Parents' Guide to

Word Hookup

By Erin Brereton, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 6+

Unclear currency, rules spell confusion in word puzzler.

Word Hookup Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this app.

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This is a clever word search game that's held back by confusing currency and game rules that aren't cleanly explained, making it tricky to completely figure out. Word Hookup has a slight twist -- kids are told they need to incorporate all possible boxes on the screen when they swipe on letters to form a word. That's not completely true -- every box for the main word they're trying to guess in each round must be used, but don't need to be included for the shorter bonus words they can find. If they enter the correct word but don't touch every space, the app will indicate the word is correct but note all boxes need to be filled -- which can also be confusing because kids aren't directly told they need to go back and retrace the word for it to count.

The app has some other issues, though. While the background offers clues in some puzzles, such as drawings of vehicles to indicate the main word will relate to transportation, that's not the case in each round. Kids may enter perfectly legitimate words in rounds and find they're rejected because the terms aren't one of the half-dozen or so words the app says kids should be looking for. They'll earn stars for the correct words, but need coins to buy clues -- which provide the only help they can get if they're stuck -- and it isn't clear how coins are earned. There's seemingly no system to convert stars into coins, or information about why stars are at all useful. But there's plenty of pushes to buy coin and other packages from the app. The clues can help -- but the game could come to a grinding halt if they don't want to buy a coin package, especially since watching an in-game ad only gives enough coins to reveal a single letter in a secondary word in a round. It won't work for the main word you need -- and kids may not be too eager to repeatedly more ads since you're constantly subjected to commercials during play. Kids can probably find a less purchase-oriented, easier-to-use word search app elsewhere.

App Details

  • Devices: iPhone , iPod Touch , iPad , Mac , Android
  • Pricing structure: Free
  • Release date: April 15, 2020
  • Category: Puzzle Games
  • Publisher: Neha Tripathi
  • Version: 1.2
  • Minimum software requirements: Requires iOS 8.0 or later or Android 4.1 and up.
  • Last updated: April 13, 2021

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