Word Sweep!

Need gift-giving ideas? Here’s a game I can pretty much guarantee your nieces and nephews don’t have yet. Intellinitiative Game Co., Inc., yesterday announced initial shipments of WORD SWEEP!, the first board game to feature official content from America’s leading language reference publisher, Merriam-Webster, Inc.

Steve Smith, a former middle school teacher and current President of Arlington (MA) Children’s Theater, conceived of the game, drawing on his rich exposure to definitions as a competetive crossword puzzler. He placed 88th in the 2006 American Crossword Tournament. This is definitely a theme of mine–creativity springing from deep familiarity with a domain. I wonder if a theme of Steve’s is joining things with the initials ACT. Anyway…more about the game:

WORD SWEEP! is for 2 to 4 players or teams, ages 10 and up. Using over 2,000 genuine Merriam-Webster dictionary definitions, the game contains three card levels and junior rules that can be integrated for complete family game play.

WORD SWEEP! is easy-to-learn, yet provides hours of challenging fun thanks to its patent-pending guess-3-words-in-row game play. To play, one player reads a card that contains three definitions of words which appear consecutively in a Merriam-Webster dictionary. Another player tries to guess all three words to make a Word Sweep before the timer runs out. In effect, every player particpates in every turn of the game. If the Word Sweep isn’t solved completely, opponents can steal the remaining words. The more words guessed correctly, the faster players advance around the board to win.

Suggested retail price is $29.95. Boston-area locals can already find the game at Catch a Falling Star toy stores. Others should soon find it at Target, Borders, and Barnes & Noble. “Word” on the street is a Junior version may be available in December.

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