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Quadrinarian Word Find: The Search for Meaning

Ohio Distinctive Software

Ages 5 and up

Rating Scale
5 = great,    1 = poor
Educational Value
Kid Appeal
Ease of Use

Word Find: The Search for Meaning Screen Shot System Requirements

PC / Mac Price Survey

Product Support

The title pretty much sums up this program. It consists of word-find puzzles, dressed up in many different packages.

The user is invited to visit the far-off planet, Quadrinaria, where a serious issue has arisen. Precious words are slowly and mysteriously vanishing from the inhabitants' vocabularies. They implore the user to please help them recover these important words and their meanings, for if they are lost forever, the planet in its current form will cease to exist. As they search, kids meet amiable aliens, explore the wonders of unknown regions and perhaps even expand their own vocabularies.

Educational Value
Quadrinarian Word Find offers two game modules. The first, "Word Watch", provides students with the word and its definition, and asks them to search a letter grid to find the word. The second module is called "Definition Expedition". In this section, children are given the definition only, and must find the word in the grid based on its definition. Each module features the same four gameplay options: "Freeform Find", "Beat the Clock", "Reach the Top", and the "2 Player Word Rally".

Before beginning a game, the student decides on a goal -- how many words s/he would like to finish in the round and the level of play (1-22). Words run horizontally, vertically or diagonally, and have forward or backward placement in the grid, which consists of a 3x3 array at level 1, and progresses to10x10 at level 22. Having completed a round, the student is transported to the 'Stats' screen, which lists the number of words found and missed, the net words, the time spent playing the round, and the net words per minute.

Kid Appeal
Even our testers who purportedly love word-find games said "Enough is enough". Despite the game's obvious educational value (it helps develop spelling and vocabulary skills), it's a stretch as an entire software program. Not only that, but program's graphics and theme are only second rate, making it even less appealing. As one of our student testers put it: "I might play this in class after I finished my work, but otherwise I don't think I'd play it".

Ease of Use / Install
Quadrinarian requires no installation. It can be launched by simply accessing the CD-ROM drive and double-clicking on the Word Find icon. Program navigation is simple, and the CD also contains a manual in PDF, HTML and text formats.

Our testers complained that from time to time the program would fail to recognize correct answers. This bug frustrated especially younger users, who were surprised to find that it was not infallible. "I had the right answer, but it said, 'Incorrect'," complained one tester. "I really got them all right!"

Best for... / Bottom-Line
This program will work only for those who realize that it consists solely of word-find activities and are content with its limitations.

See SuperKids' comparisons with other vocabulary software titles, and the Buyers Guide for current market prices of the PC and Mac versions.

System Requirements
PC: Windows 95 or later, 16MB RAM, CD-ROM drive.

Mac: System 7 or later, 16MB RAM, 640x480 bit display, CD-ROM drive.

Reviewed on:

  • Pentium 450 with 128MB and 24xCD
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