Word Search Puzzles
Most people are familiar with word search puzzles. Basically they are a grid of letters containing various words (some of which may overlap) in all sorts of orientations, left to right, right to left, top to bottom, bottom to top, and various diagonal directions. Of course the words may not fit together perfectly, so the unused letters in the grid are simply filled with random letters.
The objective in a word search puzzle is of course to locate the words hidden in the grid of letters, and when you find a word, circle it. Depending on the designer’s preference, the player may be given the list of the words that are contained within the grid, or they might simply given a clue as to what type of words to look for (e.g. “names of American Presidents”).
Just like crosswords, sudoku, kakuro and other puzzles, many people enjoy doing word search puzzles as a leisure activity. It can be a fun challenge hunting for those words! Additionally word search puzzles are increasingly popular with teachers, in English as a Second Language (ESL) courses, and for educational uses in general.
It’s possible to create word search puzzles by hand but it’s incredibly time consuming. A better solution is to use your computer – with the right software the job is a snap; simply enter the list of words, and a puzzle can be generated automatically for you in seconds. With the right software you can also set up puzzles that only involve words in certain directions (e.g. horizontal and vertical) to make an easier puzzle, or even set up puzzles where the letters are arranged in a particular shape (e.g. if you had a puzzle containing words relating to aeroplanes, you could have the puzzle in the shape of an aeroplane instead of an ordinary square).