Quordle learnings!

It began with Wordle on 13-01-2022.

Being an avid puzzle enthusiast for years, I got hooked on it fairly easily! ๐Ÿ˜… The simplicity - guessing a 5-letter word in 6 tries with clues emerging based on the guesses - definitely aided its stickiness.

(as of July 9, 2022)

A friend introduced me to Nerdle on 19-02-2022. Numbers fascinate me so I found this puzzle engaging! In Nerdle, one gets 6 tries to guess a mathematical equation and, like Wordle, clues emerge based on the guesses made. Wordle is language-based and Nerdle is math-based; thus, my brain gets a blended workout. ๐Ÿ˜‚

(as of July 9, 2022)

Building on the craze generated by Wordle, a number of variations began popping up on the internet. I discovered Quordle on 21-03-2022 and found this to be a tougher variant of Wordle as one had to guess 4 5-letter words simultaneously in 9 tries. It promptly joined my daily puzzle cart. ๐Ÿ˜„

(as of July 9, 2022)

Over time, I tried Octordle (guess 8 5-letter words in 13 tries), Sedecordle (guess 16 5-letter words in 21 tries) and Duotrigordle (guess 32 5-letter words in 37 tries) as well. So, my mornings begin with the Wordle-Nerdle-Quordle triad and, depending on my mood, one or more of the other three.

Among the word puzzles, I found Quordle to be the best in terms of how engaging it was and the challenge it provided. Hence, I observed my approach to solving it and the strategies that I evolved over time.

Read on for a deeper dive... ๐Ÿ˜€

~ o ~ x ~ o ~

With just 9 guesses, it feels like one needs quite a bit of luck to guess all 4 words! On my second Quordle (beginner's luck on the first one led to a false sense of security! ๐Ÿ˜‚), I fell into the trap of getting fixated on 1-2 words and exhausted my 9 guesses while only guessing 2 of the words correctly.

So, I asked myself - how do I avoid falling into the fixation trap? The answer lay in not getting swayed or tempted by the result of the first guess.

To not get swayed, I needed a logical and viable alternative.
  • Should I make 2 independent guesses and then survey the board? Would I then have enough information to make better guesses?
  • If 2 is less, should I make 3 independent guesses? That would leave me with 6 guesses in which to guess 4 words. Is that too less?
  • What should I consider when choosing the words for the independent guesses?
2 independent guesses with no repetition of alphabets meant that I could hit a maximum of 10 letters. Assuming all 5 vowels will be a part of the guesses, that left me with 5 consonants to hit. Going by my gut sense of letter frequencies, these would most likely be 'S', 'R', 'T', 'L' and 'N' (in no particular order). I realised that still left a whole lot of room for variations and even 7 guesses might not be enough to narrow down the words...

So, counterintuitive as it may seem, I went with the approach of making 3 independent guesses and hitting 15 alphabets that I believed occurred frequently (I reasoned these by eliminating alphabets like 'Q', 'Z', 'X', 'J', 'V' etc.). I used STEAM-CLING-PROUD (order doesn't matter) and then surveyed the board to start making educated guesses.

This worked like a charm! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ Even though there was more riding on each subsequent guess (with only 6 of them to guess 4 words), the additional information I gained made those guesses tantamount to shooting arrows in a well-lit room rather than the dark! This translated to completing the board in 7-8 guesses at a higher rate than before. ๐Ÿ˜€

Some examples...

(May 13, 2022)

Going the STEAM-CLING-PROUD route made getting GROWL (top-right) easy. Next, having 'L' at the end with 'T', 'E', 'M' and 'O' in some order made guessing MOTEL (top-left) straightforward. TUMOR (bottom-right) fell into place as all 5 letters were known and only the order remained to be reasoned. To guess WELCH (bottom-left), I had 'W', 'E', 'L' and 'C' in some order (see how the 'W' was provided by the GROWL guess?) and took a shot with WELCH which worked out.

