New York Times forces closure of third-party ‘Wordle Archive’

The company purchased 'Wordle' for a price "in the low seven figures" in January

Wordle Archive was a platform that allowed players to revisit previously released Wordle puzzles – until The New York Times Company apparently forced it to close.

One of the core features of Wordle is the fact that one puzzle is released per 24-hour period. Today (March 16) is the 270th consecutive game, meaning there’s a whole back catalogue of puzzles to play – and Wordle Archive allowed people to go back and try their hand at what they’d missed, free of charge.

However, now the website boasts a message that reads: “Thank you for playing the Wordle Archive, and for all your nice comments and feedback that helped make the site better.”

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“Sadly, the New York Times has requested that the Wordle Archive be taken down.”

As it stands, there are other sites that offer a similar experience, while the team behind Wordle Archive have also developed their own word game – Word Grid.

Wordle was originally created by solo developer Josh Wardle for his wife before The New York Times Company purchased it earlier this year, for a figure in the “low seven figures”.

In the same announcement, it was said that Wordle will “initially remain free to new and existing players” but with much of the article referencing the purchase as a means to improve the company’s subscription base, it’s believed the title will eventually move behind a subscription paywall. To combat this, some users are saving offline versions.

According to Wardle, there were 12,000 words loaded into the game’s original library, meaning it could last for seven years before repeating a word.

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However since its takeover, The New York Times has reportedly “substantially altered the list of acceptable words”.

Since its launch, Wordle has inspired a wave of copy-cat titles including a Taylor Swift-themed titled Taylordle, Worldle, which tasks players with guessing which country is on display each day and Squabble – a spin-off that transforms the casual word game into a tense battle royale.

Most recently Weezer‘s Rivers Cuomo got involved, creating a game based on his band’s back catalogue. 

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