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Bookworm Adventures Deluxe

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10: Bookworm Adventures Deluxe

Developer: PopCap Games
Publisher: PopCap Games

Once upon a time, a prolific generator of genuinely great puzzle games said, “Hey, look at our word spelling game Bookworm – you know what’s wrong with it? It doesn’t feature a green worm fighting Greek mythical beasts!” After the applause died down, PopCap got to work and created one of the most brilliantly executed, strange and silly puzzle games ever released: Bookworm Adventures. (And its follow-on sequel, Bookworm Adventures 2.)

In a style a little bit similar to 10,000,000, Bookworm Adventure’s screen is split in two. At the top you’ve Lex the worm, squiggling inexorably to the right, encountering an array of daft enemies with special skills and attacks, and at the bottom a 4×4 grid of lettered tiles. You are tasked with spelling out words from those tiles, the longer the word the more powerful the attack. Along the way you gather special items that allow extra abilities, most impressively, allowing specific types of words to do extra damage. Animal words, say. That sort of thing.

There’s a silly story, a lot of very entertaining banter, and most of all, the enormous pleasure of spelling ace words to ultra-thwack enemies in their stupid faces. And it’s cleverly designed too, such that those with less wordy skills can still satisfyingly complete the game, while the more sesquipedalian will see bigger, more explosive results along the way. Few puzzle games are as hilarious, or as superbly crafted.


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