iLounge Game Spotlight: Lex
Lex ($1) is a new word game from Simple Machine. Players are tasked with building words as fast as they can. Though there’s no board, the game should feel familiar to Scrabble players.
Players in Lex make words from a “rack” of nine letters. When letters are used in a word, they disappear, and new letters arrive. However, to up the drama, the letter tiles start to turn red as they hang around — the tiles “fill up” from the bottom. Once a letter tile turns completely red, the game ends. Letters with the lowest point values fill up quickest, and it appears that Lex dutifully follows the traditional Scrabble point values. For instance, vowels are worth one point, Q and Z are worth 10, and so forth.
The pace of the game speeds up very quickly. While you may find yourself aiming for longer, more point-laden words at the start of the game, you’ll soon have no choice to spell out any word you can think of, just to survive. The gameplay is basic, but works perfectly. It’s furious and fun; Lex definitely has that “one more game” appeal.
Like some other games, Lex recommends users play with headphones, to better immerse themselves in the sound of the game. But let’s be honest — this is a word game, so that’s not necessary. The game’s description also touts the unique imagery and player generated soundtrack. They’re nice touches, but hard to really concentrate on when you’re frantically thinking of a word that includes the letter U.
Which brings us to the biggest issue with this game. No matter what you think of the Scrabble scoring system — which is solid at worst, but could probably use a few tweaks — it definitely doesn’t translate perfectly to a game that moves this fast and doesn’t allow two-letter words. We found ourselves time and time again failing due to the letter U. It’s just harder to use than the other vowels, which is only exacerbated by the time factor. We also think the letters fill up just a bit too fast, too early. The game would be more satisfying and addictive if each round could be measured in minutes, rather than seconds.
Lex is lots of fun, and pretty addictive as it is. It’s easy to pick up and play, and the presentation is polished. Considering its low price, we would definitely recommend it to any fans of word games. But with a few tweaks, it could have been truly special.
iLounge Rating: B+
- Russia mulling tax increase on App Store purchases, other Apple services
- Indie game ‘The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth’ rejected by Apple over violence toward children
- Airmail, Day One 2, Airfoil Satellite, Instagram + Pocket
- Facebook rolls out Live Video to US users
- Microsoft releases News Pro app for iOS
- Report: Apple to offer subscription content via News app
- iPad Air 3, iPhone 5se expected to be available March 18
- Apple filming original ‘dark drama’ television series featuring Dr. Dre
- Apple under fire for patent infringement from haptic feedback company Immersion
- CBS CEO Moonves notes Apple talks have stopped
- Apple will source iPhone 7 ‘A10’ CPU solely from TSMC
- Federal bill aims to take regulatory power for phone encryption out of state hands
- Job post shows Apple emphasizing new complications, faces for Apple Watch
- New comments hint at forthcoming streaming TV service from Apple
- Apple Music available on Sonos starting today
- Screen protector installation now available at Apple Stores
- VRS Design Crystal Bumper, High Pro Shield + Verge Active for iPhone 6/6s
- Vicks SmartTemp Wireless Smartphone Thermometer
- Gumdrop Cases DropTech Case for iPad Pro
- Edifier MP700 Rave Portable Bluetooth Speaker
- Just Mobile HoverDock for Apple Watch + HoverDock for iPhone
- VRS Design Dandy Layered Case for iPad Pro
- Just Mobile TENC for iPad Pro
- Native Union DOCK Lightning
- Native Union DOCK for Apple Watch
- Hitcase Pro+ Action Pack and Snap for iPhone 6/6s
- Inside the betas: What’s new in iOS 9.3 and tvOS 9.2 (Updated)
- Life with HomeKit: Our experiences with Apple’s home automation system
- Under the Radar: 10 ‘hidden’ details about the new Apple TV
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 9.0
- Under the Radar: A closer look at smaller iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus changes
- A First Look at iOS 9’s Transit in Apple Maps (Updated for watchOS 2)
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iTunes 12.2
- Instant Expert: Secrets & Features of iOS 8.4 + Apple Music
- CE Week 2015: IK Multimedia, Monowear’s Apple Watch bands + More
- Live From CE Week 2015: Brand New iPad, iPhone + Mac Accessories!