Questions tagged [word-ladder]

A word ladder puzzle has a source word and a target word, and to solve the puzzle you must find a chain of words to link the two.

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43
votes
5answers
9k views

TRUMP to BIDEN : This transition won't be easy

Can you change the word TRUMP to the name BIDEN in 10 steps or less by changing one letter at a time? Each change must result in a valid word from MW dictionary. No proper nouns, abbreviations or ...
33
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2answers
3k views

The cat exchanges places with a drawing of the cat

Given CAT RENDERING see if you can get them to exchange places, resulting in RENDERING CAT by ...
25
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8answers
7k views

As easy as Three, Two, One... How fast can you go from Five to Four?

You have to reach Four from Five in the minimum number of tries with the following rules. You are only allowed to change one letter at a time. You have to keep the word length the same. At each step ...
23
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7answers
3k views

From Puzzling to StackExchange

This is a variation of a game I used to play with my friends in my childhood. You are given a starting word, and using the following operations, you have to reach the target word. The solution that ...
18
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9answers
10k views

"bees" -> "hive" in 5 letter changes or fewer

Example of "warm" -> "cold": warm worm word cord cold Notice that it's a real word each time. Can you get from "bees" -> "hive" in 5 letter changes or fewer?
15
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1answer
319 views

Words with Alchemists

You are probably familiar with Word Ladders, where you attempt to transform one word into another by switching one letter at a time, with each transformation forming a new word. This puzzle is similar....
14
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4answers
638 views

This word chain will come back to me

I am a four-letter word. My anagram's antonym's Rot(13)'s synonym's homophone is a portion of me. What word am I? Note: There are six separate words in this chain. Please list them all with ...
14
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2answers
414 views

A series of fortunate transpositions

Using only a sequence of transpositions, see if you can take this: to this: while maintaining English words on each of the three horizontals. At each step, you may transpose any two neighboring ...
14
votes
1answer
668 views

A chain of words

curlicue baleful running rigging example passionate toothy? more up complement of because triangular cloth curlicue Replace each line above with a new two-syllable word of similar ...
13
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3answers
2k views

Want to go from MANILA to UGANDA

How do you get from the word MANILA to UGANDA in the shortest time? You can change up to 3 letters at a time to form a new 6 letter word which MUST be either a country name or a capital of a country. ...
12
votes
3answers
3k views

Turn Lead into GOLD

Can you turn the word LEAD into GOLD in five steps or less? You can change or replace one letter at a time only. The newly formed word must be a legit word in a recognized dictionary. Of course you ...
12
votes
5answers
4k views

Fastest way from 8 to 7

Inspired by this great question by Uvc (actually, it's the same logic but with different words). How fast one can get from EIGHT to SEVEN? The rules are the same: You are only allowed to change one ...
12
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3answers
389 views

Word Ladders go to the movies

An entry in Fortnightly Topic Challenge #36: Twisted Classics 1 You love movies. You had several (9) VHS tapes, neatly organized in their sleeves, up on a shelf. However, due to a certain incident, ...
12
votes
2answers
301 views

Chrysanthemum bejeweled with dew drops

If you squint, you might be able to see letters in the reflections of some of the dew drops. Those will help get you started. In this puzzle, the adventure begins just after 12 o'clock and the ...
11
votes
1answer
352 views

Don't look back, crazy clown

Start with these two words INSANE RETROSPECT and see if you can get them to exchange places by transferring one letter at a time. With each ...
11
votes
1answer
264 views

A sequence of three letter words/abbreviations

I have ten three letter words/abbreviations in a sequence, numbered 0-9, each of which differ by precisely one letter from their previous and next words. Here are clues for each of the words: The ...
10
votes
2answers
272 views

Missing lattes and mutually mistrustful words

It's always amusing to watch two kids who don't trust each other swap baseball cards by exchanging them at exactly the same moment. Words can be equally mistrustful about trading their letters. ...
9
votes
7answers
1k views

From bottom to top

A twist on the word-ladder type of puzzle: Reach from "bottom" to "top", following these rules at each step: You can change a letter, remove a letter or add a letter at each move. The changed ...
8
votes
3answers
283 views

Lead the way to this Literary Knight to its final “DESTINATION”

As this Literary Knight (only chess move allowed) hops along, picks up a letter each time to make it to final $DESTINATION$ Starting from a cell containing right D, ride the Knight picking up each ...
8
votes
1answer
192 views

Word Wall of Whimsical Wordy Whatchamacallits

I was making a particularly difficult word wall, when I misplaced all the words for it. Luckily, I still had the clues. However, poring through the clues, I realised that I had nine clues, yet my word ...
8
votes
1answer
1k views

Word Ladder puzzle

The Numberplay blog on the NY Times website used to have word ladder puzzles along with their weekly math puzzles. I found them fun and so I figured I'd introduce them here. These aren't just your ...
8
votes
1answer
131 views

A chain of words 2

Replace each line below with a new two-syllable word (or three syllables, where noted) of similar meaning that is legal in Scrabble. The last two or more letters of each new word must form the start ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Change Four to Nine in fewest steps

Change the word FOUR to the word NINE by changing only one letter at a time. The change must result in a 4 letter word from the MW dictionary and cannot be an abbreviation,acronym, anagram or a ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Changing WATER to STEAM

How do you change the word Water to the word Steam by changing one letter at a time? The newly formed words must be from Merriam Webster dictionary. No proper nouns, abbreviations or acronyms. No ...
7
votes
4answers
744 views

Wordmorph K: An Introduction

Let me introduce you to a game I invented called Wordmorph K (WmK). You may have played a variation of this game in the past. WmK Rules: 1) The objective is to transform the "Start Word" to the "...
7
votes
3answers
322 views

Snakes and Ladders

Things are getting a bit puzzly... Reveal the Ladder and solve the clues to form a Word Ladder. Find the word that fits in the clue “???”. One fake clue is here to ruin your day [laughs ...
7
votes
2answers
303 views

Andrew's House Cleaning - A Word Ladder

Andrew is cleaning his house but needs help. Your task is to get from bits to bobs to odds to ends. You can alter letters, one at a time, and each intermediate word must be a valid word in dictionary....
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Life, uh, Finds a Way

[Rated PG-13 for language} I saw someone wearing a "Life happens" t-shirt, which is a fine enough sentiment, but not the most common turn of phrase. It made me wonder... How fast can you ...
7
votes
3answers
422 views

Moans to Rocky in 4 moves?

