. Each word you find puts more time on the clock. Every level increases the maximum amount of time you have. It starts with 30 seconds at level one and increases by 5 seconds for each level.
  • Accuracy - You lose points for selecting letters that aren't part of valid words. If you select a letter then un-select it, you lose the amount of points you would have earned if it was a valid word. If your score gets below zero, the game is over.
  • Forever - This is the same thing as normal mode, but you keep the same board layout with each new level. This means that you have to keep playing with the same board until the game ends the normal way.
  • Insanity - Insanity is a combination of the other three modes - there is a timer, you lose points for selecting the wrong letters, and the board stays the same with each level. Insanity mode is hard.

Playing Wordzor

Selecting Words

To play Wordzor, you need to create words. Words are created by selecting adjacent letters. They have to be to the top, bottom, left, or right - not diagonal. When you touch a letter, you can touch it again to un-select it.

If you hold your finger down on a letter, a zoom window will show up at the top of the screen. This is a better visual indication of which letter your finger is on. Because the letter tiles are so small, sometimes it get frustrating to keep hitting the wrong letter. The zoom window lets you be more precise.

Once you select the first letter, you don't have to touch the next letter exactly. If you want to select the letter to the right, touch the screen anywhere to the right of your last letter. Same goes with top, bottom, and left. With a little practice, you should be able to select words very quickly and accurately.

Scoring a word

Once you have a word selected, the blocks light up even more than they were lit up before. The top bar on the screen also lights up and indicates the score of the word. To clear the word from the board, either press the last letter of your word or press the top bar. This will remove the word from the board and the letters above will drop down.

Rotating the board

Rotating the phone lets you choose which way is down when the words drop. You can tell which way is down by the orientation of the letters. Turn your phone on its side to see what I mean. The phone needs to stay relatively vertical - you can't place it on a table top, it should be held in front of you.

Bombs

Bombs were put in the game to annoy you. After you get to Level 2, it's possible for a bomb to replace a letter in a word that you clear. With each higher level, the chance of getting a bomb increases.

The bomb's counter starts at 9 and decreases for each turn you take. Every time you clear a word, the timer goes down. To remove a bomb, you have to get it to the bottom row. Of course which row is the bottom depends on how you are holding the phone.

Bonus points are awarded for removing bombs based on the timer on the bomb - removing a bomb with the timer still at 9 is worth much more than one with a timer at 2. To get the most points, you need to position the phone in a way that lets you clear each bomb as fast as possible.

Tricks

Tricks are items you earn that let you remove or rearrange letter tiles on the board. There are four different tricks available. They show up in the four large empty spaces between the scores and the letter grid. They have icon shapes that give you some indication of what they do.

To use a trick, press the icon and it should light up. You can then do whatever operation that trick supports. If you decide you don't want to use that trick after all, press the icon again and it should go back to normal.

The tricks are:

  • Zap - Remove a single letter tile. All you need to do is select a letter. Remember that you can hold your finger to zoom to make sure you're on the right letter.
  • Swap - Exchange two letters on the board. This can be useful to put a U beside a Q, create a really awesome word, make it possible to clear a bomb quickly, etc. The way you use swap is to select the first letter, then the second. After choosing the second, your two letters will switch places. Don't forget to use the zoom to make sure you pick the right letters.
  • Multi-zap - Remove all of a certain letter from the board. This comes in handy when you have too many W's, which always happens to me. Which ever letter you select, all of those letters will be removed. When you hold your finger on a letter, you'll see each block that will be removed.
  • Nuke - Remove a 3x3 block of letter tiles from the board. Doesn't need any more explanation than that.

Tricks that remove letters don't award you points for those letters - they are purely for strategy.

Helpful tips

Here are some top secret tips for playing Wordzor better. Don't tell anyone about these, they're really secret and awesome.

  • A bomb will never appear in a cleared word if it would immediately drop down and give you points, or let you turn the phone and get the points. This means that a bomb will never show up on the outer rows (top, left, right), and if you select a vertical word that goes the whole way to the bottom, a bomb won't show up there. There's probably some way you can use this knowledge to your advantage, but I can't think of anything.
  • If you're really close to a new level, it might be worth it to ignore a bomb on your screen. If it's an easy bomb, go for it. If it's stressing you out, just try to get enough points to get to the next level (as long as you aren't on Forever or Insanity modes). When the board resets at the next level, there won't be any bombs.
  • Try words randomly. If it looks like a word, it might be one. The dictionary in Wordzor is over 250,000 words from 3 to 14 letters long. It was built from a variety of word lists from a few different countries. There are slang terms from the UK, Australia, South Africa, USA, Canada, etc. I can assure you that all of the possible words are indeed words though - if you find one that you don't think is a word, let me know and I'll find the definition for you.
  • I may be willing to add words for you if you can put up a convincing argument.
  • My first and last names are valid words. Wordzor is too.

This page is (c) 2009 Jon Larimer