(May 30, 2022)

GRADE (bottom-left) directly came since 'R' was fixed and 'G', 'D', 'A' and 'E' had to be put in some order. Ditto for LATER (top-left) as ALTER was ruled out since 'L' couldn't be the second letter. SALON (top-right) was easy as, by that point, I knew the word began with 'SA' and had 'O', 'L' and 'N' in some order. MIRTH (bottom-right) was a bit like the WELCH of the previous example in how I guessed it.

(May 23, 2022)

This one was tougher! NURSE (top-left) came easily as a consequence of my STEAM-CLING-PROUD strategy. With 'G', 'E', 'A' and 'R' in hand and the other two words not looking immediately promising, I went for WAGER which was close and helped me get EAGER (bottom-left). However, I was left with just 3 guesses for the other two words. NEWER (bottom-right) was direct as it began with 'N', ended with 'ER' and had a 'W' in it. Thanks to the NEWER guess, 'E' got fixed in two places in the word on the top-right and that made getting GENRE trivial. ๐Ÿ˜€

One last example - one that I found difficult and needed all 9 guesses for (partially because of a careless mistake too!).

(May 25, 2022)

With CRUST (top-right) coming quickly, I thought I might cruise through this one! I ended up needing 2 guesses for QUITE (bottom-left) thanks to stupidly trying QUIET even though 'T' couldn't be the last letter. ๐Ÿ˜ช A guess of CLIFF for the bottom-right word was to no avail and I was down to 2 guesses for 2 words. I tried CLICK with my fingers crossed and it worked. The final word baffled me as I'd exhausted nearly all the viable letters that I could think of; after racking my brain for a bit and taking a break from the board, I tried ALLAY and kept my streak intact! ๐Ÿ˜„ These words with two double-letter pairs are a handful! ๐Ÿ˜ค

I shared this strategy with a colleague who is passionate about language. He plays Quordle regularly and suggested including 'Y' in the list of 15 alphabets. I decided to give it a try by guessing SALTY-BEING-PROUD (sacrificing the 'M' and 'C' for 'Y' and 'B') and found that this tweak marginally enhanced the efficiency of the strategy since there are quite a few common 5-letter words that end in 'Y'.

(Here is an article I came across after trying this strategy for a few weeks which appears to support my colleague's suggestion. As per the article, 'Y' is at the 13th position in frequency which means it's a good idea to have it as one of the 15 letters. It's clear that neither of my strategies [STEAM-CLING-PROUD or SALTY-BEING-PROUD] are the best as they don't use the top-15 frequently occurring letters but, as of now, they work for me! ๐Ÿ˜‚ Maybe, I'll find a new 3-word combination in a few weeks!)

Through my experiences with Quordle, I concluded two things that I believe are applicable to life outside of puzzles too.

First, having more data points leads to better decision making (or more educated guesses about the path forward) which, in turn, takes us closer to the desired outcome. While it might be easy to jump the gun in the initial phase of any undertaking, collecting additional information and sitting back to take time to analyse it in its totality can bear fruit in the long run. ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

Second, leaving a tricky problem partially solved and returning to it later can bring in a fresh perspective that provides a breakthrough to cracking the problem! This is something I've observed in puzzles other than Quordle too (such as Sudoku and Kakuro). When I wasn't able to fathom a word or two, I would leave the browser tab open and proceed with my day. I'd come back to the board some hours later and have my Eureka moment! ๐Ÿ˜‚ Similarly, in life, challenging problems can be overcome by looking at them through different lenses. Sometimes, putting distance between oneself and the problem is what is needed to solve it.

To conclude, a big thank you to Freddie Meyer (the brain behind Quordle) and others like Guilherme S. Tรถws and David Mah who have supported him in building and growing Quordle. ๐Ÿ˜Š You've definitely added a stimulating spark to my day over the past few months and I want to acknowledge that here!

~ o ~ x ~ o ~

The link to a random sample of 21 puzzles that I documented in May 2022 is here. The four examples shown above are a subset of this list.


  1. Very interesting strategy bhaiya. I also got to know this new game which I should definitely try. Thank you

    1. Glad you liked it! The convenient part about these puzzles is that they are all online and some of them even have practice modes! :-)


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