How To Play Googlewhacking

Googlewhack is an online-based game that gained popularity among Internet users around the early parts of 2002. The term was coined by a man named Gary Stock. It started out as a hobby of his, hunting for highly improbable search strings on the Google search engine. If you want to try your luck and wits in this game, all you need to have is a computer, an Internet connection, and some creativity in thinking up bizarre search terms.

  1. Know the aim of the game.
    Googlewhack's aim is to find that one search term consisting of two words that will only generate one result. For a search term to qualify, the result should link to an entry in an online dictionary or an article. A result linking to an online entry that only has a list of words, such as a bibliography or a list of domain names, will not be considered a Googlewhack.
  2. Know the rules.
    First, the search string you need to come up with has to be composed of two words. These should be legitimate and existing words with definitions in an online dictionary. Second, punctuations such as quotation marks cannot be used with your search term. Third, proper nouns are not accepted. Fourth, no numbers can be included in your search string. And lastly, each word has to be between four and thirty characters long.
  3. Play the game.
    Of course, you need to rack your brains for that unique search term. Then once you're ready, open your Web browser and go to Type your search term in the search bar and click on the "Search" button.
  4. Check if you won.
    To know if you've found that one legitimate hit, look at the blue bar on top of the results page and see if Google says "Results 1 of 1." The search term also has to be underlined, meaning that it has a link to an online entry. Go to the linked online entry to see if your search term is indeed a Googlewhack.

The best part about playing Googlewhack is probably its creatively challenging nature. Most online games are mind numbing point-and-shoot types. Another unique thing about Googlewhacking is that it isn't a PC or web-based game in the conventional sense. There is no program to download or access, all you need is the search engine and your brain. Aside from enriching our vocabulary, Googlewhacking promotes reading and creativity as well.


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