Milkbag Games has released a new word game for iOS called Sidewords. What kind of game is it anyway? As you may have guessed, this is a word game, but Milkbag helpfully adds that it also includes elements of logic puzzles. There are no timers, no penalties, and no pressure, which means you can take as much time as you need to sharpen your mind and complete the puzzles. And if one game isn’t enough “brain training” for you, the good folks at Milkbag have also added a “bonus game” to complement Sidewords — what kind of game is it, and what do you need to do to ace it?
You’re probably guessing that this is the part of the game guide where we tell you that we’ve solved the first so-and-so levels and have an answer key for anyone who’s stumped at any point of the game. (Don’t forget the usual warning against reading the answer key from top to bottom!) But instead, we’ve got a list of Sidewords tips and tricks that will help you solve more puzzles and create more words, while making good use of the grid and coming up with the right strategy to that end.
1. Learning The Basics
Sidewords, as we said in the game overview, isn’t like a lot of the word games we create answer keys for. The mechanics are noticeably different, but once you get the hang of things, it shouldn’t be much of a problem for you. Just tap on the letters in the correct order — O-N-E for the word “one,” T-W-O for “two,” and so on. Hit the arrow to confirm your answer, and you’re good. You can also remove words, simply by tapping on them as they appear on the grid.
2. Manage Your Real Estate
Of course, we’re not referring to houses and buildings here, but the space on your screen — it’s important that you optimize it to your advantage, and always think at least one move in advance. Don’t leave too many letters left behind — this essentially means working your way down the grid by creating different words, or creating a long word with all the letters so you can cover the entire grid. You’re trying to make the most of what you’ve got in this case.
Don’t worry too much about creating big words, much like you would in Scrabble. Your goal is to use all of the letters, and not to create the words that have the most total points. And even if you’ve got a great word but have nothing to work with when it comes to the other letters, you might want to start from scratch and try creating another set of words.
3. Rhyming Words
Sometimes, you may get lucky and stumble upon a chance to create a series of rhyming words, or words that have there same last few letters. For example, try words like “Time,” “Mime,” or “Dime,” or “Gun,” “Fun,” and “Run,” or anything to that effect. Like the average “brain game” available on your app store of choice, it’s all about working that brain out and thinking of patterns or anything you can riff on.
4. A Dictionary Might Help, But Sometimes It Won’t
The internet is rich in dictionary websites or other similar resources, such as anagram websites that feature different ways in which you could rearrange several letters to form a valid word. Of course, that would be tantamount to cheating, but if you’re all out of ideas, it just might give you an extra edge — just try your best not to do it too often if you really want to train your brain, as game makers often say! But at the end of the day, a dictionary’s only benefit would be to help you come up with the words. That’s just half of the battle, because the rest of it is knowing where you should place the words, and knowing how to fill the grid properly.
5. Create Small Words That Fit In The Side
Although small words might not be as fun or flashy as the longer ones, it’s good strategy to create words that are small enough to fit in the side of the board, as that’s going to allow enough space for something more substantial in another part of the board. You’ve got all the wiggle room you need to experiment, as the words don’t need to be in a matching pattern or order or anything.
6. About Quads
Quads is like a mini-game, or a game within a game in Sidewords. Basically, it’s like the game’s makers wanted to offer two games for the price of one, though in this case, the title is absolutely free. So how do you go about playing Quads?
Quads is played by creating words out of a group of letters, by sliding the letters to form the word. Don’t bother making a whole bunch of three-letter words, because the only time you’ll earn points is when you create words with four letters, no more, and no less — that’s why this mini-game is called Quads in the first place! The only time you should create three-letter words is when you’re trying to free up some space on the grid, but otherwise, it’s all about four-letter words, and finding the right opportunities to form them.
That’s all for now. We hope you’ve enjoyed our list of tips and tricks for Sidewords. If you have anything to add or just want to share your thoughts about the game, don’t hesitate to drop us a line in the comments!