A company in Sheffield has created a fun (and free!) real-world puzzle game called WanderList. It challenges people to get out there and solve the puzzles to bag themselves the numerous WanderLists that are dotted in and around South Yorkshire – plus other places. This bank holiday weekend would be a great time to try out the new game.
Become a WanderList player
Whether you want to be a sole wanderer or play with/challenge your friends and family, WanderList is a people game designed to gently work our brain muscles and our physical muscles in a fun way. All you need is a smartphone (iPhone or Android) or tablet that has 4G/5G data capabilities to play.
Why Yorkshire you might ask? Because the creators (and that includes me!) are born and bred in South Yorkshire. And where best to start the inception of this game but God’s own county?
Full instructions on how to play the game can be found on the ‘How it works’ page of our WanderList website. But here’s an insight into how it all works.
So far, we have created four types, and they work as follows:
Walker (green ones) – all of the puzzle answers are located within the town/city centres and the puzzles are virtually all simple pictorial ones, such as Sheffield City Hall or a picture of a prominent street sign. The green ones are designed for beginners and families. They’re more about the journey than the head-scratching.
Hiker (blue ones) – all of the puzzle answers are again located within the town/city centres, but the puzzles are a bit more involved. They might be a cryptic clue that needs to be worked out, a graphical metaphor of a place or thing, or perhaps a historical photo that might represent a place or thing from a time gone by. As an example, one of the puzzles in Sheffield city centre is actually a place spelt out in sign language!
Wanderer (purple ones) – this type is a bit more involved and is aimed at our hardcore players. Certainly don’t start on a purple this weekend if it’s your first time! The puzzle answers can be in the city centre as well as the surrounding areas – providing a bit more of a challenge for the more adventurous.
Getting out and about
The game is designed to be active and to take advantage of the wonderful people and places on offer locally. As designers, we felt it was more important for players to move around and get out and about in our towns and cities, rather than spending hours trying to figure out a puzzle. Through the game, we also wanted to encourage players to speak to local people for assistance. That’s why we’ve tended to use local heroes in some of the puzzles, so that the locals will hopefully be able to identify them straight away, but a visiting player might not.
The beauty of players using their phones to play the game is that they already have an amazing resource at their fingertips to assist them in solving a puzzle.
Plans for the future
As more and more players play the game, we’re planning to do event-type WanderLists, which will only be released on a particular day in a particular location (as a WanderList Challenge). These will be Special (yellow) types.
For these new challenges, players will be able to sign up and compete against each other. They’ll be able to keep track of how well they are doing at any time by looking at the challenge league table. Hopefully this will create a bit of a buzz on the day and for the town/city, with local businesses getting involved too!
We also plan to hold some charity-driven special events, where we’ll ask competitors to donate to a particular charity before we give them the access code to join the challenge. Hopefully this will create a few pennies for a few charities as well as being enjoyable days full of active fun.
Jump right in and play WanderList here: WanderList – Are you ready to wander?