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Monkey Wrench

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Rating: 3.8/5 (20 votes)
Comments (6) | Views (18,480)

Monkey Wrench

Artbegotti[Note: Monkey Wrench is now available on Android!]

Did you know that the word "monkey" of a "monkey wrench" comes from sailing? If you needed a quick solution to a problem, you would put together a monkey jib or a monkey bridge, perhaps assembled using a monkey wrench. You might find "monkey" in a category of nautical terms in Monkey Wrench, a new word search puzzle by Blue Ox Technologies, the makers of other puzzling apps like 7 Little Words and Red Herring. A bunch of words are hidden in the grid, but the monkey wrench in the works is that before you can find the words, you need to figure out what they are first!

Monkey WrenchEach puzzle consists of a grid of hexagonal tiles with letters. Some tiles are shaded; these shaded letters are the first letters of the clues that fit into the categories at the top of the screen (swipe sideways to see more categories). Trace or tap a path of connected tiles to select letters and spell out an answer. If your answer matches one of the clues, the tiles disappear, and you're one step closer to solving the puzzle. Find all the clues to clear the tiles and win! Note that some clues can be found in multiple configurations in a grid, but there's only one arrangement that allows all of the clues to be found (a notice pops up if you find a correct clue with a wrong path, so you don't have to worry much about false leads).

As is usually the case with Blue Ox's puzzles, Monkey Wrench comes with one free bundle of 50 puzzles (with more puzzle packs available for purchase) and the three most recent daily puzzles are also available to play. Every puzzle can be played on three difficulty levels: Easy shows you all the full answers to the clues to find, Medium shows you only the initials of each word, and Hard gives you nothing but blanks to fill in. You can jump between difficulty levels by resetting the puzzle, or hints are also available in the form of revealing the vowels of a clue, the last letter, or completely revealing its location in the grid.

Monkey Wrench touts itself as a puzzle for all ages, but some of the categories (say, 70's Bands or Famous Russians) might be a bit obscure for young ones to pluck clues out of thin air; the trivially aged will feel more comfortable in the Medium and Hard levels. But regardless of who's playing, one thing Blue Ox does well with their games is present an interesting challenge, then get out of the way and let you solve it without needless bells and whistles. Even if you never buy a puzzle pack, the daily puzzles can give you a good headscratcher and keep you monkeying around with this wonderful word game.

Download on the AppstoreMonkey Wrench (iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad)

Google PlayMonkey Wrench (Android, Android Tablet)


Pet lingustic peeve: review the definition of "obtuse" (it means "stupid" or "greater than 180°", not "hard to understand"). You probably meant "obscure", or possibly "abstruse". See http://public.wsu.edu/~brians/errors/abstruse.html for more on this.


2b: difficult to comprehend : not clear or precise in thought or expression

New Oxford American Dictionary:
1b: difficult to understand


I have gotten hooked on these. Some take a bit of thinking to figure out even on the medium level. For me this is a nice break from some of the other puzzles out there.


I really love these - very addictive! Some categories (mainly sports) I am not familiar with but I have been able to figure them out as I solved the rest of the puzzle.

Definitely a different twist on the puzzle genre and one I was glad to find. I have 7 Little Words and Red Herring and love those as well.


As a Brit, my only complaint is - as ever with these sort of games - the US-centric nature of the trivia. (Red Herring suffers horribly from this too at times.)

Having said that, the game is sufficiently well-structured that off-beat solutions become apparent as the grid becomes smaller. Certainly I've happily paid for a couple of the extra puzzle packs which I haven't done with many similar titles.


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