If you’ve spent any time on Twitter in the past week, you’ve likely seen emoji box networks take over your feed. That’s thanks , a new puzzle game that has become somewhat of an obsession for many since then New York times A little over a week ago.
Like other viral games, Word Deceptively simple: You have six chances to guess a new five-letter word. And that’s… pretty much. There is only one puzzle per day, and it is free to play with no ads. Its creator, a software developer named Josh Wardle, apparently goes back to the popularity of his game. But the fact that the game does not have an application allowed the developers to create a copy of the game.
One particularly egregious example comes from developer Zach Shakked who created an app called ‘Wordle – App.” At first glance, the application titled “A word game that everyone plays!It could easily be mistaken for the original. The word grid looks almost the same, and even uses the same color scheme. But the Shakked version also requires players to sign up for a $29.99 “Pro” subscription after a three-day “Free Trial.”
But between naming the app “Wordle” and running search ads against the term in the App Store, Shakked appears to have succeeded in capitalizing on the popularity of the game that Wardle originally created. “This is ridiculous. It has become private since then, 450 trials at 1 AM last night, now at 950 new trials every minute.” 12,000 downloads, No. 28 word game, 4th hit for “Wordle” in the Store Applications. We’re going to the damned moon.”
Shaked Wordel did not respond to questions from Engadget. But Shaked isn’t the only developer trying to cash in on the popularity Wordl. Its app is one of at least six apps Word Clones have been released on the App Store in the eight days since the original release The New York Times article about Wordl. Another, called “What Word – Wordle” which charges an in-app purchase of $0.99 to remove ads, claims to be a “No. 1 word game” in its App Store screenshots. (It’s actually ranked #7 in Word Games, according to its App Store listing.)
Of course, SCAMMY copycats taking advantage of the popularity of a viral game are nothing new. Game developers are practice for years. Apple did not immediately respond to questions about Word Clones in her shop. But thanks to the emails released during the Epic v. Apple, we know that fake apps have been a source of frustration for Apple executives, too. “Does no one review these apps? Does no one care about the store?” Phil Schiller wrote in. Three years later, he complained that “I can’t believe we still don’t have” automated tools for finding scam apps.
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