Wordle is “too hard” after New York Times took over, say users

Originally published at: Wordle is "too hard" after New York Times took over, say users | Boing Boing


My husband’s whole family has been posting daily scores in our slack, and it’s pretty consistent that half of us struggle and half get it in 3 or 4. I think it just depends on how your brain is working that day, if you always use the same starting word or if you switch it up, and so on.

Today took me 3 guesses, yesterday i barely got it in 5 because I forgot one of the letters that was in the wrong place. Some days you get lucky and the rest is confirmation bias.


Oh, good grief. 2 seconds of googling would show that Wordle is still using the exact same (minus a few) client-side preset word list as before the acquisition. Just more proof human psychology is highly subject to priming and bad at statistics.


But we do… It’s all Javascript running client side. You don’t need the new york times at all. You can look at the word list and see if it changed. What a failure of reporting. All they had to do check the old word list (available like… everywhere) and see if cynic and aroma were on there.



+1 to this, it was widely known that you could look up future day’s words in advance since the java script was deterministic from your clock and the list of words. A forensic web developer could quickly identify if that logic has changed. I don’t like the aroma of this reporting.

Also +1 for the author for simplifying, I’m sure fetching the word every day has a non-zero cost to host and code. And the success of Wordle shows the loss of “security” isn’t actually important. I love it when people stretch the accepted wisdom on how apps should be built!


Yeah, I started playing in December and have also been working my way through the archive. The words are somewhat unusual and nonstandard pronunciation plays a big role, and that hasn’t changed AFAICT.

What’s surprising to me is that there are so many 5-letter words that I know that are actually hard to solve in Wordle because of the above. I have yet to come across a word I didn’t know and yet sometimes it just takes a lot of clues to get it.

  1. I thought someone cracked the word list and the order, so can’t one just confirm it is the same?

  2. Some words are going to be tougher than others. And depending on your guesses, you may going down the wrong path you otherwise would not.

  3. Really stuck? Use this Scrabble Word finder.


Wordtips has a Wordle Answer Finder now.


Comparing the ordered word list Robert Reichel reverse engineered pre-NYT, and a fan-list of published results it’s obvious that the results are still the same as they would’ve been when it was hosted on the old site.


Ohhh - I thought at one point it had a Wordle Dictionary, and now it is not there. Makes sense they made its own thing.

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I see what you did there.


How do you play through the archive??!

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I dunno, I learned not to beat myself up if I had to use all 6 tries. No misses if you know what you are doing no matter what the word is.


One more piece of evidence. Today’s word was the first time that the old server and the NYT server did not have the same target word. We found this because my partner and I have been doing it in competition with each other for months. Today, we realized for the first time, our target words were different, and my partner’s word just happened to be one of the words that BB reported was removed from the NYT version. We checked, and sure enough, she’s still connected to the old PowerLanguage server, while I’m on the NYT server.

ETA: Curiously, the two words are similar, in that we both had difficulty guessing for the same reason. But they were not the same word


call me a cynic


Two words in a row starting with U, and now everyone thinks they’re getting ulcers from the ultra-hard words.


Today’s was pretty hard, but it always is a bit harder when letters are repeated. Then again, I guess I’ve been playing on hard mode without realizing it. I always limit myself to letters that haven’t been ruled out. Most of the “tutorials” I read have you casting about for the first couple guesses, just to get the letters. That’s not how I learned to play Mastermind.


That’s one; there are others.

I might be a cynic, but the smell of these complaints is off. They stink. They’ve got a bad… something.

And who on earth would guess GAMES after a guess of TIMES told you that M, E, and S were wrong letters??