Well, the puzzle editing project continues to eat up my constructing time, but that should only be for another couple weeks or so. This puzzle, like the Tessellation Nurikabe a few weeks ago, was directly inspired by learning how to make fancy grids in Inkscape. I was expecting to have some difficulty working with a hexagonal grid, but instead I found it quite smooth to fill. I have no idea if the solving experience is quite as smooth, however. Enjoy!
After posting on Tuesday last week, and missing the week before entirely, I am finally posting a puzzle on Saturday. I rather like today's Pathfinder, if I do say so myself. I felt like I was finding new ways of having words fit together, and I managed to get a little scrabbly with some of the fill. What do you think?
I tried posting this on Monday, but it didn't take. Apologies for the lateness of this week's puzzle, and for missing last week's puzzle. I've been involved in a puzzle editing project that has been eating up a lot of my time lately, so I haven't been able to finish my own puzzles in time. I hope to get back on track, but I make no promises.
This week's puzzle is based on a Patrick Berry creation that appeared in the Wall Street Journal a few months ago. His version used a 14x14 grid, but I was worried about biting off more than I could chew, and stuck with a 12x12 grid. He also used the "extra" letters to spell a quote, but I decided to spell out four words that would clue a final answer. Think of it as a Mystery Hunt-style puzzle, with instructions.
Yet another departure from my normal fare, yet again featuring something I wrote for last week's puzzle potluck. This one is a pair of logic puzzles, which is significantly outside my comfort zone as a constructor. Nurikabe is an established puzzle type invented by the folks at Nikoli, which uses a square grid, but I tweaked one of the rules to allow me to used other tessellations. In fact, I also wrote a pair of polyhedral Nurikabe, which take place on the surface of a rhombicosidodecahedron, using the same rules, but that required the assistance of a 3-D printer, so it would be tough to share them in this forum. Once again, I haven't put together a solution file yet, but with the long weekend ahead of me I should be able to get that (and last week's solution) done fairly soon.
If you're itching for word puzzles, I recommend checking out Kevin Wald's contribution to the puzzle potluck, "A Well-Lined Grid". Kevin writes consistently entertaining cryptics, and this one is no exception.
A bit of a departure from my usual fare. I wrote this for a puzzle potluck that I hosted today, and since I had it in hand I thought I'd share it with you. It's deliberately somewhat pop-culturey, and the significance of the final answer may be somewhat obscure if you're not involved in a particular subculture. But I had fun writing it, which surprised me since I normally don't consider myself good at writing "normal" crosswords. I forgot to make a solution file, and my primary computer is in the shop, so I'm unlikely to fix that for the next week or so. Sorry.
Edited to add (10/5): The clue for 37-down is missing a word. The figure should be "$220 million" instead of just "$220".
Argh! Two late posts in a row! This is partly due to being busy, partly due to computer troubles, and partly due to flakiness. At least I know I have something lined up for next week. Also, I'm a little frustrated that I had to do two easier puzzles in a row (a Snake Charmer and a Spiral); I prefer to alternate these with harder puzzles.
Oh my goodness, I'm so sorry for the delay in posting this puzzle. Although I had sketched it out a couple weeks ago using the "outtakes" from Snake Charmer #19, I got swamped with other projects and didn't manage to format it until tonight; as it is I didn't even have time to format the solution grid. I hope this is a one-time occurrence.
Whoops, I got so caught up in solving the latest issue of P&A Magazine that I nearly forgot to post! I started this puzzle a couple weeks ago, when I first heard about the death of 10N. That was the seed for the puzzle, and I was pleased to get a few more long entries to fit in around it, but there are a lot of 5- and 6-letter words to counterbalance the long ones.
Edited to add (9/15): Two of the clues in the puzzle were lacking enumerations. I have fixed the error and uploaded a new file. Thanks to Joe for pointing this out to me.
This puzzle exemplifies some of the compromises I have to make as a constructor. I originally had a different continuation of the entries starting at 9 and 23, but couldn't get that continuation to line up with the beginning, so I tore out a third of the puzzle and started again. On the plus side, that third of a puzzle that I didn't use can serve as an excellent seed for the next Snake Charmer. Also, in my effort to get more long words (8+ letters) into the grid, I wound up with lots of short words (3-5 letters) as well. In this case, I think the short words won, but I still like some of the long ones I managed to fit in.