Riper Wordle: Is “Riper” a Valid Wordle Word? [Review]

Riper Wordle, A Closer Look at Wordle’s Dictionary

Riper Wordle, the popular online word guessing game, has taken the world by storm since its release in late 2021. The premise is simple – players have six attempts to guess a random five-letter word. After each guess, the letters change color to indicate how close your guess was to the target word.

The appeal lies in Wordle’s simplicity, yet deeply satisfying challenge. Part of this challenge comes from Wordle’s seemingly endless list of obscure, uncommon five-letter words. Just when you think you have seen them all, the next day’s word is yet another unfamiliar term pulled from the depths of the English language.

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This leads to the frequent question – is {word} actually a real word? With Wordle’s penchant for pulling unpredictable words from its dictionary, players often doubt if their daily challenge is even a valid English word.

Is “Riper” a Valid Wordle Word?

One such word that has prompted this question is “riper” – an uncommon adjective that means more or completely ripe, mature, or developed. Many players were stumped when faced with guessing this rather obscure term.

So is “riper” truly an acceptable Wordle word, or is it too obscure for the game’s dictionary? Let’s take a closer look at what constitutes a valid Wordle word and where the game draws its perplexing vocabulary from.

What Makes a Valid Wordle Word?

The credentials for inclusion in Wordle’s dictionary come down to two simple rules:

  1. The word must have five letters.
  2. The word must be present in Wordle’s selected dictionary.

That’s it – Wordle does not discriminate based on how commonly known or used a word is. The game simply pulls five-letter words from its dictionary, regardless of how recognizable they are.

This explains why players encounter so many uncommon, confusing, or downright archaic terms in the game – if it’s five letters and in the dictionary, it’s fair game.

The Origins of Wordle’s Dictionary

So where exactly does Wordle derive this extensive collection of obscure five-letter words?

When creator Josh Wardle first conceived Wordle, he sourced the game’s dictionary from a standard word list of five-letter terms. This provided a foundation of common words.

However, once the game started gaining popularity after its public release in October 2021, Wardle knew the word list needed expansion to provide more variety and challenge.

To augment the dictionary, he added an additional 15,000 five-letter words pulled from Merriam-Webster’s collection of words playable in Scrabble. This influx of Scrabble-approved terms introduced more uncommon words and vastly expanded Wordle’s vocabulary.

The New York Times has maintained this dictionary since acquiring Wordle in January 2022. So between the original common word list and the expanded Scrabble dictionary, Wordle has access to some 20,000 five-letter terms spanning common vocabulary to obscure words known mainly to avid Scrabble players.

Why Obscure Words Like “Riper” Are Included

Thanks to the added Scrabble vocabulary, wordle riper has no shortage of odd, uncommon words in its mix, which gives the game its signature challenge.

Rarer words like “riper” may be frustrating, but they are valid inclusions based on the criteria of the dictionary’s origins. Scrabble draws its approved vocabulary from the Merriam-Webster’s Official Scrabble Dictionary, which includes any acceptable English word.

So while a word like “riper” is an uncommon, obscure term, it is still a legitimate English word according to Merriam-Webster and thus qualified for Wordle’s dictionary as well.

The decision to include words beyond just common vocabulary was intentional on Wardle’s part. In an interview with Newsweek in January 2022, he stated:

“I wanted people to be able to guess in 2-3 tries at the start but knew that over time, as people mastered this, they’d need harder words to keep them entertained.”

Thus, unusual and lesser-known words are essential to providing an ongoing challenge for regular players who would otherwise master all common five-letter terms quickly. These odd words help keep the game interesting day after day.

Breaking Down the Meaning of “Riper”

Okay, so “riper” is clearly a valid but uncommon Wordle word thanks to its inclusion in the Merriam-Webster Scrabble dictionary. But what exactly does it mean?

The adjective “riper” stems from the noun “ripe.” Both words relate to the condition of being fully developed, matured, or ready for use.

Specifically, “ripe” refers to something that has naturally reached an ideal stage of growth or maturity. For example, a ripe fruit has reached its peak sweetness and edibility.

“Riper” is simply a comparative form of “ripe” used to indicate something has achieved a greater degree of ripeness or maturity relative to something else. Some definitions include:

  • More mature, advanced, or developed
  • Further along in the process of becoming ripe
  • Closer to a natural point of being ready, completed, or perfected

So in essence, if an avocado is ripe, an even softer, more ready-to-eat avocado is riper. Calling something the “ripest” indicates it has achieved the highest degree of maturity compared to others.

While obscure, “riper” is the legitimate comparative form of a common word and certainly qualifies it for inclusion in Wordle’s broad dictionary.

Examples of How to Use “Riper” in a Sentence

Since most Wordle players were initially unfamiliar with the term “riper,” it may be helpful to see some examples of using it in a sentence:

  • The bananas at the back of the bunch were riper than the green ones at the front.
  • My skills are riper after months of intensive training.
  • Cheese tastes ripest when it has aged properly.
  • Tomato season yields riper, juicier tomatoes than during winter months.
  • As fruits ripen on the vine, they become riper and riper before reaching peak sweetness.
  • The grapes grown in hot climates often tend to be riper than those from cooler regions.

