Wordle Gains Popularity Across The Country

2022 has been the year of Wordle. The high stakes game where you only get six chances to guess a five letter word, very similar to color game Mastermind, has gained immense popularity over the past few months. 

Josh Wardle created Wordle as a competition between himself and his partner. The game’s name is a play on his last name. It was launched in October, but gained popularity in the new year, especially in Walpole. 

“I did not start playing Wordle until about a month ago, but ever since I try to play everyday” junior Autumn Mathews said. 

Wardle formerly created “The Button” and “Place” while working for Reddit. Rather than a team of engineers, Wordle was created by him and his partner Palah Skikah with time to kill during the pandemic. He had a similar idea in 2013, but his friends did not like it as much, so he reinvented the idea in 2020 after getting into crosswords and other word games. 

Wordle has been appreciated for having just the game and no advertisements or pop-ups. Wardle saw people sharing their results by typing out a grid with different colored emojis, so in mid-December he built an automated way for players to brag about their score without spoiling the word. Similarly, he never used notifications or reminders to get users to come back because he wanted to leave his users alone and figured they would come back if they wanted to—and they did, with millions of users every day. 

The New York Times bought Wordle in January, which Josh Wardle was largely comfortable with because it had originated based on the love for other New York Times word games. When the New York Times bought the game, they changed some words that were believed to be harder. On Feb. 15 people who were still playing under the original game got a different word that caused controversy. 

Some of the latest hype around Wordle includes what people’s starter words are, including whether they change day to day. Popular words include “adieu,” “steak” and “audio” in order to try to get multiple vowels. Students and Faculty at Walpole High School have their own favorite words. 

“I try to change my start words up every few weeks, but right now I am using crane,” senior Katie Gillis said. “Past words I used include stern and tears.” 

Lately, people have been disappointed when the word of the day is spoiled for them, including at Walpole High School. Since it is such a popular game, it has been a frequent game topic of conversation and many people have had the word of the day spoiled for themselves if they cannot solve it fast enough. 

“It’s really frustrating when people give it up at school, but it’s funny to get it on the first try and brag about it to friends, so it’s kind of funny,” junior Kieran Stover said.  

Wordle continues to gain popularity with increasing users and people getting better at guessing the word in less tries. Now, there are games based off of Wordle including “Heardle” for music and “Taylordle” that is the equivalent game for Taylor Swift related words.