Is Wordle harder on ‘New York Times’? Here's what to know about the game's difficulty.

Here’s Why Wordle On ‘NYT’ Seems Harder Than The OG Version

You might have experienced this on the old version, too.

by Daffany Chan
Originally Published: 
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Wordle officially moved to The New York Times on Feb. 10. Of course, there are a few changes that come with the migration from the old platform to the new version — like a new website to play it on. If you you’ve been getting some tricky words more often than you used to, you may be wondering: Is Wordle harder on The New York Times? Here’s what to know about the difficulty of The New York Times’ version of Wordle and if there are material changes making it seem so hard.

Along with temporarily losing game streaks, another common complaint that users have been tweeting about is the difficulty of NYT Wordle compared to the classic Wordle game — and some players are even suggesting that The New York Times’ game designers are intentionally attempting to make the game harder. Though it may appear more difficult, Jordan Cohen, Executive Director, Communications The New York Times tells Elite Daily, “No changes have been made to the game play.” The solutions for the daily game are generated in the same way they have been prior to the change on Feb. 10, and the new Wordle, in theory, shouldn’t be any harder than the old version.

A Feb. 14 Verge article points to Wordle creator Josh Wardle’s Jan. 3 interview with The New York Times in which Wardle explained the game has a set list of about 2,500 five-letter words — not every possible five-letter word from the English language is included in the list. According to The Verge, that very list of 2,500 words is part of the Javascript of the Wordle website, and it appears The New York Times hasn’t added any new solutions to use on the new Wordle website as of Feb. 14.

The Times did make some changes, according to Polygon, but they involved removing obscure or potentially offensive words.

So, why does it seem so much harder? Per The Verge, the solutions since The New York Times bought Wordle on Jan. 31 have been: “THOSE,” “MOIST,” “SHARD,” “PLEAT,” “ALOFT,” “SKILL,” “ELDER,” “FRAME,” “HUMOR,” “PAUSE,” “ULCER,” “ULTRA,” and “ROBIN.” The full list reveals a mix of both easier words like “THOSE,” and “FRAME,” as well as more difficult words like “ULCER,” “ULTRA,” and “ROBIN.”

Of course, if some of your guessing words were removed by NYT, that could account for some feeling of difficulty — but on the whole, you might just be hitting a patch of consecutive tricky solutions. The Verge also points out that OG Wordle had some tough answers, like “TAPIR” and “KNOLL.”

So, Wordle isn’t technically any harder on the new New York Times’ version, but that won’t change the fact that tough streaks will still show up. At least you can know it’s not you, it’s the predetermined word list.

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