If you love word games or are simply incredibly active on social media, there is a high chance that you have heard about Wordle, a word game that became incredibly popular during its initial release, gaining a lot of users worldwide. The game works like this: when you open the wordle game website, you are greeted with a 5 by 6 grid of empty, white boxes. In the first row, you begin by entering a random 5-letter word. Following the initial guess, the boxes turn from yellow to red to green, indicating the accuracy of your response. After that, you continue guessing until you find the solution!
The simplicity of the game eventually led to it becoming a social media sensation. According to Statista, the average amount of Wordle players went from around 90 in November of 2021 to around 300,000 on January of 2022, gaining over 2 million players only a week later. People bragged on the internet about their splendid guesses online, strategizing how to get the best guess. Its competitive nature led to its strong popularity, making its way into highly engaging social media platforms such as Tiktok and Instagram. An example is (@kennyhaller), a 22-year-old Twitch streamer, who posted an edited version of playing wordle on Tiktok. He received nearly instant popularity, gaining 4.7 million views on his account. However, only months after its initial release, the game’s popularity started to decline rapidly. In the second half of 2022, many individuals found conversations surrounding Wordle as stale, overdone, and just simply boring.
So, why are people not playing Wordle anymore? There is much speculation that one reason for its decline is because the New York Times bought the game. Many players were concerned that the game would become drastically different after the shift, but Wordle has not become harder or experienced any change in its gameplay. A second reason is knockoffs. While people seem to like the simplistic nature of this game, some want more difficulty in the words, or a different approach to the game. Alternatives of Wordle such as Hello Wordl, Heardle, Quordle, Framed, Globle, and so many others have arised, providing word game enthusiasts hundreds of different options to spend their time on instead. Finally, a third reason as to why this game is simply not popular anymore, has a very simple answer – Wordle became a trend. TikTok has publicly stated that trends on the platform have a shelf life of 90 days. The fact that Wordle even lasted for as long as it did is surprising.
Technology and faster communication has allowed trends to reach the public much faster than before, meaning that people will get bored of each trend quickly as well. Therefore, when a trend runs out, people quickly start looking for another trend. Some examples of trends include: Fruit Ninja, Nyan Cat, Rainbow Loom, Pokemon Go. In a never ending cycle, such trends have come and go, but there is no reason for one to let go of well designed games and hobbies as well. So, although Wordle’s popularity seems to be waning in 2022, there’s really no downfall to giving the game a shot if you’re an avid lover of well-designed word puzzles.