This Is Why We're All Obsessed With Wordle

We're three weeks into 2022, and it's already safe to say that it's the Year of Wordle. So why are so many people obsessed with playing the game and sharing their scores?

If you haven't played the online game, the goal is to guess a five-letter word in six tries. If you guess the right letter in the right place, the tile turns green. If it's the right letter in the wrong place, it turns yellow. A gray tile means the letter isn't in the word at all. 

Josh Wardle, a software engineer in Brooklyn, created the game to kill time with his partner, but when he made it available to the public, it took just three months to rack up two million regulars.

So what's the allure? Experts have some ideas.

  • Everyone's connected. Everyone who plays Wordle gets the same puzzle on the same day, so a player in Australia and a player in Alaska know just how tough -- or how easy -- the other person had it.
  • It's shareable.If you're on social media, you've seen those familiar color-block results posts, and you instantly know what they mean.
  • It's not a time-suck. Wordle can only be played once a day, so it isn't as addictive as most online games. Productivity coach Juliiet Landau-Pope says, "It's a very smart product because people know that if they get hooked, they can't waste more than a few moments each day."
  • It's good news.As Landau-Pope says, "There's a [lack] of good news on social media. Wordle has given us all something fun to focus on, if only for a few moments of the day." (Insider)

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