Game: Mini Words – minimalist puzzle
Genre: Word Puzzle
Developer|Publisher: Mens Sana Interactive
Controller Support: No
Price: US $1.99 | UK £1.59 | EU € 1,69
Release Date: October 24, 2019
Review code provided with many thanks to Mens Sana Interactive.
The game Mini Words features more than 700 scrambled words for players to puzzle out of its minimalist design. This game starts off incredibly easy but gets more and more difficult as players continue through the levels.
Gameplay in Mini Words
Mini Words look is minimalist and yet colorful. The design and ways to interact with the game make it easy to learn, but oh so hard to master. In order to complete puzzles, players have to click and drag the cursor over letters to make a single word. There are hints on the left side of the screen, letting you know how many letters a word has; this system also gives players the position of one of the letters to give them a little hint as to what the word could be. There is an additional hint box that appears next to this that will give players the definition of the word if they choose to click on it.
The starting puzzles only have one word as the game teaches you all the different ways that words can be formed. Players can reuse letters so long as the path that connects them with the previous letter has not been used yet. The more difficult puzzles begin to add in more words as well as longer and more difficult words. Each set of ten or so levels is a stage, and each new stage introduces a new concept or a new way of connecting letters.
Pros of Mini Words
The simplistic gameplay is one of this title’s many charms. There’s not a whole lot going on; the sound design and the look are both simple and attractive. All you have in front of you are some letters, a couple of hints, and some word-finding puzzles that will make your brow furrow.
Mini Words is charming. It features 721 words to find, and each is its own puzzle. The game starts very slowly, giving the player ample room and time to figure out how everything can connect before throwing slightly harder puzzles at them. After that, a new concept is added, and players can puzzle through those for the next few levels and so on.
This integrated tutorial makes the game a little slow to start but is a fantastic way to introduce concepts without info-dumping or overwhelming the player at the start.
Cons of Mini Words
This game does not feel like it should be a Steam title. Mini Words would benefit massively from the use of touch screens. So it’s good to know the game will be released for Switch players later this year. I like the ideas they are working with from the minimal design to their unique take on the word searching genre; however, it would be much improved with touch rather than clicking.
Mini Words also has the same problem that loads of word searches do; there are just so many words that the puzzle could be and only one real solution. Thankfully, Mini Words doesn’t punish you for getting it wrong. However it does light up the letters that have been selected red, and that just feels kind of bad. I usually find myself absently clicking the letters as I try to figure out the words, and it flashes red each time I do so, making me feel like I’m failing before I have even tried.
I really like this game. It’s a word search puzzle that’s been upgraded and modernized. What’s not to like about that? With a couple of tweaks, this game could be an amazing addition to anyone’s library. I do hope they add this game to mobile; I would be adding it to my phone as soon as it was available.
Final Verdict: I Like it a Lot.