Puzzle No. 500 – 9 Shady Masterminds [Special] [Marathon]

I thought quite a bit about what I wanted for my 500th puzzle here. There was a stage when I thought I’d just ignore the milestone and post something normal. Then I got a bit of an idea of a simple theme which might still give out a nice solve path with different logical deductions combining.

The puzzle that resulted from this idea is pretty narrow and quite difficult, according to my and Swaroop‘s test solving experiences. Still, I think its ended up being quite varied in the thinking required and I like how it turned out.

Unlike my usual approach of posting a single image, for this puzzle I am attaching a PDF instead. This PDF has 4 pages. The first page contains the puzzle. The 2nd and 3rd pages contain the rules (The length is just because there are 9 different puzzles to cover, but most of them are familiar and should just be a quick read-through). There are two newer puzzle types, and one variant which I couldn’t immediately find an example for, so I have added 6×6 examples for these three rule-sets. The remaining are all classics, so I’ve just linked to the respective page where I got the rules from, and you can visit these links if you want an example. If you are new here and haven’t seen those sites before, I suggest visiting them anyway for more great puzzles.

Here’s the PDF:

9 Shady Masterminds

Please let me know in the comments or by mail (prasanna16391@gmail.com) if you have any queries regarding the rules or any other issues.

Puzzle No. 382-396 : Czech Puzzle Championship Puzzles

I think this was a set I wrote when I wasn’t that well. That’s not meant as an excuse, but as a warning – I tend to make things harder when I’m ill. However, some of these are also rejects from newspaper bunches for being not-too-easy (Heyawake for example) which means there’s some easy in there too. Unlike my previous puzzle set posts, I decided to find out a bit more this time, which basically means that I can add the points that were assigned to each puzzle. The Skyscrapers Pentomino was not used, but since it was not used for being too hard, I’ve simply valued it at points higher than any of the others.

The Championship had 5 rounds and then a playoff at the end. The first round had the largest time slot and so two of the hardest puzzles of my set, the Yajisan Kazusan and the Shakashaka were moved into that round. Two others, Heyawake and Multiplicative Corral were moved to the Playoff/Final. There’s no point valuing for these, but I’d put their difficulty around the LITS or the Country Road, something of a medium difficulty.

There were 25 participants, and Jan Novotný emerged as the winner, mainly by having a good playoff, as Matej Uher was ahead after the first 5 rounds (377.8 – 299.2). In fact, Jan was 4th before the playoffs, behind Jana Vodičková (332.5) and Jakub Hrazdira (306). Congrats to him, and the other qualifiers. For my round (the 4th round, valued at 110 points), the top scorers were Matej Uher (85), Jakub Ondroušek (77) and Jakub Hrazdira (62). I’m posting only my own puzzles but as a test solver for the event in general, I did have access to the other puzzles too, and the quality is quite high throughout. If you’re interested in knowing more, or you are a Czech/Slovakian interested in becoming a member of the HALAS Association (where I think you will gain access to all these puzzles), I’d suggest you contact Jiří Hrdina, who co-ordinated/organized this Championship.

Rules/links and points –

P382 : Bosnian Road (8 points).

P383 : Country Road (12 points).

P384 : Easy As Tapa (14 points) – Follow regular Tapa rules. Clues outside must be placed in the first unshaded cell in that row or column.

P385 : Fillomino (7 points).

P386 : Heyawake (Playoff puzzle).

P387 : LITS (12 points).

P388 : Masyu [Alternative] (4 points) – Follow regular Masyu rules. Additionally, the loop cannot pass two circles of the same colour continuously.

P389 : Multiplicative Corral (Playoff Puzzle) – Draw a single closed loop along the grid lines that contains all the numbered squares and does not touch itself, not even at a point. Each given number is the product of two numbers: the number of interior squares that are directly in line vertically with that number’s square (including the square itself) times the number of interior squares that are directly in line horizontally with that number’s square (again, including that square itself).

P390 : Nanro (14 points).

P391 : Norinori (5 points).

P392 : Product Heyawacky (25 points). Follow regular Heyawacky rules. Additionally, the number at the top left of a cage is the product of shaded cells in each different region, only pertaining to its area within the cage.

P393 : Shakashaka (40 points).

P394 : Skyscraper Pentomino (60 points?). (Edit – It should be noted that the puzzle in the link has “X” marks where pentominos can’t be placed, whereas the puzzle below has black cells denoting that)

P395 : Sum Skyscraper (9 points). Follow regular Skyscrapers rules. This skyscraper uses the digits 1~7. The numbers outside indicate the sum of the visible digits.

P396 : Yajisan Kazusan (40 points).

Now, the puzzles! Enjoy!

