Word Power: The Green Revolution
As a collaboration between Reader’s Digest and a development studio called Fit Brains, a company responsible for creating challenging “brain games,” Word Power should be a challenging, informative game for all players. However, because of a poorly-constructed game design and a style of play that at times requires no creativity or skill, it is a game that becomes tedious in a very short amount of time.
The main part of the game revolves around unscrambling words in order to complete a sentence. The sentence is displayed, one word at a time, and players rearrange the letters in each word. After completing a series of sentences, players earn money that they use to build various “green” energy structures in a virtual city. Players can earn extra points for making additional words out of the letters, but the round ends as soon as the “correct” word is guessed.
The entire theme of the game is green technology and alternative energy. And that is the content of virtually every sentence in the word puzzles. As such, words like “Wind,” “Solar,” “Power,” “Harness,” and “Energy” appear over and over again. So those jumbles become easier and easier to identify, and thus as the game progresses it becomes more and more tedious.
The main goal of the game is to earn enough money from the word puzzles to create the ultimate green cities. However, this aspect of the game is also largely tedious. Each wind turbine or solar panel increases the energy meter for the city, and players are awarded for reaching various points on the energy meter. When players run out of money from buying green facilities, they can run through another round of the word puzzles.
Because the game centers around such an important topic in society, there is value in the fact that it presents players with some information about green energy. And every now and then, there are general knowledge questions that appear, which also provide insightful information about everything from the story of Helen Keller to questions about how the brain works.
There is also a storyline that unfolds as players bring green energy to the city. Children may be encouraged to play through the game because of all the congratulatory messages they get for providing affordable energy to the various neighborhoods, but that’s only if they can put up with the less-than-exciting game itself.
Word Power obviously presents itself as an educational game more than a fun, casual word game. However, it even fails to really achieve there. That’s because there is no way for players to review the facts and information presented in the game. Adding some sort of green energy encyclopedia or a green trivia quiz or something like that, would have reinforced the message.
Also, the main story mode is the only mode of play, so if players should so desire to just play through a bunch of the word puzzles in rapid-fire fashion, there’s no outlet for that. The bottom line is that this game just feels like it was rushed from start to finish. The core gameplay mechanic is boring, the city-building aspect is little more than just plopping down as many green facilities as possible, and the “learning about green energy” aspect is presented in a very scattered and unmemorable way.
There are a handful of more captivating word games out there, like Text Twist or KrissX, and for a more fulfilling green city-building experience, there’s Plan It Green. So Word Power‘s niche has already been filled, and it brings nothing new and exciting to the table.