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Today's Wordle answer and hints — solution #343, Saturday, May 28

Wordle displayed on a smartphone
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Today's Wordle answer continues the theme of recent games — yes, it's of fairly standard difficulty. There's no sign of 'Wordle 343 X' trending on Twitter and the NYT's WordleBot tool says people are solving it in an average of 3.6 guesses, which makes this a fairly straightforward start to the weekend.

That doesn't mean you won't find some hints to be helpful, though. After all, Wordle is a deceptively simple game and failure is only ever six guesses away.

I’ve played every Wordle so far and lost only once, so I've got plenty of Wordle tips and tricks to share. I've also analyzed every Wordle answer to look for patterns and got some further advice for you there. And if you're new to the game you should also take a look at my What is Wordle? guide.

Each day, I'll be updating this article with tips to help you find today's Wordle answer. And if the hints aren't enough, I'll even give you the solution, in case you're really stuck or just haven't had time to complete today's puzzle. I've also included my analysis of yesterday's puzzle, #342, in case you're reading this in a different time zone. 

So be warned: spoilers lie ahead for game #343. Only read on if you want to know today's Wordle answer!

PS: If you're a music fan then also check out our guide to today's Heardle answer.

Today's Wordle answer #343 — hints to help you solve it

My first tip is that you should use one of the best Wordle start words for every game you play. But if you want some more specific clues to today's Wordle answer then here you go:

  • It has one vowel*
  • There are no repeated letters
  • It starts with a common starting letter

* By vowel I'm meaning A, E, I, O, U. There are other letters that are sometimes considered to be vowels, depending on how they are used. 

Those hints should get you at least some of the way towards finding today's Wordle answer. If not, then you can read on for a bigger clue; or, if you just want to know the answer, then skip down further for that.

Alright then, here's my final hint: Today's Wordle answer is sneaky.

OK, it's time to scroll down for the answer…

Today's Wordle answer #343, Saturday, May 28

The game Wordle displayed on two smartphones

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

So, what is today's Wordle answer for game #343?

Drumroll please — it's CREPT.

Wordle appears to be in a bit of a groove at the moment: pretty much every recent answer has been of around average difficulty. OK, so that makes sense — it wouldn't be an average if it didn't happen regularly — but even so, it's been surprising that there haven't been any really tough ones for a while. 

As with yesterday's game (see below), the NYT's WordleBot says people are solving this one in an average of 3.6 guesses, and to the best of my memory we've only had one recent game with an average above 4, let alone anything approaching 5. I'm not complaining, by the way, merely observing!

As a word, CREPT isn't particularly obscure. It doesn't feature in Word and Phrase Info (opens in new tab)'s list of the most frequently used English words, but that's purely because it's a derivative of CREEP — and CREEP is a common word. 

The letter pattern, meanwhile, is a real mixed bag. As I show in my analysis of every Wordle answer, CR is the third most common starting combination in the game, occurring 45 times overall. But PT is not a common ending combination — only 10 games have this format.

As with yesterday's game, and Thursday's ASSET, my start word gave me quite a few letters here. Unlike with those two, it didn't help me get a good score, and I had to settle for a below-par 4 today.  

My choice of the best Wordle start words is STARE, as it has been since I started playing Wordle back in January, and today it gave me a yellow T, R and E. Lots of yellows can be helpful, but it tends to indicate that are lots of possible answers and I'd definitely prefer two greens over three yellows.

Here, I had 30 options to choose from, according to WordleBot. I didn't find them all, but I did come up with a list of around 20, most of which I subsequently found were genuine Wordle answers. Quite a few of them started with T and ended ER; I had TIMER, TUBER, TRUER, TIGER and TOWER. Other options began TR (TREND, TRIED) or ended TER (ENTER, VOTER, METER). And then I had a bunch of random words without any real pattern — RETCH, RIVET, ERUPT, ERECT, CREPT, BERTH and REBUT.

Given how many started with T, I decided to go that route. The fact that ER is a very common ending combination also influenced my decision on this front. So I played TIMER. 

Wordle 343

(Image credit: Wordle/NYT)

In one sense, that didn't help — I still had just three yellows to work with. But in another, it helped greatly, narrowing the options down from 30 to seven. 

I didn't know there were seven left at this stage, instead thinking that I had six: ERECT, ERUPT, CREPT, BERTH, RETCH and REBUT. The one I'd missed was RECUT, but fortunately that didn't negatively affect my game.

