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Calculating the Score for the Daily Crossword

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Calculating the Score for the Daily Crossword

How is your score calculated?  Today I finished the puzzle faster than any other day, with zero wrong letters entered and my score was tied for the lowest I've ever scored.  So it isn't just "time" and it isn't just "number of incorrect letters entered, then corrected".  So what is it?  Should I change my strategy?  Solve long words first in their fullest instead of solving short words to provide letters to solve the long words?  My strategy will of course depend on how the scores are caluclated.

 

And I don't want anyone to change the calculationg method.  I'm fine adapting, but to WHAT?

 

Thanks in advance.

 

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I agree... No matter what I do - well or otherwise - on the Daily Crossword I've never been able to get more than 10,500 points while others are racking up hundreds or a couple thousand more.  What's up with that? 

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Conversationalist

Hi Arthur-I think all of us that complained about this decided we would do the crosswords for fun, and give up on any rhyme or reason to the scoring. I wrote that back in July, and my scores are still the same way. Go figure, but I do enjoy the games.

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I, too, do not get the scoring of the crossword. I also get very low scores on days where I finished the puzzle with no errors and in a very short time. On other days, I take longer and get a higher score, even after seeing and correcting myself in spots.

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Retired Community Manager

Hi, @CatherineS641676, keep in mind bigger puzzles will have a higher achievable score. Meaning, in each puzzle, the total achievable score will differ depending on how many black squares the author uses in each puzzle. This varies puzzle to puzzle. Total achievable score is the cell total x 10 points per cell. If the puzzle author has used more black squares in a particular puzzle, the total achievable score for that puzzle is lower than a puzzle where the author has used less black squares.  

 

For example:

  • The August 7 puzzle is a 15x15 grid = 225 total cells. Subtract the 40 black squares = 185 total cells X 10 = 1850 achievable score
  • The August 8 puzzle is a 15x15 grid = 225 total cells. Subtract the 42 black squares = 183 total cells X 10 = 1830 achievable score

 

You mention a “very low score” below despite completing the puzzle without help and in reasonable time. If possible, could you share the puzzle’s date and what was your score? That would help us to look into it further to see if you're possibly experiencing some sort of bug.

 

Thanks and let me know if this helps!

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The scoring does not add up the way you explained. Even when completed 100% without help I can never get more than the 10,050 points, but I see others getting over 12,000 points. 

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Same here.  10050 points every day.  No matter how fast or flawless.  No idea how people are getting 16000

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Hey Kelly-I had to chuckle at your post only because, 10,050 is my more often than not, my score. We have all come to the conclusion that the games are for fun and reward points that can be used for sweepstake entries. The scoring makes absolutely no sense at all. Sheesh!!

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Conversationalist

I, again do not get my crossword scoring today. I finished in 4:04, made no mistakes, went in logical order, and got my lowest score in days. I guess I will follow one of the other responders who opined we should just do these puzzles for fun and not even look at your scoring. 

 

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Definitely must be a scoring bug on all word puzzles. Best to just play for the fun and points. I too have played, no assistance, no errors, rapid time ……..low score. 

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Conversationalist

Join the club😊 Even after a supposed explanation, it still makes no sense to me. I do enjoy my morning crossword, so your suggestion is the same conclusion I came to. Enjoy, my friend.

 

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Newbie

I thought I got the scoring; but today I’m seeing a top score of 10,050, and for the weekly and monthly tallies, even higher scores.

 

Like others, I play for the pleasure; but what gives?

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Today May 2nd. Finished Mini in very quick time, no help and got 190. Days I take longer, no help, I get a higher score. Definitely don't get the scoring at all. 

I often finish Daily (regular) with no erroes and it doesn't register as completed. Then I hit "Reveal Puzzle" to a lower score. I check the squares and there are no mistakes.

I don't care about the score, I do it for pleasure but it is perplexing.

