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FurbyFubar

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A member registered Mar 22, 2020

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Another reason for keeping this as is is that you could do the same thing in Wordle, and keeping Dordle as close as possible to Wordle (but with the twist) makes sense.

I say this sort of hypocritically as I designed the variant Squardle, and there the analogous thing works the way you suggest. But it's for other reasons than what I described above.

I absolutely agree that you have a good point if we're talking about hard mode! In hard mode finding letters is not only the goal of the game, but also something that hinders you in achieving that goal. So finding common letters later can clearly be an advantage then, especially if the strategy you're running is to set aside some number of guesses at the start for letter-hunting.

This is just by my gut feeling, but In English it feels finding  vowels is less helpful for narrowing down what letters can go next to it than finding a consonant, and especially an uncommon consonant. The only languages I really know are Swedish, English, and JavaScript, but it feels like the irregular spelling  of words in English vs their sounds mean that vowels can go anywhere they damn please given just one or two other fixed (green) letters around them. Whereas consonants following each other can do weird things on occasion, but if you have a word starting with T you know that if it's not a vowel coming up, it's pretty much for sure is going to be H, R or W. T's in the middle of a word add C and another T as other common possibilities. But for vowels, loan words with spellings from languages that treat vowels differently mean that such rules for are much fewer and much more frequently broken. Very often when I get stumped trying to figure out what word could possibly fit with just one unknown and four greens, the reason is that I overlooked the word is because I pronounced it wrong when I checked the possibilities. This is less of an issue (but can still happen) when I play word games in Swedish, and I don't think it's mainly because it's my first language; having had a spelling reform, even if it was in 1906, means that Swedish is a bit more regular in how it uses its vowels.

But a binary search is the way to go when it's possible. Sure this isn't a sorted list, but starting by cutting the search space in half still sounds great to me as it's the closest we can get to a binary search? Guessing a single E will always remove half the possible answers from the list (with the info from just that one E), so that must be the most info we can (always) get from a single letter in the first word.

So yes, you will get more info if you guess and find another letter than E. But you will get less info in every case where you don't find that letter. On average, going for an as close split to 50/50 as possible will result in the fastest average search. For example, think of teaching a robot to looking up a word in a strange dictionary with one word per page. If we tell it to open the dictionary in the middle and look at the  word, then it can remove 50% of the book no matter what. For the next step it looks at the middle of the pages it was left with, and repeats this until it's either looking at the word it's looking for, or it tries to go half a page forward (and thus knows that the word it's looking for wasn't in the dictionary). This can always be done in O(log n) steps, where n is the number of pages in the dictionary. 

The analogy here is that guessing a letter that's in half the possible answers is like the robot guessing to look at the center of the dictionary first. If we guess an uncommon letter in Wordle that's in 10% of words, that's like programming the robot to opening the dictionary 90% towards the end and hoping that the word it's searching for still comes later in the dictionary, because then we've made the search even faster! Well, if it's lucky and its word is in the last 10% , then  we have made the that search faster. But we can't ignore that in 90% of cases the random word it's looking for comes in the first 90% of the book. (Yes, I know that a human would assume things about where the word they're looking for is expected to be in a normal dictionary and thus make their first guess better for normal dictionaries, but this is still how a program searches in an ordered list, because it's mathematically proven to be the fastest way to do it when you don't have info about what's in the list.)

I'll admit that it's still *possible* that a single word without an E could result in 5 different pseudo "binary lookups" that when combined (always or on average) cuts the list down more than the 5 lookups of any single word that includes an  E would, but that seems unlikely to me.

Of course, this whole argument is all ignoring any info green squares could give.

I'd go to a forum talking about Absurdle to see what starting guess(es) leave(s) the least *possible* answers given the worst possible luck (because someone is bound to have done that analysis already). I couldn't find it while trying to speed read on the games's own page https://qntm.org/absurdle And the first results I found with Google was some guy on a blog  NOT using Wordle/Absurdle's word list in their analysis,  so yeah -  Your mileage may vary.

