Wordle: What You Need to Know (2023)

When all is said and done, 2022 may go down as the year of Wordle. Its become a daily staple for millions around the world.

By this time you're mostly likely vaguely aware of Wordle, but if you're looking for insights into its origins, and how it became such a hit, here's everything you need to know.

What is Wordle?

Wordle is a daily word game you can find online here. It's fun, simple and, like a crossword, can only be played once a day. Every 24 hours there's a new word of the day, and it's up to you to figure out what it is. The site itself does a fantastic job of explaining the rules:

Wordle: What You Need to Know (1)

Wordle gives players six chances to guess a randomly selected five-letter word. As shown above, if you have the right letter in the right spot, it shows up green. A correct letter in the wrong spot shows up yellow. A letter that isn't in the word in any spot shows up gray.

You can enter a total of six words, meaning you can enter five burner words from which you can learn hints about the letters and their placements. Then you get one chance to put those hints to use. Or you can try for performance and guess the word of the day in three, two or even one go.

Simple stuff, but also incredibly compelling.

So it's a word game? Big deal...

Yeah, it's just a word game. But it's super popular: Over 300,000 people were playing it daily by January, according to The New York Times. That popularity may sound perplexing, but there are a few tiny details that have resulted in everyone going absolutely bonkers for it.

There's only one puzzle per day:This creates a certain level of stakes. You only get one shot at the Wordle. If you mess up, you have to wait until tomorrow to get a brand new puzzle.

Everyone is playing the exact same puzzle:This is crucial, as it makes it easier to ping your buddy and chat about the day's puzzle. "Today's was tough!" "How did you get on?" "Did you get it?" Which takes us to the next point...

It's easy to share your results:Once you've successfully or unsuccessfully done the puzzle for the day, you're invited to share your Wordle journey for the day. If you tweet the image, it looks like this...

Note that the word and letters you chose are obscured. All that's shown is your journey toward the word in a series of yellow, green and gray boxes.

It's compelling. If you get it easily, maybe in the second or third try, there's a gloating element whereby you must show your followers how smart you are and share.

If you get it by the skin of your teeth in the sixth go, that's also a cool story. But most importantly, the puzzle itself isn't spoiled.

OMG IT HAPPENED

🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩

(Video) How To Play Wordle: The New Game That’s Taking The Internet By Storm

Wordle 184 1/6

— Jason Imms 🅽🅸🅲🅴 (@jasonimms) December 21, 2021

So Wordle isn't just a word game, it's a conversation starter and a chance to show off on social media. That's why it's going viral.

Tips and tricks

If you're a word game purist, you may want to avoid the following tips and rely entirely on your own instincts. For everyone else who's sick of seeing gray boxes, here are some tips that you may find helpful.

Choosing your first word: The first word is arguably the most important. To maximize the value of your opening gambit, choose a word with three vowels and five different letters. Some examples: orate, media, radio. I always use "adieu" for some reason. It's a habit and I'm refusing to break it.

I just finished reading a fascinating piece by Tyler Glaiel, a programmer and game designer who tried to figure out the best possible starting word. Apparently we should all be kicking off Wordle with the word "roate." Honestly, read this whole article, it's great.

Avoid reusing grays: There's a keyboard at the bottom of the Wordle board that shows what letters are green, yellow and gray. Avoid reusing letters that have come up gray. Yes, this sounds obvious. But it can take time and effort to think of five-letter words that don't use letters you've already tried. That effort will pay off.

Letters can appear twice: This complicates matters, especially when you're running out of letters to try on word four or five. But letters often recur, as with words like chill, sissy and ferry having been the correct answers in the past.

Wordle, Wordle everywhere

  • Beyond Wordle: All the New York Times' Puzzles and Games
  • Best Wordle Start Words, Strategies and How to Win
  • Dordle, a More Evil Wordle, Makes You Tackle 2 Words at Once

Who made Wordle?

Wordle is the work of software engineer Josh Wardle, who originally created the game for his partner, a fan of word games, and tells the BBC it will never become laden with ads. Extremely online people may remember Wardle as the creator of Place, an utterly wild collaborative art project/social experiment that sent the internet into a tizzy in April 2017.

Place was a shared online space that allowed literally anyone to fight over what was drawn there. It resulted in huge, sprawling communities battling over space on this gigantic online canvas.

