Crossword: How It Creates Its Clues and Our Version
Sometimes, the best way to relax is by gently exercising your mind. For us, our favourite method is opening up the paper and trying our hand at the daily crossword. But, what is the history of this clue-solving grid? In today’s blog, we explore the basics and origins of this puzzle. And, we’ve designed our own to test your knowledge on all things Gooroo.
What is a Crossword?
A crossword is a puzzle that usually takes the form of a rectangle or a square. This grid contains white- and black-shaded squares. The game’s goal is to fill the white squares with letters that form words or phrases. And, in order to know which letters belong where, you solve clues which lead to the answers. The shaded squares, if used, help separate the words or phrases.
Because the goal for everyone is to complete the puzzle, there are a few conventions and types that designers abide to when creating a crossword. Firstly, capitalisation is ignored. Typically, puzzle solvers fill in the grid using all caps. Check out these other categories:
- Straight or Quick clues are simple definitions of the answer. Often, they rely on puzzlers solving other clues so they can establish the correct answer with certainty. They come in the form of fill-in-the-blank, before and after, or a question mark (which signals that the answer involves some sort of pun/wordplay).
- Abbreviations occur when the full answer doesn’t fit into the grid. For example, SEN would be used instead of Senator. To show this is the case, the clue could read “Washington bigwig: Abbr.”. Thus indicating the need to use an abbreviation. Another variation of this is positions on a compass such as NNW (for north-northwest) and soon on.
- Foreign Language crossword clues require knowing the answer in a different language. Usually, this is a common word that most people might know. For example, if the answer is ETE (French for summer), then the clue might be “Summer, in Paris”. A similar idea is that ROMA would be clued as “Italia’s capital”, meanwhile “Italy’s capital” would indicate the English spelling of ROME.
- Indirect clues require some lateral thinking. For example, “half a dance” could clue CAN (half of CANCAN) or CHA (half of CHACHA). Additionally, “Start of Spring” could either be MAR (for MARCH) or ESS (to spell out the starting letter S). Other clues include “Nice summer?” indicating ETE which is summer in Nice, France.
What’s more, most American crossword puzzles feature a ‘theme’. This consists of long entries that share some relationship, type of pun, or other elements in common. Other themes include:
- Quotes broken up into parts to fit in the grid.
- Anniversary or tribute
- As well as, poems, shifted letters, rhyming phrases, puns, and homophones
We’ve created for you the Ultimate Gooroo Crossword. Check back in on the blog tomorrow to see if you got the answers right!
2. The name of our mascot.
4. The club taught in American Sign Language.
5. What we transform our passions into.
6. An Eco Club instructor.
8. The discount code which will give you 1 month free.
10. “After School Shouldn’t Be An __“
1. A Music 101 Instructor
3. Our partnership with Itza Media.
7. The number of days of our free trial.
9. The product we offer as well as Clubs.