Word Solitaire and Word Solitaire Aurora both cost the same: $0.99 and what’s more, the two games are actually made by the same developer: Candywriter. From the game interface alone, one of the two is definitely a clear winner.
I’m sure everyone has some point in their lives played the game Solitaire on a Microsoft PC. For those who were born after the 90s, Solitaire was the procrastination tool before Facebook and Youtube. A deck of cards is laid out face-down in seven piles. The top card is shown and you have to work your way putting all the cards in sequential order. Sounds easy, but often you would get stuck when you can’t reveal any more cards.
The Word Solitaire games are based on the same principal. Except instead of numbers, you’re dealing with – you’ve guessed it – letters. Cards are moved from pile-to-pile by dragging them with your finger.You form complete or partial words. Once a card is moved to another pile, you can flip and reveal more letters on the pile below.
In both games, you can draw cards from the deck to help you form words. That comes helpful when you’re only left with a string of vowels or consonants. On the bottom right hand side, there’s a spot where you can “burn” unwanted cards, in case the X, Y and Zs aren’t helping. Word Solitaire Aurora also features ‘wild cards’ where you can assign a particular letter of your choice. To progress to the next level, you must form ‘real’ words from all the letters in the piles. Each game level is timed and your moves counted.
One of the biggest differences between Word Solitaire and WS Aurora is probably the scoring. WS Aurora uses Scrabble-like scoring where more difficult letters like Us, Qs and Ws are given more points than the As, Ss or Ts. On the other hand, Word Solitaire simply assigns 1 point to all the letters.
Although both games cost the same, if you wanted more value for money, then go with WS Aurora, which has 250 levels. Word Solitaire only has 35 levels. In addition to the “campaign” mode, there’s also the quick mode in WS Aurora – although it’s pretty easy to complete a single level so I found that somewhat pointless. There’s also the option to compete with other online players with WS Aurora’s daily challenge. Whereas the only online integration Word Solitaire offers is the ability to tweet your high score.
In both games, each level progressively gets harder. However, I found Word Solitaire difficult to begin with, whereas WS Aurora was relatively easy for the first 10 levels. What’s good about Word Solitaire is that you can repeat a level once you become stuck. Once you surrender in WS Aurora, you would have to go back to the last milestone, which could knock you back anywhere from four to 10 levels. This could get a bit frustrating.
A very small glitch is that both games to run into problems with identifying familiar words. However, has no problems recognizing old English words that no one uses anymore.
Overall, I would say the clear winner for this head-to-head is WS Aurora simply because it has loads more levels, better features and sleeker graphics.
Winner: Word Solitaire Aurora
Word Solitaire Aurora
Pros: Online integration, crisp graphics, ‘wild card’ feature.
Cons: Giving up means going back to the last milestone rather than last level.
Pros: Auto-save, fun word game.
Cons: Not many levels, no online integration.