Best Chances of Winning on WORDLE
First – What Is Wordle Before You Find Out Your Best Chance of Winning on Wordle
Many of you have seen this odd graphic on social media posts. Many of you have started playing.
First, the rules for those who don’t know.
General Wordle Rules
Each day there is a new 5-letter word chosen by the New York Times puzzle folks. Everyone gets the same word each day, and there is only one word per day. Your job is to guess the word in a maximum of six guesses.
You start by guessing any valid 5-letter, American-English word. When you enter your first word guess, Wordle will highlight any correct letters:
- Letters that are in the correct place in the word will be highlighted in green
- Letters that appear in the word but in a different position than your word will be highlighted in yellow
- And letters that aren’t anywhere in the daily word are highlighted in charcoal gray (you can adjust the colors on your screen for accessibility, so these might be different based on personalized settings)
- The letter must be a valid American-English word. COLOUR is six letters, so couldn’t be used. But it’s also not a valid word. But COLOR is.
So, for instance, if my first guess for the Wordle on February 18th was BLADE, Wordle would display the following:
The correct answer has an E in the last position, a D in one of the first three positions and contains no B, L or A at all.
Also, very importantly, Wordle will gray-out incorrect words on the keyboard, so you know not to use them again!
Wordle Strategies For Winning
It may seem at first that it’s random luck of your first choice in words. But it’s a lot more than that.
First Word Strategies
Many people use the “Wheel of Fortune” strategy of picking their first word with a word that contains the five letters, RSTLNE. STERN, for instance.
Other players like to sort out the vowels first. So they’ll choose a word with lots of vowels. AFIRE or ADORE, for instance.
Finally others, choose random first words each day, knowing that the eliminated letters are often more informative than correct letters.
Three Important Wordle Strategies
I’ve found two rules to be important in successfully guessing the correct word:
- It’s pretty normal to not consider re-using a letter you’ve already gotten correct. But letters can be used more than once, so make sure you consider that when looking at possible word choices.
- Never throw away a letter choice. Always keep looking for a word that doesn’t use a letter that has been grayed out. And never put a Yellowed letter into the same spot where it was yellowed earlier. It sometimes strains the brain a bit, but it will be rewarding when you get it.
- The final strategy I use won’t work if you’ve changed your settings for Wordle to have “Hard Mode” on. But it works great when you have more word options than guesses left. Especially when the configuration of correct letters is a common configuration.
Strategy 3 – Example –
Once you’ve come up with a possible guess that fits all the criteria, check to see if you can find others that also fit. If there are LOTS of other options, you may want to try a throw-away guess for letter eliminations. See the example below.
In this example, you have a lot of possible options. KNAVE, QUAKE, SHAVE, CHAFE, PHASE, SHAPE, etc. Instead of using the A and E in their correct places and running out of guesses, you might want to try a throw-away guess that narrows down your letter choice. Find a 5-letter word that has as many of the letters in your possible options. KNVQUSHCFPS are the unique letters in my options, so I might consider guessing the word POCKS, for instance. Even though I know the 3rd and 5th letters will be wrong, it will save me from having to guess more times than I might have left available.
This reduces my possible options to only one (that I can find) – SHAKE.
Yes, I “wasted” a guess with a word I knew would be wrong. But it eliminated the possibility that I’d guess four times wrong! Minimally, if you’re going to guess one of your possible words, use the one with most common letters with the other possible word options.
What other strategies do you have for playing Wordle?
After finishing another Snug Cowl/Gaiter and hat on Friday, I worked on yet another Snug Cowl/Gaiter this past weekend.
I used a different yarn (KnitPicks Mighty Stitch-worsted weight), which isn’t a very good yarn. It’s 80% acrylic and 20% wool, but it has a really limp drape that I don’t like.
Surprisingly, the simple 3-color, single-round-helix stripes created a really nice looking fabric. I was honestly thinking this colorway wouldn’t be very compelling, but I like it a lot.