Arroword puzzles, also called Swedish or Scandinavian Crosswords, are a type of Crossword variant in which clues are placed within delimiting cells in the grid, rather than being numbered and placed outside of it. As a result, they are entirely self-contained and have grids that can take up more of a given page than traditional crosswords (without extending to multiple pages).

Background[edit | edit source]

Arroword puzzles were supposedly invented in Sweden, although it is unknown exactly when or by whom it was first created. Regardless, the names of 'Swedish Crossword' and 'Scandinavian Crossword' have remained popular.

Arroword puzzles are one of the more popular crossword variants in Europe.

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Puzzle Application[edit | edit source]

With regard to fill, Arroword puzzles tread a line between tradition blocked crosswords and barred crosswords, in that they don't contain very many black squares (or avoid black entirely), but still contain delimiting squares. The primary difference found it them, though, that separates them from either of the other arrangements is that the delimiting cells double as clue-holders. Rather than numbering cells where entries begin, those entries' clues contain an arrow pointing in the direction of entry, so that solvers can simply begin next to the clue cell and continue in a straight line.

The benefit of the Arroword arrangement of clues within the grid is that it, in theory, allows for larger/more content-filled grids. However, requiring clues to fit within individual cells creates problems for both the clue content and the cell sizes. Regardless of how large the clues are, the cells need to be large enough to fit entire words inside, while remaining legible. At the same time, clues need to avoid being too long or complicated, as certain clues may be too long to fit in any reasonably-sized cell. As a result, clues have to be relatively short and simple, and cells will almost always be quite a bit larger than those in a normal British/American crossword.

One benefit to the arrangement, however, is that it opens up clues to being much more visual. Some setters will choose to include images instead of written clues (either in part or for the entire puzzle), as an image may be capable of expressing a concept in a much more condensed manner than a written clue would.

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Strategy[edit | edit source]

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Notable Examples[edit | edit source]

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See Also[edit | edit source]