Word Sandwich


JohnBWord SandwichWord Sandwich is a free online Flash game that adds something a little different to the word game genre. The goal of the game is to guess the mystery five-letter word.

In true sandwich style, a text field sits in-between two slots, one above and the other below. As you enter possible words they slide to one of these slots. If it moves up, it means the target word is later in the alphabet. The reverse is true for the bottom slot. For example, if the top word is "Boats" and the bottom is "Dread", the mystery word could be "Creep". Whittle away at the possible words by carefully choosing your sandwich material and you might be lucky enough to win.

Every five rounds your score is tallied and recorded. A public high-score board constantly reminds you just how horrible you are at the game. To compete with the best you'll need to play several rounds, have phenomenal luck, and really know your five letter words.

As you play, a sliding arrow gradually decreases a score multiplier. When you enter a word, it resets. The faster you enter words the bigger your multiplier will be. But don't go too fast, as you only have 50 turns to guess the word, and each guess cuts down on your score.

Analysis: Simple to play and difficult to master, the game can be highly addictive. Consider yourself warned. The combination of guesswork and alphabetic strategy (with a nice jazzy musical score) grabs you pretty quickly.

When I first started playing the game, I blindly typed in words hoping to hit the right one. It wasn't until later that I evolved some strategy. Since I'm a really nice guy, here are some tips to save you some time staring at the screen reciting the alphabet in your head:

  • Start with words toward the middle of the alphabet to sandwich your word as quickly as possible.
  • Thinking phonetically helps, but don't limit yourself to sounding out words in your head.
  • When your "slices of bread" are very close to each other, think of common letter combinations and try them out. Go through the alphabet and pair letters together to find the right word.
  • The plural "S" is your friend.

Give Word Sandwich a try.

Play Word Sandwich

Big thanks to Darren for sending this one in!

30 Comments

You're right...ADDICTIVE!!!

Nice game, but for some reason it doesn't work correctly on my computer.

Using the example give in the text above I typed my first guess to be "creep" only for some reason it did not validate creep to be a word. So I put in another bunch of words like "world, horse, foams, mouse, table" and still ".. is not a word"

It wasn't until I clicked give up could I actually type the word, which could allow me to get 4,000 points just by typing in the actual word.

Not a bad game, if only it would work properly for me.

Words are not FUN!

Just one thing about the scoring which I don't think is clear in the review - the score multiplier does gradually reduce but if you enter a word once it's reached 2x (for example) it only resets back to 2x, not to the maximum of 4x.

To keep the multiplier at 4x you have to enter each word within the 4x limit. Once you are down to 1x you can take as long as you want, it makes no difference to the score.

My highest so far is 8200, I can't stop playing! ;-)

love it. great brain exercise.

the only complaint i have is that there doesn't seem to be a way to start a new game once you've completed the 5 words. not very conducive to obsessive gaming ;)

holy crap this is hard, ive never been good at word games and this is no exeption

That's not how it worked for me, James. I got 1x for my first three words and 2x the last time.

Great game, especially since Words doesn't seem to work for me anymore.

Yeah sorry Jetamors, I didn't explain very well - I meant that this happens independently for each of the five words. Every time you suggest a word, the 'multiplier bar' resets, but the maximum multiplier stays at whatever it had gone down to.

Once you have successfully found the word and click 'Next' the multiplier is completely reset back to 4x.

Hope that makes sense!

loved the game! i noticed a flaw with scoring though...if you click in the word box and hit "enter" after the game is over, the score for that word will be added to your total, then your new score will be submitted to the high score board. i think it'll keep adding and resubmitting as long as you keep hitting enter, so you could cheat your way to an infinitely high score if you wanted. but other than that, i thoroughly enjoyed it :)

Additional hints for those who want to improve their score:

The most efficient way to find the word is to try to cut the list of possible words in half every time. This does not necessarily mean putting half the possible letters on either side.

Your first guess should be a little ways into the first half of the alphabet from the middle -- more words begin with A, B, C than X, Y, Z, especially in the five-letter range.

Try finding your letters one at a time -- it'll help you think of the word. The way to do this is to pick words that are at the beginning (or the end) of the sections of the dictionary beginning with the various letters of the alphabet. (For example, if you can narrow the field down to something between 'macho' and 'myths', you can concentrate only on words beginning with M, and then repeat the process for the second letter.)

S is particularly nasty as an initial letter. It can be followed by A, C, E, H, I, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, T, U, W and Y in relatively common words. Also remember that other consonants can show up in pairs, particularly H, L, and R for the second.

Good luck!

This game is great. A really good concept for a word game.

It's also frustratingly difficult. . .

howdy ;) .. I run wordsandwich.com and today I noticed a crazy spike in usage (about 8x the normal rate), so I traced the referring links and here we are! ..

