LONDON — The “special” relationship between the United States and the United Kingdom is strained once again, this time not over politics but over a new gaming phenomenon: “Wordle.”
The free online word game, which currently has an estimated 2.7 million players, gives people six attempts to guess a five-letter word every day. And a word this week has angered British players, who dubbed the game unfair as it was unveiled for using an American spelling, arguably putting players on American soil at a significant advantage. .
“Favor?!?!?! Really??? It’s a favor!!” One user tweeted after realizing — or, perhaps, “realizing” — that it’s actually a five-letter word in America.
Launched publicly in October last year, the game was originally created by Josh Wardle, a Wells-based software engineer living in New York, for his partner Palak Shah, who loves puzzles. At first, the game was played by the family, before it was introduced globally, Wardle told the New York Times. The name of the game is intended as a riff on Wardle’s surname.
It seemed that everything was going well. The New York Times called the invention “a love story”, while the Daily Mail announced it was “taking over the world.” Players on both sides of the Atlantic became hooked, sharing screenshots of their success in the form of colored squares. on social media.
As of Wednesday many in the English-speaking world divided the term.
“Today’s Wordle won’t find favor with anyone in the UK,” read another tweet from a user who predicted that once they found out that the guessing game used American English, the British would be furious. Will be
One of the many shocked tweets read: “Bloody American spelling. I thought a Brit invented it?”
Some pointed out that the game’s official website uses a .co.uk domain – and they expected it to use only British English and not American English. The term “British English” began trending again on Twitter in the United Kingdom on Wednesday and Thursday as complaints flooded in.
“My mom is also shocked by the Wordley scandal – we deserve justice!” One user tweeted. Several others said they felt “betrayed”. Will this war of words ever be forgotten?
The uproar prompted some users to request that the game alert users when a word may be spelled in more than one way, so that people don’t lose sight of the wrong way.
Josh Wardle did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Thursday.
While Wordle has only been around for a few months, there have been other instances where players have expressed displeasure over the chosen word of the day.
In recent weeks, fans have called out the game for inviting players to guess less familiar words like “tapper” and “rebus.” According to Google Trends, searches for the words “rebus earth” and “tapir earth” increased in the United Kingdom earlier this month as people researched the words.
Wardle told the New York Times that he has about 2,500 words in the bank to keep the game going for a few more years.