Wordle is already one of the best things to go viral this year. By now you may have heard of this very short but very sweet word game, which comes with an exceedingly simple premise: guess the five-letter word of the day in just six tries. The game began to take off with the gray, yellow and green blocks that have been jamming up social media, with the ambiguity of these brightly coloured icons, and a succinct description of your score and attempts, capturing the attention of curious doom-scrollers on Twitter.
Chances are, you probably saw these same grids online—Twitter, perhaps—wondered what the big fuss is about, and searched it up on Google. These posts function like a secret handshake; those in the know will understand what these icons mean, perhaps even weep with envy at the sheer brilliance of these attempts. Meanwhile, those who don’t will be compelled to wade into the thick of it all, and discover what all these mean. Wordle thrives on this virality, and its pure ingenuity lies in how keenly it understands the idiosyncrasies and behaviour of social media.
More than that, Wordle is also the best antidote to morning fatigue, much like a fresh burst of caffeine injected straight into your noggins. Think for a few good minutes what the word of the day is—just about enough time to refresh your mind—and then you can move on to the rest of your tasks. The beauty of it is in Wordle’s clarity, simplicity, and sheer accessibility, as anyone can play as long as they have a smart device or a laptop. Plus, it’ll usually take you no more than ten minutes to complete. A green tile tells you you got the right letter in the right place, yellow for the right letter in the wrong place, and gray for the wrong letter entirely. Deduce the right word by mentally running through all possible combinations of these alphabets, and then—eureka! Feel the rush of finally getting the puzzle right wash over you. And then you eagerly await a new word the next day.
Right now the web is ablaze with tips on mastering this sweet game—many have agreed that ‘adieu’ may be your best first bet, since the word contains the most number of vowels, while others have suggested the Wheel of Fortune gambit of using words containing the letters RSTLNE. Then there are the competitive sort, the ones attempting to finish the game in the shortest amount of entries possible. Perhaps even in the mythical first try! There’s even a hard mode, too, if you crave for a greater challenge, which you can toggle under the cog icon at the top right corner of your screen.
It may be a really short game, but Wordle is just enticing enough to keep everyone playing together everyday, even bringing communities together to discuss more about the word of the day. Features Editor Ben Sludge is, too, charmed by the gentle prospects of this game, and declared it the internet’s worst-kept secret for its capacity to not incite people into cheating—a rarity among gaming circles. And Wordle is free! Free to play, free of ads, and free of attempts to monetize a viral moment. Wordle is not particularly challenging, but it’s an incredibly brilliant little thing. Come end of this year, let’s see how many Game of the Year lists Wordle will make an appearance in—who knows, it may very well appear in mine.
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