wordament

Wordament Snap Attack has just been released and we’re already addicted. If you haven’t downloaded it yet, this word-building game is available for Windows Phone and Windows tablets or PC’s. Players from around the world compete on the same board, using the same clock, making as many Snaps as possible. Don’t have time to play it yet? Head past the break to watch our hands-on video and gameplay.

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Microsoft's popular Wordament game has enjoyed success across the board and the game is set to sport a sequel as early as tomorrow – Wordament Snap Attack. If you're not familiar with Wordament, it's a word game putting players against each other in a continuous series of two minute matches to find as many words as possible. Snap Attack will be changing things up without sacrificing on gameplay.

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Wordament is a game of many firsts. It was the first game with Xbox Live on iOS and on the web to offer achievements. It started as an internal project between two Microsoft employees, but was quickly bought by Microsoft once the potential was realized. It hasn’t seen an update on Windows Phone for quite some time, so let’s check out what’s new as of today.

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Wordament is a boggle styled Xbox Windows Phone game where you have to create words from a 4x4 grid of letters. You earn points based on the letters used and compete against thousands of other Wordament players to earn the most points.

Wordament was recently updated to version 2.5 and adds the ability to login with your Facebook account so you can play against your Facebook friends.  You can still log-in with your Windows ID with the Facebook log-in being optional.

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When exclusive Xbox Windows Phone/Windows 8 game Wordament jumped ship to iOS, we were perhaps a little disappointed. Windows Phone needs all the exclusive games it can get, and Microsoft doesn’t need to do Apple any favors. Still, the game has gone multiplatform now and there’s no turning back.

In fact, Microsoft just published the most platform-agnostic version of Wordament ever. This one’s playable via HTML5-enabled web browsers. Best of all for Xbox gamers, the web game comes with 50 GamerScore worth of Achievements!

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Alright, so Nokia has a good grasp on what the word exclusive means. But Microsoft takes a more liberal stance towards supporting other platforms. We’ve seen the big MS publish previously Xbox Windows Phone exclusive games to iOS before, such as Kinectimals and Tentacles. It always hurt, but we sucked it up and complained only in small doses.

Yesterday, another exclusive turned coat and migrated to iOS: Microsoft’s own Wordament. I had previously speculated that Wordament could function as a killer app, attracting gamers to Windows Phone with its highly addictive gameplay and smart design. That will no longer happen, but here’s the really bad news: Wordament on iOS is an Xbox Live title complete with real Achievements!

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Windows Phone Central Reader's Roundup: Games

WPCentral's Readers Roundup of games for your Windows Phone

Last week we posed the question, "What is your recommendation on Windows Phone games?" and you, our readers, tossed out your top three gaming recommendations.  We tallied up all the recommendations and this week's roundup highlights the top five games from these recommendations.

The results weren't too surprising but dragon themed games scored two of the top slots. The other three included two Xbox titles and one game that is a gaming library within itself. If you didn't get a chance to offer your recommendations in the WPCentral Forums discussion, feel free to sound off below in the comments.

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Windows Phone Central's Roundup of Go To Games

This week's Roundup deals with Go To Games for your Windows Phone. For the lack of a better term, Go To games are the ones that always find their way on to your Windows Phone and really never grow old. These games are amongst your favorites but always seem to rise to the top of that list. They are the games you go to for entertainment that are great time wasters that never disappoint.

The Windows Phone Central staff were polled on which two gaming titles are their Go To Games. We see a lot of games come and go on our Windows Phones but these titles seem to always be around. The Roundup contains a wide range of games that include a beauty salon, chickens and rainbows as well as a healthy selection of Xbox Live titles.

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Microsoft themselves didn’t have as much of a presence at Casual Connect Seattle this year as we would’ve liked, but they did stage a fascinating presentation on the effects that switching to Xbox Live has had on popular free word game Wordament. We all know Xbox Live has helped Wordament become more popular, but the specific benefits and results of the switch are extremely encouraging and could have wide-ranging effects on future Windows Phone games.

Windows Phone Central has the full presentation video to share, plus a detailed summary and anaylsis. Check it out after the break.

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Be ready to be humbled.

Meet Joseph. He may very well be the youngest Wordament champ. He's five and a half years old and is already tearing up the Windows Phone Xbox Live game.

Joseph's game stats are as follows:

  • Best Word: Lumberjacks for 120 points
  • Total Score: 1,075,940
  • Total Words: 83,460
  • Best Game Score: 1,229
  • Best Word Count: 68
  • Full Games Completed: 3,032
  • Top Ten wins: 4
  • Best Ranking: 6

He's also a bit of a ham for the camera scoring near or above 500 points and ranking in the 90+ percentile while on camera. But we all can relate to his request for "just one more game". Most say it daily as our wives, husbands, parents, children, pets or bosses try to get our attention.  I just wish I could sit as comfortably in my lazy boy.