Either way, it was clear to me that I should now end with the T instead. ERECT had the advantage of using the E in two places, which would help me narrow it down if it was wrong — If the first E turned green, the answer would be ERUPT. If the second E turned green, it would be CREPT. 

As it happened, it was the second one that turned green, together with the R and the T. There was now only one option left to me, so I played CREPT and walked away with a slightly disappointing 4. 

Let me know how you did in the comments or via email (opens in new tab) — and if you have already got in touch then apologies for the delay in replying, you will get a response soon (honest)!

Yesterday's Wordle answer #342, Friday, May 27

Reading this in another time zone where it's still Friday? The Wordle answer for game #342 was TIARA.

Your verdict on this one will probably depend on your start word. That's often the case, but as with Thursday game (ASSET), that fact may be made starkly clear here.

As an example, my choice of the best Wordle start words — STARE — left me with only four possible answers right away. There was, essentially, no way I could fail. But anyone using WordleBot's favored CRANE had 24 options open to them. 

WordleBot says people solving it in an average of 3.5 guesses, which is reasonably low; I wouldn't describe this as one of the hardest ever answers. But there are a few complicating factors. The repeated A is one of them: as I show in my analysis of every Wordle answer, this occurs in only 69 games, or 3% of the total. 

An A at the end of an answer is not that common either. A is the most common letter in second and third positions, and is sixth most likely to start a word and fifth most likely to be in fourth place. But it's only 10th in the final spot, with just 63 answers ending that way. So yes, it's actually less common to find an A at the end than it is to have two in the word somewhere. But here we had both of course!

As a word, TIARA is not exactly obscure, but nor is it a word most people use regularly. In fact, it's only at 24,173rd in Word and Phrase Info (opens in new tab)'s list of the most frequently used English words, which is pretty far down the rankings.

The fact that it didn't cause me any real problems was purely down to the luck of the draw. As I said, I played STARE as my start word, and that gave me a green A and R plus a yellow T.

Wordle 342

(Image credit: Wordle/NYT)

CHART was the first word that popped into my head for the second guess, as CH is a common combination at the start and T is a very common ending. This would have been mathematically the most likely answer.

But rather than play it right away, I restrained myself and went through the motions of seeing how many other options there were. I only had two 'paths' to consider — T at the start or T at the end.

For T at the end, I found CHART, APART and QUART. I tried every other combination I could and didn't come up with any others, although a subsequent look at the Wordle Solver (opens in new tab) website says I could also have played BOART or LYART. I have no idea what either of those words means, and I am fairly certain Wordle does not include them in its answers!

For T at the start, my options were limited. There aren't many letters that follow a T — it's basically TW, TR, TH or a vowel. I worked through the possibles (THARL? TOART?) and decided that TIARA was the only viable option.

So I had only four to pick from — which was a pretty good result at this stage. 

However, I was a little torn for what to play next. CHART was the most likely based on probability, and if I guessed that and got lucky, I could get a 2/6 (for the second game in a row). But if it was wrong, I risked getting a 4/6 — even if the T turned green, I'd still have no way of knowing whether the answer was APART or QUART.

So I nearly played POUCH as my second guess. This would have guaranteed me getting a 3/6, because if the P turned yellow the answer must be APART, if the U turned yellow it would be QUART, if the C and H it would be CHART and if none did, it would be TIARA. It's essentially a game theory dilemma — go for the best possible result while also risking the worst possible one, or play it safe.

In the end, I risked it, mainly because I couldn't stand the thought of my friends scoring a 2/6 when I only got a 3/6. So I played CHART and crossed my fingers. As it happened, when the T stayed yellow I knew the answer was TIARA, so ended up with a 3/6 anyway.

Previous Wordle answers

If you're looking for a list of older Wordle answers, we can also help. Here's a list going back 20 games.

  • Wordle #342: TIARA
  • Wordle #341: ASSET
  • Wordle #340: VOUCH
  • Wordle #339: ALBUM
  • Wordle #338: HINGE
  • Wordle #337: MONEY
  • Wordle #336: SCRAP
  • Wordle #335: GAMER
  • Wordle #334: GLASS
  • Wordle #333: SCOUR
  • Wordle #332: BEING
  • Wordle #331: DELVE
  • Wordle #330: YIELD
  • Wordle #329: METAL
  • Wordle #328: TIPSY
  • Wordle #327: SLUNG
  • Wordle #326: FARCE
  • Wordle #325: GECKO
  • Wordle #324: SHINE
  • Wordle #323: CANNY

Wordle tips — how to win at Wordle

The best tip I can give is to use one of the best Wordle start words. I can't stress this enough — it makes a massive difference. 