P382

P382

P383

P383

P384

P384

P385

P385

P386

P386

P387

P387

P388

P388

P389

P389

P390

P390

P391

P391

P392

P392

P393

P393

P394

P394

P395

P395

P396

P396

Puzzle No. 351 – 366 : Zagreb Open puzzles

I managed to somehow squeeze this set out in one day just before my exams started, right in the middle of the hectic submissions time in college. After that, Vladimir managed to squeeze in some time on that day itself to test these puzzles, so many thanks to him for that.

Rules all placed at the start of the post with the puzzles coming later (Trying a new format for posting, simply because its more convenient for me. The puzzle captions should aid you in knowing which rule is for what puzzle, but the ordering is the same as well, so it shouldn’t be much hassle either way.

Rules –

351 – Akari.

352 – Fillomino.

353 – Graffiti Snake.

354 – Heyawake.

355 – Japanese Sums – Place the digits 1-6 in some of the squares, so that no digit is repeated in any row or column. Sums on the outside indicate the sums of consecutive digits in that row or column, in order. Each sum is seperated by at least one empty square.

356 – LITS.

357 – Nanro – Write numbers in some cells of the diagram. All numbers in a region must be equal. The given number in a region denotes how many cells in this region contain a number (at least one). Same numbers must not be orthogonally adjacent across region boundaries. Numbered cells must not cover an area of size 2×2 or larger. All numbered cells must form a single orthogonally continuous area..

358 – Odd Even Skyscraper – In addition to Skyscraper rules linked to below, all outside clues that are shaded are odd. The rest are even. Range 1-6.

359 – Pentopia.

360 – Regional Yajilin.

361 – Shakashaka.

362 – Skyscrapers. Range 1-6.

363 – Tapa.

364 – Tents – Place a tent ortogonally next to each tree so that no two tents touch eachother, not even diagonally. Numbers on the outside indicate the amount of tents that are in that row or column.

365 – Walls Fillomino – Some region borders are given; i.e. the numbers on both sides must be different.

366 – Yajisan Kazusan.

Enjoy!

Akari

P351

Fillomino

P352

GraffitiSnake

P353

Heyawake

P354

Japanese Sums

P355

LITS1

P356

Nanro

P357

OddEvenSkyscrapers

P358

Pentopia

P359

RegionalYajilin

P360

Shakashaka1

P361

Skyscrapers

P362

Tapa

P363

Tents

P364

WallsFillo

P365

YK

P366

Puzzle No. 344 – 346 : UKPA Open Tournament puzzles

I’d sent many more puzzles for the UK tournament, but the rounds were put together in a bit of a rush, so a lot of them will be used in future contests, I’m told. Anyway, the 3 that were used, 2 Snake variants, and a LITS are what I’m posting now. Its been a while since the Puzzle Booklets were released on the UK forum so most of you have probably seen these. Still, for the few who haven’t…

On a side note, I’ve been working on a few puzzle sets recently too. While a few of these might/might not make it here, one set in particular will sometime in the next week I think. So, something to look forward to.

Also, try out April Contest by Riad on LMI. Its tough, but there aren’t any time constraints, so one can solve the puzzles at their own pace purely for enjoyment.

Anyway, to the puzzles.

No. 344 – Horse Snake – Blacken some cells so that they form a single continuous path, one cell width (the snake), which head and tail are given. The snake cannot touch itself, even at a point. A clue in a cell corresponds to the number of snake cells (head and tail included) which can be reached in a knight step from this cell. There cannot be any snake segment on a cell containing a clue.

P344

P344

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No. 345 – Slitherlink Snake – Draw a 1 cell-wide snake of unknown length, not touching itself even diagonally. Its head and tail are marked with circles. The snake cannot go through numbered cells. Numbers show the amount of cells occupied by the snake in the four neighboring cells.

P345

P345

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No. 346 – LITS – Colour a shape of 4 orthogonally connected squares in each black bordered region so that all coloured squares form a single contiguous area. This area can’t contain any 2×2 coloured squares. Two identical shapes in different regions can’t touch eachother by a side. Rotations and reflections are considered the same shape.

P346

P346

 

Puzzle No. 316 – 336 : Polish Championship set

I’d mentioned a few posts earlier, that I’d contributed some puzzles to the Polish Championships this year. There was an offline qualifier, an online qualifier, the finals, and the playoffs. I think there was a good share of my puzzles in all 4 of these rounds. Its pretty confusing which was used where, since I’ve not organized it that well in my folders, so I’ll just post all the themed ones together (as mentioned in that post linked to above, the online qualifier had puzzles that I used simultaneously elsewhere and were more of a hurried solution).

