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Author Topic: Comparison of CW Construction Software  (Read 193 times)


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Comparison of CW Construction Software
« on: March 13, 2014, 10:38:08 AM »
Hi, rather new here. Long-time puzzle solver, new to construction. Done a couple of specialized ones (Fraternal, etc) and have dabbled with some demos to do them. I have searched through the old threads on the forums here and haven't quite found the answer to my question: If you were going to buy one product to build puzzles, what would it be?

So far, I see ~6 or so different software packages out there, let me list what I know about them (so far):

Crossfire: Rather nice Youtube piece on it by a pro building an Angels and Demons themed 15x15 with it ... free lifetime upgrades once you buy it ($50), but has seen only 3 upgrade/fixes (1.0, 1.1 and the current 1.2) since ...? And I'm seeing some people ask if it is still being supported (silence from the author is never good, in fact he didn't bother to reply to my inquisitive email) ... But still, this looks like a decent product.

CCW: Crossword Compiler, the author seems to break it into purchase modules, not well received. You can buy the basic or you can buy the bells and whistles. Gets good reviews by those that use it, but then again I tried the demo and after a few usages it told me buy or goodbye, so it's goodbye for now. Maybe later, but not now. Severely crippling your demos is never a good idea.

Crossword Studio: Tried it, not bad. Looks like a newer entry into the market and if the author keeps improving it, it has real possibilities. Current version 1.2 tells me (like Crossfire) it has not been worked up to its potential. Priced better than the others @ $30, maybe.

Crossdown, Crossword Forge and Crossword Weaver: Didn't try them, no idea whatsoever other than they are still for sale with prices all over the board.

Across Lite, looked and it seemed like it was not capable of what I want to do (could be wrong) ... but it's free and only a malcontent would poke holes in free software. Also, I hear theres a 'Crossword  Maestro' out there and Hot Potato Software is a product of an .edu site that may or not be free depending on if you're in education or not (Does  my wifes job at the school count?) ...

Comments? I see very little response to some of these question-threads but many seem to have read them (usually 300-400 reads) so I know somebody out there is reading them.

Again, I want to buy 1 product and 1 product only. What would you buy if you were at the threshold and hadn't purchased anything yet?




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Re: Comparison of CW Construction Software
« Reply #1 on: March 15, 2014, 02:12:11 PM »
You'll probably get more answers if you post your question on the mailing list. More folks respond to mailing list items than to forum posts.

Click on the CRUCIVERB-L link on the left side of the screen, listed under Navigate, for more information. I think anyone who can post messages to this forum also has rights to the mailing list (posting new messages and viewing the archives) but I'm not sure. Maybe there are different membership levels.


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Re: Comparison of CW Construction Software
« Reply #2 on: April 01, 2014, 01:13:17 PM »
You'll probably get more answers if you post your question on the mailing list. More folks respond to mailing list items than to forum posts

Thank you for replying; 2 weeks later/100+ views and you're the only one.

Just my opinion, but I don't like flooding peoples inbox with mail from persons unknown. I had hoped to get at least one constructive review of some of the software packages I mentioned.

I'm beginning to think breaking into the secret society of crossword puzzle makers is harder than getting into the magicians circle. And worse, some of the software sellers don't even answer inquisitive emails, and I don't want to lay out money for silence.

I'm trying to be honorable here and purchase software. Alot of this stuff has been hacked or keys are floating around in newsgroups, etc. I don't want to go that route.

But I would like some objective criticism before I buy. This is supposedly the secret meeting site of the enabled.




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