Saturday, August 20, 2011

Starts With Ends With - A Cheap, Fast Paced, Word Game App

Starts With Ends With is an app that I released a few months ago, based on a card game I created a few years ago. The concept is real simple: Players are given a starting and ending letters, and you must come up with the longest word using the letters that you were given. The app is exactly the same, except for it's single player and you can play on your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch. I kept it cheap (only 99 cents!), and the reviews have been really positive so far.

Click through the jump for more information on the app, some excerpts from recent reviews, and my plans for immediate and distant future.

Here's a better description of the app from the press release:
"Players are provided two letters; a starting letter and an ending letter. They must form the longest word possible using the limitations of the letters provided. Points are determined by the length of the word and the speed of the player. After ten rounds, scores are tallied and multiplied by their longest word. Apple's Game Center is integrated for Global Leaderboards, and social interaction is enabled using Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and more. The game relies on correct spelling and encourages vocabulary expansion. It's available in both the Word Games and Educational Games sections of the App Store."

One of our first reviews was from the very awesome site. They review a wide variety of apps (not just games) and their website interface is really nice. Plus Andy Crofford is a really, really good guy. Not because he gave my app a good review, but because he's stayed in touch and helped me spread the word about Starts With Ends With. He went above and beyond the reviewers call of duty.

"A lot of times I find the simplest games the most entertaining. If the game is fun, has a nice interface, and can be played in short bursts of three to five minutes, then it is a game I will definitely check out. ‘Starts With Ends With’ is a game developed by J. Tagmire and fits my criteria perfectly." (more at

I found out today that there was a review in the iOS Board Games blog at BoardGameGeek. This was super exciting because I read that blog daily, and base a ton of my app purchases off of it. I can tell that I'm not the only one, because there was a huge spike in players on the leaderboards today. It was really exciting, although someone knocked me down from #4 in the world to #5. Our very own Luke Milton is holding on strong to the #1 spot.

"Lately, there has begun to be a trend in iOS board games to bring less acknowledged print board games onto iOS to give them a new life. We have seen this with titles such as Par Out Golf and What’s My Word. In many cases the iOS transformation has increased the quality of enjoyment of these games and this is the case with Starts With Ends With." (more at

Onto the updates. I'm just a few days away from submitting the next update. We've cleaned a few things up, added new ones, and fixed a few issues. Here's what to expect in the next update.

This will be optional of course. It will be fun little blips and bloops provided by 8-Bit Artist "Data Parade". These were recorded on the elusive Tenuri-On and will definitely brighten up your game a little.

Reset Button
For the hardcore players. If you’re game isn’t going to well and you know that you won’t top your high score… you can now reset the game. Cut right to the chase, and start over. This is one thing that I personally want.

Instead of counting up, the timer is now counting down. You’ll have a minute for each word now. This will add a little bit of pressure, but in a good way. It’ll definitely keep everyone on their toes.

Speed Points
We’ve given the speed a little boost. This will reward the quick thinkers with a few extra points. The speed bonus is as follows: Under 5 seconds = +5 points, under 10 seconds +3 points, under 20 seconds +2 points, and under 30 seconds +1 point.

Better Score Bar
The top score bar currently only shows your current score and the timer. We added two more things. The current speed multiplier, and the current round. Both of are unseen in the current version, and will help the player get a better understanding of exactly where they are and how they are doing in the game.

Not A Word
If you enter an incorrect word, it currently says “Not A Word”. We’re fixing this so you can see the word that you listed. Seeing your typo will definitely frustrate you for a minute, but ultimately it will help you next time.

Updated Dictionary
A few new words such as “megalodon”, which is both extinct on earth and in the dictionary for some reason. Also "everyone" and "everything" and a few other compound words that I've heard are missing.

Touch Ups
Just a few other touch ups that you may or may not notice.

That's about it. More than enough to say about a silly little word game.

Starts With Ends With in the App Store - Only 99 cents

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