WordBoxer: Written iPhone App Review
WordBoxer is a brand new and extremely promising word game. Developed by WordBoxer VOF, this is sure to become one of the App Store’s next top games. Move over, Words with Friends, here comes the knockout punch!
Concept and Gameplay:
I’m not quite sure what the developers were thinking when they came up with the idea to combine the sport of boxing with the tedious craft of word searching, but the results are nothing short of amazing. I can’t rave enough about this brand-new game.
The main goal of WordBoxer is to either deduct enough points from your opponent for a knockout, or survive 12 rounds with the most points. Both of you have 250 points to start, and each round consists of three punches, or turns. Whoever creates the longest word receives a bonus at the end of the round. This bonus allows you to shuffle letter and word multipliers around the board.
When you start a new game, you can select your opponent a number of ways: e-mail, from your boxing club, Facebook, randomly, or you can challenge the computer. When creating a match, you’re able to select the difficulty level and language.
Even if you’ve never watched a boxing match in your life, it won’t be long before you have your opponent in the corner with this game. It’s extremely easy to pick up the concept, and games go by extremely fast once you have the hang of it.
Thanks to the ability to create words using letters that are next to each other and adjacent, the number of words you can make on a board is greatly increased. This adds a whole new level of strategy for those who like to create the best word they can. Also, letter and word multipliers add to the challenge.
The most unique word bonus, however, is the purple letter block. If you create a word using one of these, the points are added to your score instead of deducted from your opponent. This is great if there’s a huge gap between scores and you’re looking for an extra boost.
Swiping your finger across the screen automatically deselects letters, saving you the hassle of manually doing this.
One of my favorite WordBoxer features is the Boxing Club. I’m sure you’ve played a game against an opponent you really had fun with, but what happens when it’s been an eternity since you’ve played them? Not only does the Boxing Club give you quick access to other players, but you can also keep an eye on how well they’re playing. Boxing Club also shows achievements friends have earned.
Another great feature of WordBoxer is the ability to chat with opponents. While testing the game, I found the chat messages were delivered to the opponent almost instantaneously. However, not everyone is a social butterfly, and it might not be a bad idea to include an option that allows you to disable chat.
Like most turn-based games, there are multiple ways for you to be notified when it your turn to play. Unlike Words with Friends, there isn’t a way to remind someone when it’s their turn (only a badge notification on the icon). Perhaps a way to nudge an opponent after a certain amount of time would be helpful although players are reminded by notification of their turn 48 and 24 hours before it expires.
One of the lesser celebrated features of WordBoxer is the ability to look up the definition of the word either you or your opponent played. For those of you who blindly try to make words up, this is a great way to back up your move in case opponent pulls the “That’s not a real word” card. To see the word played by your opponent you can either look in the scorecard or go back and forth to the matches screen.
The only major flaw I’ve found in WordBoxer is that words which don’t exist in the English dictionary sometimes pass as playable words. I have a feeling that the developers knew this would happen, though, which is why they included a “Report Word” option in the menu window.
There are a couple of improvements I’m hoping that developers could work on in future updates. Seeing as you’re not allowed to play the same word as your opponent within the same round, it would make sense to faintly shade or cross out the word they made. Even though it shows when they make their move, the word they played disappears once it’s your turn. If you happen to leave WordBoxer, there’s no way for you to know what word they played.
WordBoxer is an amazing game which is sure to keep you on your toes. If you’ve moved on from Words with Friends or you’re looking for something slightly similar (but with more features), this is the game for you. The free version allows you to play up to 3 games simultaneously and is ad supported. Upgrading for $1.99 will unlock the ability to play 25 games simultaneously and will banish ads completely. Considering other games like WordBoxer go for $2.99, this is an excellent deal.
WordBoxer is compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation), iPod touch (5th generation) and iPad. Requires iOS 5.0 or later.
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