The new Knotwords game combines sudoku and crossword puzzles to create high quality logic puzzles suited to challenge the ancient crown of Wordle.
While wordle took Twitter by storm in early 2022, the new game Keywords may be positioned to become the next big Internet headache. Months after its release and subsequent purchase by The New York Times, wordleThe cultural relevance of has largely faded. As such, the space has been cleared for something new, as long as it’s fun and distinct.
On the surface, Keywords seems to share a lot with its predecessors. It plays almost like a mix between sudoku and a crossword puzzle, providing the player with a series of empty squares and a grouping of letters to arrange within. The free version of the game includes a daily puzzle and a set of 10 trial puzzles, while the paid version, available on the App Store, Google Play Store and Steam, adds dozens of puzzles and allows trying daily puzzles previous ones.
When compared in Wordle, his clones, and especially the clones of wordle clones like Kirby Heardle, Keywords definitely offers a new experience. The puzzles challenge skills that are slightly different from those wordle – it’s less of a guessing game and more of an overt logic puzzle. This, along with a significant number of other design choices, further differentiate the two games.
Knotwords focuses on speed more than Wordle
First of all, Keywords has something structurally different from wordle – puzzles are timed and players are encouraged to solve with speed rather than efficiency. This puts Keywords more in line with crosswords and sudoku, often rewarding trial and error over careful planning. Logic and strategy certainly help, especially as the puzzles later in the week seem to increase in difficulty.
Other elements of Keywords can be inspired by wordle, with a rotating daily puzzle and an option to share via social media being the most obvious. However, these similarities don’t quite work. Keywords’ daily puzzles are just one part of a larger experience – a complete, purchasable game (although some wordle clones are not completely free). Compare that to wordle‘s simplicity – one day, one puzzle, one attempt. Wordle has become a hot topic of discussion, allowing players to sympathize with particularly difficult answers or debate the best starting word. Same wordlethe sharing on social networks of , visually clear and personalized, plays in its favor here; by pressing the share button in Keywords only shares a blank image of today’s puzzle and how long it took to complete it.
These are not really strikes against the game – Keywords is excellent, although it may never reach wordlelevel of viral success. It’s refreshing to see new puzzle games that are more than clones of wordle and clearly have considerable thought and effort behind them, rather than combining the premise of another game with various gimmicks. Good game design speaks for itself and generating social buzz is far from a requirement. Keywords better good and obscure than bad and popular.
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