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Remember when Wordle blew up in popularity last year? The game, which calls on users to guess a five-letter word in six chances, is still being played faithfully every day by some users. Arguably, it reinvigorated the brainteaser game industry. Wordle was quickly purchased by The New York Times for a reported $1 million.
I’ve recently been playing some alternatives that I found more enjoyable than Wordle. Quick shoutout to my favorite streamer, Northernlion, as the inspiration for this piece.
Here are some Wordle-inspired games to try, all of which are free browser-based experiences that you play once per day.
This game asks you to “guess the country” and should improve your geography skills.
Based on the outline of the country, you have six guesses to name it. If you don’t guess it correctly on the first try, you’re given a distance and a direction toward the correct country. For example, my guess on the May 16 Worldle was Angola, which was more than 2,000 kilometers south of the answer. Since playing these games, my geographical knowledge is improving, but I couldn’t quite get to the answer of Cameroon.
Similar to Worldle, you’re tasked with finding the mystery country of the day. The big difference is you’re given the entire globe and asked to enter a guess. Your first guess, statistically, is likely to be wrong, but each guess shows you how close you are to the correct country. It then uses a “warmer” or “cooler” system to indicate how close you’re getting, and the color of the country you select changes, as well, to give you a visual indicator.
I started with the United Kingdom and was able to guess my way toward New Zealand.
This one is a geography-based game with a twist. Your guesses are informed by a list of exports from the mystery country, as well as the total export figure. From there, like Worldle, you’re given a direction and a distance as further clues.
The May 16 puzzle shows me 27.3% of the $23.7 billion in exports are in crude petroleum, with crustaceans and bananas also being popular. My mind immediately thinks central or South America, but I’m unable to get there within my allotted six guesses. Turns out it was Ecuador.
Movie to Movie
Have you heard of Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon? The idea is that Bacon has been in a bunch of movies with a lot of famous actors, thus leading to a parlor game in which you try to find the shortest path between two actors based on films they’ve both appeared in.
This game is similar, presenting you with two movies that you have to connect through actors. The May 16 version wants me to connect “This Means War” with “Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over.” That’s a tall ask, since I haven’t seen either. The game gives you a list of actors to choose from if you can’t think of one yourself.
Still, I had to get help on this one. Tom Hardy is in “This Means War” and “Black Hawk Down.” From there, it was Josh Hartnett to “Sin City” to Elijah Wood to “Spy Kids 3-D: Game Over.”
If you’re a fan of the monthly Curb Appeal series in the SBJ Daily Update, you’ll probably like this game.
You start with a picture of a house and a sale date, and you’re tasked with finding the price. You get more information unveiled after every guess – location, beds, baths, etc. – to narrow it down, and you’re also told whether your query is higher or lower than the correct answer.
The home, to me, looks modest at first, but then I find out it’s in Panama City Beach, Florida. Better adjust my guess for what I assume is a hot property market. Turns out it was more affordable than predicted, at $430,000 for a 1,900-square-foot home.
There are a bunch more, such as video game brainteaser Gamedle and the Box Office Game, which gives you clues about film data during a random weekend at the multiplex. You can find a lot of these games by googling “alternatives to Wordle.”
Springfield Business Journal Digital Editor Geoff Pickle can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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