The inventor of word game sensation Wordle has spoken of being overwhelmed by its success, following a sale to the New York Times.

Software engineer Josh Wardle released the free simple online game in October, and has now sold it for an undisclosed seven-figure sum.

He said the game, which has millions of players, “has gotten bigger than I ever imagined. It has been incredible.”

The NYT said it will “initially remain free” to play, raising questions that the intention in the long term is to charge.