Custom Hangman is an iPhone / iPad app that gives you the classic Hangman game but with a couple of nice new twists. It’s a universal binary – one app that includes versions compatible with the iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad.
Though it’s compatible it is not a full iPad version (it will only show up under iPhone apps in an iTunes search) – so you can either choose to run it at its standard size, which will show up small and centered on the iPad screen, or scaled up in 2X mode.
Not a Full-on iPad Version
I have not enjoyed many scaled-up iPhone apps on the iPad, and have deleted the majority of them that I synced over via iTunes by now. Custom Hangman is one where – though I’d still love to see a custom iPad version – the ‘compatible’ app doesn’t bother me too much, and certainly doesn’t detract from the game.
It’s not an app that loses a whole lot just because the text / images don’t look quite as sharp. My daughter and I enjoy playing this and we’re finding we like it better on the big iPad screen.
Gameplay is basic and there are no real action graphics that would lose crispness and impact in the 2X mode.
The first twist on traditional hangman is that there’s no drawing of head, arm, legs etc – instead the theme is that you are being made to walk the plank. With each bad guess, your figure moves a little closer to a fatal fall into the deep.
This is well done and kind of fun – with nervousness building when you know you’re right on the edge of the plank.
The "Custom’ Part
The custom bit of Custom Hangman is that you get to choose a category for your word guessing efforts. I love this part of the game – as it makes it at once more fun and also quite educational if you’ve got little ones. My daughter and I did the States of the USA the other day – and managed to get 49 right with only one unwanted dip into the dark seas. We also tried out categories like ‘Halloween’ and ‘Dog Breeds’
Simple and Fun
Custom Hangman doesn’t alter the simplicity of Hangman. Once you choose your category, playing is just as you’d expect. Just start guessing letters. If you guess right, that letter will show up in all the places that it is used within a word. Guess wrong and your pirate figure moves a bit closer to the end of the plank.
So, for me, this game has kept the charm of a long-time classic and added a good enough spin to make it my favorite version.
There are some things I’d love to see improved in the app as well though. For starters, I’d like to see more categories, and especially more kid-friendly ones. A few more choices of theme (in addition to walking the plank) would also be nice. And of course a full-on iPad version would be welcome at some point.
You can find Custom Hangman in the App Store now, priced at $0.99.
*** This app was independently purchased by the post author in the iPhone App Store. For further information regarding our site’s review policies, please see the "About" page.