Author Topic: Ozlip vs. Letterbox games  (Read 9935 times)

biggerbirdbrain

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Ozlip vs. Letterbox games
« on: April 05, 2007, 12:57:02 AM »
Alan:

I've actually played the Letterbox game quite a bit, and it really drives me crazy sometimes, 'cause just as I get smug about beating the computer, I get zapped.

So, I thought I'd dare try Ozlip,  but, because, not being an Aussie, I thought it would really stump me. In some ways, it's actually more fun than Letterbox, and sometimes I seem to get luckier on my scores. I also love the little messages, definitions and other little features. We don't seem to talk about those games, which are so conveniently available on this website.

Thanks for the extras!  :D
3-B

Alan W

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Re: Ozlip vs. Letterbox games
« Reply #1 on: April 05, 2007, 11:08:24 AM »
I'm interested to read your comments about Ozlip, 3-B, and I'll be interested to see any thoughts other people post here. I suspect the design is not a complete success.

I actually started out with the mobile phone version, but I wanted to complement that with a Web version that would have exactly the same functions, but with necessarily a very different "look and feel". The mobile version has different displays for high scores, options, etc, etc, but I put all that together on the screen for the computer version. But then it seemed to be looking cluttered, so I decided to hide a lot of the features and just start with buttons for things like the high scores. The end result, I think, is probably a bit confusing.

I'm a lot happier with it as a mobile phone game, but its sales were very low, even when it was being sold by Telstra, the biggest phone company in Australia. In fact the generic game Lexi (the mobile version of Letterbox) always outsold it. I suspect there might have been a "cultural cringe" factor: people assumed if the game was Australian it would be second rate. So I won't be in a hurry to make any more Australian-themed games.

But as for Letterbox, it was my first game, and the one that required the most innovative thinking, in working out how to get the computer to play a good game without cheating. And there doesn't seem to be anything else quite like it. (Euler's day off resembles it in some ways. I'd like to use that concept - of knowing all the letters from the start - but with a more graphical and interactive design.)

I've rather neglected Letterbox for the last couple of years, but I think it has loads of potential for variations on the basic concept. It probably needs a complete make-over, to add some of the good features of Ozlip, and an online high score table and other interactive features. For now, I'm thinking of adding a couple of options: one to have the letters better reflect their frequency in the word list, so you won't get as many Qs, Xs and Zs; and the other, to have the Q come with a U attached (as is the case already in Ozlip).
Alan Walker
Creator of Lexigame websites

Viz

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Re: Ozlip vs. Letterbox games
« Reply #2 on: April 05, 2007, 09:03:48 PM »
good plan alan - put your thiking cap on!
Viz

biggerbirdbrain

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Re: Ozlip vs. Letterbox games
« Reply #3 on: April 05, 2007, 09:29:38 PM »
Yes, Alan - I agree with Viz, and I'm so glad to have given you yet another task -- to make those games as fabulous as you have made the Chi. It's not like you don't have anything better to do, because these games have pretty much become your life, it seems! Do you ever get out? Are you too pale?

Onya
 ::)
3-B

PS:
One idea I had - on one or all levels of difficulty, randomly put a double letter combination (like you have "qu-", but a different one, as well) in a round, just to make it even MORE frustrating (er, I mean CHALLENGING). ;)
« Last Edit: April 05, 2007, 11:40:32 PM by biggerbirdbrain »

Alan W

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Re: Ozlip vs. Letterbox games
« Reply #4 on: April 06, 2007, 11:29:13 AM »
I do occasionally get out.
Alan Walker
Creator of Lexigame websites

biggerbirdbrain

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Re: Ozlip vs. Letterbox games
« Reply #5 on: April 06, 2007, 11:34:20 AM »
Yes, Alan -- It's a wonder what they can do nowadays with cut-and-paste on the computer, or painting on glass to create spectacular backgrounds. Nice tan! Did you spot the fin lurking in the background? Just kidding, of course. I'm actually jealous. It's been too long since I've seen surf and smelled ocean air. The Gulf Coast of Mexico is lovely, though, especially around Port Aransas. It's also nice in Key West, especially the sunsets, which are different every evening, and where people gather just to be amazed.

Thanks.
3-B



technomc

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Re: Ozlip vs. Letterbox games
« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2007, 07:43:13 AM »
Hi Alan,
thanks for your welcome home message...
Regarding 'letterbox'.. i play it for inspiration when i'm having a 'dull- brain- moment' playing 'Chi'. I have to say i like it just the way it is. Although any improvements you decide to make will be fantastic too, no doubt..
keep up the good work..
We all love it, and you too of course...
Technomc  ;)