Review: Word Searcher 2 (DSiWare)

Legend of the seeker

In late 2009 and early 2010, Digital Leisure released versions of Word Searcher on both WiiWare and DSiWare respectively. Finally, after nearly a year of waiting, fans of the original adventures can quit holding their breaths and take in the fresh air of Word Searcher 2, available now as a brand new addition to the DSiWare service. If you loved the first entries then you’re in luck, but does this new title pack enough punch to draw new fans to the hunt?

Word Searcher 2 is played by holding your DSi sideways like a book. Just as before, the game contains 100 different word search puzzles with 14 words to find in each. Puzzles take about 10 to 15 minutes to complete, making this great to play in short bursts. Even if you've already completed a puzzle, each time you load up a category that you’ve already played, the words will all be hidden in different places than last time, making the replayability of each seemingly limitless.

While this game is not particularly challenging or remarkably easy, the whole point is to find the words in as little time as possible. There is no score keeping besides the time, and you are not penalized for highlighting incorrect words. Fortunately, you are allowed up to four different profiles in the game, so you and your friends or family can each keep track of your best times individually rather than each playing the same stages.

Word Searcher 2 is completely controlled using the touch screen. As such, it is expected that the touch controls would be very precise, but this is not exactly the case. The same control issues that haunted the last game reappear here. While the controls are not by any means horrible, they can get a bit fidgety sometimes when you are trying to play quickly.

One concern with the first DSiWare Word Searcher game was that the music and sound effects, while not terrible, could get annoying after a while. The quality of the audio has not changed in this sequel, but there is the added options menu from which you can mute either the sound effects, music, or both. And just like the sound, the visuals haven’t changed much either for the sequel. Word Searcher 2 is very bland and boring to look at, but the letters are crisp and clear, which is really what matters the most here.

Conclusion

Minus the addition of new puzzle categories and the option to mute the sound, Word Searcher 2 is exactly the same as the first Word Searcher. If you played the first game then you pretty much already own this one, and if you weren't compelled to try it before then then there isn't enough different here to change your mind. If you really love word search puzzles and didn’t download the first title, then this might be worth it for you. Everyone else, there are many much more interesting and ambitious games available.

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