Yeah, I just looked at the source code, the list's always been in plain text there. And even if it had been garbled in the code somehow for obfuscation, the JavaScript (being run client side) needs the word list to function, so with a browser's dev tools you could just tell the script to list the dictionary it has decoded, so any such obfuscation would be pointless. 

The most common letters in English are not the same as the most common letters in the Wordle possible answers list. The 15 most common letters in the latter are all in crape, doily, shunt. That's the first point of this whole post. (The second point being that I also cared about what three words using all those 15 letters would give the most green squares on average.)

Also, all the vowels? You just make Y go cry in the corner again!

This is a frequency order for English I'm guessing? So not for the Wordle possible answers list which is what I used?

Did you misunderstand the part of these three words *together* being the best three starting guesses? They *together* use all the 15 most common letters in the list of possible answers, and do so in a way that will result in (on average) more green squares than any other three words using those 15 letters.

I've quite clearly stated my methodology and the assumptions it made, so saying that "You want to start with two words" when the whole post was about finding the best triplet of words is a strange take.

>"to force the AI to discard words that have them"

The surprising part for me was that they are so common that AI starts out by giving me green squares. But yeah, it makes sense in retrospect that this strategy also works well on Absurdle, but since it's not what I set out to do it still amused me that it did.

Also, if you want to share your daily results for either Dordle or Wordle with people who follow you online, having a standard starting guess or guesses means that telling anyone else about them means that the colored squares you share now becomes a spoiler for anyone who knows what your starting guess always/typically is. So you should pick at most one thing to share with the same set of people: Either your daily results OR your standard starting guess(es).  

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The Wordle strategy of starting with "Siren, Octal, Dumpy" that I saw mentioned on a youtube channel I follow just nerd sniped me hard. The TL;DR is that I now think "Crape, Doily, Shunt" are three better opening guesses, especially for Dordle. Read on to find out why.

Since you have to find two words using one set of guesses in Dordle this mean that making use of the first few guesses to make progress of finding most letters in both words is even more important than in Wordle. So after hearing about starting with guesses of "Siren, Octal, Dumpy" I tried it out, and it very much increased my Dordle win rate. But that strategy was based on the frequency of the letters in English as a whole, and that got me thinking, wouldn't checking how common letters were the list of allowed answers be much more relevant? That's not the same list as the list of allowed five letter words to *guess*, so it's not just the same thing as limiting the dictionary to five letter words. This is because it would be frustrating to play if the answer was too often words they've never heard of.

So if I assume that I always want to use my first three guesses to find as many letters as possible, (if the first two guesses hasn't found all five letters), then optimizing the first word to have the most common letters isn't needed. I still optimize primarily on finding as many letters as possible, so that means finding three words using the 15 most common letters. But then I want to optimize those possible guesses on finding three words that will give an as high average for number of green squares found with those words. So I set to writing a quick and dirty JavaScript.

The first thing I did was count the number of times each letter was in the 2315 words allowed to be the randomly picked answers. I counted both for that letter in any position, and for that letter in each of the five positions. I found that if you're going to use just two words to guess, then "Siren, Octal" is not the correct way to go for this dictionary, even if we ignore finding green letters. The 10 most common letters in allowed answers are ACEILNORST. The word "Orate" contains all the 5 most common letters, but that leaves CILNS as letters 6-10 and that doesn't anagram to a word. Hang on, "orate" is the five most common letters, that doesn't have an S in it? Aren't plural forms of nouns allowed, so wouldn't S shoot up to near the top? Well, no. The game allows plural forms for guesses, but not for the answers! So for example, the word "Books" can never be the answer in Dordle. In fact, only 36 out of 2315 allowed answers end in an S! (This made me think my code was buggy, but the count tool in my text editor confirmed this.)

But since I was looking for three starting words to guess, what's more relevant for that search is that the fifteen most common letters in possible answers are: ACDEHILNOPRSTUY. Wordsmith's Internet Anagram Server gave me a list of 3223 triples of five-letter words that use all of these letters. https://new.wordsmith.org/anagram/ Yes, it's possible that Wordsmith uses a slightly different dictionary than the allowed guesses, but I decided to not worry about it.