For those who haven't already downloaded Wordament yet, you can find it here at the Windows Phone Marketplace. It is a free Xbox Live title and very addictive. For those already hooked on Wordament, how does your Wordament stats compare to Joseph's?

Source: Wordament Blog

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Wordament update addressed connectivity woes

Wordament, Microsoft’s popular Xbox Live exclusive, just received an update a couple of weeks ago. That doesn’t mean the development team at You vs. the Internet has rested on their laurels though. Not only have they recently unlocked the French language dictionary within the game (in beta form as with other non-English languages), but another title update has just gone live.

The Wordament version 2.2 update doesn’t add any new features or options. Instead, its sole purpose is to improve the game’s network connectivity and performance. As a result, errors such as “Can’t connect to Xbox LIVE” and “Can’t connect to Wordament.net” should appear much less frequently. I never encountered those problems myself, but I’ve been up to my neck in newer Xbox Live titles like Final Fantasy and Battleship recently. I still love Wordament with more than nine-tenths of my heart though, so it’s great to see the developers still working to improve the experience for players.

Wordament is a free-ad supported game that requires a constant online connection to play. Check out our review for more details, or get with the program already and download it here from the Marketplace.

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Yesterday we covered the news of an impending Wordament update, which would feature a number of improvements and completed requests from players. Today we're pleased to announce that the update is live and should be hitting your Windows Phone shortly. The popular multiplayer word game was Live-enabled earlier this year, and remains a top free title.

Quick recap of what's included in version 1.1:

  • System tray enabled
  • Theme switcher
  • More user-friendly error reporting
  • Connectivity improvements

Looking to the future, the developer is set to release and maintain the title on upcoming Windows 8. You can download Wordament from the Marketplace for free. Thanks, everyone, for the heads up!

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While the developers of the popular Windows Phone word game Wordament have been busy adding new language support and building a Windows 8 Xbox Live-enabled version, the team have managed to get an update packaged for Windows Phone that should be hitting the Marketplace very soon. So what's new in Wordament version 1.1?

By popular request from players, the system tray (the status bar at the top of your Windows Phone screen) will now be displayed after it was previously removed when the game was Live enabled. In the official blog post detailing these improvements, there's a humorous explanation that the developers received numerous reports from users who missed classes, trains, etc. because they couldn't see the time while hooked on the addictive gameplay. The time, battery and signal indicators, and more will now be accessible.

As well as the system tray reintroduction, the team will also be adding an option in-game to change the orange brand-driven background to a more neutral colour for those who detest the mashup of red and yellow. The choice will be colourful rainbows or monochrome madness, both looking pretty sweet in the Metro UI influenced title.

If you so happen to encounter connectivity issues, instead of relying on the not-so-easy-to-find FAQ detailing what could be causing problems, the developers have added better error reporting within Wordament. A good example of this in action is the pesky "Can’t connect to Wordament.net" error which would normally throw the player out to the main menu. The app will now attempt to use the newly applied network retry logic to be more resilient to temporary network outages.

Coupled with more user-friendly reporting, the app will now perform less calls on startup with reduced data on transit between the app and backend servers. This will aid those in areas with weak signal coverage or on tight data plans, which is surely going to please many. The last improvement added in version 1.1 is targeting those with larger screens (eg. Lumia 900). The developers used code that tunes Wordament to work well on smaller devices but later found out this actually had negative implications for those with beefy Windows Phones. This has now been corrected in the update.

As always, the developers are eager for feedback to be sent their way for improvements to be continuously applied. Read more about the upcoming changes over on the Wordament blog. You can download Wordament from the Marketplace. 

Thanks, Brandon, for the tip!

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Must-Have Xbox Live games for your Windows Phone

Best Xbox Live Games for Windows Phones

Today WPCentral is pleased to bring you a new entry in our ‘Best apps for your Windows Phone’ series. Past installments have included Must-have Games, Word Games, Free Apps, Photography Apps, Weather Apps, and Must-Have apps. Our Must-Have Games and Word Games articles already covered a ton of great Windows Phone titles, so where do we go from here? Let’s focus on just the top few Xbox Live games this time out.

If you’re new to Windows Phone, the distinction between Xbox Live games and regular ones (usually called indie games here) might seem confusing. Xbox Live is Microsoft’s multi-platform gaming brand/service. Xbox Live debuted on the original Xbox console but really came into its own with the Xbox 360, where downloadable games are called Xbox Live Arcade games. Xbox Live titles on Windows Phone are basically the equivalent of XBLA games: high-profile downloadable games that (usually) undergo a rigorous certification process. On Windows Phone, the chief advantages of Xbox Live games (beyond increased marketplace visibility) are Leaderboards, Achievements, and occasional connectivity with Xbox 360 titles (which we’ll save for another article).

Head past the break for more Xbox Live primer plus our picks for the top five best Xbox Live games!

