We create our Crosswords using a large bank of clues and answers!
As our players are worldwide, we try to choose answers that are reasonable general knowledge for an educated adult living in USA, UK, Canada or Australia. We create and proof-read every puzzle before it is added to the game.
However, sometimes we do make mistakes!
We try to make our clues and answers include words which have the same spelling in all locations (so you shouldn't find "color" or "colour" or similar), but if you spot a word with an incorrect spelling, let us know and we will do our best to flag it so that it isn't used in a future puzzle.
Rarely, some of the clues may actually have errors in them - whether factual, or just because of formatting. We do our best to avoid these kinds of mistakes, but we're not experts in all fields so if an answer seems reasonable to us we will usually include it. Let us know if we're wrong on anything!
We do throw in the occasional clue and answer which makes use of a secondary meaning of a word, perhaps a noun that sometimes has a secondary verb meaning, or a word which might be a proper noun (a name for instance) but also be a verb. Be on the lookout for those, we do like to keep you on your mental toes!
Especially for our daily puzzles, we try to limit the answers to vocabulary which is reasonable knowledge, but we think it's fair to sometimes put in a rarer word or two as well.
We understand that the average person's active vocabulary (words they themselves use) varies from 10,000 to 20,000, but that the passive vocabulary - that is, words that are recognised and understood is usually quite a bit larger.
Challenging for us is that while there might be a large overlap on the top 5000 words, each person's vocabulary is different! Our Answer database does include over 60,000 words, so there will certainly be some words that you won't know first time!
If you think a word is completely outside the reasonable knowledge for an educated (and hopefully well-read) person, let us know!
We try to filter our answer and clues for anything obscene or deliberately smutty, but there will be the occasional anatomical item, or references to drugs or alcohol. The game is aimed at adults, so we take a PG level of acceptability similar to what you might read in a newspaper.
We try to include items which have a fair chance of being understood by all players! We're conscious that our US audience might not necessarily be world travellers so we try to avoid too many references to obscure places. World capitals, major rivers, mountain ranges, are all fair game! Most non-US players are typically familiar with the name, capitals and larger cities of US states, so we include those too.
We do include a number of religious words too, most English speakers are culturally familiar with at least some of the Bible whether or not they are religious themselves, but we don't think it's unreasonable to include non-expert words to do with other cultures and religions too.
We do include plenty of TV and Movie references in the puzzles, but we try to keep it to fair knowledge from the 2nd half of the 20th century or later, unless it's something iconic or someone particularly famous.
We like to think that everyone (including us as we create the puzzles) can learn something new from Crosswords!
We double-scan our puzzles to make sure than an answer to one clue isn't contained within the clue of another... but it's possible for a similar word (differing perhaps by an ending) to slip by. Sorry about that if it happens - please just treat it as an unintended bonus!
Sometimes you might see an answer (or clue) that you've seen in a previous puzzle. We have a selection system that does its best to avoid consecutive puzzles containing the same answers - in fact we try to make it a minimum of a week before the same answer comes up twice in any of our puzzles. Some repetition over time is inevitable though. It tends to be the more unusual words that are remembered, so we hope that even though there's a clue that wasn't as difficult the second time round, at least you've increased some general knowledge along the way!
If you think we've made an error - please do let us know! (But please also consider checking a dictionary first - we quite like Wiktionary !)