‘Wordle’ clones take over the App Store


If you’ve spent any time on Twitter last week, chances are you’ve seen networks with emoji boxes download your feed. That’s thanks Wordle, a new puzzle game that has since become a bit of an obsession for many New York Times wrote about a little over a week ago.

Like other viral games, Wordle It’s deceptively simple: you have six chances to guess a new five-letter word. And that’s pretty much it. There is only one puzzle a day and it is free to play without commercials. Its creator, a software developer named Josh Wardle, is obvious “overwhelmed” by the popularity of his game. But the fact that the game doesn’t have an app has allowed developers to create their own version of the game.

One particularly amazing example comes from developer Zach Shakked who created an app called “Wordle – application.At first glance, an application that has the subtitle “Word game Everyone is playing!”Can be easily replaced with the original. The grid of words looks almost the same and even uses the same color scheme. But Shakked’s version also asks players to sign up for a “pro” subscription that costs $ 29.99 after a three-day “free trial”.

But between naming the app “Wordle” and displaying search ads relative to the term in the App Store, Shakked seems to have managed to profit from the popularity of the game originally created by Wardle. “This is absurd. 450 attempts last night at 1 am, now at 950 and getting new ones every minute, ”he wrote in a tweet that has since become private. 12,000 downloads, 28th word play and score no. 4 for “Wordle” in the App Store. Let’s go to the fucking moon. “

Screenshot via Twitter

Shakked and Wardle did not answer Engadget’s questions. But Shakked isn’t the only developer trying to make money on popularity Wordle. His app is one of at least six Wordle clones launched in the App Store within eight days of the original New York Times article about Wordle. Another, titled “What Word – Wordle,” which charges $ 0.99 for in-app removals, claims “No. 1 Word game” in its App Store screenshots. words, according to the list in the App Store.)

Fraudulent applications that take advantage of the popularity of the virus game, of course, are nothing new. The game developers were complaining about practice for years. Apple did not immediately answer questions about Wordle clones in his shop. But thanks to emails released during the Epic v. Apple trial, we know that copying apps have long been a source of frustration for Apple executives as well. “Doesn’t anyone review these apps? Doesn’t anyone mind the store? ”Phil Schiller wrote e-mail from 2012. Three years later, he complained that “I can’t believe we still don’t have” automated tools to find scam apps.

Update 11. 1. 19:52 ET: Ads in the App Store for Wordle clones are no longer available and applications appear to have been removed from the store. We contacted Apple for more information.

Update 11. 1. 22:05 ET: Apple has confirmed to Engadget that it has removed games from its App Store.

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