Are you familiar with Mechapuzzle?  If you’re a fan of meta-crosswords, or “contest crosswords” like the kind you might find at the WSJ or MGWCC, then you might find its analysis useful to help you solve the meta-puzzle.  Up until recently, though, it only accepted .puz files, which (1) ewwww and (2) they had to […]

Cryptic Crossword Butler

Most of you know about the Crossword Butler, and the butler is great, but he has only been serving up American-style crosswords. What can you do if you’re hankering for some cryptic-style snacks? Well, good news, because our butler made a friend. Introducing Cryptic Crossword Butler, serving up cryptics both American and British, despite his […]

Miscellaneous Updates

It’s been a while since we’ve had any updates about crossword tools here at Crossword Nexus, but that doesn’t mean nothing has been going on.  While we don’t have any big announcements quite yet, there have been many improvements to our offerings: The Crossword Nexus Solver now has the “Notepad” available from the “File” dropdown, […]

The Crossword Nexus Anagram Finder

Anagram Finder Sometimes you’re working on a wordplay project and need to find some anagrams.  Where do you turn?  The Internet Anagram Server is good if you’re looking for arbitrary anagrams, but not great if you want your anagrams to be real phrases.  Anagram Solver is good but I have two complaints about it — […]

Submission checker

Want to make sure your puzzle is acceptable before submitting it to a publisher?  Check out our brand-new submission checker, which allows you to choose a file and see if it checks all the boxes a publisher might require.  This includes the clue character count (mandated by Universal and USA Today) and the de-duper functionality […]

Creating Acrostic Puzzles

The Crossword Nexus Solver has supported acrostic puzzles for a while now, but acrostic puzzles remain relatively uncommon in the indie puzzle community.  This is a shame, because acrostic puzzles are very fun, and I for one want to see more of them.  So what’s holding constructors back? Constructors may not know how to create […]

Diagramless Crosswords

 A few days ago, some of us had a great time doing some old New York Sun crosswords on stream, but instead of doing them the old-fashioned way, we first converted them to diagramless puzzles.  This added an extra challenge, and discovering the shape of the grid was a surprise each time.  It was […]

Collaborative Crossword Creation

At Crossword Nexus, we’re all about collaboration.  It’s why we’ve opened up the Collaborative Word List for anyone to modify and use, and why we’re releasing more and more of our codebase on GitHub.  With that in mind, we’re beyond pleased to announce a collaboration with the good folks at Beyond Wordplay: a Google sheet […]

The Collaborative Word List

For years now we’ve been hosting the collaborative word list at my personal web site, and it’s been fine, but there are a few disadvantages.  First, the list is completely reliant on my website, and if it goes down or changes something the list is down.  Second, the updater program is a packaged perl script […]

Embedding crosswords with the Nexus solver

PuzzleMe is the standard for embedding crosswords these days, and why not?  It’s got a slick interface, plenty of customization options, and analytics.  That said, there are some things it can’t handle.  If you want to embed a Marching Bands puzzle, or a Spiral, or any number of other variety puzzles, the PuzzleMe solver won’t […]