The latest craze: Wordle


Photo courtesy of Polygon

It is as simple as one word. Five letters. The catch is you only get six tries and the only way to find the correct word is to guess other five-letter words. Wordle is a daily word game created by Brooklyn software engineer, Josh Wardle. Every day there is a random five-letter word that you have to figure out. When you lock in a guess, the letter tiles change colors. Green means you have guessed a letter in the word in the correct spot, yellow means you have guessed a letter that is in the word but in the wrong spot and gray means that letter is not in the word at all. 

Wardle began to work on the game’s prototype when he was living in Silicon Valley working for social news and Reddit. The game was originally invented for Wardle’s partner, Palak Shah, a crossword puzzle enthusiast. Shah continues to be involved with the game today, as the 2,315 five-letter word bank was created  by her. The words were then categorized into words she knew, did not know and words she was somewhat familiar with. According to The New York Times, the game went from having 300,000 people to over a million daily players in the span of two weeks. 

The game has been taking the media by storm, with people posting their results, statistics and starting word strategies like the notorious “adieu” or “crate.” One of the features of Wordle that make it so addicting is the ability to share and boast about your results. When you identify the word or when the word is revealed, you can text or tweet your results showcasing the number of tries it took, the letters you immediately got right or even your failure to guess correctly. 

Wordle had even managed to possibly save the life of Denyse Holt. A naked man broke into Holt’s home, took her hostage and locked her in the bathroom of her basement for seventeen hours. Holt’s daughter, concerned for her 80-year-old mother, called the police asking to perform a wellness check. Officers noticed shattered glass on the ground from a broken window, notified SWAT, and apprehended the man. The reason for her daughter’s concern was because Holt had not shared her daily Wordle results. A life was saved thanks to Wordle.

Because of Wordle’s continuously increasing popularity, it was difficult and stressful for Wardle to maintain. This prompted Wardle to sell his beloved game to The New York Times for a price “in the low seven figures.” The game will still continue to be free for all with no advertisements and no changes to the gameplay. The internet is scattered with different variations of the game Nerdle for those math geniuses, Taylordle for the Swifties out there and for those who think Wordle is too easy, try doing eight at once and play Octordle. Whether or not you successfully guess the word in six tries, there will always be redemption within twenty four hours.