Frequently Asked Questions

Where are my puzzles saved?

Currently, puzzles are saved in persistent storage provided by your browser. In other words, they live on your hard drive but in a format that only your browser can read. This means that you can only access puzzles from the browser in which they were saved and that if you clear your browser's cache, the puzzles are lost for good. As a backup, you might want to consider exporting puzzles, although exported puzzles do not contain any custom filters that you might have created.

In the future, we plan to introduce user accounts and cloud storage of puzzles.

What are acceptable word list formats?

Word lists can be unscored or scored. An unscored word list is just a text file where each line contains a word list entry. Entries can only include alphanumeric characters; Special characters are not allowed. For scored lists, each line would consist of a word and a number separated by a semi-colon, comma, or tab.

Words can also contain sample clues that are displayed when showing the results of fill operations. In the default word list included with this app, most entries have a sample clue. Sample clues can be included in a word list by adding a third component to each line. So, for a scored word list with sample clues, each line would consist of an entry, a number, and a sample clue with these items being separated by a semi-colon, comma, or tab.

How are word scores used?

Scores are primarily used to sort lists of slot options. Higher scored entries, which presumably correspond to better fill options, are shown first. It is also possible to set minimum score filters when searching for fill. These filters can be set globally for the entire grid or at the slot level.

Is there a way to add more than one block at a time?

Yes there is. If you click on multiple squares while holding down the control key (or for Mac users, the command key), the app will select those squares. You can then perform bulk operations on them, such as toggle block, toggle circle, or toggle shaded square.

How can I see the top candidates list for a particular slot?

If you right-click on a square in the grid, it will bring up a context menu that, in general, will show the top 10 candidates for both the across and down slots containing the square. The exception is when a slot is completely unfilled. In that case, the context menu will just include the number of candidates from your word list that match the slot length.

Is there an easy way to add an item from a slot option list to the grid?

Yes. When viewing slot option word lists, either in the Fill pane or a context menu, there are two actions that can be initiated with the mouse. A single click will look the word up in the clue database and display the results, while a double click will add the word to the grid.

What do the colored slots mean?

When you open up the fill tab, the app performs lookups on each slot based on the characters currently in the grid. If there are 10 or fewer candidates, the slot will be highlighted in yellow. If there is a single option, the slot is highlighted in yellow and the sole candidate is shown in grey. And if there are no candidates, the slot is highlighted in red.

These colors are intended to show you the constrained and unfillable slots, although it is important to note that these colors are based on candidates, not valid options. You can only tell if a candidate is valid by performing a fill operation.

How can I fill just one region of the grid?

For many grids, the black squares and the completed slots break up a puzzle into multiple isolated regions in which the fill can be tackled independently. You can control which region is filled by changing the active slot on the grid before starting a new fill operation. If that slot has unfilled squares, the application will limit the search to the region containing that slot. On the other hand, if the active slot is completely filled in, or a black square is selected, the application will attempt to fill the entire grid.

What browsers does this work with?

The app has been tested in the latest desktop versions of Chrome, Firefox, and Edge. It is not mobile friendly at the moment, and there have been some problems reported with Safari. Also, it uses some browser features released in the last year, so if you have not updated your browser in a while, you might encounter some issues.

This app is almost perfect, but it's missing one key feature. Could I make a suggestion?

Of course! We love suggestions here at Crosserville and have added many user-proposed features to the app. If there's something you'd like to see implemented, send a message to support@crosserville.com and we'll see what we can do.