The theme I was working on should be pretty obvious on seeing all the puzzles. It started with the easier Tapa, which I made completely by accident while writing a bunch of newspaper puzzles, and then I just tried a similar thing with the Corral and that happened quickly too. So, just decided to go along with it, discarded those two from the newspaper bunch and started off the Polish set with them. I couldn’t really try and retry the puzzles to get the exact appearances I wanted, and this is apparent from the 2 LITS and the Killer Sudoku among other ones. The LITS is of course something difficult that I set myself to do in a pretty short timespace, as both LITS were required hurriedly for the qualifiers, and to make it have duplicated regions throughout on the first try seems almost impossible, at least for me.

Anyway, here they are. As with the Zeka set, rules are either linked to by the puzzle names or just added here. These puzzles have varying difficulties, but I don’t think anything was exceptionally hard.

Enjoy!

P316 – ABC Box – Fill the grid with letters A, B and C. The clues outside give the sequence of letters in that row or column. If the clue is a number, that is the number of times a letter appears in that position of the sequence (Which letter is determined while solving). If the clue is a letter then that letter appears in that position of the sequence (The number of times it appears continuously is determined while solving). A “?” means that an unknown letter is appearing an unknown number of times in that position of the sequence.

P316

P316

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P317  : Akari.

P317

P317

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P318 : Corral.

P318

P318

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P319 : Country Road.

P319

P319

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P320, 321 : Fillomino.

P320

P320

P321

P321

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P322 : Heyawacky.

P322

P322

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P323 : Killer Sudoku 8×8 – Follow regular sudoku rules. Additionally, the numbers at the top left of a cage gives the sum of numbers in that cage. Numbers cannot repeat in a cage.

P323

P323

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P324, 325 : LITS

P324

P324

P325

P325

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P326 : Masyu

P326

P326

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P327 : Pentasight

P327

P327

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P328 : Pentopia

P328

P328

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P329, 330 : The Persistence of Memory

P330

P329

P329

P330

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P331 : Regional Yajilin

P331

P331

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P332, 333 : Tapa

P332

P332

P333

P333

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P334 : Tapa Skyscrapers

P334

P334

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P335 : Yajilin

P335

P335

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P336 : Yajisan Kazusan

P336

P336

Puzzle No. 315 : Creeky LITS?

Daily League Update –

A Renban Groups Sudoku with a slightly different perspective by Bastien on Wednesday.

An odd-even Chessdoku by Rishi on Thursday.

About today’s puzzle, its one of those cases where I’m thinking “Oh I wanna do this today, no, I wanna do that today, well I’ll just do both”. I’ve wanted to do a regionless LITS variant for a while now but haven’t been particularly happy with any of the choices I came up with. I’ve also wanted to do a Creek puzzle for a while because I really like these from what I’ve solved of them. Joining both together makes for a lot of rules, which, apart from the top right area, is the trickiest aspect of this puzzle so be sure to keep all of them in mind while solving 😉

Rules for Creek. Additionally, the white area has the following constraints –

1. A 2×2 area of cells cannot all be white.

2. The white area must all be tiled with tetrominos of different shapes and as in a LITS puzzle, same shapes cannot touch each other orthogonally.

Enjoy!

P315

P315

Puzzle No. 282 : LITS

Daily League Update –

Wednesday – Pointing Evens Sudoku by Bastien.

Thursday – Argyle Sudoku by Rishi.

I have many things going on right now. Among them, is the fact that I have to wake up early tomorrow, as I have been called to my college to attend the Annual Day prize function where they will acknowledge my puzzle-related achievements in the past year. Obviously, this is a really nice thing to happen, and I will need to sleep early to make sure I make it on time tomorrow. What this means is that there is no way I expected to be posting today.

However, I had to squeeze out 10 puzzles for the newspaper so I can send a batch tomorrow, and while doing so, this LITS was produced. I made a mistake while drawing it in my notebook, but then realized that this is still solvable. But its too hard for me to send for the newspaper. So, here it is. Its still probably just a tricky medium for an experienced WPC level solver though. Enjoy!

Rules for LITS.

P282

P282

Puzzle No. 274, 275 : A Diagonal Count Sudoku and a Diagonal Count LITS

Daily League update –

Para contributed a Distance Sudoku on Saturday, that went really well for me :p After that, earlier today/yesterday depending on the part of the world you’re in, Seungjae Kwak (Kwaka) contributed a Quadruple Sudoku, that can be found on facebook here. Fred Stalder has just told me he will soon be posting his Monday contribution for Week 3, a Killer Sudoku. Check for that sometime later today too.

I think both of these are of a medium difficulty. I’m a fan of Diagonal variants in general, and I was adamant for there to be a LITS variant here just like I was with the Snake variant.

For 274 : Follow regular Sudoku rules. Additionally, the clues outside show the number of different digits in that direction.

For 275 : Follow regular LITS rules. Additionally, the clues outside show the number of shaded cells in that direction.

Enjoy!

P268

P274

P275

P275