I then ran all those triples through my script and counted how many green squares each triple would result in when run against every possible answer. The winning triple was "Crape, Doily, Shunt".

I then checked for the number of green letters given by each of those words, and got back that they should be guessed in the order "Crape, Doily, Shunt", the same order I randomly got them in first. But then I realized that if I know I'll use three words to search for letters *unless* the first two words got all five letters of the answer, then I want to optimize for doing this instead, so I searched for those words giving yellow or green squares. And a bit annoyingly the correct order for them was still "Crape, Doily, Shunt".

 It's also worth noting that while Crape, Doily, and Shunt are all legal guesses, only Shunt can ever be the correct answer.

Amusingly I just noticed that Crape, Doily, Shunt is an opening that beats Absudle, the adversarial Wordle variant in just 5 guesses, even though it's in no way optimized to be good against it.

Anyone have any feedback? Would you try to have optimized for something else instead or as well? Or do you think I missed something obvious?

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The Wordle strategy of starting with "Siren, Octal, Dumpy" that I saw mentioned on a youtube channel I follow just nerd sniped me hard. The TL;DR is that I now think "Crape, Doily, Shunt" are three better opening guesses, especially for Dordle. Read on to find out why.

Since you have to find two words using one set of guesses in Dordle this mean that making use of the first few guesses to make progress of finding most letters in both words is even more important than in Wordle. So after hearing about starting with guesses of "Siren, Octal, Dumpy" I tried it out, and it very much increased my Dordle win rate. But that strategy was based on the frequency of the letters in English as a whole, and that got me thinking, wouldn't checking how common letters were the list of allowed answers be much more relevant? That's not the same list as the list of allowed five letter words to *guess*, so it's not just the same thing as limiting the dictionary to five letter words. This is because it would be frustrating to play if the answer was too often words they've never heard of.  

So if I assume that I always want to use my first three guesses to find as many letters as possible, (if the first two guesses hasn't found all five letters), then optimizing the first word to have the most common letters isn't needed. I still optimize primarily on finding as many letters as possible, so that means finding three words using the 15 most common letters. But then I want to optimize those possible guesses on finding three words that will give an as high average for number of green squares found with those words. So I set to writing a quick and dirty JavaScript.

The first thing I did was count the number of times each letter was in the 2315 words allowed to be the randomly picked answers. I counted both for that letter in any position, and for that letter in each of the five positions. I found that if you're going to use just two words to guess, then "Siren, Octal" is not the correct way to go for this dictionary, even if we ignore finding green letters. The 10 most common letters in allowed answers are ACEILNORST. The word "Orate" contains all the 5 most common letters, but that leaves CILNS as letters 6-10 and that doesn't anagram to a word. Hang on, "orate" is the five most common letters, that doesn't have an S in it? Aren't plural forms of nouns allowed, so wouldn't S shoot up to near the top? Well, no. The game allows plural forms for guesses, but not for the answers! So for example, the word "Books" can never be the answer in Dordle. In fact, only 36 out of 2315 allowed answers end in an S! (This made me think my code was buggy, but the count tool in my text editor confirmed this.) 

But since I was looking for three starting words to guess, what's more relevant for that search is that the fifteen most common letters in possible answers are: ACDEHILNOPRSTUY. Wordsmith's Internet Anagram Server gave me a list of 3223 triples of five-letter words that use all of these letters. https://new.wordsmith.org/anagram/ Yes, it's possible that Wordsmith uses a slightly different dictionary than the allowed guesses, but I decided to not worry about it.

I then ran all those triples through my script and counted how many green squares each triple would result in when run against every possible answer. The winning triple was "Crape, Doily, Shunt". 

