Who would’ve guessed that a simple mix of Mastermind and Wheel of Fortune, with a little bit of Hangman thrown in, would become such a massive hit? If you somehow haven’t heard of this new mobile and PC gaming phenomenon, you may have seen the weird colored grids people have been posting online and been confused about what all the fuss is about.
Wordle is a simple but genius example of a puzzle game that will draw you back day after day. Don’t let those weird-colored boxes throw you off; this is a game anyone can pick up in a few minutes.
You might be able to jump right into Wordle but actually winning is another story. You only get a total of six attempts to solve the daily puzzle, and there’s only one puzzle per day. If you don’t manage to solve it in that amount of guesses, you have to wait until the next day to try again with the next word. If you want to maximize your chances of solving your daily puzzle, here are tried and true tips, and best starting words, for Wordle.
How to play Wordle
If you’re brand new to this world of Wordle, here’s a brief rundown of how the game works. Every day, a new five-letter world is chosen that is the same for everyone playing that day. Your challenge is to type in five-letter words to try and figure out what the day’s word is. Every letter in the word you guess will be given a color: Green means you guessed the correct letter, and it is in the correct spot; yellow means that letter is in the answer but not in the right spot; and gray letters are not in the word at all. Each guess must be a dictionary word, so you can’t just throw in five random letters.
Since everyone playing gets the same word each day, when the game prompts you to share your results, it will only show the colors of how you did in a grid so no one is spoiled on the day’s word. The faster you guess the entire word, the more impressive!
Best Wordle starting words, and tips to win
It might seem like Wordle is all luck, but there are a few good practices you can use to help get as many clues as possible in just a few guesses, making it that much more likely you can figure out the final word before you run out of tries.
The most important guess is your first. You want to get as many green and yellow letters here as possible to help guide your future guesses. The most important letters to get started with are vowels — A, E, I, O, and U — so words containing as many of these as possible are a great start. Some popular starting words people have had good luck with are “adieu,” “media,” “arise,” and “radio.” Just make sure not to pick a word with double letters, to get as much new info as possible.
Your second word, assuming that the first one gave you a good jumping-off point, should begin to lean more heavily on common consonants like R, S, and T. More good ones here we’ve seen are “stern,” “irate,” and “atone.” This is where things will vary due to each day being a different solution, but you never want to reuse any letters from a prior round that showed up as gray. It may push you to think a little harder to come up with a word, but there’s nothing to be gained from using a letter you know isn’t in the answer.
Finally, keep in mind that words can have a duplicate letter. These words are the toughest to get, but also aren’t super common. If you get to the final round or two and are stumped, it’s a great thing to keep in mind.
The New York Times, which operates Wordle, made a sizable change to the way the game works in November 2022. A dedicated editor is now in charge of the game, and will potentially make changes to the solutions list to liven things up. Most notably, plural words that simply add an “es” or “s” to a singular word will not be valid answers anymore; for example “boats” and “foxes” cannot be a Wordle answer anymore. Other plurals like “fungi” or “geese” will still be valid. Crucially, all five-letter dictionary words are still valid to guess and get yellow or green letters from, but that doesn’t mean they’re available as a future solution.
Other than that, just have fun with it! Wordle is meant to be a fun little brain-teaser, not something to get stressed out over. Enjoy the ride, learn some new words, and start posting your own grids all over social media to show off with everyone else! And if you’re stuck, here’s today’s Wordle answer.