Puzzle No. 444-447 : Puzzles from the Visa Application office

In addition to my usual puzzle related activities, I have been managing Team India’s visa application submissions. This has been quite a tough process. As part of the process, I have to stand in queue outside the office for 4 and a half hours, and then sit inside for about an hour more. The puzzles below were part of 9 I wrote when sitting in the office. I was obviously exhausted, and this was more of a “oh, I found a pen and paper, lemme just have a little fun to pass the time” kind of activity. Also, with a pen, I couldn’t erase stuff which makes construction infinitely harder, at least for me. So out of the 9, only 2 ended up working when I reproduced them on the computer. 2 others had easy fixes. The other 5 will have to be discarded as I can’t see what I can do to make them work. This hopefully makes up for my inactivity on this as well as next Thursday. Other than the league post on Tuesday, my next post will be a week after this.

Of the 4 puzzles that made the cut, 3 are Tapa related. This is fitting, as the TVC and CTC are nearing their end. I feel fairly certain of a top 10 finish in CTC, and hopefully somewhere thereabouts in TVC too. Generally happy with how I’ve done this year. The 3 puzzles below have a nice mix of a Classic Tapa, a variant that appeared this year, and a variant from the past. The 4th puzzle is a Shakashaka, which is nothing special.

In other news, the “Around the world in 80 Puzzles” Instruction booklet is out! As announced on this blog before, one of the 4 sets is written by me. I’d like to thank Amit Sowani, for test solving each puzzle and providing some good inputs along the way. I thank Ravi Kumar too, for coming up with the name Indian Intrigue which I liked the most out of the possible names. It was a pleasure working with Zoltan Nemeth and the other Hungarian team members too.

Anyway, puzzles!

P444 : Tapa. Rules for Tapa.

Rated : Medium (could be hard).

P445 : Twopa. If both grids are considered together using the following rule, they will each have a unique solution. In each solution, every clue must behave at least a little bit differently. This means, in a multi-digit clue, some of the digits can have the same behavior, but not all.

Rated : Medium.

P446 : Tapa Trimino. Follow regular Tapa rules (above). Additionally, the wall should only be made up of “L” shaped triminoes without overlapping.

Rated : Hard.

P447 : Shakashaka. Rules for Shakashaka.

Rated : Easy. 

P444

P444

P445

P445

P446
P446

P447

P447

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Puzzle No. 443 : Monopoly-Untouch Sudoku [Daily League]

Remember that you can solve the puzzles from the League online on the Sudokucup Guest League page with a 24h delay.

Rules – Follow regular Sudoku rules. Additionally, numbers in shaded cells along each side must be increasing in clockwise direction (so 4 sets of increasing numbers over 6 cells each). Also, same digits cannot touch each other even diagonally.

Rated – Medium.

Enjoy!

P443

P443

Puzzle No. 440, 441 : Tapa [Touch and Go]

I’ll just quickly link to a few of my contributions to the recent Czech Team Sudoku and Puzzle Championships.

1. I co-authored a Sudoku team round with Tom Collyer. The round has easy classics, that give some digits which need to be transferred to harder variants. The Weighted Killer, the Outside or Skyscraper, the Rossini and the Battenburg are all written by me. They are all uniquely solvable, without the transferred digits, but obviously, the transferring makes them easier. This Sudoku round is the 6th round, and can be found in PDF numbers 28 and 29 in the Sunday tab of the above link.

2. I wrote two team puzzles, one being an interconnected wall puzzle, a combination of LITS, Nurikabe and Tapa. This puzzle has two versions. The original version included determining where the part-grids go as well as solving them. Based on testing times, I decided to make it easier and gave the positioning of the 9 grids at the start itself. The detailed wall rules and the actual competition puzzle can be found on the Sunday tab of the above link, it is the 6th Puzzle round, which is PDF numbers 35 and 36. There are English rules there too. The original version of the puzzle, with just the layout given and some added logic required in placing the part-grids correctly, is given below.

OriginalWall

3. The second team puzzle was a Loop puzzle. It is a combination of 4 loop types, a Masyu, a Yajilin, a Simple Loop and a Country Road. There’s an added rule that there are certain shaded cell positions given where the loop segment behaviour is exactly the same for all 4 grids. This can be found on the Saturday tab, it is the 2nd puzzle round, PDF numbers 16, 17 and 18.

