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@ Kickstarter Serious Games Turn Classic Literature Into A Social Puzzle

Local No. 12, an indie group formed by Eric Zimmerman with fellow designers Colleen Macklin and John Sharp in 2009 to make games that explore social interaction and new kinds of gameplay, has launched a Kickstarter campaign to complete the development of Losswords.

With the value proposition of turning classic literature into a social word puzzle game, Losswords is a mobile Serious Game for iOS expected to be released in 2017.

A Game For Literary Outlaws

In the future world of Losswords, books have been banned and video games are the only form of state-approved culture. You are a member of secret literary underground called The Readers. To keep books alive and out of sight from the oppressive government regime, you scramble and unscramble passages from famous works of literature.


Losswords gameplay is a two-part process: LOSSWORDING and SOLVING.

First, you LOSSWORD a book. You do this by finding the words inside the words of a literary passage. Like finding ALL inside CALL or EARS inside YEARS.

The leftover letters then fall down to the bottom - leaving behind a scrambled version of the text.

After that - your scrambled passage is sent to someone else who has to SOLVE the book by putting the letters back in the right place. Every player both deconstructs and reconstructs passages.

The cool thing about Losswords is that as you are scrambling a passage, you are actually creating a word puzzle for other players.

As the game proceeds, you level up, getting special rewards for finding long and rare words, for putting passages back together quickly, and for guessing the author and title of books. Players gradually accumulate a library of their contraband literature - the more you play, the more books you collect for your secret underground library.

To help select books for Losswords, the developers have enlisted some amazing cultural figures to act as literary curators and will be adding more as the campaign goes on.

As reported by Kill Screen,” The hope is that Losswords will act as a vehicle for literary discovery, as each of the books used to create the game’s puzzles are in the public domain and currently available for free through the archival website Project Gutenberg.”