My newest daily task is Wordle.  It has quickly become one of the first things I do in the morning. For those of you not on the Wordle train yet, let me explain. Wordle is a daily word game. The rules are simple: you have six guesses to guess a five-letter word. The word changes every day and everyone has the same word. After pressing enter on a guess, the letters will change color: green means the letter is right and in the right place, yellow means right letter wrong place, and gray means the letter isn’t in the word at all. Wordle is a simple game. Not to mention, Wordle will not give you ads or make you watch a 30-second video to play. Each day, you just go to the website and play. It takes about 5-10 minutes to complete and is a great way to get your brain working in the morning or relax at night. The game follows a simple premise but generates challenges and debate. So, what is the story behind this daily game that has taken the world by storm?

Josh Wardle, a software engineer from New York, and his partner love word games. This inspired Wardle to create a game for the two of them to play and it became a pandemic project for them. Much like my own family and friends, his family began playing and loved it. The New York Times, famously known for crosswords puzzles, bought Wordle in late January, escalating the game's popularity. Now, over 300,000 people play the game.

I was introduced to Wordle a couple of weeks ago by a friend and immediately told my family and friends about the game. Now we have daily conversations about the word of the day. Each day we compete to see who can get it in the least amount of guesses, my record is three. Without fail, I receive now daily morning texts from my Mom with the amount of guesses it takes her. She explains her thought process of guesses and if she thought it was a difficult word. Although there are only so many five-letter words out there, some days pose more of a challenge than others. Those who play can attest to this. Some days, I can't help but stare at the screen and wonder, "what is this?”

Wordle has become an internet sensation. While some people dive right in and guess, some apply a strategy. The first word is arguably the most important as it sets you up for success. I start with “adieu” because it contains every vowel but "o." It gives me a clear idea of what vowels are in the word. Some people choose to start with a different word every day. Other popular first words are “audio” or “raise” because of the amount of vowels they have. With all the praise the game is receiving, the game has received some backlash for obscure words after being bought by the New York Times. This past week, for instance, several of the winning words such as “caulk” and “swill” were disliked by many for being too niche. While some words are easier than others to guess, Wordle keeps users coming back day after day to guess the word.

Play Wordle on New York Times Games.