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Retired Community Manager

Daily Crossword scoring is calculated at the end of a game with this formula:

  • Player gets 10 points for every cell that was completed without help.
  • Bigger puzzles will have a higher total achievable score
  • If another player has a bigger or smaller score for the same date on the leaderboard, that means they played a puzzle for the different date (i.e., not today’s) – since there are 14 puzzles available to play every day and each will have a different total achievable score based on number of cells.

Completed without help is defined as:

  • Cell filled in correctly without using the Reveal function
  • If the player has Show Errors turned on in the puzzle’s menu, then completed without help means the cell has never shown a red, incorrect letter.
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It seems as though you get a higher score if you fill in the word at one go.  In other words, don't skip between horizontal and vertical.  Also, fill in the word the first time you click on it.  Of  course, you'll have to go back at the end to fill in any still-empty spaces.  

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Periodic Contributor

This occurs with the Cryptic Puzzles as well! Today I finished a cryptic without help and without any errors and my score was the same as many others who probably did the same.  Except there was one more score that was ahead of all the other with an extra 10 points.  Why?  What had that solver done that the rest of us had not done?  There is no explanation posted anywhere to explain the scoring system.  I still enjoy solving the puzzles but the scoring system has no separate listing that would at least satisfy the unanswered questions about how the scores are calculated!  Obviously, this is not of great importance to the AARP tech people or it would have been seen to by now.

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I agree with your post as well as many similar.  Obviously Lynne the community manager has not played the crossword.  I believe the correct answer is that the scoring system has a few bugs and simply not important enough to warrant a fix.

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Retired Community Manager

Hello, @MichaelE11234, sometimes you'll see another player has a bigger (or smaller) score for the same date on the leaderboard. That means they played a puzzle from a different date (i.e., not today’s). Keep in mind, there are 14 puzzles available to play every day and each will have a different total achievable score based on number of cells.

 

In other words, the score can show up on the Leaderboard under “Today” but it doesn’t mean the person played today’s puzzle. If their score is higher than the total achievable for today’s puzzle, it means that today they played one of the other puzzles available in the 14-day inventory that had a higher achievable score (i.e., less black squares) than today’s puzzle.

 

Glad to read that you're enjoy the puzzles and I hope this helps!

 

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I want to know how the scores calculated.I get the answers without help.  TJ

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The scoring on this puzzle has been driving me crazy, also. There is no rhyme or reason to it. I love to do the puzzle, but the scoring drives me crazy.
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Hello. I do the cossword almost every day. I don't use any of the aids. I do it in a timely fashion. I don't enter any wrong letters. I get 100%. Nonetheless, I don't get the number of "points" that others do. Why? What am I missing? Not a big deal, but I would like to understand how this puzzle series is scored.

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Retired Community Manager

Hi @RobertL814599, great question! I hope the following info is helpful to you. 

 

In Daily Crossword, scoring is calculated at game end with this formula:

 

  • Score = Number of cells completed without help x 10
  • Bigger puzzles will have a higher total score

Note: "Completed without help" is defined as: cell filled in correctly without using Reveal function. If "Error Checking" is turned on, cell has never shown a red incorrect letter.

 

***If my post answers your question, please mark it as an "Accepted Solution". Thank you!

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The answers here r of no help. Even when I do well my scores r not as high as others scores then there r days I do not do as well and I’m shocked at how high my score is. But I never have scored as high as others who score 440,000 how is this possible??? There must be more to the scoring as I’m referring to puzzles done the same day. As others have stated the scoring seems to make no sense. If so many people r saying this something must clearly be wrong. I used to do it just to enjoy it until I scrolled down one day and saw I was listed with others as top scorers again never as high as mentioned above. Then I began feeling pressured competitive stopped enjoying it as much. I finally stopped playing for weeks as the scoring made no sense. I’ve resumed playing and am trying to just enjoy the puzzle but ultimately do look at the scores only to see nothing as changed their r people with outrageous scores if speed is calculated I personally think this is wrong. It should be accuracy not speed. This is AARP. Many r slow with response or struggle to hit the small keys inadvertently hitting wrong keys so must slow down. People have arthritis and eye issues others cognitive issues. Speed should not be a factor. Not on this forum

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This can't be, unless the formula has changed between when this was written and today.
No matter what, perfect solving gets me 10,000 points, or 10,050 with 50 pt bonus for today's puzzle.
If Score = Number of cells completed without help x 10, as you say, then one would have to complete 1,000 cells to get 10,000. Puzzles don't have 1,000 cells.

