I have 40 characters, (broken up into two lines of 20,) to send hints to users about the location of a "prize" buried somewhere in a grid.
There is ambiguity when I tell the user if, at any time during the exercise, they have visited the same square as the prize. Previously I would send one of these messages:
You have not passed the prize yet.
You have already passed the prize.
If the user has just entered the same square as the prize, it should count as a pass. This is problematic, because the phrasing of the hint makes most users believe they have already missed it, while it's entirely possible the prize is currently below their feet.
Users agree that a "pass" involves walking into the prize's square, then walking away from it - which is not what I mean to imply. This is confusing for everyone, but I can't seem to rephrase the hint without it becoming more confusing, or completely giving away the position of the prize.
How could I unambiguously convey this in 40 characters or less?