In his novel A Case of Need, one of Michael Crichton's characters claims that the classic word‑ladder‡ "MOANS to ROCKY" can be made in 4 moves (5 lines total). But the book does not ...
7
votes
1answer
213 views

Three to Seven in five or less

Can you change the word Three to the word Seven in five steps or less with the following rules: You must exactly replace two letters; one vowel and one consonant of the word in each step with a ...
7
votes
1answer
225 views

Bike Lock Word Ladders

We are going to construct word ladders, but unlike the classic word ladders in which only one letter can change per step, you may change as many letters as you like at each step. However, each letter ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

Lead into IRON! really?

Now that the word LEAD was turned into GOLD in only three steps (kudos n_palum) can you turn the word LEAD into IRON changing one letter at a time creating new legit 4 letter words (from Dictionary) ...
6
votes
2answers
331 views

A Fairy Chess Ladder

This is yet a fairyly ordinary word ladder on the chessboard. Sequence: PAWN > KNIGHT > ROOK > QUEEN > KING Rules: Each step you can do ONE of the following: 1) Add a letter 2) ...
6
votes
1answer
231 views

Change EDIT to UNDO

On your computer right now, you can probably click on the "Edit" menu; and one of the first options will be "Undo". These are closely associated words. But how close are they in a word ladder? ...
5
votes
4answers
3k views

Fastest way from 10 to 1 with everyone in between

I got inspired by this question from trolley813 to make this puzzle. How fast one can get from TEN to ONE, passing each number in between? The rules are simple: You are only allowed to change ...
5
votes
4answers
1k views

Word ladder island (formerly dead-end)

Following on from CodeNewbie's question "From Puzzling to Stack Exchange", I thought I would set a problem of my own using the same rules: Rules: In any move, you can either replace a letter, add a ...
5
votes
2answers
406 views

Solve the ladder, but you have to get there first

First things first, your ever so helpful nonogram. It's got what you need. That should help you sort through this to get your words for the ladder. ...
4
votes
1answer
149 views

Another series of fortunate (and sideways) transpositions

Using only a sequence of transpositions, see if you can take this: to this: while maintaining English words on each of the three horizontals. At each step, you may transpose any two neighboring ...
4
votes
1answer
156 views

Word Chain (?) Bird to Nest

Lloyd is quite fond of math, and likes to incorporate math into almost everything he does. One weekend, the local newspaper printed a Word Chain puzzle, with starting point BIRD and ending with NEST. ...
3
votes
4answers
483 views

"phone" into "cord"? (word ladder)

Here's a classic word-ladder for y'all. Can you transform "phone" into "cord", using only single-letter alterations? Rules Each step can either add a letter, remove a letter, or change a letter. ...
3
votes
3answers
810 views

WmK: Oh, Life Relax Please!

"Oh, Life Relax Please!" is the title of a book about yoga that my Grandfather gifted me. This Wordmorph K is inspired by his love of wisdom and knowledge. If you are not familiar with this ...
3
votes
5answers
332 views

Transforming Colors

Inspired by the increase of word ladders lately I found a fun one. Transform the color BLUE into PINK. No proper names.
3
votes
4answers
537 views

From Puzzle to Riddle to Solution

Your goal is to create a word ladder that goes from the word "puzzle" to the word "riddle" and then to the word "solution". In that order! That is, if it's possible, if not you better show me why not!...
3
votes
2answers
154 views

A chain of words 3

Replace each line below with a new word of similar meaning that is legal in Scrabble. The last two or more letters of each new word must form the start of the next new word, and the first and last new ...
3
votes
1answer
239 views

Fruit Transformation

This word ladder is a little more difficult, especially being 5 letter words. Can you transform an APPLE into a MANGO? No proper names. Goal is to be smallest amount of steps.
3
votes
1answer
92 views

Word Wander - Connect the Words

A Word Wander, also called a "Synogram", is a word puzzle that requires you to connect the first and last word by following a certain pattern. Each word down the puzzle must be either a ...
3
votes
1answer
144 views

Wordmorphs IN SPACE!

The year is 21XX. Space tourism is easy and affordable. You decide to spend your next vacation hopping from planet to planet, hanging out with aliens and so forth. To that end, you rent a WordMorphian ...
2
votes
3answers
146 views

Be a Wordsmith — Assemble enough words to score 50 from the Triangular Settings [closed]

Use this triangular setting of letters to form as many words(minimum length 5) as possible, following the given rules. You can start at any letter, follow the connected lines to pickup additional ...
2
votes
2answers
123 views

Word Chain (Word-ladder?)

You've heard of the change LEAD to GOLD by changing one letter at a time. A player has suggested another, and we're having a hard time with it. BITTER to SWEETS.
2
votes
1answer
87 views

Number conversion via Prime route

This is a variation of the Word Ladder. Instead this is a number ladder. Convert the number 12345 to the number 54321 in seven or less steps with the following rules A: You can only change any one ...