Image of the first chapter of Monument Valley, annotated with the 'tap handle' circled and an arrow pointing to it

I am looking for the name of this sort of tap handle. This is a screenshot of it in the game Monument Valley. It has four spokes and can be rotated, behaving as one would expect of a similar design on a bathroom tap releasing water.

It was during a game design class, that I am no longer a part of, where the teacher told us that there was a specific name for that sort of tool. But I have forgotten the name and I was wondering if anyone might know.

I tried searching things like "tap handle name", "tap handle four spokes name game design", but couldn’t find the term for it. I was expecting it to not just be limited to game design, since, in that lesson, the teacher also mentioned the book The Design of Everyday Things by Don Norman and I was thinking that it might be used as a general term for those types of tap handles. (He mentioned the book for the term "affordances" (which I had heard of before), in the context of the tap handle looking like what it does, and relying on that familiarity of users likely having seen those sorts of tap handles in their everyday lives before). But I also couldn’t find the name when I added the term "affordances" to the search.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Google tells me it is a "twist tap". Does that help? \$\endgroup\$
    – Weckar E.
    Nov 9, 2020 at 7:17

1 Answer 1


I'm not aware of a specific term used for this kind of widget in UX/UI design specifically (the way we have names for the hamburger menu or kebab/dango menu)

But searching for "cross handle" turns up lots of physical handles with a similar look, mainly for bathroom and kitchen faucets — though you can also get some more general plumbing handles by prefixing it with "valve":

Image search showing faucet handles

I think describing it as a cross handle affordance is reasonably descriptive.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Ok after some searching, I managed to find my notes from the time, and the word that I wrote was 'spigot'. So I searched that term up, and it seems the teacher was referring to that part of a tap in general, and not specifically one with four spokes, which I didn’t realise. Since your response directly answers the question I wrote, I will mark it as the answer — 'cross handle' does seem reasonable. \$\endgroup\$
    – icelight
    Nov 10, 2020 at 6:02

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