Of all the Wordle-derived internet puzzles, Actorle has turned out to be my favourite. Unlike Heardle or Framed, which strongly depend on you really knowing the song or movie the puzzle is looking for, with no chances of simply guessing it, Actorle – much like the original Wordle – relies on a lot of context clues that can lead you to an answer, even if you don’t know every actor that ever lived. (To be honest, Actorle doesn’t even care about most actors that worked before 1975, so you don’t even have to know that many actors, anyway.)
If you have never played Actorle, the puzzle is looking for an actor every day. As hints, it provides you with a list of films the actor has appeared in, with Xs where the letters of the title should be. It also lists the genres of those movies and the average IMDB score. Once you guess an actor, it tells you how old that actor is and if the actor the puzzle is looking for is much or a little older or younger. It also reveals the titles of all the films the guessed actor has appeared in.
This means that the best way to solve Actorle is actually identifying one or more of the films in the list and then finding the actor that appeared in all of them. This might sound obvious, but it’s worth stating nevertheless.
So, what is the best way to identify the films? I mostly look at the IMDB scores first. Scores above 8 are often films that were either box office successes, won awards or became cult hits. In other words: These are the films you are most likely to know, so look at them first. (This has gotten more difficult since Actorle changed its listing criteria to be independent of IMDB scores, recently.)
The second thing I look at, are the genres. If you look at the genres across all the listed films, you will get a general sense of what kind of actor you are looking for. For a character actor, the list will mostly display tags like “drama”, “history” or “romance”. Typical mainstream actors of the 21st century will probably will have lots of “fantasy” and “science-fiction”, because those are used for all the franchise movies that dominate screens in our era. Keep an eye out for less frequent tags like “sport”, “war” or “horror”. There are often not that many films of these genres in a given year, which will make it easier to identify them.
Finally, look at the titles. More precisely, look at their punctuation. Especially if you’re looking for an actor who has appeared in some franchise movies, there will be colons, dashes and repeating patterns of Xs that make movies fairly easy to identify.
Once you are quite certain that you have identified at least one film in the list, have one last look at the year of the first film listed. This is probably the first major role the actor played. Most actors get their first major part somehere between the age of 18 and 25, so the release date of the first film in the list might clue you in on the age of the actor you are looking for.
Is the first-billed in the right age range? Then it’s probably them. It’s not unusual to solve Actorle on your first try.
If you didn’t solve it, but you guessed at least one movie correctly, you should have enough clues to find the right answer within the next two tries. Good luck!