The sale of Wordle (opens in new tab) to the New York Times earlier this year sparked some consternation among committed fans, who worried that the quick, fun, and free word game phenom would end up overburdened with extraneous features and, worse, monetization. The Times’ statement that the game will “initially remain free” did not help that situation. But so far, so good—it’s still free, still fun, and still incredibly basic—and today the new owners announced a change that will actually make it meaningfully better for a lot of players.
Wordle tracks stats, most notably streaks—how many games in a row you’ve played without blowing it. The problem is that those stats are based on device, rather than player, so if for example you play Wordle on your PC and your mobile phone, your stats and streaks will be different on each.
But that will soon change, as players will soon have the option to link their Wordle stats to an NYT account. That means that as long as you’re logged in, your stats will follow you no matter what device you’re playing on—and importantly, it will work with free accounts as well as paid. Think of it as cloud saving, but for crossword puzzles.
The stat-linking functionality doesn’t appear to be live yet—I fired up Wordle for the first time in months today, and there’s no sign of a linking option. The Times hasn’t tweeted anything further on the status of the update either, saying only that it’s coming “soon.”
If you don’t see the option to link your account on the device where you play Wordle every day, hold on tight! The feature is coming to you soon. Once stats are linked to a New York Times account, this process cannot be reversed. Happy solving!July 12, 2022
As for why this is a big deal, it really all comes down to ego: Publicly reveling in your word-guessing prowess is a big deal for a lot of players. In case there’s any doubt about how strong that urge really is, here’s what happened as soon as the topic of Wordle came up in the PC Gamer Slack earlier today:
Some of us have fallen away from the Wordle craze, but it’s clearly still tremendously popular, and other big companies are still trying to get in on the action: Just yesterday, Spotify acquired Heardle (opens in new tab)a Wordle-meets-Name That Tune mashup that challenges players to guess songs based on brief audio clips.