Words for Evil is the title of a game combining word game and RPG elements.

But what does this title mean? I'm not sure I understand how the word for has been used here.

And this fragment from an article about the game has confused me even further:

Upon meeting strangers I sometimes describe my job as "conjuring up words for evil". It's for this reason that Dylan Loney's Words for Evil speaks to me.

Source: http://www.pocketgamer.co.uk/r/Android/Words+for+Evil/news.asp?c=60431

It looks like "conjuring up words for evil" is the reference to the title of the game, but I don't get it either. Has the author of this article used the phrase "words for evil" in the same sense as the developer of the game?

  • Typically, "a word for something" is a word we use to call that something. For example, a word for book in Thai is, well, หนังสือ. Commented Sep 4, 2014 at 14:24

2 Answers 2


"Words for Evil" seems to mean that in the game, words will be used for doing evil. Upon watching the game's trailer, one can see that the character creates words to attack and destroy creatures. In the first definition of "for", it says

with the object or purpose of:

The words in the game are used with the purpose of evil, hence the name "Words for Evil".

When the person in the article says that he is "conjuring up words for evil" he means that he is conjuring (creating) words that are used for evil. This may be a joke referring to the fact that he is a writer, as is implied from his biography. At the bottom of the game's homepage that you included in the question, the author states that his name is Dylan Loney. That means "Dylan Loney's Words for Evil" is referring to the name of the game.

  • You're probably right, but... In this game you kill monsters. Does it count as evil?
    – user10056
    Commented Sep 5, 2014 at 19:55
  • Well in general, killing is considered evil. I don't know much about the storyline, but if the character may be on an evil quest, but it doesn't seem like he is. Often times, titles of things (especially games) don't have much meaning behind them, they just sound nice.
    – TheIntern
    Commented Sep 5, 2014 at 20:10
  • Oh, I see. I was also wondering whether it could mean something like in the phrase "return sth for sth". Monsters attack you--you give them back words for evil. But I guess I'm overinterpreting like this, right?
    – user10056
    Commented Sep 5, 2014 at 20:23
  • I didn't think about it in that way - it definitely could mean something in a sense like "an eye for an eye".
    – TheIntern
    Commented Sep 5, 2014 at 20:25
  • And I considered the interpretation "a cure/a solution for sth" as well. Words as the cure for evil. Of course, I'm not a native speaker, so I don't even know if some of my guesses can be taken into account.
    – user10056
    Commented Sep 5, 2014 at 20:44

Another possible interpretation is that the player of the game has words which are reserved for use on evil creatures, similar to the meaning of "I have a present for you". A less fantasy example would be a soldier saying "These bullets are for the enemy" - they don't mean they're going to give the bullets to the enemy, they mean they'll use the bullets to shoot at the enemy.

  • Maybe it's just the season, but when I read the game title in a different context on another site, I thought of Toys for Tots so my first reaction agrees with your interpretation. It does seem like there is an intended double meaning though.
    – ColleenV
    Commented Dec 17, 2014 at 21:32

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