Wordle’s popularity is yet to wane after taking over people’s morning coffee time earlier this year.
The game has now switched over to the New York Times‘ website but remains free to play, at least for now.
Today’s Wordle is the 243rd edition. If you haven’t attempted it yet and don’t want to know the answer, look away now.
What is Wordle?
Wordle is a simple word game that gives players six attempts to guess a five-letter word each day.
There is a new word every day, and the word is the same for everybody.
The game now has millions of players, and has become instantly recognisable on social media, with people sharing their scores in the form of little green, yellow and white (or black if you’re playing on dark mode) squares.
What is today’s Wordle answer?
OK, this is your final chance to avoid spoilers, so if you don’t want to know the answer yet, leave this page immediately. Don’t say we didn’t warn you.
The Wordle 243 answer for Thursday 17 February is… SHAKE.
Despite being a common word, today’s Wordle gave people some issues, particularly if they found they were missing only the fourth letter, as there were so many potential options. Share, Shave, Shame, Shale and Shape were all possible solutions.
The Cambridge Dictionary defines shake as a verb that means “to move backwards and forwards or up and down in quick, short movements, or to make something or someone do this”.
It can also mean “to cause to feel upset and worried”, “to make something less certain, firm or strong”, or “to get rid of or escape something”.
It can also be used as a noun, as in, “she gave the box a shake to see if there was anything inside it”, or to refer to “a drink made by adding fruit or other ingredients to milk or ice cream and mixing it together”.
How do I play Wordle?
You can play Wordle online, either on a computer or mobile device, right here.
Start by inputting a five-letter word and hitting enter.
The letters will then either turn green, yellow or stay blank.
Here’s what those colours mean:
- Green – you have put the right letter in the right spot
- Yellow – the letter is in the word, but in a different spot
- Blank – the letter is not in the word
You can use your previous guesses to inform you next guess, and attempt to guess the word within six attempts.
Once you have finished the game will give you the option to share your score on social media.
Are there any tips for winning?
Everyone has their own strategies, but there are a few golden rules worth remembering if you want the best chance of winning.
First, you want to start with words that contain a lot of common letters. Many players like to use a lot of vowels early, as well as common consonants like R, S and T.
Various experts, from linguistics professors to mathematicians and computer scientists, have weighed in on what the best starting word is.
A computer scientist who goes by crvlwalnek on TikTok looked into Wordle’s source file to analyse the frequency of each letter in winning answers, and found the best starting word was “later”.
Other starters people have vouched for include:
Another good tip is not to use duplicate letters early on. For example, starting with a word like “awake” is not optimal, as it uses two As.
Sometimes you may want to ignore your previous guesses to eliminate some letters. However, Wordle also has a “hard mode” which stops you from doing this. You can access this by hitting the settings icon in the top right.
Finally, it is important to think about common conventions when guessing words. For example, there are lots of words that end in -ICK or start with an SH-. Go through the alphabet while making your guesses and see what works phonetically, and you’ll be rewarded with those satisfying green squares.