Crossword Puzzle Definition, Meaning & Benefits!

What is a crossword puzzle?

Puzzle games on a square or rectangular grid with half-filled and half-empty boxes are crossword puzzles. There are clues and cues and a time-testing thrill attached to crosswords. The goal of this game is to chase the clues and fill out the empty boxes with the correct answers.

These interesting games have been popular for a very long time. Some people started taking newspapers, not for the news update, but to solve new crossword puzzles in earlier times. Such is the fun of solving these fun-filled maze-like puzzles. It is challenging as much as it is soothing.

Why Play Crossword Puzzles?

Do you like wordplay?  If so, this is the number one reason this game is for you.  You don’t have to be a vocabulary expert to play. Anyone and everyone can play crosswords, just for the delight of it.

Second, these grid games have the capability to take you into an exciting world of finding clues and discovering new words. Adults and kids alike can play it. There’s no age bar to play these types of crossword puzzles.

Crossword puzzles are readily available online these days, making them more accessible than in the past when you had to wait for the newspaper. Having easy access to these word puzzles anytime you wish makes strengthening your brain power more manageable than ever.

Money Hunter Corporation known as MoneyHunter Corp recognizes the need for online crossword puzzles. Not only do they provide dozens of choices to challenge your mind, but users can also participate in Hunts against others for a chance at winning the Owner’s Bounty.

What are the benefits of Crossword Puzzle?

Playing mind games makes you more intelligent. They put your brain to work, thereby making you think. Some puzzles even demand out-of-the-box thinking. This then develops logical reasoning and makes one sharper.

Playing these types of games is like killing two birds with one stone. Or maybe three!  All the brain work and exercise while playing makes you smarter, enhances your vocabulary, entertains you, and helps you earn money when you play crossword-like puzzles at MoneyHunter Corp.

Types of Crossword Puzzles

You may have solved many crossword puzzles. Have you ever wondered how different they are? Let’s see how many of them you can recognize!

Cryptic Crosswords

Cryptic crosswords take you to the next level of critical thinking. Just when you begin solving them, you will realize that these are as much challenging as they are dubious. After a lot of practice, they become incredibly rewarding and captivating. Some puzzles can be quite difficult and can be a great mental workout for you. So, what are cryptic crosswords? The clues in these puzzles will not have the literal meaning, but they will tell you how to find the answers. They can have a meaning of their own but may not tell you the real answer. You must find the hidden meaning of the clues to solve the actual puzzle.

Blocked Grids

Are you a newspaper buff? Then you surely have seen this kind. A grid of squares containing some of the letters with spaces between them is marked by one of the squares being filled in, forming a block. Too complex? Let us simplify it for you. These crosswords are the ones you get in newspapers with blocked grids.

It is generally a 15×15 grid and is to be filled with words. You get the clues to find the answers below or beside the grid. This usual crossword grid contains approximately 30-32 words. A fair amount for a good mind game!

Barred Grids

Barred grids allow more answers to be filled as compared to blocked grids. In these grids, every square can be filled and none of the boxes may remain blank. When you are done filling in all the words, every square will be occupied by a letter. In many of these crosswords, every letter is a part of both an across and down answer.

Thematic Crosswords – A different approach

The name says it all. Thematic crosswords are generally theme-based. The clues having some twists will never tell you the answers but will lead you to them. Want to understand how it works? Try it yourself. Before you try, just know that these crosswords are somewhat frustrating but have pleasing learning curves.

Codeword Crosswords – Are you the technical kind?

These types of crosswords don’t have any clues to guide you through. A codeword crossword is similar to a grid layout. Replace the alphabet with numbers. In this crossword, you will have to find out which letter has what number by decoding the numbers on the grid. This one is not counted among the challenging crosswords, as there will be 2-3 letters already present having their numerical value.

Word Search – Try the easy-peasy

Tired of thinking of words? Try some easy ones. This type of crossword consists of a gridded square or a rectangle with random letters. The objective of this crossword puzzle is to find the meaningful words hidden in between the random letters of the grid. The clues related to the given words are mentioned on any side or at the bottom of the grid. A word search grid may have approximately 5-10 words hidden in it.

How to Solve Crossword Puzzles?

Here are 10 simple tips to win your next crossword like a professional.

  • Get the Clues

The first step to beginning a puzzle is to get the easiest clues first. Once you begin with the easy words, it will help you to keep the ball rolling without wasting any time.

  • Small words first

Try getting 3, 4, or 5 letter words first before moving on to big words. Smaller words are few and tend to appear repetitively in crossword puzzles. Hence, the chances of finding these words in a jiffy are great. Perhaps, you will even find words from daily life. We often have these words in our mind, in our memory bank, but we miss them because that would be too simple, right?

