Minnetonka High School's Student News

Minnetonka Breezes

Minnetonka High School's Student News

Minnetonka Breezes

Minnetonka High School's Student News

Minnetonka Breezes

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The Rise of New York Times Games


In October of 2021, software engineer Josh Wardle started what would soon become a
viral internet phenomenon when he released his new game: Wordle. A mere 3 months later,
the game was purchased by The New York Times (NYT) and available to play on The New
York Times Games website. The number of players skyrocketed due to NYT’s worldwide

acclaim, and continued to become more and more popular. The NYT has offered a cross-
word puzzle in their newspaper since 1942, and in 2014, they released The Mini Crossword

available to play online. Subsequently, The New York Times has created many other logic-
based games including Spelling Bee, Vertex, Letter Boxed, and Tiles.

Although this national newspaper service has offered a plethora of online games for
almost a decade, none have been as popular as the sensation Wordle. Luca Vincent (‘26)
and Onora Islam (‘26) both stated that they didn’t start playing the NYT Games until
Wordle was made available. Luca commented that she “started playing the games in 8th
grade,” the year that Wordle was bought by the NYT Games platform. Since the global
takeover of Wordle, NYT has released a new logical word game, Connections. In this game,
players need to make 4 groups of 4 words with a connecting theme in each. With all of
these addictive options available at everyone’s fingertips, the number of players logging on
to decipher these puzzles has soared.
Onora is a part of a growing group of puzzling fanatics who make a point of signing
onto the Games website everyday to maintain her series of Wordle victories. “I just broke

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my 63 day Wordle streak, but I usually play everyday.” She says that Wordle is her favor-
ite NYT game because “it’s more strategic.” Onora has also been playing since the game’s

release in 2022, and both she and Luca note that they have been taking part in NYT Games

more over the past couple of years. Luca attributes her increase in NYT gaming to the web-
site “[having] more games since when I first started playing them.”

In the wake of an online puzzle commotion spearheaded by The New York Times
Games, other websites have created Wordle spin-offs. Luca recalls some of her favorite
Wordle spin-offs including Worldle (a geographic guessing game of country outlines) and
Heardle (an audio-based game of song-guessing based on short snippets), for when one
Wordle a day just isn’t enough.
Amid this dramatic spike in online puzzling, The New York Times Games stands

strong and proves to be an unsuspected gaming giant. Whether you’re a crossword con-
noisseur, or a steadfast sudoku-er, The NYT Games are the place to puzzle in 2024.

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