Wordle, inevitably, has been turned into a battle royale

Squabble is like Wordle battle royale
(Image credit: Ottomated)

The natural evolution of a game can begin anywhere—a circle eating dots, bricks falling from the sky, cars driving around—but it always leads to the same end: Battle royale. Pac-Man, Tetris, and Forza all have battle royale modes these days, along with lots of other games in which large scale multiplayer wouldn't seem like a natural fit.

So why should Wordle be any different?

There are already tons of Wordle-alikes featuring swears, geography, dungeon crawling, and now there's Squabble, which works just like Wordle but adds battle royale modes, hit points, kill cams, a big angry red X when you're eliminated, and a whole lotta stress.

Keep Your Streak

Today's Wordle being played on a phone

(Image credit: Nurphoto via Getty)

Wordle today: Get the answer
Wordle tips: Don't get STUMPed
Wordle starting words: Headstart
Games like Wordle: More dailies

Typically I play Wordle first thing in the morning while still lying in bed, staring blearily at my phone for long minutes thinking "But there is no word that starts with U and has a C, L, and E, except for UNCLE. There's just nothing else. Stupid New York Times! You broke the game! Oh. ULCER. Right."

Squabble removes all that blissful thinking time and replaces it with blind panic. You can see all the other players on the screen making guesses, their rows filling up with colored boxes one by one. "Shoot, that player has three green already and I'm sitting here staring at one yellow, an X! What words have an X in them? I can't think of a single one!"

In true battle royale form, Squabble also gives you hit points before taking them away with each wrong guess. Getting a letter right heals you while damaging your opponents. Want to play it cool and just take your time? You can't. Doing nothing also deals you damage. And tragically, guessing the word before everyone else doesn't mean you win: Squabble continues until all but one player has lost all their HP so there may be multiple secret words to guess during a match.

There are two Squabble modes: Blitz, with 2-5 players and Squabble Royale which supports anywhere from 6 to 99 players (though the games I've played have topped out at about 12 or 13, probably so you don't have to sit there all day waiting for the queue to fill). It's all pretty slickly done, and you can either join random games or generate a room code to send to your friends. 

There's even a replay feature that is essentially a kill cam. During the match you can only see colors but in the replay you get to see everyone's letters, too. Please, enjoy watching me stumble into FLICK, get the LICK part right, and then experience complete brainfreeze until I decide maybe PLICK is a word. (It is not). Also, consider this replay is double speed so it took me twice as long to finally remember CLICK exists.

If I'd never played Wordle before I'd probably think Squabble was a lot of fun. But it takes a nice comfy no-pressure word-guessing game I play in bed and turns it into a furious frenzy of typing the first word that pops into my head. I definitely prefer the original, relaxing version. Oh, that's an X word! RELAX! Dammit!

Christopher Livingston
Senior Editor

Chris started playing PC games in the 1980s, started writing about them in the early 2000s, and (finally) started getting paid to write about them in the late 2000s. Following a few years as a regular freelancer, PC Gamer hired him in 2014, probably so he'd stop emailing them asking for more work. Chris has a love-hate relationship with survival games and an unhealthy fascination with the inner lives of NPCs. He's also a fan of offbeat simulation games, mods, and ignoring storylines in RPGs so he can make up his own.