Overfilled Spaces

Overfilled Spaces, sometimes called rebus squares, are a type of grid gimmick in which multiple characters can be placed in a single cell of a grid. This can apply to both word and logic puzzles, but is more commonly found in word puzzles.

Puzzle Application[edit | edit source]

Overfilling spaces can be done with logic or word puzzles, stuffing single cells with any number of characters 2 and up.

Packing more than one character into the cells of a grid based puzzle seems like a relatively unintuitive thing to do. However, it can become clear that it's necessary if given the right clues. If a puzzle's clues are too long to fit in their spaces, it's usually an indicator that they either extend past the edges or need multiple letters within a single space to fit.

Overfilling spaces is sometimes used as the core conceit for several crossword variations, such as the 1, 2, 3 Crossword (in which cells can contain anywhere from 1-3 characters), Rebus Crosswords (in which specific squares would have to contain multiple letters with a theme, like state abbreviations or entire animals), and Double or Nothing Crosswords (in which cells contain either exactly 2 characters, or none at all).

Examples[edit | edit source]

  • Crushed Petals (MITMH 2016) (web) - A 1, 2, 3 Crossword, with the bonus of being on a flower-shaped grid.
  • Stuffing (MITMH 2019) (web) - A Rebus crossword where certain across clues contain Click to revealfruits, but down clues proceed as normal. As a result, each cell will likely contain only one letter going down, but Click to revealan entire fruit packed into one space, Thankfully, these were represented by emoji in the solution.
  • Gala Premiere (MITMH 2020) (web) - A relatively normal Diagramless Crossword, except some cells get to have two or three letters jammed into one cell. These don't follow any particular pattern, but go towards the extraction in a special way.

See Also[edit | edit source]