Word Games: Wordle and More

It feels like the entire English-speaking world is addicted to Wordle. Here are some other word games to keep you, and your thesaurus, busy.

Updated on Feb. 1 to add information about the New York Times acquisition

Wordle. It feels like the entire English-speaking world is addicted. Players are tasked with guessing a five-letter word in six or fewer attempts. Each time they enter a new word, the letters change colors to let players know how close they are—gray means a letter is wrong, yellow indicates that the letter is right but in the wrong place, and green means the letter is correct and in the right place. (So if the answer is BLAZE but a player guesses ZEBRA, the letters Z, E, B, and A will turn yellow. If a player guesses BLARE, the letters B, L, A, and E will turn green and the letter R will turn gray.) It’s fun to play with friends because everyone is playing the same puzzle. The only issue is that players get only one puzzle per day, and if they don’t get the word within six guesses? They’ll have to wait until tomorrow for a new puzzle. The game was created by John Wardle, a software engineer in Brooklyn, for his partner, who loves word games. With versions in other languages in the works, it has since grown from an audience of one to more than three million people. The NYT purchased the game on Jan. 31. While full details have not been released, players' wins and streaks will be preserved in the move. Need more? Here is an archive of all the past Wordle games.

While you wait for those 24 hours to pass, here are some other word games to keep you, and your thesaurus, busy.

Spelling Bee is a game on the New York Times site. Users need a subscription to Games to play all the way through, but at five dollars a month, which includes access to the crossword and other puzzles, word fans might be inclined to sign up. In Spelling Bee, users are presented with six letters arranged in a honeycomb shape; at the center is seventh letter, in yellow. Players create words using the letters; each word must include the letter in yellow and must be at least four letters long. Four-letter words are worth one point each; for each additional letter, users garner an additional point. There is always at least one pangram (a word that uses all the letters in question), which is worth seven extra points. A new puzzle is released at 3 a.m. ET each day, perfect for those waiting for the next Wordle.

Words with Friends has been around for 10 years and is a classic for a reason. Players can download the app or engage on the website. Set up like an old-school Scrabble board, the game asks users to make words on the board, and whoever has the most points at the end wins. Users can play against friends or the computer.

Word Forward is a paid app. As in the classic game Boggle, the goal is not necessarily to make long words but rather to clear the board, a five-by-five tile grid, of all letters. Making words cause the letter tiles to vanish. Once the board is clear, you’ve won.

WordScapes is the marriage of Boggle and a crossword puzzle, with anagrams, too. There is a selection of letters at the bottom of the screen that players use to find hidden words. Upon completing the puzzle, users are rewarded with a lovely landscape to admire. Players can download this app from the App Store or the Play Store

Kitty Letter features cats willing to fight to defend players’ good name and honor. How to unleash their furry fury and majesty? Players unscramble letters to make words, which turn into a Cat Army that attack opponents, be that another person or the computer. Grab your fighting feline battalion from either the App Store or The Play Store.

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