Best Wordle start words to help you keep your streak

Wordle’s Best Getting Started Quotes is the key to winning the game and eliminating the need to search for today’s Wordle answer.

Without a good opening word, you risk losing your streak, and no one wants that. What fate to fall upon them. Also, even if you’re a bit of an expert in Wordle, having a great opening phrase will help you convert 4/6s to 3/6s or even 2/6s. Even NYT’s shiny new WordleBot tool acknowledges the importance of a good opening word.

I’ve written before about how I’ve played every wordle so far and only lost once, and #1 on my list of tips is to use a good starting word. So that’s what I’m going to discuss here.

Keep reading and I’ll explain to you what the best Wordle starter words are, the math behind them, and what alternatives to try.

most common letters

Wordle’s Best Starting Words: The Most Common Letters

Before we dive into the word list, let’s break down the science behind it.

You don’t need to be a genius to realize that using the most common letters in English is a good idea. For example, you are more likely to find “A” in the word rather than “Z”.

in a research article on English letter frequency numbersPeter Norvig, director of research at Google, analyzed data from Google Books to create a list of the most frequently used letters in the English language. Their findings concluded that “E”, “T” and “A” ranked in the top three, while “J”, “Q” and “Z” were the least common.

However, this list is based on words in general rather than Wordle’s answers – so you’ll need to analyze them all to really find out which letters appear most frequently in the game.

Fortunately, this is easy to do. Since all of Wordle’s answers are freely available in the website’s HTML code, it’s actually pretty simple to download them and then do some number compression. Here is the list of most used letters you get when you do this:

  1. AND
  2. one
  3. R
  4. This
  5. T
  6. I
  7. I
  8. s
  9. Number
  10. C

Note that the list above is based on correct Wordle answers rather than Wordle words; The game accepts over 12,000 words as guesses, but only 2,309 are valid solutions.

So that’s interesting, but it’s just appetizers for the best main course to follow from Wordle’s first word…

Wordle’s Best Starting Words

What are the best Wordle starter words?

word 272

(Image credit: Wordle/NYT)

A few people have tried using math to determine the best Wordle starting words.

One was programmer and game designer Tyler Glaiel, who assigned each letter in Wordle’s 12,972 possible guesses a score of 0, 1, or 2, depending on whether it appeared in one of the 2,309 answers and whether it was spot on.

After checking all 12,972 words, the algorithm determined that the best starting options were:

  1. RISE
  2. DIRECT
  3. RAISING A CHILD

For reasons too complex to be discussed here, Glaiel concludes: DIRECT Wordle’s is the best starting word if you want to sift through possible answers as quickly as possible.

However, since ROATE doesn’t appear in Wordle’s list of possible answers, you’ll never get 1/6 with it. Therefore, she recommends starting with Glaiel. RAISING A CHILD.

Programmer Bertrand Fan took a similar approach and found, unsurprisingly, a very similar list:

  1. RISE
  2. SAREE
  3. SEARE
  4. to look
  5. DIRECT

Given that the first three are not on Wordle’s list of possible answers, this is to look Statistically the best Wordle first word, at least according to Fan analysis.

Coincidentally, Stare is a word independently chosen by some of the Tom’s Guide team without seeing this survey weeks ago, so that’s what we’re going for.

This decision was based on common sense; after all, S is the most common first letter among Wordle’s answers, A is the third most common letter, and E is the fifth most common. T and R, in turn, are the two most common consonants in the game.

Here you go — at least for the Tom’s Guide team, This Wordle’s best starting word is STARE.

Celebrities and Wordle

Wordle Start Should Your Word Have Too Many Vowels?

Some people swear by playing songs like ADIEU, AUDIO, ABOUT, CANOE, or OUIJA because it allows you to use three or four vowels in the beginning.

This might be a good alternative approach, as every Wordle response has at least one vowel, so it makes sense to identify it as quickly as possible. But I personally wouldn’t go that route. ADIEU is not a Wordle answer, so you’ll never get 1/6th of it. AUDIO is fine, but does not contain the letter E – which is not only the most common vowel, but also the most common in the game. ABOUT.

KANO isn’t bad, but when it comes to consonants, C and NS aren’t as common as T or R, so what you gain one way you lose the other. And OUIJA is just a silly suggestion: there is no letter E but there is a letter J, which is the second least likely letter to appear in the game.

However, vowels are very important in the game in general, so think strongly of them when thinking of a second word. Meanwhile…

Wordle’s second best words

But what about the best accompanying word?

word 251

(Image credit: Wordle)

Of course sometimes even a good start word won’t get you yellow or green results. If that happens, you’re going to need a good second word.

The choice will obviously depend on what your first word is because you won’t want to repeat the letters you used before. But assuming you follow this advice (you will, it’s true) and use STARE as your wordle starting word, I would suggest PHONY, COULD or DOING as the second option.

PHONY is a statistically better choice as a second word because Y is one of the fifth most commonly used letter. However, COULD and DOING use two more vowels, and it’s always a good strategy to use your vowels early, as explained above.

The Best Wordle Starter Word According to WordleBot

A NYT WordleBot screen showing the best starting words from your chosen Wordle

(Image credit: Wordle/NYT)

NYT’s excellent new WordleBot tool has its own list of top Wordle starter words – and it’s a must-know, as it’s made by the people who currently run Wordle.

The math behind this is based on how many of Wordle’s 2,309 solutions are left on average after playing, plus the average number of steps needed to solve it, and a few other metrics. And by that measure, Wordle’s best starting word is apparently CRANE.

This is surprising to me – at least STARE actually scored 71.8 against Crane’s 78.7 as it actually outperforms in terms of average number of solutions. But overall, WordleBot scores 99/100 on CRANE and only 97 on STARE and is probably better than me at math, computer and all.

Here are the top 10 WordleBot starter words:

  1. CRANE
  2. SLATE
  3. cashier
  4. SLOPE
  5. TRACE
  6. SPEAR
  7. LETTER
  8. AT LEAST
  9. MOMENT
  10. TO BAKE

STARE is at number 12 on this list – very good if not the best.

Of course, the opening words can only take you so far. If you’re like me, just one word a day isn’t enough. If that sounds too close to home, you can always dive into our guide. how to play wordle several times a day and hone your skills for the game of tomorrow.

We have also prepared a list best wordle alternatives In case the original game is too easy or too hard for your taste. And I analyzed all Wordle responses for patterns – here’s what I found.


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Best Wordle start words to help you keep your streak

The best Wordle start words are the key to beating the game and avoiding the need to search for today’s Wordle answer.
Without a good start word, you risk losing your streak — and nobody wants that fate to befall them. Plus, even if you’re a bit of a Wordle expert by now, having a great start word will help you turn 4/6s into 3/6s and even 2/6s. Even the NYT’s brilliant new WordleBot tool recognizes the importance of a good start word.
I’ve written before about how I’ve played every Wordle so far and lost only once, and No. 1 on my list of tips is to use a good starting word. So that’s what I’ll discuss here.
Read on and I’ll explain what the best Wordle start words are, the math behind them and what alternatives to try.
Most common letters
Best Wordle start words: Most common letters 
Before we dive into the list of the words, let’s break down the science behind it. 
You don’t have to be a genius to realize that it’s a good idea to use letters that occur more frequently in English. For example, you’re more likely to find an “A” in the word than a “Z.”
In a research paper on English Letter Frequency Counts, Peter Norvig, director of research at Google, analyzed the data from Google Books to put together a list of most commonly used letters in the English language. His findings concluded that “E”, “T” and “A” were the top three, while “J”, “Q” and “Z” were the least common. 
However, that list is based on words in general, rather than Wordle answers — so to really find out which letters feature most frequently in the game, you’d need to analyze them all.
Fortunately, that’s easy to do. Because Wordle’s answers are all freely available in the website’s HTML code, it’s actually pretty simple to download them, then do a bit of number crunching. This is the list of most most frequently used letters that you get when you do that:
E
A
R
O
T
L
I
S
N
C
Note that the list above is based on correct Wordle answers, rather than Wordle words; the game accepts some 12,000-plus words as guesses, but only 2,309 are valid solutions.
That’s interesting, then, but it’s just the appetizer for the best Wordle start word main course to follow…
Best Wordle start words
What are the best Wordle start words?

