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Word Wheel by POWGI review for Nintendo Switch, PS Vita, PS4


Platform: Nintendo Switch
Also On: PS Vita, PS4
Publisher: Lightwood Games
Developer: Lightwood Games
Medium: Digital
Players: 1-4
Online: No
ESRB: E

On the surface, Word Wheel would appear to check all the boxes for me: a word game (my favourite genre) by Lightwood Games (probably my favourite publisher) with a pretty straightforward objective (you spell as many words as you can using a wheel full of letters). Before I’d even played a moment of it, I was ready to declare it my new favourite game.

Turns out that even I have my limits when it comes to word games.

This comes down almost entirely to how Word Wheel is structured. Wheels have 9 letters (8 spokes and 1 hub), and you have to spell every single word you can using the middle letter. While I find this idea hugely fun in theory, in practice it can sometimes turn into a slog. Like, one of the wheels spells out “orchestra”, with the letter A in the middle. Do you have any idea how many 4- to 9-letter words can be formed with those letters? It’s a lot, and somewhere along the line it goes from, “how many words can I spell?” to “I need how many more words now?”

Don’t get me wrong: now that I’ve played the heck out of it on the Switch, I’m going to buy it on the Vita too. I really, really like word games, after all. But unless you have a love of word games that borders on the obsessive, I suspect that Word Wheel will feel more like a chore than a fun way to pass the time. If you’re in the mood for a solid puzzle game, you’re probably better off investing in one of Lightwood’s other games.

Lightwood Games provided us with a Word Wheel by POWGI Switch code for review purposes.

Grade: B-