Open Spelling Bee (OSB)
Open source port of New York Times' puzzle game Spelling Bee for the command line.
Requires Python 3.x and nothing but standard Python libraries.
To download the game:
git clone https://github.com/philshem/open-spelling-bee.git cd open-spelling-bee
To play a random game:
To play a non-random game:
python3 play_puzzle.py RDGHNOU
R is the center letter that must be used at least once in each word. If the puzzle
RDGHNOU does not exist, it will be created and saved to
data/RDGHNOU.json (the file names are the first letter and the alphabetically sorted remaining letters).
The word list used is from SCOWL. The default setting contains 40,000 words, which seems comparable to the New York Times dictionary. (See below on changing the size parameter to include more erudite words.)
To reach "genius" level, you'll need to solve 50% of the words.
To solve a game (aka cheat-mode):
python3 solve_puzzles.py RDGHNOU
If the game does not exist, it will be created and saved to the
For a list of the previous NY Times letter selections, see William Shunn's page.
to generate new puzzles
Set custom parameters in the
params.py file, for example how many puzzles you want to create. Then generate by running:
Or to save the word stats:
python3 generate_puzzles.py > stats.csv
Runtime depends on your parameters. For the default parameter settings, the code takes approximately 8 hours to generate 100 7-letter puzzles that meet the criteria (total points, total words, pangram count).
To generate a certain letter combination, use:
python3 generate_puzzles.py AGFEDCB
which will then be saved to
to change the size of the wordlist
If you find the game overly facile or wish your recondite words were accepted, you can change the wordlist size. Change
size=35 to a larger number in word_lists/mkscowl and then run
mkscowl to create a new wordlist. You must run
generate_puzzles.py (as detailed above) whenever the wordlist changes.
|Description||Scowl size||Num words||Sample word|
To play, build words with a minimum of 4 letters, using the letters provided.
Each word must include the center letter at least once.
Letters may be used as many times as you'd like.
Scoring: 1 point for a 4 letter word, and 1 more point for each additional letter.
Each puzzle has 1 "pangram" that uses each of the 7 letters at least once. The pangram is worth 7 extra points.
(based on game found by playing
python3 play_puzzle.py RDGHNOU)
Type !help or !h for help Playing puzzle index: 1 Your letters are: _____ / \ / \ ,----( N )----. / \ / \ / \_____/ \ \ H / \ U / \ / \ / )----( R' )----( / \ / \ / \_____/ \ \ G / \ D / \ / \ / `----( O )----' \ / \_____/ Max score: 88 Total words: 37 Your guess: GROUND ✓ GROUND word score = 3 words found = 1/37 total score = 3/88
Use the following commands for more details:
!i : instructions !g : show letters !f : shuffle letters !s : player stats !h : help !q : quit
Qas center letter:
Xas center letter:
Zas center letter: