Wordle clones take over the App Store

Wordle clones take over the App Store

If you’ve spent any time on Twitter in the past week, chances are you’ve seen the sides of emoji boxes overwhelm your feed. That is thanks to him Word, a new puzzle game that has become a real obsession for many ever since The New York Times wrote about it a little over a week ago.

Like other viral games, Word deceptively simple: you have six chances to guess a new five - letter word. And that's basically. There is only one puzzle a day, and it's free to play without ads. Its creator, a software developer named Josh Wardle, seems to have been "overwhelmed" by the size of his game. But the lack of an app for the game has allowed developers to create their own version of the game.

One notable example comes from developer Zach Shakked who created an app called “The Word - The App.At first glance, the app, subtitled "Word game everyone playing!”Could be easily mistaken for the original version. The word grid looks almost the same, and even uses the same color scheme. But the Shakked version also asks players to sign up for a "pro" subscription that costs $ 29.99 after a "three-day free trial".

But between announcing the “Wordle” app and running term-by-term review ads in the App Store, Shakked seems to have succeeded in taking advantage of the sheer size of the game he created. Wardle first. "It simply came to our notice then. 450 tests at 1m last night, now at 950 and getting new ones every minute, ”he wrote in a tweet made private since then. Download 12K, # 28 word game status, and # 4 product for “Word” in the App Store. We're going to the fucking moon. ”

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Screenshot via Twitter

Shakked and Wardle did not answer questions from Engadget. But Shakked is not the only developer trying to make money on a show Word. His app is one of at least six Word clones launched in the App Store in the eight days since the first one New York Times article about it Word. Another, called "What Word - Wordle", which costs $ 0.99 in-app purchases to remove ads, says "No. 1 word game "in his App Store screenshots. (He actually ranks No. 7 in word games, according to his App Store list.)

Scam apps are nothing new that take advantage of how viral a game is, of course. Game developers have been complaining about the usage for years. Apple did not immediately respond to questions about it Word clones in the shop. However, thanks to emails published during the trial of Epic v. Apple, we know that copycat apps have long been a source of harassment for Apple officials as well. “Does anyone review these apps? Isn't anyone paying attention to the source? ” Phil Schiller wrote in an email in 2012. Three years later, he complained "I can't believe we don't" have automated tools to detect scam apps.

Updated 1/11 7:52 pm ET: App store listings for the Word clones are no longer accessible, and the apps appear to have been removed from the source. We have contacted Apple for more information.

Updated 1/11 10:05 pm ET: Apple confirmed to Engadget that they had removed the games from its App Store.

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