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Content Type: Gaming Reviews
Date: August 24, 2019

One Word by POWGI is a word search puzzle game available for download from the PlayStation Store for the PS4 and Vita. Word search puzzles were brought to America on March 1st 1968 as they were designed and published by Norman E. Gibat within a free publication local to Norman, Oklahoma titled Selenby Digest before being distributed throughout schools in the area followed by teachers sharing word searches with schools throughout America. However, it is stated that a Spanish puzzle creator named Pedro Ocón de Oro actually created and published what in Spanish is referred to as Sopas de letras or otherwise known as Soup of Letters prior to Norman E. Gibat’s puzzles. Lightwood Games are specialists in puzzle games involving word searches, picross and more besides. Can One Word by POWGI deliver an entertaining videogame adaptation of the traditional hidden words on paper puzzle game?

One Word by POWGI’s unique premise is that there are anywhere from three to nine word search puzzles for each of the 120 sets of word search puzzles with every set of word searches involving finding individual words culminating in a quote by a famous entertainer, inventor, philosopher or an historical figure. For instance, Jerry Seinfeld’s “There is no such thing as fun for the whole family” and Albert Einstein’s “Strive not to be a success, but rather to be of value”.

One Word by POWGI supports cross-buy between the PS4 and Vita, although it unfortunately does not support cross-save, so you will not be able to continue from your previous progression on the Vita version when playing the PS4 version and vice versa. Cross-buy presents a superb amount of value as it means that you will be purchasing the PS4 and Vita versions of the game with just a single purchase.

The controls are appropriately mapped to both the Vita and DualShock 4 controller as the Vita version has an impressively accurate touch screen control scheme in which the player can tap on the letter they would prefer to begin highlighting the word from followed by swiping across the touch screen until the end of the word. However, there are other methods of successfully highlighting words on Vita and the DualShock 4 controller by moving an orange square with the d-pad or left analogue stick before pressing X to start highlighting a word, continually holding X while gradually pressing up, down, left or right on the d-pad or changing the direction of the left analogue stick until the word is selected; pressing select on Vita or R3 on the DualShock 4 controller to display the instructions; simultaneously pressing L and R on Vita or L1 and R1 on the DualShock 4 controller to provide a hint; and pressing start on Vita or the options button on the DualShock 4 controller to display the pause menu. Light bar support produces a bright orange tone throughout gameplay, although there is no touch pad implementation, despite Vita’s alternative touch screen control scheme, alongside no vibration that could have vibrated to indicate an incorrectly selected word.

Graphically, One Word by POWGI does what anyone experienced in word searches would expect as it focuses on the word search with bold letters highlighted in orange when a word has been found instead of any unnecessary flair, although a dog provides some fun puns and play on words styled one-liners when pausing a puzzle or at the end of each puzzle.

One Word by POWGI’s presentation is solid with a great touch screen based user interface across various menus on Vita such as the puzzle category menus, options menu and various gameplay menus with support for navigation via the left analogue stick, directional pad and face buttons on Vita and DualShock 4, although it does not include support for navigation via the right analogue stick on either, rear touch pad on Vita or the touch pad on DualShock 4. Menu backgrounds are simply related to the subject matter involving finely outlined graph paper.

Sound effects include a positive ringing effect to signify that a player had successfully found and highlighted a word, while the music is light in tone in the same vibe as the POWGI puzzle games. There is no DualShock 4 speaker implementation that could have produced the sound effect upon finding a word.

The trophy list includes 33 trophies with 31 silver trophies, 1 gold trophy and 1 platinum trophy, while the Vita and PS4 versions have their own individual trophy list resulting in the player earning the same trophies for two separate playthroughs between both platforms. Every trophy involves completing 32 specific sets of word search puzzles. It is estimated that depending upon skill and a good trophy guide to provide some helpful tips that it would take around 10 to 20 hours to platinum the trophy list.

There are no difficulty levels, although the difficulty curve is seemingly harder in comparison to Word Search by POWGI due to there only being a single word to find within each individual word search through the course of the set of word searches towards completing the famous quote.

One Word by POWGI’s replayability originates from 120 sets of word search puzzles with between three to nine word searches per famous quote, alongside replaying puzzles to improve your personal best time that will collectively keep players returning for quite some time on Vita and PS4. However, unlike Word Search by POWGI; One Word by POWGI does not feature local multiplayer on PS4.

• Title: One Word by POWGI
• Developer: Lightwood Games
• Publisher: Lightwood Games
• System: PS4/PS Vita
• Format: PSN Download
• Cross-Buy: Yes (PS4 and PS Vita)
• Cross-Play: No
• Players: 1 (PS4 and PS Vita)
• Hard Drive Space Required: 151MB/Vita Memory Card Space Required: 155MB

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