(Image credit: Wordle/NYT)
Several people have attempted to use math to determine the best Wordle start words. 
One of them was programmer and game designer Tyler Glaiel, who assigned each letter in Wordle’s 12,972 possible guesses a score of 0, 1 or 2, based on whether it is included in one of the 2,309 answers or not, and whether it is in the right place. 
After checking all 12,972 words, the algorithm determined that the best starting options are:
SOARE
ROATE
RAISE
For reasons that are too complex to go into here, Glaiel concludes that ROATE is the best Wordle start word if you want to rule out possible answers as quickly as possible. 
However, because ROATE doesn’t actually feature in Wordle’s possible answers list itself, you’ll never get a 1/6 with it. For that reason, Glaiel recommends starting with RAISE. 
Programmer Bertrand Fan took a similar approach and unsurprisingly came up with a very similar list:
SOARE
SAREE
SEARE
STARE
ROATE
Given that the top three don’t feature in Wordle’s possible answers list, that would make STARE the statistically best Wordle start word, based on Fan’s analysis at least.
Coincidentally, Stare is the word independently picked by some of the Tom’s Guide team weeks ago, without having seen that research, so that’s the one we’d go for. 
That decision was instead based on common sense; after all, S is the most common first letter among Wordle answers, A is the most common third letter and E the most common fifth letter. T and R, meanwhile, are the two most common consonants overall in the game.
So there you have it — for the Tom’s Guide team at least, the best Wordle start word is STARE.
Vowels and Wordle
Should your Wordle start word have lots of vowels?
Some people swear by playing the likes of ADIEU, AUDIO, ABOUT, CANOE or OUIJA, as they let you use up three or four vowels at the start.
This can be a good alternative approach, as every Wordle answer has at least one vowel so it makes sense to identify it as soon as possible. But I wouldn’t personally go down that route. ADIEU is not a Wordle answer, so you’ll never get a 1/6 with that. AUDIO is decent, but it doesn’t contain an E — which is not just the most common vowel but also the most common letter in the game. Ditto ABOUT.
CANOE isn’t bad, but C and N are nowhere near as common as S, T or R when it comes to consonants, so what you gain in one aspect you lose in the other. And OUIJA is just a silly suggestion: it doesn’t have an E but it does have a J, which is the second least likely letter to feature in the game at all. 
However, vowels are very important in the game in general, so consider them strongly when thinking of a second word. Speaking of which…
Best Wordle second words
What about the best follow-up word?

(Image credit: Wordle)
Of course sometimes even a great start word won’t earn you any yellow or green results. If that happens, you’ll need a good second word.
Which you choose will obviously depend on what your first word was, as you won’t want to repeat any letters you’ve already used. But if I assume you’re following this advice (you’re going to do so, right) and using STARE as your Wordle start word, I’d recommend PHONY, COULD or DOING as good second options.
PHONY is a statistically better option as a second word, because Y is one of the most frequent fifth letters. However, COULD and DOING both use two more vowels, and using your vowels early is always a good strategy, as described above.
The best Wordle start word according to WordleBot 

(Image credit: Wordle/NYT)
The NYT’s excellent new WordleBot tool has its own list of the best Wordle start words — and it should know, given it’s made by the people who now run Wordle.
The math behind it is based on how many of Wordle’s 2,309 solutions are left, on average, after you play it, plus the average number of steps needed to solve it and a couple of other metrics. And by that measure, the best Wordle start word is apparently CRANE.
That’s surprising to me — not least because STARE actually fares better in terms of average number of solutions, scoring 71.8 to CRANE’s 78.7. But overall WordleBot awards CRANE a score of 99/100 and STARE only 97, and presumably it’s better at math than I am, it being a computer and all that.
Here’s WordleBot’s 10 best Wordle start words:
CRANE
SLATE
CRATE
SLANT
TRACE
LANCE
CARTE
LEAST
TRICE
ROAST
STARE is at number 12 in this list — so pretty good, if not quite the best.
Of course, starting words can only take you so far. If you’re anything like me, then just one Wordle a day doesn’t quite cut it. In case that sounds too close to home, you can always dive into our guide to how to play Wordle multiple times a day and hone your skills for tomorrow’s game. 
We’ve also put together a list of the best Wordle alternatives in case the original game proves either too easy or too difficult for your taste. And I analyzed every Wordle answer to look for patterns — here’s what I found.

#Wordle #start #words #streak


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