Archive for the ‘Variation’ Category:

Arrow/Shape/Thermo-Sudoku

Sudoku by Prasanna Seshadri

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Theme: Diamonds (for Chris Green)

Author/Opus: This is the 150th puzzle from our contributing puzzlemaster Prasanna Seshadri.

Rules: Classic Sudoku Rules. Also, some arrow shapes are in the grid; the sum of the digits along the path of each arrow must equal the digit in the circled cell. Some thermometer shapes are in the grid; digits must be strictly increasing from the round bulb to each flat end. Finally, some diamond shapes are in the grid; the labeled diamonds below the grid must be placed in some order onto the shapes in the grid. The labeled diamonds can be rotated but cannot be reflected.

Answer String: Enter the 1st row from left to right, followed by a comma, followed by the 9th row from left to right.

Time Standards (highlight to view): Grandmaster = 5:15, Master = 10:45, Expert = 21:30

Note: Follow this link for other less common variations of Sudoku and this link for classic Sudoku. If you are new to this puzzle type, here are our easiest Sudoku to get started on.

SLICY by Thomas Snyder

SLICY by Thomas Snyder

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Theme: JH (for Jamie Hargrove)

Author/Opus: This is the 263rd puzzle from Thomas Snyder, aka Dr. Sudoku.

Rules: Variation of LITS. Shade exactly four cells in each outlined region to form an S, L, I, C, or Y tetrahex. When all regions have been shaded, the following conditions must be true:
1) All shaded cells will be connected through a network of adjacent shaded cells;
2) No three shaded cells will share a common vertex;
3) When two tetrahexes share an edge in adjacent regions, they must not be the same type (S, L, I, C, or Y), regardless of potential rotations or reflections.

Answer String: Enter the length in cells of each of the shaded segments from lower left to upper right for the marked rows. Separate each row’s entry from the next with a comma.

Time Standards (highlight to view): Grandmaster = 4:45, Master = 8:00, Expert = 16:00

Note: Follow this link for more variations of LITS and this link for classic LITS. If you are new to this puzzle type, here are our easiest LITS to get started on. More LITS puzzles can be found in LOTS O’ LITS by Grant Fikes and Prasanna Seshadri.

Tapa (Borders) by Murat Can Tonta

Tapa (Borders) by Murat Can Tonta

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Theme: Cluelessly Wandering? (for Veep)

Author/Opus: This is the 60th puzzle from our contributing puzzlemaster Murat Can Tonta.

Rules: Standard Tapa rules. Also, if two cells are separated by a thick border, this means that exactly one of those cells is shaded and the other is unshaded.

Answer String: Enter the length in cells of each of the shaded segments from left to right for the marked rows, starting at the top. Separate each row’s entry from the next with a comma.

Time Standards (highlight to view): Grandmaster = 2:15, Master = 3:30, Expert = 7:00

Note: Follow this link for other Tapa variations and this link for classic Tapa. If you are new to this puzzle type, here are our easiest Tapa puzzles to get started on. More Tapa puzzles can be found in The Art of Puzzles and in Tapa and Variations, both by Serkan Yürekli.

Sum Star by Dan Adams

Sum Star by Dan Adams

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Theme: Logical

Author/Opus: This is the 1st puzzle from guest contributor Dan Adams.

Rules: Place digits into some cells and shade all remaining cells so that: each dodecagon contains the digits 1-9 exactly once; digits in cells sharing a vertex with a black triangle add up to the indicated clue number without repeats; and shaded cells cannot share an edge with another shaded cell.

Magic Summer Example by Serkan Yürekli

Answer String: Enter the digits in the marked central rows (triangle, hexagon, triangle, …). Use a capital X for shaded cells. Separate each row with a comma. The example has the key “8178XX,243”.

Time Standards (highlight to view): Grandmaster = 16:00, Master = 32:00, Expert = 1:04:00

Note: Follow this link for other less common Number Placement puzzles.

Country Road by Bryce Herdt

Balance Loop by Bryce Herdt

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Theme: Brick Road

Author/Opus: This is the 8th puzzle from guest contributor Bryce Herdt.

Rules: Draw a single non-intersecting loop in the grid that enters and exits each bold region exactly once. If a number clue is given in a region, that number indicates the exact number of cells used by the loop in the region. Unused cells cannot be orthogonally adjacent across different regions.

Answer String: Enter the length in cells of the horizontal loop segments from left to right in the marked rows, starting at the top. If the loop only has vertical segments in the marked row, enter 0. Separate each row’s entry with a comma.

Time Standards (highlight to view): Grandmaster = 3:15, Master = 6:00, Expert = 12:00

Note: Follow this link for other less common Loop variations.

Balance Loop by Bryce Herdt

Balance Loop by Bryce Herdt

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Theme: No Numbers

Author/Opus: This is the 7th puzzle from guest contributor Bryce Herdt.

Rules: Draw a single, non-intersecting loop that passes through all circled cells. All white circles must have equal segment lengths on both sides of the circle before turning. All black circles must have unequal segment lengths on both sides of the circle before turning. Numbers indicate the sum of the segment lengths on both sides of the circle.
Also, see this example:

Balance Loop by Prasanna Seshadri

Answer String: Enter the length in cells of the horizontal loop segments from left to right in the marked rows, starting at the top. If the loop only has vertical segments in the marked row, enter 0. Separate each row’s entry with a comma. This example has the key “11,311”.

Time Standards (highlight to view): Grandmaster = 2:45, Master = 4:00, Expert = 8:00

Note: Follow this link for other Balance Loop puzzles and this link for other less common Loop variations.

Cave Battle by Roger Barkan

Cave Battle by Roger Barkan

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Theme: Logical

Author/Opus: This is the 6th puzzle from guest contributor Roger Barkan.

Rules: Combination of Star Battle and Cave. Place digits into two cells in every row, column, and region of the left grid (one cell in the example). Digits cannot touch, not even diagonally. The numbers in the upper-left of each region indicate the identity of the digit to be entered in that region. The digits must form a valid cave puzzle (which can be solved on the bottom grid).

Cave Battle by Roger Barkan

Answer String: Enter the length in cells of each of the cave segments from left to right for the marked rows, starting at the top. Separate each row’s entry with a comma.

Time Standards (highlight to view): Grandmaster = 9:00, Master = 15:30, Expert = 31:00

Note: Follow this link for other classic Caves. If you are new to this puzzle type, here are our easiest Cave Puzzles to get started on. More Cave puzzles can be found in The Art of Puzzles and in Roger Barkan’s Colossal Cave Collection.