In order to win, players must correctly predict a five-letter word in six attempts. Following each guess, a colour is chosen for each letter: green, yellow, or grey. Green denotes that the letter is correct and in the proper place; yellow, that it is in the answer but not in the proper place; and grey, that it is not in the answer at all. Multiple instances of a letter in a guess, such as the “o”s in “robot,” will only be taken into account if the same letter also appears more than once in the solution. highlighted in green or yellow. Otherwise, excessively repeated letters will be highlighted in grey. Players must add letters indicated as green and yellow in their future guesses when playing the game on its “hard mode” setting. The Everybody has the same daily word. For colorblind accessibility, the game also offers a dark theme and a high-contrast theme that switches the colour scheme from green to orange and blue.



Early development

Rise in popularity

Acquisition by the New York Times Company

Statistics were carried over when the game was formally relocated to The New York Times’ website on February 10; however, some participants claimed that their daily streaks reset after the transition. The Times’s producers only wanted to alter one key aspect of Wordle for two reasons: changing the game’s programming language to React to enable integration with the Times online games app and adding functionality to allow users to sign in using their Times accounts as an additional method of progress tracking.

The acquisition of Wordle, which took place on March 31, 2022, attracted “tens of millions” of additional players to the Times puzzle website and app, many of whom continued to play the other puzzles the Times had to offer. The Times hired Tracy Bennett as a dedicated editor in November 2022 to choose the word of the day from a vetted list. Speaking to Today in January 2023, she revealed that the words are first chosen at random, but she then evaluates each phrase for appropriateness. Those “if there are any, like, secondary meanings that,” she gets rid of them Avoids words that are hard to locate because they share four letters with numerous other words, such as “found,” which has eight alternatives for the first letter, and those that may be either profane or disparaging. Before her appointment, when abortion was a hot topic, “Foetus” was removed, and she checks “to see if there’s anything that would make one of those words feel more hurtful or insensitive than normal.” Apart from those with too many options, like “found,” the words that had drawn the most criticism had were new words like “parer,” “Rupee,” and the very American “condo.”

The most popular Google search in the world and among American users in 2022 was “wordle.” Due of Wordle’s popularity, players searching for information on

The most popular Google search in the world and among American users in 2022 was “wordle.” Due of Wordle’s popularity, players searching for information on discover how top Google search trends were impacted by Wordle replies. Wordle responses for the words cacao, homer, canny, foray, trove, saute, and tacit were seven of the top ten most looked-up word definitions in 2022.

Adaptations and clones

At the beginning of 2022, Wordle gained popularity quickly, and many copies of it soon followed. Some of these copies changed the recipe using fresh techniques. The adversarial Wordle variant Absurdle, developed by British programmer qntm, maintains the integrity of the previously provided hints while changing the target word with each guess. Others replicate Wordle’s functionality while altering the words that players must guess. These clones include everything from guessing swear phrases in Sweardle to NFL players as in Weddle to translations into foreign languages. Wordle has also been ported to a variety of earlier devices, including Gameboy Wordle for the Nintendo Game Boy Wordle DS for the Nintendo 3DS and a Wordle-only version for the Nokia N-Gage.

Even if the gameplay of other games differed significantly from Wordle’s, they used the “-le” suffix to signify a relationship. These include Semantle, in which users search for words based on their semantic similarity. Redactle, in which the majority of a Wikipedia article is hidden until the player chooses words to expose in order to identify it, and Waffle, in which players must arrange letters into six different words in a five-by-five space, are two examples of games where this is required. A number of non-word games, including Worldle, in which players must recognise a nation or area by its silhouette, have also gained popularity as a result of the game. If the player guesses incorrectly, they are provided the direction and distance from the incorrect location to the correct answer in place of text-based hints. a Heardle A Wordle-style game centred on song identification was purchased by Spotify in July 2022 for an undisclosed fee. For an undisclosed fee, Merriam-Webster acquired Quordle in January 2023, which allows users to work on four word puzzles at once. The game was then moved to Merriam-Webster’s website.

Early in January 2022, a number of ad-supported Wordle clones debuted on Apple’s App Store, although they barely changed the formula—some of them even used the title of the game. Users kept looking for more Wordle imitations on the App Store, and by the end of January 11, almost all of them had been taken down. Soon after purchasing Wordle, The New York Times submitted an application to register a trademark to assist safeguard the intellectual property.


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