For the past few days I’ve been enjoying Puzzmo, a new daily words-and-more puzzle service from Zach Gage (Really Bad Chess, Sage Solitaire, Typeshift, and so on), Orta Therox, and their fellow puzzle makers and artists.
It’s got just what freaks like me who are tired of just doing the daily Wordle crave.
Puzzmo’s got your classics like challenging crosswords but with helpful twists like get out of jail cards in the form of different hints when you get stuck, but only if you want them.
Then there’s the new stuff, like Flipart, a game where you just gotta spin a bunch of tiles to make em fit into a rectangle.
There’s also a bunch of stuff that Gage worked on before, but stuffed into the daily puzzle genre, like Typeshift, Spelltower, and Really Bad Chess.
Like almost everything these days there are some caveats to Puzzmo. The first is that it’s in a limited access beta. Trying the service out is hidden behind a puzzle and a daily limit unless you have a friend with a special link to get in. Once you go to get in, you get a fun postcard in the mail with a special puzzle to decode a key.
In the future, it looks like Puzzmo will be ad-supported, which would be kinda bad but people who get in early have access to a one time purchase for a lifetime version (I forked over the $60 USD), or a slightly cheaper yearly fee ($40). It’s possible or even likely these options and plans will change as Puzzmo’s player base grows.
Once you’re in, you get all kinds of online stuff if you want it, like friends lists, groups, leaderboards, and so on. The leaderboards and other stuff can be toned down and hidden if you’re not a fan of competition. Not everything has to be about stepping on someone else to get ahead, even puzzles.
My biggest gripe with Puzzmo is that it seems super friendly and indie until you realize that Hearst, one of the richest newspaper nepo-conglomerates in the world, is the money behind it. Who else could be printing out hundreds of puzzle cards and mailing them?
I really like Puzzmo. Hopefully Hearst doesn’t ruin it.