A word search
is a simple type of word puzzle
which involves finding hidden
words in a grid
. Usually, the grid is rectangular and the words may be written horizontally (backwards or forwards), vertically (up or down), or on a main diagonal in any direction, for a total of 8 directions. In the basic form, a list of the words to be found is provided.
More involved word search puzzles may not give you a list of words to find, or may give you clues or some other indirect ways of specifying the words to find.
Often, in word search puzzles, at the end, the unused letters (those not part of any word to be found) spell out a quotation or other phrase.