This is a follow on from my previous word puzzle:

Highest scoring words based on distance travelled along the alphabet

The twist in this puzzle which opens it up a lot more is that the alphabet can be traversed in a circle.

More formally: We define the circular alphabetic distance of a word to be the total amount of letters you need to traverse between each letter where you can loop from Z back to A and you must always count the shortest route.

Example: WORD had a score of 25 in the previous puzzle but now has a score of 23

  • 8 character distance between W and O
  • 3 character distance between O and R
  • 12 character distance between R and D

Another example of a previous optimal solution for a 2 letter word ZA now only has a score of 1!

This puzzle is to find the highest scoring words for words of length N=6,7,8 (plus any higher if you're willing).

Optimal solutions can easily be found for N=2...5:

  • N=2 AN Score 13
  • N=3 NAN Score 26
  • N=4 NANA Score 39
  • N=5 RERER Score 52

My best attempts for you to beat for 6 and 7:

  • N=6 COCOAS Score 56
  • N=7 VIVIDLY Score 65

While I am not against writing a program to solve this I would appreciate letting some people have a go manually before adding your computed solutions.


1 Answer 1


6 letters

ANANYM has a score of 62

7 letters

NAPERER has a score of 74

8 letters

GUITGUIT has a score of 83

  • $\begingroup$ very impressive start again! Thanks for taking part! $\endgroup$
    – Plog
    Dec 4, 2019 at 10:41

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