I then checked for the number of green letters given by each of those words, and got back that they should be guessed in the order "Crape, Doily, Shunt", the same order I randomly got them in first. But then I realized that if I know I'll use three words to search for letters *unless* the first two words got all five letters of the answer, then I want to optimize for doing this instead, so I searched for those words giving yellow or green squares. And a bit annoyingly the correct order for them was still "Crape, Doily, Shunt".

It's also worth noting that while Crape, Doily, and Shunt are all legal guesses, only Shunt can ever be the correct answer. 

Some feedback:

The beeping sound of moving a matchstick is really annoying.

One inherent problem with matchstick puzzles is that some digits could be formed by matched in different ways looking slightly different. 6 and 9 could have one more or less match, and 7 is written by some calculators using four segments. To stop this from being an issue, you should write out a small version of how all digits are supposed to look in the game at the top of the screen to be visible while playing. (Hiding them on an instructions or help page won't help, because if a player has written 6-2=4 with a 6 the game doesn't allow, they will think they are right and that the game is just buggy. They won't stop to look at those instructions.) For extra helpfulness, if the player leaves the wrong version of 6, 7 or 9 on the screen for more than a few seconds you could have the small example digits flash or turn red to indicate what's wrong.

On level 8 you can write 03 = 3 and that feels like it should be allowed (though there is an awkward space between the 0 and the 3). Allowing this solution would also open up for more type of levels to be made. So I would suggest you leave a little bit of less space between numbers and signs to make this sort of solution look more correct (and then let it be correct)

Another change that would open up for more puzzle designs: You should put the lower match of = to be at the same height as the horizontal match in + and -. That way moving the matches in the equal sign (and forming an equal sign elsewhere) would be a thing opened up for. (I haven't played all the levels yet, but from the fact that they're on different levels so far I assume this doesn't change later on.)

But really, just let me turn of the music and the sound effects, I'm listening to music of my own choosing here!

Oh, assumed this was JavaScript. I see PuzzleScript mentioned on another of your games, but had no real clue what that entailed. Reading up a bit on it now I see that it's not just (a subset of) JavaScript with a bunch of game specific libraries added, it's its own language that can be compiled down to HTML5. So it having greater limitations makes sense to me now.

But yeah, then instead of URL arguments, the option I'd suggest is having the shared text say "seed:DAY324" or "seed:df3Zi" and have the user fill it into the game themselves if they want to play the same game seed, and if they don't fill anything in (and their cookie says they haven't already played it), give them DAY[current-day-number] as their seed. Of course, that is assuming you feel the feature is worth your time.

To maximize change of going viral, try to keep the max length of the shared text to be a bit under what fits in a tweet. That way people can also fit in a short comment in their tweet. The use of an URL-shortener might help with that, and if you're not using arguments in the URL it's at least an option.

If you check the source code for the iframe with the game you will see that the game in fact uses two word lists, one for guesses and one for possible answers. Very likely this is the same list that Wordle uses, since making your own list would be much more work.

Unintuitively: Press the share button to see what the words were.

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EDIT: (This suggestion was implemented, so that's why I now look like I'm complaining about something that's not a thing below.)

When you've solved one word, shouldn't the letters in that word stop being marked as green on the keyboard to have it give the now relevant information? 

The confusing half-gray half-white square would then also not be possible. What is  a gray/white letter trying to tell me? My best guess is: "You've tried this letter but you don't know if it's in one of your words. (Because you already know that word, and thus you know it's not in it.)"

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Cool idea!

I think gameplay would be improved if getting one of the words correct unlocked another guess. That way it's not possible to have only one guess left and know that you can't possibly win.

I think I found a small bug. I played a game and pressed share, then I played another game (until game over) and pressed share again, and it hasn't updated the text to share to my latest game? EDIT: Uh, I couldn't reproduce my own bug for a moment... So here's a better bug report! To reproduce this bug you have to edit what's in textarea after clicking share the first time. Say, add a space at the end or so. The share button doesn't set the textarea to show the text for the latest game if it's been edited. I feel like the expected behavior would be to always have the share button(s) change the textarea to be the data for the latest game. 

