Best words to start Wordle : 5-letter words to use first

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What is the best five-letter word to begin with when attempting to solve the daily Wordle puzzle? Some of us have go-to words that we use to improve our word-guessing and puzzle-solving abilities, and there are some statistically advantageous starting words with a variety of commonly used letters. On your first guess, you should use a five-letter word with five distinct and commonly used letters, such as “arise” or “roast.”

Similarly, you should probably avoid starting the daily puzzle with a word like “qapik,” “queue,” or “qajat” — all of which Wordle accepts — because they use less common letters in English words and have repeated vowels.

According to one study, the letter E appears the most frequently in English-language words from a condensed version of the Oxford Dictionary, followed by the letters A, R, I, O, T, N, and S. Starting words with those commonly used letters, such as “ratio,” “irate,” “stain,” or “stare,” are excellent choices. Because there are more English-language words beginning with S than any other letter, a starting word beginning with S is also a good first guess. (If the words mentioned earlier in this paragraph return all gray, try “lurch” or “cloud” for a different set of frequently used distinct letters.)

The word “ouija” has all but E (and sometimes Y) and is a good starter word if you want a variety of vowels, even though J is one of the least frequently used letters in English words, according to the aforementioned analysis.

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5-letter words to use first : Best words to start Wordle

For those who aren’t interested in pure optimization, here’s how our Wordle players start the puzzle every day. Best words to start Wordle : 5-letter words to use first

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Best words to start Wordle : 5-letter words to use first

POETS, EARLY, STEAM, BOILS, SPOUT, COUNT, WOUND, STEAK

I’m in the same boat as other people here (hey, “boats” isn’t a bad one) — I like the challenge of coming up with a new starter word every day so Wordle doesn’t start to seem like a rote, mechanical task. The point (ooh, “point” is pretty good too) is always to hit at least two vowels and a couple of the more common consonants without repeating any letters. But I prefer the feeling of coming up with a new starting point every day and seeing what lands over trying to whittle down the skeleton key that might fit every lock.

ROAST, TEARS, MEATS, OUIJA, PIZZA

Like several people at Polygon, I revel in the uncertainty of a new word each day. But, I’m also human, which means I do have fallback words for those mornings after I scored in five or six tries the previous day. Also, I stole “roast” from Nicole Carpenter and “ouija” from Toussaint. I’m like a starting-word Robin Hood, if Robin Hood just kept everything he stole, and were nothing like me at all. 

ARISE

I stole this off someone on Twitter. It has the two most important vowels, and arguably the two most important consonants to identify or rule out. It rarely draws a blank and usually gives you a decent lead on the second line. It appeals to the puzzle-solving, min-maxing side of my brain. But I’m not sure I like playing Wordle this way. It’s strategic but it has no flair; it’s almost cheap. And I miss the thrill of trying to intuit something with a first guess out of the blue. 

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READY, PEARS, CHIEF, TOUCH

Big fan of never playing the same word twice. Prefer the chaos. Peace is knowing the goal of Wordle is not to get the correct word in the fewest turns, but to get the job done in the space provided. Wordle is life. That said, if I’ve decided to Wordle before coffee, I’ll default to one of these words that seem to check those Wheel of Fortune “top letter” boxes. 

ADIEU, OUIJA

I’ve fallen off the Wordle bandwagon over the past week, but my go-to strategy is to start with a five-letter word with as many vowels as possible so as to figure out the general composition of the day’s word. After that, it’s just blind guessing.

AUDIO, FARTS

The first is to knock out four vowels in one go and the second is because how funny would it be to get that on the first try? Disclaimer: I definitely got that idea from someone on Twitter, but it’s too good. 

FRAME, GRAZE, WINDY, PAINT, GOURD, SWING, VAPES

I aim for a mix of common and uncommon letters in my first guess(es). The more common letters are to see if I can nail down the shape of a word, with those less common ones for process of elimination — just trying to avoid the heartbreak of having four of the five letters set, and a last letter that could be a number of different options. That said, I wouldn’t call myself a big strategy person. It’s more fun, in my opinion, to throw random ideas in there and see if you happen to get some leads.

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