Wordle has taken social media by storm. But unlike other viral games, it’s not available on app stores. Instead, the ‘real Wordle' can only be found here. With this in mind, we analyzed three Wordle copycats on Google Play.
If you’ve spent any time recently on social media sites like Twitter, you’ve probably come across posts depicting grids of green, yellow, and grey boxes. No, it’s not tetris. It’s Wordle, a free, browser-only (meaning it’s not available on app stores) word game developed by Brookly-based engineer Josh Wardle.
Here’s how it works. Every day at midnight Wordle releases one five-letter word. It’s the same word for every user in the world. Players then get six tries to guess the word and each time they make a guess, the letters will turn green, yellow, or grey to indicate whether or not they’re in the correct spot. Green means the letter is in the right position, yellow means the letter appears somewhere in the word but not in the current position, and grey means the letter isn’t in the word at all.
That’s it. It’s not a particularly complex game. Even from an engineering perspective, it’s not all that sophisticated. Nevertheless, it’s doing numbers. It’s generating hundreds of articles, countless tweets, and dozens of cheeky copycats.
Yup, you read that correctly. Looking to siphon off downloads from curious users, Wordle copycats have been cropping up all over app stores. And some have actually been performing remarkably well! So, in this article, we take a quick look at three Wordle copycats currently available on Google Play.
Here’s what we’ll cover (click the links below to jump to the relevant sections):
1. Wordle - Daily Word Challenge by Digital Snacks
- Short Description: Challenge your brain every day and find the correct word.
- Total Downloads: 65,000+
- Release Date: January 10th, 2022
2. Wordle.es by Medrodome Software
- Short Description: Wordle clone in spanish - a daily word guessing game
- Total Downloads: 1,600+
- Release Date: January 10th, 2022
3. Wordle - Daily Word Puzzle by Tech Tree Games
- Short Description: The famous daily word puzzle. Guess the daily word in 6 tries.
- Total Downloads: 1,000+
- Release Date: January 15th, 2022
Let’s pause here for a moment. There are a few things we want to draw your attention to before moving on. First, each of these apps is very new — no older than 10 days. Second, while the Digital Snacks and Tech Tree Games copycats seem deliberately aimed at tricking app store shoppers, the Medrodome Software app is a little more straightforward, declaring itself a Spanish-language clone. Finally, despite relatively modest downloads, the Medrodome app currently ranks in the top charts in 18 different countries (more on this later).
In the chart above you’ll find daily global downloads for the Digital Snacks and Medrodome Software copycats. In particular, this chart depicts downloads between January 7th, 2022 and January 18th, 2022. That said, we’ve not yet captured enough data to map the Tech Tree Games copycat since it was launched too recently (January 15th, 2022); which is, incidentally, a good indication of how quickly these developers move when an opportunity presents itself.
In any case, from a performance perspective, the Digital Snacks version has performed best by far, generating some 65,532 downloads in just 10 days. Medrodome Software, meanwhile, has generated 1,284 downloads in the same timeframe. Moreover, daily downloads for both apps appear to be trending upwards. Daily Snacks surpassed the 15,000 daily downloads mark on January 18th and Medrodome topped 300 on the same day.
Next up, top chart insights from the same time period. In the image above, you can see how Digital Snacks and Medrodome Software have performed in the United States. More specifically, among word games available on Google Play. Once again, the Tech Tree Games version has yet to be calculated.
A few things about this. Just two days after its release, the Digital Snacks copycat charted at 134th among all word games in the United States. Seven days later it ranked second in the same category. That’s a remarkable ascent. Medrodome Software hasn’t been quite so successful, but the upward trajectory is no less dramatic. While it first charted at 438th, it now sits around 202nd in the U.S.
Globally, the story is similar. The Digital Snacks app currently ranks among the top 100 Android word games in 121 different countries. Medrodome’s app, meanwhile, currently charts in the top 100 in 18 different countries, including Spain, Argentina, and Columbia (i.e. Spanish-speaking countries).
The situation here is fluid. There are new Wordle copycats coming online every single day and users are beginning to wise up. Still, it’s worth keeping an eye on which ones have the most success. Medrodome offers a good example here. While their Spanish-language clone has yet to catch up with Digital Snacks, it’s had decent success simply by identifying an underserved market. Indeed, unlike the other copycats, Medrodome isn’t attempting to trick users. It’s offering Spanish speakers a more accessible alternative to a viral game. Perhaps their gambit will pay off!