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iPad: Double Across, A Multiplayer Crossword Game With Literary-Based Computer Opponents

View Poll Results: How often do you play word games?
Often -- I love them 8 50.00%
Occasionally -- They are fun, but they aren't my favorite 7 43.75%
Rarely -- Only if forced 0 0%
Never -- Even under pain of death 1 6.25%
Voters: 16. You may not vote on this poll
05-26-2010, 03:29 PM
#1
Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 16
Double Across, A Multiplayer Crossword Game With Literary-Based Computer Opponents


Our new game "Double Across" has been submitted to iTunes and is currently in review. It should be available in about a week. Game details follow; check out our first game play video on YouTube or scroll down to see the screenshots.

If you haven't already done so, go to http://doubleacross.com to register to win a ton of cool stuff.

GAME DETAILS
Double Across is the exciting new word game for the 21st century; it's designed for everyone who loves books, board games, or crossword puzzles. Double Across invites to travel back in time to match the power of your vocabulary against such fascinating computerized personalities as Jane Austen, Mark Twain, Jules Verne, William Shakespeare, and Aesop. For an even greater challenge you and your friends can match wits with the incredibly powerful Mr. Genius. When playing against these built-in personalities, Double Across not only lets you exercise your vocabulary skills, it is also a delightful source of entertainment. Whenever you play a word that strikes their fancy, these characters wax romantic (Jane Austen), colorful (Mark Twain), philosophical (Jules Verne), poetic (William Shakespeare), or quixotic (Aesop) by proudly spouting off phrases and quotes from their published works.

This is the game inventor Alfred Butts (a.k.a. Mr. Scrabble™) would have invented if he had had an iPad. The strategy is to construct new words of any length, one at a time, to build an ever expanding crossword composition. At the beginning of each turn a player has four minutes to make a word that intersects with as many existing words as possible.

PLAYER FEATURES:
• 1 - 6 Players (Play solo or against up to five human or computerized friends using the same iPad.)
• 6 Distinct Computer Personalities [AI's] (Jane Austen, Mark Twain, Jules Verne, William Shakespeare, Aesop, and Mr. Genius)
• 5 Individualized AI Dictionaries (Author AI's are restricted to using words from their writings.)
• Thousands Of AI Quotations (Author AI's respond to words played by others with lines from their books, bringing out elements of Adventure, Philosophy, Science Fiction, Drama and Romance.)
• Uber Genius AI Included (Mr. Genius knows it all and plays it all. Watch out!)

DICTIONARY FEATURES:
• 4 Unique English Dictionaries (American, British, Canadian, and Australian).
• Proper Nouns Optional (There are more than 3,000 proper nouns included, in such categories as: common first names, common last names, countries, states, cities, other geographical names, days of the week, months of the year, planetary bodies, constellation names, names of languages, etc.)
• No Need For Word Challenges (No penalties are assessed for trial words or misspellings.)
• Unlimited Letters (Each player starts with all of the letters they'll need, and you can buy more.)
• No Forced Hard-To-Use Letters (You can't get stuck with Q's and X's that you can't use.)
• Blanks Unnecessary (Buy whichever letter you may need, including Q's and X's.)
• No Word Length Limit (Play words of any length.)

OTHER FEATURES:
• Non-Random Game Play (Double Across is more like Chess than Yahtzee®.)
• No Poker Face Required (Everyone can see everyone else's letters.)
• Extremely Large Playing Field (Double Across's board is 10x the size of Scrabble® or Words With Friends™.)
• Timed Multiplayer (Party games don't get boring.)
• User Friendly Interface (Type your words or drag tiles to the board.)
• Works With Hardware Keyboards (Use your Bluetooth or iPad Dock Keyboard.)
• Family Friendly (Kids can learn lots of new words, and the AI's are prohibited from playing profanity.)
• Stunning Graphics (It's OK to judge this book by its cover.)

SCREENSHOTS









Last edited by Cortis; 05-28-2010 at 10:51 AM.
05-26-2010, 03:50 PM
#2
Joined: Jun 2009
Posts: 10,966
UI looks fantastic, and I like the concept you've come up with AI players.

Quote:
Originally Posted by NickFalk View Post
Squids!?

Worst idea ever!

05-26-2010, 04:36 PM
#3
Joined: Sep 2009
Location: Colorado
Posts: 5,244
Looks good.
05-26-2010, 04:42 PM
#4
Mm, an iPad, I do not own. Overcome me, greed has!
05-26-2010, 05:49 PM
#5
Joined: Mar 2009
Posts: 158
Looks interesting. I like the AI approach using words from their writings. If the price point is reasonable I might have to check this one out.

Check out my photoblog wolfhuntphotos.deviantart.com
05-26-2010, 06:16 PM
#6
Joined: Dec 2009
Posts: 4,449
Looks pretty cool and I love the concept.
05-27-2010, 01:07 AM
#7
Joined: Jul 2008
Location: Orlando, FL
Posts: 4,491
This game looks gorgeous! I really wish I had an iPad cause I'd definitely pick this up
05-27-2010, 12:57 PM
#8
This looks very interesting and depending on the price, I might be tempted to pick it up.

I understand the family friendly dictionary, but it might be nice to allow profanity for adults. Maybe only allow that to be enabled if parental controls are off? If the players are allowed to use profanity, then I don't see this as a problem at all. That is my main concern, not whether the built-in players will use it.

The real issue for me will likely be the dictionary. As a Scrabble player, it can be frustrating playing various games that have too small of an allowed vocabulary. I end up trying to play words that I know are real words only to have the game disallow them. How large is the vocabulary for each of the dictionaries? (How many words?)

Can the players add words to the dictionary? That would be an especially nice touch and would help make up for the inevitable missing words.
05-27-2010, 03:34 PM
#9
Joined: Apr 2010
Posts: 16
Double Across

Quote:
Originally Posted by Finandir View Post
I understand the family friendly dictionary, but it might be nice to allow profanity for adults. Maybe only allow that to be enabled if parental controls are off? If the players are allowed to use profanity, then I don't see this as a problem at all. That is my main concern, not whether the built-in players will use it.
There isn't a profanity filter for human players, just the AI.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Finandir View Post
The real issue for me will likely be the dictionary. As a Scrabble player, it can be frustrating playing various games that have too small of an allowed vocabulary. I end up trying to play words that I know are real words only to have the game disallow them. How large is the vocabulary for each of the dictionaries? (How many words?)
We spent a lot of time on the dictionaries, so we believe that they are pretty good. Each of the English variant dictionaries currently contain more than 120 thousand words. There are also approximately 3,000 common proper nouns (things like days of the week, country names etc.) that can be added (actually proper nouns are on by default). The AI players average about 5,000 words each, excepting Mr. Genius whose vocabulary is 120,000+ words minus profanity.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Finandir View Post
Can the players add words to the dictionary? That would be an especially nice touch and would help make up for the inevitable missing words.
No, but perhaps in a future version (No promises).
05-27-2010, 05:13 PM
#10
Joined: Mar 2009
Location: NY
Posts: 515
Liking the concept and classy graphics!