already has a printed version in hobby format

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In his meteoric success story, Worlde has returned to square one. It started as an easy, agile and comfortable online game, a hobby without great complications to distract yourself in your free time with the help of your mobile or computer. It looked like a crossword puzzle, it had the sensations of a crossword puzzle, it hooked like a crossword puzzle, but… —and here is a big part of its success— It wasn’t a crossword puzzle! Now, several plot twists later, the game that went viral for allowing only one game per day has ended up turning into a book, a printed format with 500 puzzles.

That there is a publishing house that wants to take advantage of Wordle’s tremendous pull is reasonable. And expected. The striking of Wordle Challenge 500 puzzles to anywhere, anytime is that, in a certain way, give up part of the “success formula” that has made the original version, the online one, catch hundreds of thousands of users all over the world and multi language version.

A round-trip

Both the aesthetics and the dynamics of the book, at least as far as its creators advanceis similar to the original design of Josh Wardle; but the printed version plays with an idea that differs from the original: it incorporates 500 puzzles and allows you to cover more than one a day. In fact, that’s one of the claims with which it is advertised. One of the peculiarities of the web is that it allows you to complete one screen per daya single, simple, unpretentious game, a fun game designed to take no more than five minutes and keep the user wanting more.

Along with its simplicity and minimalist aesthetic, it is part of the charming anachronistic aura that has won over people all over the planet. A couple of months ago, Daniel Rodríguez, the Colombian developer who has versioned Wordle into Spanish, recognized that this limitation is part of the winning DNA that has given life and air to the game. He himself explained to Xataka that, after preparing the edition in Spanish, there were those who suggested that he lift that 24-hour restriction between games. He said no. “A lot of people have asked me to, but the magic of the game is not doing that,” he commented.

What is Wordle, who created it and how to play it

The release of a print version is just one more chapter in Wordle’s “hyper-accelerated” chroniclewhat started with no pretensions to help pass the time in a simple, fast way and, incidentally, squeeze some neuron. Its creator, Josh Wardle, a computer programmer of British origin, developed it for his partner, a fan of crossword puzzles. New York Times.

The first steps of the game were on a family scale, with relatives and friends. From that small domestic ring, it did not take long to make the leap in October 2021 to the capital figures and exponential growth, almost pandemic. In November it added 90 daily players, two months later there were more than 300,000. By the end of January 2022 there were millions of people enjoying it.


Something similar happened with the Spanish version. On its first day there were a thousand people who were challenged to discover the secret word. The second was already 20,000, 40,000 to the third and 52,000 to the ninth. The success of the game was so overwhelming that it left some curious story behind.

Perhaps the most surprising of all is Developer Steven Cravotta’s, which five years ago launched an app with the same name – Wardle’s, you may have noticed, is a play on words with his last name – which passed unnoticed by the App Store. Almost giving her up for lost, Cravotta suddenly found himself with a brutal peak of downloads. The reason? That a lot of people came to his app looking for Wardle’s. Proceeds were dedicated to an educational program.

With such a track record of success, Wordle quickly caught the interest of the publishing world. On January 31 New York Times announced that he had bought the game for a “seven-figure” amount to enrich his hobby offerings. When announcing the operation, the company that owns the newspaper explained that access “initially will continue to be free.” In the same statement he slipped, yes, that games are a “key” piece in his strategy to attract users. Since 2011, it applies a payment model for most of its content. Hobbies, a field in which the American newspaper has long experience, in fact require your own subscription category.

Daniel Rodríguez, creator of Wordle in Spanish, speaks: this is how he adapted it in "two afternoons" the fashion online game

That was already a first turn in the brief history of Wordle. “This step seems very natural to me,” Wardle explained after remembering that the hobbies of New York Times they had played an important role in the origins of its creation. The new printed format, world challengemarks another step in the drift of its creation, increasingly positioned in editorial focus.

The big question is: Will that story end up turning Wordle, a successful format precisely because it differentiates itself from conventional crosswords into the most conventional of crosswords?

In his meteoric success story, Worlde has returned to square one. It started as an easy, agile and comfortable online…

In his meteoric success story, Worlde has returned to square one. It started as an easy, agile and comfortable online…

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