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Word Squares

No. of Players: 1+
Type of Game: written
What you need: pen and paper

Goal

To fill a square grid with letters to form interlocking words.

How to play

Word squares are square grids of letters that form words which read the same horizontally and vertically. For example:

3 by 3 word square using words SAT, APE, TEN

Players challenge themselves and others to construct their own word squares of various sizes. Larger grids are more difficult to construct. To ease gameplay, word squares can be constructed using words which read differently across and down. In an alternative version of this game, the gamemaster constructs a word square, removes the letters, and provides clues to the missing words for other players to solve. The first player to solve the puzzle wins and becomes the gamemaster for the next round.

Another variation of this word game is Phrase Squares.

Example

Anne constructs the following five-by-five word square puzzle for the other players to solve. She explains that while the five words read the same horizontally and vertically, the clues to these words are not given in any particular order.

5 by 5 word square puzzle with clues to words TOWEL, OLIVE, WIDEN, EVENT, LENTO

Solution

5 by 5 word square with words TOWEL, OLIVE, WIDEN, EVENT, LENTO

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