Without one, you'll be scrabbling around in the dark trying (and possibly failing) to find the right five letters (or possibly fewer) out of the 26 possibles. But clever people (not me) have done the math and identified the best start words based on both frequency in English and frequency among Wordle answers. So use them! 

Secondly, think about combinations, especially at the start and end. Some options are far more common than others — for instance, SH, ST, CR and CH all feature frequently. 

Vowels obviously need consideration too: not all Wordle answers will contain more than one, but plenty do, and some even have three. A good Wordle start word should have used a couple, but if they don't feature you might well want to try another one or two on your next go.

Plus, remember the Y — this sometimes acts as a surrogate vowel, and is easy to forget. It also appears at the end of plenty of words.

Finally, try out possibilities. So long as you don't press 'Enter' you can try possible answers to see how they look on screen. Put in likely letters plus any you know are definitely in the word, then mentally change one to the other available options. This technique has worked for me multiple times, and it's particularly helpful when the word in question is not an obvious one (like FJORD or ISLET). 

What else should I know about Wordle?

Wordle launched in October 2021, but only grew in popularity towards the end of the year, then went viral in January as the world woke up to its charms. In fact, it proved so successful that The New York Times bought Wordle for a seven-figure sum in early February and the game is now part of NYT Games.

It's played via the NYT Games website here (opens in new tab), and is entirely free. Both the NYT and the game's creator, Josh Wardle, have stated that it will remain free. Some people think that Wordle has got harder since the NYT takeover, but it really hasn't.

Wordle is a simple game in which your challenge is to guess a five-letter word in six attempts. Each time you guess, you're told which of your chosen letters are in the target word, and whether they are in the right place. 

If a letter is in the correct place, it turns green. If it's in the word but in the wrong place, it turns yellow. And if it's not in the word at all, it turns gray.

There's just one puzzle a day, and everyone completes the same one. It resets at midnight each day. You'll find more information about the game in our What is Wordle? article.

Wordle Alternatives

If you're eager for another game to pass the time while you wait, we've put together a list of the best Wordle alternatives. We also have a page on today's Quordle answers, because it's our favorite, and also today's Heardle answer — because that's great too. 

Other Wordle alternatives to try are the ultra-stressful (but very good) Squabble and the soccer-themed, Who Are Ya?. We also like the geography-based Wordle clone Worldle, the Star Wars-themed SWordle and the math-based Mathler.

There are certainly plenty of options once you've finished Wordle for the day!

As U.K. Editor in Chief on Tom’s Guide, Marc is responsible for the site’s U.K.-focused output as well as overseeing all gaming, streaming, audio, TV, entertainment, how-to and cameras coverage. He previously edited the tech website Stuff and has tested and written about phones, tablets, wearables, streaming boxes, smart home devices, Bluetooth speakers, games and much more. He also spent years on a music magazine, where his duties mainly involved spoiling other people’s fun, and on a car magazine. An avid photographer, Marc likes nothing better than taking pictures of very small things (bugs, his daughters) or very big things (distant galaxies). When he gets time, he also enjoys gaming (console and mobile), cycling and attempting to watch as much sport as any human can (particularly cricket).

  • fraochmuir
    There is no yellow E in Stare for March 27th.
  • John II
    I used to use SUITE which uses 3 common vowels and 2 common consonants. Lately, it seems like some of the words have been a bit more obscure, so I've switched to HAVER (thanks goes out to The Proclaimers and 500 Miles for this obscure word). If no hits, that's fine, I burn some more letters to narrow the field by using two more vowels and other common consonants... MOIST. Yeah, I know... no one likes MOIST, but it reveals two more vowels and three more consonants . That combo helped me get today's HAIRY on the third guess! 🆒
  • Nhobuna
    The may 10th answer might also be a double. I was working through it but I have a b,u, and t as letters that are in the actual word.
  • TexTechie
    There are 2 answers again evidently.. I have the same word as you and it's not gecko obviously 😅
  • Scotth71
    Far from Gecko for me. Not sure what is going on but seems someone has mucked up.
  • SS2021user
    Was in the exakt same position with the end of 335, but chose wrong. Didn't think GAMER would be a very likely word, so I chose GAZER instead. Goodbye 40 day streak!