These examples demonstrate how “riper” can be used as a simple comparative to indicate something has progressed further in the ripening or maturing process.

Other Obscure Words You May Encounter in Wordle

“Riper” is just one example of the many strange, uncommon words you’re bound to eventually see in Wordle thanks to its broad dictionary. Here are some other odd terms that have appeared as past Wordle solutions and may come up again:

  • CAULK – a flexible sealant used to fill seams and cracks
  • TRAIT – a distinguishing quality or characteristic
  • HOMER – a home run in baseball
  • BAYOU – a slow-moving creek or river in the southern US
  • CINCH – something easy, without difficulty
  • TANGY – having a strong, tart flavor
  • GAWKY – clumsy, awkward, or ungainly

Don’t be surprised if even experienced Wordle players have to break out a dictionary when one of these words pops up. Obscure vocabulary is simply part of the fun in Wordle.

Why People Thought “Riper” Might Be Invalid

After exploring the confirmed validity of “riper,” it’s understandable why some players were skeptical at first glance. A few reasons why the word seemed questionable:

  • It’s an uncommon, rarely used word – even the comparator form “ripe” is more recognizable.
  • The “er” ending resembles some invalid plural forms like “badder.”
  • It sounds like it could be a misspelling of “ripper.”
  • Without knowing the “ripe/riper” connection, it appears completely made up.
  • Most players have simply never encountered the word before.

Since uncommon words violate players’ expectations, it’s only natural to question if the day’s puzzle is using a “real” word. But again, rarity itself does not disqualify a Wordle word – which serious players often have to remind themselves.

Lookups for “Riper” Spiked on Wordle Day

When “riper” stumped players on August 5, 2022, many flocked to dictionary lookups to fact-check the word. Merriam-Webster reported a 2,400% increase in lookups for “riper” compared to the previous year.

Searches for whether it was a real word also spiked on Google. This data shows how obscure Wordle solutions send players scrambling to verify validity.

But in the end, despite its unfamiliarity, “riper” checks out as acceptable. Even veteran Wordle users get stumped by an uncommon term now and then!

Tips for Handling Obscure Wordle Words

When you encounter one of Wordle’s curveball words that has you questioning its legitimacy, keep these tips in mind:

  • Remind yourself there are no bogus words – only unfamiliar ones. Wordle pulls from a dictionary of over 20,000 entries.
  • Plug the word into an online dictionary to verify it. Increased searches will confirm if multiple players had the same doubt.
  • Lean on word roots and prefixes/suffixes. Even weird words like “riper” contain familiar elements.
  • Accept that you just learned a new word! Uncommon solutions are an opportunity to expand your vocabulary.
  • Keep in mind that rarer words are integral to Wordle retaining its challenge. Enjoy them as a fun learning experience.

While obscure words may feel like unacceptable or fake terms at first glance, remembering the broad scope of Wordle’s dictionary explains their validity. These uncommon additions keep the game interesting for the long haul.

So next time Wordle challenges you with a bizarre term you’ve never heard before, take a beat, check the dictionary, learn something new, and carry on having fun!

Frequently Asked Questions about Obscure Wordle Words

Still have questions about how Wordle words are chosen?

Here are answers to some frequently asked questions:

Q1. Where does Wordle’s full word list come from?

Wordle’s dictionary originated from a standard word list, but was expanded with an additional 15,000 words from the Merriam-Webster Scrabble dictionary. So it includes both common and obscure words.

Q2.How many words are in Wordle’s dictionary?

Estimates suggest around 20,000 words, though the NYT has not released an official count.

Q3. Has Wordle ever used made up “fake” words as the solution?

No, every Wordle solution must be in the accepted dictionary, so there are no fabricated words. Even uncommon words are legitimate.

Q4. Does Wordle reuse words?

No, the NYT Wordle does not repeat words to ensure everyone gets a new challenge each day. The allowed word list is large enough to avoid repeats.

Q5. Why doesn’t Wordle just use common words?

Uncommon words make the game more challenging and interesting long-term. With only common words, players would quickly master the limited vocabulary.

Q6. How do obscure words add variety to Wordle?

Rare words pull from diverse origins – like science, geography and pop culture. This exposes players to more niches and provides unpredictable new challenges.

Q7. hould uncommon Wordle words be eliminated?

While confusing initially, obscure words ultimately make the game more fun and expand the vocabulary of players. Unusual additions keep Wordle novel.

In Conclusion

While “riper” is an uncommon word that many Wordle users did not recognize at first glance, it is absolutely a valid solution according to the game’s broad dictionary pulled from both standard vocabulary and Scrabble terms. Obscure words add enjoyable challenges to Wordle, prompting dedicated players to enlarge their vocabulary.

Strange new words may initially feel questionable, but a quick dictionary check will confirm their legitimacy. In the end, uncommon solutions advance the enjoyment of Wordle gameplay. So next time the day’s word has you stumped, remember “riper” as confirmation that Wordle has brain-boosting surprises waiting even for experienced solvers!

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