It ultimately ended up looking like this:

(Video) Solving Wordle using information theory

Wordle: What You Need to Know (2)

Wordle got a mention in The New York Times in November of 2021, but really got traction when the share element got added.

Added a share button to Wordle that generates a spoiler-free emoji grid for you. Shoutout to @irihapeta for inventing such a cool way to share your results each day.

👇

⬛⬛⬛⬛⬛
🟨⬛🟨🟩⬛
🟩🟩🟩🟩🟩

Wordle 180 3/6

Try it out: https://t.co/pZTmeT1p7E

— Josh Wardle (@powerlanguish) December 16, 2021

In a Reddit post, Wardle said he wanted Wordle to feel like a croissant, a "delightful snack" that's enjoyed occasionally. This is explicitly why there's only one puzzle per day. "Enjoyed too often," he explained, "and they lose their charm," Wardle says.

Agreed.

New York Times acquisition

At the end of January, creator Josh Wardlesold Wordle to the New York Timesfor a figure "in the low seven figures."

(Video) Everything you need to know about Wordle | Trends

Wardle noted that his "game has gotten bigger than I ever imagined" and added he's "just one person."

The game will ultimately become part of New York Times subscription puzzle service, but Wardle made sure that Wordle would remain free-to-play and that current streaks would be preserved in the move.

"It is important to me that, as Wordle grows, it continues to provide a great experience to everyone," Wardle said. "Given this, I am incredibly pleased to announce that I've reached an agreement with The New York Times for them totake over running Wordlegoing forward."

Has the New York Times changed anything?

Following Wordle's acquisition, the internet scuttlebutt was that the game had gotten more challenging. Fact check: False.

According to The New York Times: "Nothing has changed about the game play," the Times' communications director, Jordan Cohen, said to CNET in an email, but things have changed a little since then.

Now the New York Times has assigned a full time Editor to run Wordle. This means the daily puzzle is drawing from a more curated list of words.

"The game will have aTimes-curated word list and will be programmed and tested like the Spelling Bee and the Crossword," said the New York Times in a statement.

Hilariously, the statement even made reference to that earlier, "more challenging" rumor.

"After nearly a year of speculation, it will finally be our fault if Wordle is harder," read the statement.

(Video) How To Win Wordle Every Time #shorts

Wordle clones...

Since the success of Wordle, there's been clones. Lots of clones. Some have been cynical cash grabs, but a huge amount of them are unique, interesting alternatives.

  • Worldle invites you to guess countries based on their outline.
  • Squabble is a multiplayer, Battle Royale version of Wordle.
  • Dordle forces you to solve two Wordles at once.

That's just the tip of the iceberg. Here's a fairly comprehensive list of word games you can check out if you get tired of the original.

FAQs

What is the secret to solving Wordle? ›

While picking a new word is a trick, starting Wordle with the same word every day is another strategy players have been using. Choosing words with at least two to three vowels along with most common consonants, such as 'sauce,' 'saute' and 'dance', is an efficient way of arriving at the Wordle of the day.

What are the 4 best words for Wordle? ›

While WordleBot — an AI from Wordle owner New York Times which analyzes your strategy — recommends SLATE, CRANE, SLANT, CRATE and CARTE as the strongest openings, Paskov says the issue is that analysis wasn't done using MIT's computational capabilities.

What are the 3 best words to start with in Wordle? ›

So RATIO first, then MENDS, then LUCKY. That's it. With those three choices, you'll have slimmed down the list of possible letters to the point that figuring out the solution with your final guesses becomes significantly easier.

What is the #1 first word in Wordle? ›

Wordle is a daily online word game in which players have six tries to guess a five-letter word. The answer is the same for all players. And now, without further ado (not "adieu") the perfect starting word is — "crane."

What is the best 5-letter word to start Wordle with? ›

According to one analysis, the letter E appears most frequently in English-language words featured in a condensed version of the Oxford Dictionary, followed by A, R, I, O, T, N, and S. So starting words like “ratio,” “irate,” “stain,” or “stare” that include those commonly used letters are great options.

What are the 2 best words to start Wordle? ›

Best Wordle starting words
  • Slice. Slice is the best starting word according to this research, and it's easy to see why. ...
  • Tried. Just like in the example above, 'tried' lets you leap closer to the solution by finding or cutting out some extremely common letters. ...
  • Crane. ...
  • Bakes. ...
  • Reach. ...
  • Roast.
17 Feb 2022

What is the best 6 letter word to start Wordle? ›

The next most common letters were: “a” (39 percent), “r” (34 percent), “o” (29 percent), and “i” and “s” tied for fifth (28 percent). Out of these six letters, one word immediately “arose” as the best option!

