If the idea of a game where you play a variety of word mini-games appeals to you then you should definitely check out Wordhunters.
Wordhunters has up to 6 friends play through a succession of word games in order to win letters that fill in their secret words. Once you complete your word, you win the game. However, doing so is a lot trickier than I just described. Basically, you select destinations to travel to and upon winning a game, you can only choose letters from that location's name so there's an impressive amount of strategy required seeing as you can view the letters that your friends already have. So, if you can guess their words then you can pick destinations that have letters that you need but don't have any that your friends need. Anyway, I should mention that Wordhunters is a PlayLink game which means that you need to play it with tablets or phones. Thankfully, these word games are super-intuitive to play using a mobile device so folks of all ages can join in on the fun. That is, if there are enough devices to go around.
The presentational aspects of Wordhunters are delightful. For starters, there's a goofy host who says the lamest jokes imaginable. Some are so lame that I didn't even understand them but this silly sense of humour actually adds to the fun instead of detracting from it. When it comes to visuals, the travel destinations are cute miniature interpretations of their respective cities featuring lots of detail and animation. I found it fun to just watch all the little vehicles moving around as the camera pans across the cities. Anyway, each player takes photos of themselves before the game begins and whenever you travel to your next destination, you can see all the players through the plane's windows which made me laugh. Overall, Wordhunters offers a fun-filled game world that wraps up the word games perfectly.
The actual word games in Wordhunters are varied and plentiful. You'll find yourself spelling words from a sushi-style conveyor belt, picking letters off big words to form smaller words, and even playing a mini-game that's exactly like Boggle. One of the goofiest games is one where you have to choose whether a word is real or not but there's no way anyone could ever be 100% confident in all of their answers because the fake ones sound real and the real ones are often hard to believe. Most of the games are highly enjoyable but a few are quite lame such as one where you merely have to find the letters of a given word within a grid. Also, the overall premise of playing word games gets repetitive after a while so you likely won't play Wordhunters for hours at a time.
Finally, I wish Wordhunters had a selection of modes because the main mode where you fly between destinations and try to spell your secret word is fun but it frequently takes too long to complete and just having the one mode doesn't allow for much variety. If you could play the individual games or compose mini-game playlists then that would have been great. Also, different main modes like being able to play a board game and such would have added a substantial amount of variety to the gameplay.
The library of PlayLink games has been growing a great deal recently so thankfully, Wordhunters is a worthwhile multiplayer experience that's filled with silly word-based mini-game mayhem.
- + Fun travel-themed setup that requires a surprising amount of strategy
- + Delightful presentation and host
- + Variety of enjoyable word games
- - Word games get repetitive after a while
- - Could use additional modes and variations