How thousands of Wordle players cheat every day – as expert reveals how he catches them out | The Sun

A MATHS expert has revealed how thousands of Wordle players cheat every day and how he catches them out.

The viral game sees players guess what the five-letter word of the day is within six turns, before waiting until the next day for a new puzzle.

But every day, far more Wordle players solve the brain teaser on their first turn than would be expected by chance, says one expert.

Dr James Dilger, 71, a biophysicist, was using WordleBot, a New York Times app that analyses your results, when he smelt a rat.

Speaking to The Times, he said: “I noticed one day an awful lot of people answered with one guess and thought, ‘that’s strange’.

"And then I paid attention to it and it was happening day after day. Well, I’m a science nerd and wanted to know what’s going on.”

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The maths whizz downloaded the data from the app and discovered that 0.2 to 0.5 per cent of players would solve the puzzle in one attempt.

The odds of guessing the one of 2,315 possible target words at random isjust 0.043 per cent.

Dilger adds: “Do I mean to tell you that never, not once, was the share per cent of the first guess less than 0.2 per cent (4,000 players)?

"Yup! So, at least five times as many people as expected were ‘guessing’ the target word by ‘chance’!”

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Dilger's findings all but point to the fact that 4,000 to 10,000 players "cheat" by obtaining the word of the day elsewhere.

The expert continued: " It happens consistently every day!

"What shall we call these people? Hmmm, ‘cheaters’ comes to mind, so that’s what I call ’em!”

Based on Google search trends, more and more people have turned to the internet for help solving their daily Wordle puzzle.

Many Wordle players have taken to using 'Adieu' as their opening guess because it contains four vowels.

Popularity surged on August 15 because a New York Times mini-crossword clue that day was “most popular starting Wordle guess”.

“This seems to have inspired about 30,000 players to abandon whatever opening strategy they had been using and follow the crowd,” he wrote in the paper, which he has submitted to Recreational Mathematics Magazine.

Cheats can also delve into chatrooms to find the answer or search social media.

He concludes: “We are baffled as to how first word cheaters actually have fun playing, but that does not diminish our enjoyment of the game!”

Wordle was created by software engineer and former Reddit employee, Josh Wardle, and was launched in October 2021.


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The title of the internet word game is a pun on Wardle's last name, hence Wordle.

The inventor initially devised the game during lockdown for himself and his wife.

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