What 5-letter word uses the most vowels? ›

Top-Words with 5 Letters with mostly vowels
  • MIAOU. ...
  • ADIEU. ...
  • AUDIO. ...
  • AULOI. ...
  • LOUIE. ...
  • AUREI. ...
  • OURIE. ...
  • URAEI.

Is there a perfect Wordle strategy? ›

In Wordle, an optimal strategy means avoiding repeating letters as much as possible. Instead of rushing to try to guess the actual solution on your second try, an ideal second word would repeat no letters from your first guess.

Which letters are most common in 5-letter words? ›

This means the top most commonly used letters in 5-letter words (in terms of total frequency as well as average frequency) were the letters A, E, S, O, R, I, L, T, etc. I decided to focus on the top six letters since the average frequency dropped significantly after the sixth letter.

Do most people get Wordle every day? ›

There is only one Wordle game released per day — at midnight — and most Americans who still play (57%) say they attempt to complete the puzzle every day. Another one-quarter (25%) are playing Wordle most days, and 18% say they play less frequently.

What is the Wordle word 257? ›

The word for Wordle 257 is MOURN. The word is a verb in English and means “to feel and show great sadness, especially because somebody has died.” Today's word was a tough one to guess, right?

Are there 5 words that use 25 letters? ›

The idea is to select 5 words that have distinct letters so you'll end up with 25 characters.
...
For this list:
  • brick.
  • feast.
  • glent.
  • jumpy.
  • vozhd.
  • waqfs.
6 Feb 2022

What 5 words should you use in Wordle? ›

Excel found that s, e, a, r, and o are the top five most common letters. "So a word that has those five letters is going to win," Jelen concluded in his video. Jelen recommended 'arose,' but he also pointed out that 'i' is the sixth most common letter, meaning that a word like 'arise' or 'raise' is also a good bet.

Which 5 letter word has no vowels? ›

Crwth and cwtch are Welsh words that English has adopted. Grrrl and grrls are slang words, and phpht is a commonly accepted onomatopoeic word.

Has anyone got a Wordle first try? ›

Based on his findings, O'Connor has determined that approximately 1% of the players who post their results to Twitter are guessing the correct word on their first attempt, and somewhere between 3% and 9% guess correctly on the second try.

What's a good Wordle average? ›

Wordle in Four

Most people should, on average, get it in at least 4, even on days where it is harder. Especially if you aren't making risky moves, four guesses should supply you with enough information to make a correct guess.

What word has all 5 vowels? ›

EUNOIA is the shortest word in English which has all five vowels.

What 5 letter word has all vowels? ›

Unfortunately, there are no words in English that are made up entirely of vowels, so we will have to settle for the next best thing: a five-letter word containing four of them.

What is the hardest 5 letter word? ›

Sesquipedalian. This word means 'long-winded' words, such as Sesquipedalian.

What is the most common Wordle opener? ›

Here are 10 of the most efficient starters for your next Wordle round.
  • Trace. ...
  • Serai. ...
  • Arose. ...
  • Tales. ...
  • Cones. ...
  • Hates. ...
  • Audio. “AUDIO” is a community favourite that we've seen said by many as their go-to starting word. ...
  • Adieu. No, we didn't forget about “ADIEU,” but it's not as efficient of a word as you might think.
19 Apr 2022

What 6 letter words have the most vowels? ›

Eunoia, at six letters long, is the shortest word in the English language that contains all five main vowels.

What are good Wordle openers? ›

According to the data, the best Wordle opening is ORATE, with a mean score of 7.46 points. Coming in at a close second is AROSE. RAISE, which was my guess, doesn't do too badly, settling in at number 14. ADIEU, on the other hand, comes in at number 1057.

Do any 5 letter words have 3 vowels? ›

The following is a list of 5 letter words with 3 vowels: Abide. Abide. Abies.

Does Wordle use plurals? ›

In addition, the Times announced some rule changes to the game. No longer will the answer be a plural of a three- or four-letter word, with “S” or “ES” added to the end. Plurals, on the whole, are not being done away with, the paper added.

What word has no vowel in it? ›

The words without vowels are why, hmm, hymn, xlnt, wynd, myths, thy, dry, cyst, etc.