To today’s puzzles now. I came up with this variant today, and liked it enough to use it in two puzzles. I didn’t really check if the variant exists already, but I can’t remember solving one with these rules.

Rules – Follow regular Tapa Rules. Additionally, no dead-end can ever be a part of a checkerboard pattern. A dead-end is a shaded cell with just one orthogonally adjacent shaded cell, and a checkerboard pattern is a 2×2 area of alternating shaded and unshaded squares. Note : The clue cells are also considered as unshaded cells for the checkerboard pattern.

Rated – Medium (the first one’s on the easy side and the next one’s harder)

Enjoy!

P440

P440

P441

P441

Puzzle No. 439 : Arrow Sudoku [Daily League]

I’ll be posting about a Championship and my puzzles in it tomorrow. For now, I didn’t want to crowd up this post.

Remember that you can solve the puzzles from the League online on the Sudokucup Guest League page with a 24h delay. Speaking of Sudokucup, much thanks to Karel for providing this version of the image, with the arrowhead present in the circle. I think it provides more clarity than the version I had drawn up before it.

Today’s Sudoku was quickly put together because I couldn’t really get much time to think for it. That, in general, seems to be a good thing, because I always over-think things these days when it comes to picking variants/puzzles/themes that I want to do. Not sure why thats happening now.

Anyway,

Rules – Follow regular Sudoku rules. Additionally, the number in a circle is the sum of the digits which are covered by its arrow. For circles with multiple arrows, apply the rule for each arrow separately.

Rated – Medium (I think). 

Enjoy!

P439

P439

Puzzle No. 438 : Bosnian Road

Tapa Season (TVC, CTC) is past halfway and now getting really interesting at the top in both competitions. I’m really happy with my improvement this year from last year’s inconsistencies. Hoping to end well now. TVC XV is going on this weekend.

Nothing much to say about this puzzle. Just that I like the top opening, although its not that tricky to spot.

Rules

Rated – Medium.

P438

P438

Puzzle No. 436, 437 : Fillomino, Tapa

As promised, here’s 2 puzzles to make up for missing out on Sunday. The Fillomino’s just something I made to explore the middle pattern. The Tapa is one of those that was meant for elsewhere, but the theme was pretty nice so I decided to move it here. Its got my favorite (symmetric clues have same sums) theme, while all symmetric clues are still different. Its also got a decent un-clued space in the middle.

P436 –

Rules for Fillomino.

Rated – Medium (easy side).

P437 –

Rules for Tapa.

Rated – Easy.

Enjoy!

P436

P436

P437

P437

 

Puzzle No. 435 : Slot Machine Sudoku [Daily League]

Firstly, PDFs!

Week 32.

Week 33.

Week 34.

Remember that you can solve the puzzles from the League online on the Sudokucup Guest League page with a 24h delay.

Ook, now I realize that I didn’t post a puzzle on Sunday. This is because, I took a mini-break from, well, everything, over the weekend. As a result, I think I’ll post 2 on Thursday.

Today’s Sudoku, may be tough for someone new to the variant. The start is something thats rarely used in the variant, which in itself is rare I suppose.

Rules – Follow regular Sudoku rules. Additionally, the three shaded columns are like a slot machine. The 9 numbers they contain will be in exactly the same order/sequence. (The strips wrap around the grid for the ordering)

Rated – Hard.

Enjoy!

P435

P435

Puzzle No. 434 : Masyu

I confess, I totally forgot about my own blog schedule, and got this one out in a real hurry. As a result, its turned out really hard. I’ll keep it that way, even if it might border on guesswork. There’s a pattern to be found though, and using symmetry and some visualization, progress can be made, and after that, its fairly easy to finish up (since the pattern’s pretty big, that’s not surprising).

Rules for Masyu.

Rated – Hard.

Enjoy!

P434

P434

Puzzle No. 433 : Palindrome Sudoku [Daily League]

Remember that you can solve the puzzles from the League online on the Sudokucup Guest League page with a 24h delay.

I was experimenting with something of a Palindromic Loop, but ran out of time, so gave it up and just went for an almost-connect-structure. I think because of the size of the Palindrome, this may be harder than the rating, just considering keeping track of the equalities. But, logically, I don’t think its too tricky.

Rules – Follow regular Sudoku rules. The numbers formed by the digits on the gray lines are palindromes, that is to say, they can be read equally in both directions.

Rated – Medium.

Enjoy!

P433

P433