The New York Times Rushes To Fix Broken Wordle Streaks

The New York Times Rushes To Fix Broken Wordle Streaks
Photo: NurPhoto, Getty Images

You may know The New York Times for its reputation as the paper of record and the paper of recommending-you-put-peas-in-guac. But now the Grey Lady has joined the likes of EA, Bungie, 343 Industries, and other developers of live-service games as it rapidly tries to extinguish fires for its newly acquired puzzle game, Wordle.

In the event you’ve been offline for the past two months, Wordle is an immensely popular daily head-scratcher played by, per web traffic and social media volume, literally everyone with an internet connection. It was initially developed by Josh Wardle, a Brooklyn-based software engineer, conceptualized as a breezy way for his partner to pass the time during a daily pandemic that shows no signs of abating (maybe ever). Wardle sold it to The New York Times last month. He walked away with a sum in “the low seven figures.”

Wordle has taken the world by storm due to how easy it is to pick up. Your mission, should you choose to accept it every day, is to guess that day’s five-letter word. Incorrect letters are marked as grey, correct letters marked as green, and correct but incorrectly placed letters marked as yellow. You have six tries to guess the word. Players proudly flaunt their victories on Twitter and cherish their “streaks,” earned by successfully completing the Wordle for subsequent days, weeks, months, and, eventually, centuries. (Yes, Wordle will outlive us all.)

Wordle’s migration to The New York Times went down this week, and while the game itself seems to have made it over just fine, some players haven’t seen their streaks carry over.

The problems were first spotted yesterday afternoon, with the Times noting it was looking into the matter. Streak data wasn’t stored by Wardle and isn’t stored by the Times, so errors popped up on the user-facing end, since that data is stored locally, a combination of the user’s device, browser, and URL they use to access the game, Jordan Cohen, executive director of comms for the Times, told Kotaku via email. Yesterday evening, the Times identified a fix, and says it’s largely remedied by now.

“As of Friday morning, we believe that stats and streaks should be carried over for the vast majority of Wordle players,” Cohen said. “We are seeing some reports of users continuing to have issues, and are investigating and engaging with these users.”

If you’re still not seeing yours, you need only open Wordle in the same browser on the same device you typically play on. If that doesn’t do the trick, the Times suggests using the URL you initially used to access the game, which should automatically redirect you to where the paper lets Wordle live. (Wordle was initially hosted on “https://www.powerlanguage.co.uk.” Now, it’s “https://www.nytimes.com/games/wordle/index.html.”)

“Not everyone will be redirected immediately. We expect the overall audience of Wordle players to redirect gradually, as the old site may be still cached for many of them,” Cohen said. “This is expected, and when the cache expires (over the next few days) they will be redirected.”

Provided you can’t get your streak back, well, look at it as the chance for a fresh start. To that end, you could brush up on our tips for the game, or you could just fall back on the mathematically determined “best” starting word.

But the easiest way to build up a new streak might be an unintentional bug that popped up after Wordle’s migration: In rare cases, Cohen said, some players experienced a repeated puzzle today. Hey, take your wins where you can get ‘em.

 

Log in to comment on this story!