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Windows Phone Xbox Live Review: Wordament

Windows Phone has long been host to a number of quality word games, but they were all indie titles rather than Xbox Live ones. In fact, all the good indie word games even boasted multiplayer features, something long and inexplicably missing from mobile Xbox Live games. Of those indie standouts, one reigned supreme: Wordament, from a developer called You vs. the Internet. As it turns out, You vs. the Internet is a side project of a couple of Microsoft employees. Once Microsoft saw how well Wordament turned out, they made the wise decision to publish the game and bring elevate it to Xbox Live status. Wordament truly deserves all the visibility it can get, because it happens to be one of the finest and most addictive games on the platform.

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Best Word Games for your Windows Phone

What's the best word puzzlers on Windows Phone? We rank the best of the best in our new guide!

Keeping the "Best apps for your Windows Phone" series going, today we turn our attention to the best word games available at the Windows Phone Marketplace. We've looked at the best free apps, photography apps, must have games, weather apps and must have apps.  Now we take a gander at the games that test your spelling abilities as well as your powers of observation and speed.

Word games are a unique category in that they are great ways to pass long and short bits of time. Plus you might learn something along the way. We've compiled a short list of the Windows Phone word games we think top the charts. As with any of our "best of" lists, there might be one or two titles we overlooked. If so, feel free to speak up in the comments.

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Wordament Goes Dutch on Windows Phone

Microsoft could probably leave Wordament exactly as-is and it would still keep many of us busy for, like, ever. But what if you don’t speak English, the language that yours truly wields like swords? Hey, the developers have got your covered. The Xbox Live version launched with English and Spanish, allowing muchas personas to enjoy the game.

Now Wordament’s Dutch language support has gone live as well. Not to be confused with the movie Dutch, the Dutch language is spoken in Holland and the Netherlands, of which Holland is a region. Microsoft plans to add several more European languages to the game in the future: French, Italian, German, and Swedish – sorry Portugal!

Wordament is free and supported by ads. Get it here on the Marketplace. We'll have a full review soon.

Update: Even Portugese could be in the cards.

Source: Wordament.com; via TrueAchievements

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The popular word game Wordament went to full Xbox LIVE status this week and in our previous story on the brain straining game we mentioned how Microsoft would be promoting the app with a Wordament Tournament.

Happening right now at the Bellevue, WA Microsoft store, there's quite a crowd there evidently getting into the game. With food, giveaways and prizes (no human sacrifices though), it looks to be a fun time and a great celebration for a unique Windows Phone experience.

If you're there, send us some more pics and we'll throw 'em in this post. Also leave some comments based on what you've experienced . Pick up the free game here in the Marketplace, if you haven't already.

Update: "Here is a picture of WicketEwok in the left and DiscoPigeon on the right, two of the top players going head to head."  Thanks, Dustin S., for the photos!

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One week ago, the Wordament at Microsoft announced that their word-finding game would become an Xbox Live title on Wednesday, April 25. That’s a long time to wait though, and thus somebody decided to publish the Xbox Live version of the game a day early. That’s right, you can start earning Achievements in Wordament right now!

Wordament, much like Boggle, involves trying to find as many words as possible from a field of 16 letters, all within a time limit. The hook? You’re competing against hundreds of others in real-time over the internet. Rounds last for a couple of minutes. Once they end, you get to see how you compared against everyone else, and then the next round starts a few seconds later. Some rounds have hidden themed words and digrams (words that use a specific combination of two letters) to find as well. You can also add specific players to your Frenemies list and always see how you stack up against them. It’s all incredibly addictive.

Wordament has a few tough leaderboard-type Achievements, including one ('World Champ') which won’t even be attainable until two weeks from now (May 9 suppodely). But Wordament is a game that you play long-term and in all hours of the night. If you’re persistent and good with words, you’ll get them eventually. Might I also suggest that Spanish speakers try out the Spanish language option, which offers far less competition than the standard English setting? It could make that Achievement for coming in number one significantly easier to get.

Wordament is free and supported by ads. Get it here on the Marketplace posthaste! If you’ve already downloaded the indie version in the past, you can either choose to update the game (which will upgrade it to Xbox live status) or reinstall it to get the latest version.

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Lately we’ve been fortunate enough to receive release dates for new Xbox Live games a week or two in advance – including this week’s release, Monster Island. Naturally Windows Phone gamers are already anxious to know about next week’s new game, and we can now put those anxieties to rest. Microsoft Studios has officially announced that the Xbox Live version of Wordament launches on April 25. The game prematurely appeared on the Marketplace’s list of Xbox Live games last week, but was not Live-enabled.

Wordament is already available as an indie game. The gameplay involves trying to find as many words as possible from a field of 16 letters, all within a time limit. The hook? You’re competing against hundreds of others in real-time over the internet. Visually it’s quite plain, but the multiplayer/leaderboard aspect is compelling.

Head past the break for the full story and an update from the game's developer.

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