I did want to address Amanda's post above, as something to that effect is a concern, I can't replicate that flaw the way she's described, and since none of the new players have posted a crazy score in the tens-of-thousands, I'm guessing she was just theorizing?

Anyway, I'm glad so many of you enjoy the game.. it is a work in progress as you can see. Thanks for playin'!

Cheers
LObs

lobster-
you can actually cheat after any level where you get a correct answer, just click in the box and keep hitting enter instead of clicking "next". i'm using firefox, windows xp, don't know if that's making a difference or not.

but like i said, i loved the game! just noticed that one little flaw...

I've been sick as a dog for about two weeks now. Seriously, I think I might be dying : (

This game has been an utterly sublime respite from coughing and hacking. Whoever found this and posted it, deserves a raise.

Like heroin, this game.

;)! Amandy -- don't get me wrong, your observation is certainly apprecaited, as I have only tested this on IE and that phenomenon doesn't happen, but that is interesting to know Firefox treats it differently..

Thanks for catchin' that!
LObs

Love this game. When I finish a game though, I can't figure out how to start a new round. Anyone know?

Great game, but man... how did those people get such massive scores with average guess rates under 8? I've played about 30 games and only had a couple under 10... and I consider myself quite good at word games!

There's a way to get quick(ish) replay by the way, right-click in the spinning disk thing and select rewind, then right-click anywhere in the playing area and select play. Saves having to re-enter your details every time. :)

-Ant

Ant -

Some of the folks in the top 10 are fanatics who have played hundreds of games, they certainly have their fair share of duds in the scoreboard.. Eventually you'll have a game where you get on a nice roll, nailing a word or two in 7 or 8 guesses, giving you a good average.. There's definitely luck involved in nailing words in 8 guesses or less, but if you can nail words consistently in about 11 tries or less, you have the strategy down ;)

I'm working on a v1.3 which will feature a long-awaited replay button ;)

I suggested the game for JayIsGames, Pynchon82. Thanks for the raise. :-P

I know Qaqaq and Philana. They're members of the same hobby organization as I am, and they are *scary* good at word games.

Right now, the only way I know of to start a new game is refreshing the web page.

Lobster,
I love the game. I am unable to restart the game once the 5 turns are over. I have to relaunch the page from this site. (I'm using Firefox if that matters).
Thanks for the fun.

I was able to do the same thing as amandy. After I finished a game, I was able to repeatedly hit enter to keep increasing my score.

However at about 13,600 or so it stopped working, and furthermore, 13,600 was good enough to be in the top 5 for the day, but the score didn't show up there. So it doesn't look like the game is saving fake scores.

Also, this "technique" hasn't worked since then.

I've got no clue what's going on. Hopefully this helps.

Yay.. thanks for your input, peoples.. version 1.3 now features a replay button ;)

Pretty soon I will be unleashing Farklepimp.com on to the world (an ol' dice game I had from 1998-2005).. Stay tuned & thanks again for playin! ;)

The onelook.com dictionary can be handy.

Too.. hard.. :)

Hmm. I'm having a few issues now with the game not accepting words. It doesn't recognize anything, not even "happy". ;-) Reloading it doesn't work, nor does the earlier mention of clicking "give up". Everything was fine a few days ago (I reviewed it!), but now it doesn't like me. I'm using the latest version of Opera (which could be the "problem") on WinXP. Anyone found a fix? Must feed the addiction...

Great game. I tried using the "divide & conquer" search algorithm (halve the search space recursively), but it does seem a bit of luck is required to get quick matches. Once you've played a few times, though, it's fairly quick to narrow down the first few letters -- you'll arrive at a set of words that do your halving quickly enough to keep the x4 score, and after that, well, it's down to you and your vocabulary.

I think I know too many 5-letter words :(

a useful word structure that i use to narrow things quickly:

*ower
(i.e., bower, cower, dower, lower, mower, power, rower, sower, tower)

once you play enough and have an initial strategy, guessing in under 10 becomes much easier

great game lobster

cheers

It seems to tell up or down even for non-existent words.

Really hard game. I'm a bit annoyed, because the first time I opened the game I read the instructions wrong. So I looked and it said I needed a five letter word: and so out from the top of my head comes the word DROOL. And would you know it?: it was the correct word!(I mean, DROOL!) Then there comes the NEXT round, where since I had the instructions mixed up, I couldn't figure out what I was doing wrong. I closed the window to figure out what was going on (and read the JiG explanation). And I'm pretty mad I wasted my perfect, 1st try head start because I messed up the instructions. Still, fun yet hard game.

This game is unreasonably hard, you need to either BE a dictionary, or have one close at hand. How am I supposed to guess what word in the entire English language it'll choose? I played three rounds and two of the words I've never even heard of, how am I supposed to guess that?

Not fun at all, just an incredibly frustrating waste of time.

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