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Today's Wordle answer and hints — solution #284, Wednesday, March 30

Wordle displayed on a smartphone
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Is this the hardest Wordle week ever? Today's Wordle answer is another fairly tough one, following four difficult ones over the previous four days. 

With that in mind, you're going to need a few hints to help safeguard your streak. After all, a Wordle failure is only ever six guesses away. I’ve played every Wordle so far and lost only once — so I've got plenty of tips and tricks to share.

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. But no cheating though, because that's bad. 

So be warned: spoilers lie ahead for game #284. Only read on if you want to know today's Wordle answer! 

Today's Wordle answer #284 — 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 two vowels*
  • It starts with a very common starting combination
  • It includes one of the least common letters

* 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 an appliance for cooking.

OK, the answer's coming up next…

Today's Wordle answer #284, Wednesday, March 30

The game Wordle displayed on two smartphones

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

So, what is today's Wordle answer for game #284?

I won't keep you waiting any longer — it's STOVE.

The previous four Wordle answers, SHALL, FOUND, NYMPH, and EPOXY, were all difficult words; the first two had lots of possible solutions, the third had no traditional vowels, the fourth used an X and was an obscure word. 

STOVE is probably on a par with SHALL, in that most people will know it as a word and it's not impossible to guess, but at the same time it does have lots of similarly spelled alternatives.

Against that, it's a very common word: 4,427th more frequently used in English, according to Word and Phrase Info. Most people probably know what it means, but here's some of the Merriam-Webster definition:

  • a portable or fixed apparatus that burns fuel or uses electricity to provide heat (as for cooking or heating)

As always, I played my favorite Wordle start word, STARE, and today this gave me a real advantage, with three greens right away. 

Wordle 284

(Image credit: Wordle/NYT)

It was always likely that the answer had an O in it; the alternatives for the third letter were an I (as in STILE) or a Y (STYLE). But there were far more options for O: STONE, STOLE, STOVE and STOKE, for instance.

So I went with STOLE, knowing that if the O was wrong then the L would almost certainly be right. Of course the O wasn't wrong, and it was then a simple matter of working through the possibilities. There weren't so many that I could have lost my streak, but I could easily have got a 5/6 here, so a 4/6 was a minor victory. 

'Wordle 284 X' is not trending on Twitter yet, but it's very early days and I wouldn't be surprised if it was later. 

Still, it is slightly easier than the previous four answers and I've got my fingers crossed that not too many of you lost your streak today. Let me know how you did in the comments or via email.

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 #283: SHALL
  • Wordle #282: FOUND
  • Wordle #281: NYMPH
  • Wordle #280: EPOXY
  • Wordle #279: DEPOT
  • Wordle #278: CHEST
  • Wordle #277: PURGE
  • Wordle #276: SLOSH
  • Wordle #275: THEIR
  • Wordle #274: RENEW
  • Wordle #273: ALLOW
  • Wordle #272: SAUTE
  • Wordle #271: MOVIE
  • Wordle #270: CATER
  • Wordle #269: TEASE
  • Wordle #268: SMELT
  • Wordle #267: FOCUS
  • Wordle #266: TODAY
  • Wordle #265: WATCH
  • Wordle #264: LAPSE

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, 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.

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 pages on today's Quordle answers and today's Octordle answers.

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.

And, there's the unofficial Wordle Unlimited, which lets you play as many games per day as you like, and adjust the number of letters in the word, from four to a crazy 11. We'd also recommend checking out the excellent Heardle, which is like Wordle for pop music.

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).