Yohoho! Puzzle Pirates Forums/Searching

From YPPedia

This tutorial is a guide to searching the Yohoho! Puzzle Pirates Forums.


The forum search allows for Boolean, wildcard, fuzzy and proximity searching. It also allows for grouping, boosting and searching for phrases.

Note: Searching still has a bug where it doesn't give results for posts without subject/titles.

General tips

  • Use Term* to search for a given term and its plural. An exception is for short terms for which too many irrelevant results may be returned due to parts of other unrelated words matching the wildcarded term. Term OR Terms would be a more appropriate search in this case.
  • Restrict the search to a single forum if possible. This can help greatly to cut down on the number of results.

Order of results

If only the Text to search field is filled, the order of matching post results is seemingly random. The matching posts are actually ordered by relevance according to the search engine. This may be changed in the future.

Searching with only the By Login Name field filled, returns matching posts within each forum in ascending date order. The order of the forums shown is:

  1. A Cask of Blog
  2. Hear ye! Announcements
  3. Opal Basar
  4. Opal Politik und Palaver
  5. Spiel und Technik
  6. Opal Events
  7. Crafting Puzzle Project
  8. Ice Discussion
  9. Events Workshop
  10. Hunter Events
  11. Viridian Events
  12. Sage Events
  13. Cobalt Events
  14. Midnight Events
  15. Cobalt Bazaar
  16. Hunter Bazaar
  17. The Bazaar
  18. Sage Bazaar
  19. Midnight Bazaar
  20. Viridian Bazaar
  21. New Player Forum
  22. Cobalt Parley
  23. Viridian Parley
  24. Hunter Parley
  25. Sage Parley
  26. Midnight Parley
  27. Technical Issues
  28. Events!
  29. The Mariner's Muse
  30. Piratical Parley and Politics
  31. Tips & Tricks, Questions & Answers
  32. Davy Jones' Locker
  33. Shore Leave
  34. Game Design

If there is something in both the Text to search and By Login Name fields, the matching posts will be in relevance order.

Search fields details

These constraints are applied as AND terms to matching results.

Text to search

This field contains the terms used to perform the search. Terms can be plain words to find or contain any of the following operators:

  1. Boolean
  2. Wildcard
  3. Fuzzy search
  4. Proximity search
  5. Boost

Boolean terms

The following are the allowed Boolean terms:

  • AND
  • OR
  • NOT

If you want to search for all your terms, then use:

  • Term1 AND Term2 AND Term3 (and so on)
  • Example: Zeta AND Zambonies

If you fill in the login name field, the search will automatically require that as an additional AND condition. Result posts will have the corresponding login name.


If you want to search for any of your terms, then use:

  • Term1 OR Term2 OR Term3 (and so on)
  • Example: Zambonies OR Governor

This is the default boolean term used if none is supplied which is different behavior to most Internet search engines.

  • Example: Zambonies Governor

would search for any of the terms.


If you want to search for one term but exclude results which have a second term, then use:

  • Term1 NOT Term2
  • Example: Zeta NOT Zambonies

You can use AND, OR, and NOT in various combinations for your search terms.

  • Example: Zeta AND Governor NOT Zambonies

You can use parentheses to control the order in which Boolean terms are applied.

  • Example: (Zeta OR Governor) AND Zambonies
would be equivalent to combining the results of these two searches:
  1. Zeta AND Zambonies
  2. Governor AND Zambonies
  • Example: (Zeta AND Governor) OR Zambonies
would be equivalent to combining the results of these two searches:
  1. Zeta AND Governor
  2. Zambonies

Wildcard characters

The following characters are the available wildcard charaters:

  •  ?
  • *

These characters cannot be used as the first character in a term. However they can be used multiple times elsewhere in a term including as the last character of a term.


If you want to search for any term which differs from a given term by one letter, then use the single character wildcard.

  • Example: "Z?ta" will match these terms (amongst many others):
Zata, Zbta, Zcta

If you want to search for any term which differs from a given term by zero or more letters, then use the multiple character wildcard.

  • Example: "Z*ta" will match these terms (amongst many others):
Zta, Zata, Zaata, Zbta

Fuzzy searches

The ~ character allows fuzzy searching. If you want to search for terms which are similar in spelling to a given one, use:

  • Term~
  • Example: Zeta~

An additional optional parameter indicates the required similarity. Use:

  • Term~similarity parameter
  • Example: Zeta~0.8

The value of the parameter is between 0 and 1; with a value closer to 1 only terms with a higher similarity will be matched. The default value used if the parameter is not provided is 0.5.

Search already takes into account differences between American and British spelling as well as common typos.

Technical note: Fuzzy searches are performed using the Levenshtein distance, or Edit Distance algorithm.

Proximity searches

The ~ character also allows for proximity searching. Despite the same character as fuzzy searching being used, the meaning of these two searches is quite different. If you want to search for terms which are within a specified distance away, use:

  • "Term1 Term2"~distance
  • Example: "Zeta Governor"~10

If the distance parameter is omitted, it defaults to zero. This enables search terms which are strings of more than one word to be specified.

  • Example: "box edition"
  • Compare this with the search terms, box edition, or box AND edition.


The ^ character is used at the end of a term to increase the relevance of a term and thus affect the order of search results. Use:

  • Term1^boost factor Term2
  • Example: Zeta^5 Governor

The boost factor defaults to 1. Although the boost factor must be positive, it can be less than 1 (e.g. 0.3).

By Login Name

This field restricts results to those posts with the given forum login name.

Scope in the post

This field determines how much of a post is to be searched. You can choose from the following:

  1. Post title and body
  2. Only post title
  3. Only post body

The default setting is to search both the title and the body of a post.

In Category/Forum

This field allows the search to be restricted to a given forum. The default setting is to search all forums.

By date

This field restricts results to be either newer or older than the following timeframes:

  1. Yesterday
  2. A week ago
  3. 2 weeks ago
  4. A month ago
  5. 3 months ago
  6. 6 months ago
  7. A year ago

By attachment

This field requires results to have at least 0-9 attachments. Given that attachments are disabled in the Yohoho! Puzzle Pirates Forums, this field is not useful at present.

Result per page

This field does not restrict search results. Rather it changes how many results are returned on a page.