As for extra features:

* A daily seed that everyone plays first that day feels like the obvious way to make people more likely to share their results. Just have daily games remove the guessed and correct words from the text to share, and possibly add "?day=234" to the end of the URL to let other people play that day's puzzle even if they are late, (though not have it count for streaks and such if you also add stats.)

* Hang on! Given that a daily seed would mean coding functionality to randomize the answers from a seed, this means that you could just have the link to non-daily puzzles end in something like "?s=df3Zi" if "df3Zi" was the seed that was randomized for the shared non-daily puzzle? Then just remove the guesses and correct answers from all share text, and have Dordle match Wordle closer in that regard?

* Save stats in a cookie. Add a button for "Show my stats" and show the stats at the end of each game. Add a button to share your stats (that's only visible while looking at your stats) You could have stats both for solving the full puzzle and for solving at least one word, as well as stats for "daily puzzles" and for "all puzzles", as well as current and longest streaks in all four combinations of of those things.

* Have some games be words that are 4+6 letters long, or even 3+7 letters long. Or go nuts and add 3+3+4. If you go for daily puzzles, have 4+6 show up every Sunday, and 3+7 every first day of a month, and 3+3+4 every Sunday that's also the first of the month? To drive engagement, (ÙGH! did I just write that phrase unironically?), don't let users play extra games of those game modes to make it so players have an extra reason  to want to check out/share the games on those days. Or let us play extra games on those modes, but only on those days? Of course, given JavaScript and this function likely thus relying on the user's system time, this *might* not be worth doing. It would amuse me though. And *if* people still care enough about a game with no global high score list to try to cheat at it, I feel like the game must be doing something right?

FracFu community · Created a new topic "Scale already set"

Is there a technical reason why all instances of the next iteration has to scale in the same way? Or could that limitation be removed in a later version?

Color coding the wires would be helpful for me, both to know for sure that I'm not missing that one wire is slightly longer, and to make seeing what tangled wire goes where once the device gets crowded. 

I like this, currently stuck on the level with the three arrows and (P) and I've managed to tangle two wires so that they are stuck crossing each other and I can't untangle them. I've already spent several minutes trying to untangle them. A "Reset wired" option that just removed and respawned the wired would be useful for me here, as is I don't think I have the patience to replay all the previous levels just to get this level back as it started.

Promising game though from what I've seen so far! Could probably have a little more hand-holding or explanation for the early levels. If you don't read I and O as "Input" and "Output" but as "One" and "Zero" you could get quite confused (as a friend reported to me after trying it).

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It's possible to get stuck in positions where you've placed for example the left key and walked forward long enough that you can't retrieve that key since it's off screen. As it is now you have to restart the whole game if you get stuck in this way! So the Esc-menu should have a "Suicide to return to last checkpoint" option or there should be a button on the screen that lets you retrieve all placed keys even if they aren't on screen.

Edit: Ok, now that I've played through the whole thing restarting the whole game felt like less of an issue due to how short the game was, but if you were to make this into a full game (and you should, since the concept is great) the above fix would be needed.

In a full game I'd also want a "use item"-button (say shift och ctrl to give a 2x1 block sized button) that's unlocked later in the game, when you pick up the first item, and that lets you activate the held item for a special move. If you can only hold one item at a time (dropping your old item if you pick up a new one), and with different items abilities making it possible to bypass different configurations of blocks and enemies you could make a whole metric crapton of new levels where you have to figure out what order you have to pick up and equip different items, place keys, remove the ability to use said special abilities and so on. This should be enough to make enough levels for a full release game!

Of course, doing so would take more than 48 hours, but this could become the sort of game I would happily pay money to buy a full release version of! 

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OK, one more suggestion after seeing how few levels there were: Up the priority of making a level editor and some way to vote on the user generated maps so the good ones rise to the top.

And a bug report, your ToS at http://www.tapehead.co/terms-of-service/ is a 404.

Really good game design. Only change I'd suggest right away is: Add an undo function (for any number of steps)!