Game Guides

10 best Wordle starting words, according to math and science

Never see X/6 again.

Ian Johnston/500Px Plus/Getty Images

Brandon Bell/Getty Images News/Getty Images

If you’ve been anywhere near the internet lately, you’ve seen plenty of Wordle. There are lots of competing theories on how to start your game right, the best of which use the power of science to get you a good score.

According to experts, here are the 10 best opening words to use in Wordle.

Shutterstock

10. Crate

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

The key to finding the best Wordle starting word is knowing that some letters are used much more than others in English. Every letter in CRATE is frequently used.

9. Crane
9. Crane
9. Crane
9. Crane
9. Crane
9. Crane
9. Crane
9. Crane
9. Crane
9. Crane
9. Crane
9. Crane
9. Crane
9. Crane
9. Crane
9. Crane

Shutterstock

fhm/Moment/Getty Images

Math YouTuber 3Brown1Blue proposed CRANE as the best starting word, before revealing the algorithm used to determine that was bugged. Even after fixing it, CRANE remained a top 10 word.

milan2099/E+/Getty Images
Sauce

#8

Shutterstock

You may be noticing a pattern here. Nearly every top Wordle starting word contains an E, the most used letter in the English language.

7. Slate

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

It’s not just individual letters you should look for, but also letter combinations. Combinations like SL, CR, and EA are pretty common.

6. Slice

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

Letter placement is just as important as letter selection. Words ending in E are extremely common, so using one as your first word will either score you one correct letter or eliminate a huge number of possible answers.

5. Alert
5. Alert
5. Alert
5. Alert
5. Alert
5. Alert
5. Alert
5. Alert
5. Alert
5. Alert
5. Alert
5. Alert
5. Alert
5. Alert
5. Alert
5. Alert

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

ALERT was chosen by an algorithm that picks words based on letter frequency. It combines some very common letter combinations with less frequent placements, making it good at getting correct letters and landing longshot placements.

4. Irate

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

Irate is a linguist-approved word to start your Wordle game. It includes the top three vowels and the top two consonants, though it may take some work to get them into the right position.

3. Later

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

Fewer words end with ER than with E, but it’s still a common enough combination to be worth a guess, and if it’s correct, it’ll greatly narrow down your possible solutions.

2. Tears

Shutterstock

Shutterstock

TEARS has lots of common letters in slightly less common positions. That means the chances of hitting letters in their proper positions is lower, but correct letters give lots of information about the answer.

Shutterstock
Raise

#1

Shutterstock

RAISE contains some of the most used letters in English in a common configuration. It shows up on nearly every math and science-based Wordle breakdown, making it a very smart first pick.