  • Clues go by Rules

Give clues in the same part of speech as the answer. These would-be answers ending with ‘ed’, ‘est’, ‘ing’, and so on. For example- if the across and down clue is present, the participle for two words that cross on the last letter, the word might end with ‘ing’.

  • Guess game is also beneficial

That’s right! If you have guessed an answer but are not sure about it, it’s better to write it down in light pencil work. You never know if it is actually the correct answer. Even if you’re not on point, a jumble of letters might help you to get the right word later.

  • The English language uses many puns!

There are many words in the English language with the same spelling but completely different meanings. For example- Bear, compact, bat, fair, lie, lead, project, and so on. It’s good to keep this in mind while trying to find the answers. This will then broaden your spectrum of thinking while searching for the clues.

  • Challenge is thrilling

The main objective of a puzzle is to offer a thrill. That is what the makers keep in mind while making the grid. So, it’s natural that solving one will not be easy. Makers also try to create confusion by putting similar words in the crossword. Like SHOWER and FLOWER. So, think outside the box while approaching a clue.

  • Watch out for question marks

You will also find a question mark at the end of the clue. This may be a sign of wordplay. If you like to solve puzzles, you should be able to recognize wordplay.

  • Answers assembled by many words

It is also important to keep in mind that your answer could be made of more than one word. These kinds of answers are common in crossword puzzles these days. Your answer may even be a famous book title, movie, or song. Don’t underestimate short answers because they can also be made of more than one word. Example- Go up = MOUNT

  • Give up? – Not yet!

It is also common to get stuck even after brainstorming. Give yourself a break when you reach this point. Leave the answer you are stuck on for a moment and move on. You never know, when you will have that Eureka moment when your mind is refreshed and thinking in a different direction.

  • Welcome the references

You can always look for references, this is not considered cheating. When you have tried and tested everything and nothing seems to work out, you can always turn to cheat sheets using the dictionary, an encyclopedia, or online sites such as Google. It’s perfectly fine to look for clues when you are really stuck. It will help you reap more knowledge than you had when you started.

So, that’s how you solve a crossword like an expert. Apart from these tips to solve crossword puzzles, you can always try and come up with your own ideas for solving them more efficiently.

How to get better at solving crosswords?

Improving your crossword skills is not as tedious as the game seems to be. Thinking outside the box with the clues and inside the grid is the key!

If you want to be a master at this then follow these simple points-

  • Start by solving easy ones
  • Work on your memory to remember new words and techniques
  • Rather than being a purist at first, be a perfectionist with practice
  • Look up references until you are confident with solving any tedious puzzle
  • Knock out the blanks first in a crossword puzzle
  • The more you play, the more you will come across similar words. Keep a note of these
  • Stuck? Don’t panic, just relax and think

The 4 Best crossword puzzle makers!

As we said before (or if we didn’t, you know it already) that gone are the days of waiting for the newspaper to solve a crossword! With the digital transformation taking over the world, a crossword is just a click away. Moreover, you can now create your own DIY Crossword puzzles. How? With the help of these top puzzle makers.

1- Crossword Puzzle Tool from ReadWriteThink

In for some interactive puzzles delight? Here’s the answer. This will help you get just the right puzzle and clues you are looking for.

2- Crossword Labs

Crossword Labs is a web tool that will wow you, literally! It lets you easily build, print, share and solve crossword puzzles online.

3- Puzzlemaker

Teachers, students, and parents will love this one. With the amazing tool, you can create customized word searches, criss-cross, math puzzles, and more using your own word lists.

4- Instant Online Crossword Puzzle Maker

Using this, you can get premium access and even save the puzzles in a pdf format. Can it be any easier or more fun? We know the answer.

FAQ

What are the best online crossword puzzles?

Answer- You can enjoy paid as well as sign-in-based free websites and applications to solve some mind-boggling crosswords. Furthermore, here are a few of the sites that you can visit online to soothe your crossword cravings-

Anytime you want to earn money while you play online, MoneyHunter Corp is the place and the name. Here you will find a unique variety of different crossword-related brain puzzles and exciting prizes.

What is a crossword puzzle dictionary?

Answer- A crossword puzzle dictionary helps you break down a tough clue. Hence, it helps you get through an answer when you are stuck. It simply lets you understand a particularly difficult clue.

What is the best crossword puzzle app?

Answer- It is always great to get rewarded after a brain bombarding work. Crosswords are demanding and designed to make your brain work with vocabulary. So, why not get paid or stand a chance to win a grand prize at the end? When you play at MoneyHunterCorp.com you can win and come back again to win as much as you can.

Are crossword puzzles good for the brain?

Answer- Of course they are! Crossword puzzles increase and strengthen your vocabulary. They make you sharper at taking clues and analyzing them. They help you strengthen your memory power. There are many amazing benefits added to the prize you win. Whether you are trying to pass time or make some money, you can rest assured that your brain is at work, while solving a crossword puzzle.