The New York Times filed a lawsuit against Wordle’s geographical name-sake Worldle

It's Wordle vs Worldle!

The owner of the famous word game Wordle, New York Times has filed a lawsuit against Worldle, a geographic-based game where, just like Wordle you have to guess the geographical locations rather than words. The New York Times purchased the hit word puzzle title from the original developer Josh Wardle in 2022 for a low seven-figure sum and has now accused its namesake Worldle of “creating confusion and attempting to capitalize on the enormous goodwill associated with its brand”.

Worldle owner Kory McDonald claims there is a plethora of games with similar titles in the industry

As reported by BBC, Kory McDonald, the creator of the game, Worldle claims that there are many games in the industry operating under similar titles and genres. “There’s a whole industry of [dot]LE games, Wordle is about words, Worldle is about the world, Flaggle is about flags” he quoted. The New York Times doesn’t agree with the notion and has clarified by stating via the lawsuit, that “Worldle is nearly identical in appearance, sound, meaning, and imparts the same commercial impression to Wordle

Worldle Lawsuit, Wordle Lawsuit Worldle
Image via The New York Times

The game, Wordle, developed by Josh Wardle in 2021 has become a behemoth boasting millions of active players worldwide despite there being competition from other titles in the genre, on the other hand, Worldle has 100,000 active players with a chunk of revenue even going to Google for the use of Google Street View Images as it is used in the game to identify the locations.

Ever since The New York Times acquired Wordle, the game has seen many advancements like the Wordlebot, which was introduced to increase players’ word capacity and ability. There are new Wordle puzzles available regularly in the game allowing players to test their vocabulary with new challenges, you can even re-visit the previous puzzles to keep a flawless score in the game.

Wordle has a history of fighting off its clones and rip-offs

Ever since the game saw popularity and got famous there have been plenty of rip-offs and clones circulating in the market. Even when the game was just a web version, fake apps, and namesakes were visible on the app stores. Apple Stores in the past have even taken action against some of the rip-offs available in the stores. Kory McDonald, the creator of Worldle, was surprised to face lawsuit charges as he believes there are plenty of games under similar titles already operating.

Worldle Lawsuit, Wordle Lawsuit Worldle
Image via Kory McDonald

It is unclear if The New York Times will pursue the other games like Quordle, Nerdle, and Heardle which seem similar to Wordle. It will be interesting to see how the Wordle vs Worldle legal battle turns out to be.

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