Best Strategies, Starting Words, and Pro Tips for Wordle

Who could have predicted that a blend of Mastermind and Wheel of Fortune, sprinkled with a pinch of Hangman, would become such a colossal sensation? If you’ve somehow missed out on this mobile and PC gaming phenomenon, you’ve likely come across those peculiar, colorful grids people have been sharing online, and wondered what all the excitement is about.

Wordle is a brilliant yet straightforward puzzle game that will captivate you day after day. Don’t let those eccentric boxes deter you; this is a game that anyone can grasp within minutes.

While you might be able to dive straight into Wordle, winning is an entirely different tale. You only have six attempts to solve the daily puzzle, and there’s only one puzzle each day. If you fail to solve it within those six guesses, you’ll have to wait until the following day to give it another shot with a fresh word. If you’re eager to maximize your chances of cracking the daily puzzle, here are some tried and tested tips, along with the best starting words, to help you conquer Wordle.

How to Play Wordle

A Wordle grid showing multiple words and hints.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

If you’re new to the world of Wordle, here’s a quick rundown on how the game operates. Each day, a new five-letter word is chosen, which remains the same for all players. Your task is to enter five-letter words in an attempt to deduce the secret word of the day. Each letter you guess will be color-coded: Green signifies a correct letter in the correct position, yellow denotes a correct letter in the wrong position, and gray suggests that the letter is not part of the word at all. It’s important to note that every guess must be an actual dictionary word, so random combinations of letters won’t cut it.

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Given that all players tackle the same word each day, when the game prompts you to share your results, it only displays colored grids indicating your progress. This ensures that no one’s surprised by the word of the day. The faster you guess the entire word correctly, the more impressive your achievement!

Best Starting Words and Winning Tips

Wordle may seem like a game of chance, but there are a few effective strategies you can employ to gather as many clues as possible in just a few attempts. By doing so, you enhance your chances of deciphering the final word before exhausting your allotted guesses.

The initial guess is the most critical. You want to obtain as many green and yellow letters as possible to guide your subsequent attempts. Vowels, such as A, E, I, O, and U, are the crucial letters to focus on at the beginning. Words containing as many of these vowels as possible serve as excellent starting points. Some popular starting words that have yielded favorable results include “adieu,” “media,” “arise,” and “radio.” Just remember to avoid selecting words with duplicate letters so that you gain fresh information at each step.

Assuming that your first guess provides a solid foundation, your second word should increasingly incorporate common consonants like R, S, and T. Some additional strong choices here include “stern,” “irate,” and “atone.” However, since each day presents a different solution, it’s crucial not to reuse any letters that previously appeared gray. This may require a bit more mental effort to come up with a word, but there’s nothing to gain from using a letter that you already know is not part of the answer.

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Lastly, keep in mind that words can contain duplicate letters. Such words pose a greater challenge to unravel but are also less common. If you find yourself stuck in the final round or two, this is an essential factor to consider.

In November 2022, The New York Times, which oversees Wordle, introduced a significant change to the game. They appointed a dedicated editor responsible for the game, potentially altering the list of valid solutions to keep things fresh. Notably, plural words formed by merely adding “es” or “s” to a singular word are no longer accepted as valid answers. For instance, “boats” and “foxes” cannot be correct Wordle answers anymore. However, plurals like “fungi” or “geese” continue to be valid. Crucially, you can still guess any five-letter dictionary word to obtain yellow or green letters, but it doesn’t necessarily guarantee availability as a future solution.

Apart from that, don’t forget to enjoy the experience! Wordle is designed to be a delightful brain-teaser, not a source of stress. Embrace the journey, expand your vocabulary, and proudly share your grids on social media to showcase your skills with everyone else! And if you find yourself in a bind, check out today’s Wordle answer here.

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