I thought maybe there are some bonus points if one subscribes to things or performs some activities on the site, like other games have. There's no explanation for why the most I get is 10,000 on completing with no help and other people get 12,750.
Anyway, it can't be 10 pts per square. Perhaps today could be near 50 pts, since puzzles seem to have around 200 squares.

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Community Manager
Community Manager

Thank you @IvanT429387 !  Our scoring did have some slight changes recently.  Here they are:

 

The daily score consists of 3 parts:

Daily Score = Puzzle Score + Time Bonus + Daily Bonus

 

The Puzzle Score. It equals the % of the puzzle that was completed without help X 100 - This is the percentage of cells filled without using the "Reveal" and "Check" buttons.

 

The Time Bonus.  The Daily Crossword - (720 - Solve Time in Seconds) * 10

- If your puzzle is finished within the allowed time, you will receive a time bonus. (This time bonus will only be awarded if you complete at least 50% of the puzzle manually, without help).

 

The Daily Bonus. It equals 50 points - For example, if you completed August 31st's puzzle on August 31st, you will get a daily bonus.

AARPTeri
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I still see posts with lots of doubts from many people. I looked at this again.
About this: 

The Time Bonus.  The Daily Crossword - (720 - Solve Time in Seconds) * 10
1. If this is a formula, what is "The Daily Crossword" value?
2. I understand this an attempt to give points according to the time to solve the puzzle.

I presume the idea is giving more points the faster you solve it.

I see the magic number for a bonus is supposed to be 12 minutes (720 seconds).
However the part of the formula "- (720 - Solve Time in Seconds) * 10" will subtract points the faster you solve it because of the leading minus sign.
If you solve it in 0 seconds it's value - (720) * 10 = -7200 points.
If you solve it in 720 (12 min) it's value is - (0) = 0 points
If you solve it in 20 min (1200 secs), it's value is - (- 480) * 10 = +4800.
The sign should not be minus, but a plus.
Does the formula written here have the wrong sign or is the actual formula programmed wrong?
If someone wants to test it, they should intentionally do it in more than 12 minutes and see if they get a higher score. Maybe all the people wondering about this are solving it under 12 minutes and not getting Time Bonus and the people taking more than that are getting the bonus.

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Newbie

I do not use the “error checking”, finish the puzzle 100% correctly.  When complete, I click to reveal, is that why I am being knocked down in score? If that is the reason why I am missing out on points, what do I do once I finish the puzzle?  Only once has the message automatically come up as “100% complete”.

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If you finish the puzzle 100% correctly, the message "100% Complete" pops up. If that message does not pop up, it means that there was an error somewhere in the puzzle. If I get to the end of the puzzle and don't see that message I will scan over it once more before toggling on "Show Errors" to figure out where the error occurred. It is usually something minor that gets overlooked in my case. 

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Retired Community Manager

Great tip, @TrashmanIEatGarbage, thanks for posting!

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Periodic Contributor

This explanation does not explain the discrepancy in scoring. My wife and I play daily crossword every morning. We use to compete for the highest score. But, the score has no relation to how fast or how accurate the puzzle is completed. Every day, we both get the same score. For instance, this morning I completed the puzzle in 6+ minutes. My wife completed the puzzle in 12+ minutes. We both got the same score...1850!  If AARP would make the scoring related to speed and accuracy as the AARP person explained, it would make the game playing much more fun!

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