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A puzzle in which certain letters, e.g. of each word, line, or paragraph, form a meaningful word or words when put together.

What is an acrostic puzzle?

An acrostic puzzle is a type of word puzzle, that uses an acrostic form:

An acrostic is a poem (or other form of writing) in which the first letter (or syllable, or word) of each line (or paragraph, or other recurring feature in the text) spells out a word, message or the alphabet.

Acrostic puzzles can vary in nature depending on the creator. They can be extremely simple to give hints to those who can see it; or they can be quite in-depth for those who enjoy a full acrostic puzzle. A basic example of an acrostic would be the following puzzle:

Help is always given, to those who ask;
Even if their minds, are stuck in the past.
Let me be your guide, to treasures untold;
Prophets have spoken, the future unfolds.

The first letter of each line spells out the word help; now, in this particular example there is no relation to the riddle at hand, and the answer is indeed the word help.

What makes a good acrostic puzzle?

There is no set standard on writing a good acrostic puzzle; however, the following guidelines are quite useful when creating one:

  • Acrostic puzzles should follow the guidelines on writing a good riddle:
  • Hints given as an acrostic should be subtle, the shouldn't give away the answer; instead, they should help to find it. For example, you could create a riddle about candy and have an acrostic that says cavities or gumball.

How should I try to solve an acrostic puzzle?

  • Analyze it line by line, word by word. Note any letters or words that seem out of place.
  • Remember that acrostics are not always at the beginning of a sentence; they can be in the middle of a word, the end of a sentence, or anywhere in-between.
  • Keep in mind that some puzzles can be nested with more than one acrostic.

How should I answer the question once I have a solution to the puzzle?

  • Make sure your solution fully fits the description.
  • Answer the puzzle in a complete and detailed fashion - while partial answers are okay, they must be completed.
  • Spoiler tag content that directly relates to the answer, but do not write an answer entirely in a spoiler. It is useful to place some plain text in-between so a reader who just wants to see part of a solution can easily choose the right one. Spoiler tags hide part of a post by placing >! at the beginning of a line.