The New York Times has just purchased viral game sensation Wordle for “a low seven figures”, which has sent a few ripples of anxiety through fans across the world.
The simple daily game – to guess a five-letter word in only six tries – has become a much-loved daily ritual uniting millions of us.
🇫🇷 « Je vois des #SUTOM partout ! »
— NᴏPᴀɪɴ NᴏTʀᴀɪɴ 🚂🚋🚋 (@NoPainNoTrain) January 29, 2022
If you’ve played, you’ll know how attached people are to solving it and sharing the results on social media or more privately with a friend or workmate.
The big question is: Will it remain free?
And also: Will it keep its simple, uncluttered interface without ads?
But most importantly: Will our stats and streaks stay with us so we can brag about them to the world?
So many questions, but so far the answers are all sounding good from the new owner:
— NYTimes Wordplay (@NYTimesWordplay) January 31, 2022
Let’s hope that’s all true, because there’s a lot of this feeling going around right now, and who can blame us really.
— Patricia Mitter (@Pathillita) February 1, 2022
— Trevor Writes 💉x3 (@trevor_writes) February 1, 2022
When @nytimes makes #Wordle a paid app it will be the end of the fun free games market. This was a cultural moment and they are just gonna kill it. Like yeh, you bought it. But like you will just kill a fanbase not make a new one
— Colin Redmann🧢🏳️🌈 (@thecollenman) February 1, 2022
If I were the NY Times I’d make Wordle free to play but charge 99 cents to post your score on Twitter.
— Hemal Jhaveri (@hemjhaveri) January 31, 2022
The game was created by software engineer Josh Wardle, who made it just for his partner, but then it quickly grew since last October to have millions of players worldwide. That viral success, though, is why it’s being sold and Wardle says he’s thrilled about it going to the New York Times.
In posting to Twitter about the sale, Wardle wrote that “it has been incredible to watch the game bring so much joy to so many” but also continued by saying “I’d be lying if I said this hasn’t been overwhelming. After all, I am just one person, and it is important to me that, as Wordle grows, it continues to provide a great experience to everyone.”
— India Digital (@IndiaDigital_) February 1, 2022
But behind the simple game and all the green and yellow grids being shared to social is a rollercoaster of emotions. There’s the pure joy of solving it or the thrill of solving it in two or three guesses (or even one!) through to the pain of failure and the frustration of only having one letter to guess on the last go and still not getting it right. And the discovery that it was using American spellings? Us Aussies collectively had a meltdown!
But the cool thing is, there’s always someone to celebrate and commiserate with. We really are all in this together.
— Sheelagh Brothers (@SheeBrothers) February 1, 2022
Wordle 210 1/6
When your word is the word…🤷♀️
I need to buy me a lottery ticket today. #wordle
— Emma May (@emmagmay) January 15, 2022
— David Bonnici (@David_Bonnici) January 30, 2022
— Georgia Tennant (@georgiaEtennant) January 14, 2022
— Aakash Srivastava (@Aakash__21) January 30, 2022
— Shining Pyramid (@shiningpyramid) January 31, 2022
pivoting to wordle memes pic.twitter.com/ig0MJIEd5o
— angeline rodriguez (@gelrdrgz) January 13, 2022
— Marc L. Steinberg, PhD (@MLSteinberg) January 27, 2022
People who spend the entire working day on the Wordle pic.twitter.com/VlEd6zE6Kf
— Kieran (@kieranjmn) January 14, 2022
Wordle 226 2/6*
— Samiksha (@AlishaaGovenkar) January 30, 2022
— Gabby Zapata (@gabbyzapata) January 31, 2022
Wordle is just Hangman for people who can’t face being responsible for a man’s death
— Ross Sayers (@Sayers33) January 31, 2022
Let’s try this again without spoilers 😂
— Effie, The Original (@EffieJGannon) January 31, 2022
wordle: name a 5-letter word
my brain: …TUNA
wordle: literally any 5-letter word
my brain: …QUENCH
wordle: LITERALLY JUST TYPE IN THE FIRST 5-LETTER WORD THAT COMES INTO YOUR HEAD
my brain: …LOPPO?
wordle: A WORD. A REAL WORD THAT IS 5 LETTERS LONG
my brain: … BBBBB
— jonny sun (@jonnysun) January 6, 2022
— Sheps (@Dazenger) January 31, 2022
— Olexandr Isayev (@olexandr) January 31, 2022
— Pratik™ (@Thepratik10) February 1, 2022
— Jenna B. (@jenna2882) January 30, 2022
And finally, can you believe there are people who don’t understand what the fuss is all about?!
(We can’t be friends, just saying…)
— LiveFromPawneePodcast (@FromPawnee) February 1, 2022
— Ritodeep (@reTooDeeP) January 28, 2022
— ⚒️NickZee⚒️ (@nickzbutcher) January 29, 2022
— Phil Hassey (@PHassey) January 30, 2022