What is the best first word for Wordle unlimited? ›

Some Wordle players have found success in starting with a word that has several vowels in it. “Adieu,” “audio” or “canoe,” for instance, may be good words to start with because at least three out of the five letters are vowels.

What is the average number of Wordle attempts? ›

On average 95% of target words can be solved within 6 guesses with average game length is approximately 4 rounds. By the time the third guess has been made, a good player will have located about 4 target letters with 2 or 3 in their correct positions.

Do most players solve Wordle? ›

“Wordle” players are quite good at the game — or at least that's what they say. Seventy-four percent of players said they successfully solve the puzzle either “always” or “sometimes.” Meanwhile, 17 percent said they solve it “rarely” and only 9 percent said they “never” complete the puzzle.

Can you cheat on Wordle? ›

Simply open Wordle in Google Chrome's Incognito Mode or the Microsoft Edge InPrivate mode, complete the puzzle (or not) and note the winning word. Then close the Incognito / InPrivate mode and play Wordle in your browser, with all of your cookies enabled.

What are the odds of getting Wordle on the second try? ›

While the figure of 6.5% assumes perfect play, if you're picking any reasonably sensible first guess, and then something consistent with that guess on your second try, your odds are still over 4%.

What is the most used word in Wordle? ›

Most common Wordle starting words

ADIEU — ADIEU was the most common response, with a total of 21 submissions. We think this is a smart word to use, as it contains nearly all of the vowels, except O, allowing you to quickly assess which vowels are or aren't in the final word.

What happens if you don't get Wordle in 6 tries? ›

“But really it was like my seventh try, or eighth try.” It's important to switch after your fifth try, she stressed, because if you get to the sixth and don't get it, the game is over because Wordle automatically tells you the word.

Is guessing Wordle in 3 tries good? ›

Based on the data shared by the unofficial account, Wordle Stats, of the 241,489 players who shared their Wordle results on Twitter on January 22, 2022, approximately 1% of them solved it on the first try, 3% on the second try, 17% on the third, 33% on the fourth guess, 29% on the fifth attempt, and 15% on the final ...

Is Wordle a skill or luck? ›

WordleBot is a tool that will take your completed Wordle and analyze it for you. It will give you overall scores for luck and skill on a scale from 0 to 99 and tell you at each turn what, if anything, you could have done differently — if solving Wordles in as few steps as possible is your goal.

What was Wordle 256? ›

The word for Wordle 256 is NASTY.

What is todays Wordle 305? ›

The answer is: CARGO.

What's today's Wordle word March 3? ›

The Wordle for March 3 is MOURN.

What word uses every alphabet? ›

Pangrams are words or sentences containing every letter of the alphabet at least once; the best known English example being A quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog .

Has Juice been a Wordle word? ›

A fellow Wordle player who shared his screen with us revealed that his Wordle starting word is always "JUICE," and it rarely came in handy for him more than it did today.

What is a burner word in Wordle? ›

A letter that isn't in the word in any spot shows up gray. With each “burner” word, you can learn hints about the letter and their placements, and then, you get one chance to guess the Wordle. This simple yet entertaining game became extremely viral within the first two months of 2022.

Is a Wordle average of 4 good? ›

Wordle in four is the last respectable score. If this was “Lord of the Rings,” a score of four would be Minas Tirath, the last stop on the way to fiery Mordor, and a score of five. Most people should, on average, get it in at least 4, even on days where it is harder.

What 5 letter word has the most vowels? ›

Top-Words with 5 Letters with mostly vowels
  • MIAOU. ...
  • ADIEU. ...
  • AUDIO. ...
  • AULOI. ...
  • LOUIE. ...
  • AUREI. ...
  • OURIE. ...
  • URAEI.

What is the best 5 letter word to start Wordle with? ›

According to one analysis, the letter E appears most frequently in English-language words featured in a condensed version of the Oxford Dictionary, followed by A, R, I, O, T, N, and S. So starting words like “ratio,” “irate,” “stain,” or “stare” that include those commonly used letters are great options.

What letters are most common in 5 letter words? ›

This means the top most commonly used letters in 5-letter words (in terms of total frequency as well as average frequency) were the letters A, E, S, O, R, I, L, T, etc. I decided to focus on the top six letters since the average frequency dropped significantly after the sixth letter.

Videos

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