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Word Game Reveals Curious XBLA Word Filter

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Posted on January 30, 2012 AT 10:22am

THE BUZZ: The popular iOS game Quarrel that was ported to XBLA last week has revealed a curious feature in the Xbox Live Arcade that no one was privy to before.

EGM’S TAKE: The feature in question is a word filter for all Xbox Live games that really comes into play with Quarrel as the entire game revolves around using words to conquer territories a la Risk.

I personally had taken note of this phenomenon in my review of the game, which you can see here, when I was wondering why the word “SATURN” had been denied me, especially since I had the family filter off and was able to use some more crude words later on in the game dealing with human anatomy (if the family filter is on, those words are removed as well). I had chalked it up possibly to human error somehow or that maybe just being a proper noun was enough to get it tossed, but I really didn’t see a problem with the sixth planet from the sun being used.

But it seems that I wasn’t alone as gamers have been complaining on the game’s forums since its release that words like “dice”, “start”, “help”, and “train” are among the many other common, harmless words strangely omitted from the game’s vocabulary. In an official statement, Gary Penn who works for Quarrel developer Denki mentioned “Microsoft has an additional filter in place for all Xbox Live games, which we have to support.”

This statement alludes to many reports we’ve heard over recent months of some of the ridiculous hoops developers sometimes have to jump through to get their game onto the Xbox Live Arcade, but a word filter like this for a word game seems particularly ludicrous. Maybe someone at Microsoft can “help” me understand this better, but they have yet to make a statement regarding the matter so until then fellow Quarrel fans, just take note when attempting “word domination”.

Ray Carsillo, Reviews Editor
Ray Carsillo has extensive roots in geek culture, as he’s written about videogames, comics, and movies for such outlets as Newsday.com, ESPNNewYork.com, Classic Game Room on YouTube, Collider.com, and Comicvine.com before finally settling into his role as EGM’s reviews editor. His main goal in life? To become king of all geek media, of course! Follow Ray’s exploits on Twitter: @RayCarsillo. Meet the rest of the crew.

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