WSC/WPC Impressions – August 15 (WPC Day 2)

I should not have jinxed it the day before, but I have made 2 stupid mistakes on the puzzles from day 1. For Round 3, I guessed the pentominos, and have shaded most of the cells in. However, I left 1 cell as a scribble, which costed me 90 points. I am going to try protest this to see what happens, but I am not getting my hopes up. For Round 5, I have left a digit out on the first puzzle, which is going to be another 50 points. I doubt I can protest this, which really sucks. On the plus side, the crazy pavement was correct. I wish I can do all puzzles like that.

Anyways, Round 8 was a bunch of puzzles themed after English gardens, with flowerbeds, vegetable gardens, cobwebs, and snails. (What’s so good about cobwebs and snails?) I solved the flowerbeds, the cobwebs, and the first hitori snails. According to Byron, the 2nd snail was very doable, and I probably should have tried it as it was worth 160 points.

Round 9 was loop based puzzles, such slitherlink. I am generally very comfortable with these, and I got everything aside from the 2nd ripple loop and the inner sum fences.

Round 10 was the 200 club, where each puzzle is worth 200 points. The first was a non-consecutive kakuro, with all clues being 14 and 20. The 2nd was a yajilin, again with clues being 2,0,1,4. The 3rd was a blackout dominos, which was surprisingly easy, and so was the 4th puzzle, pentominos in half. The 5th was the inverted LITS(O), the 6th was anti-magnets. The 7th was sky anglers. The 8th was missing labyrinth. The 9th was the 3-in-1 tents-sudoku-slitherlink, which I broke multiple time. The last one was a double block which I tried guessing at the end, but didn’t managed to get it. In the end, I solved puzzles 2, 3,4, 5, and 9, which is OK but not superb.

Round 11 was consists of some variations on classic puzzles. I solved all the tapas, the diagonal numberlinks, star battle twins, and the small tetromino sums. Given that Byron solved 700+ worth points of puzzles, I am dropping further and further behind in the rankings.

Round 12 was called “something different”, which wasbasically an innovative puzzles round. I spent way too much time on the torodial numberlink, which was totally pointless, as I didn’t get it in the end. If I spent that time on the flipped mirror sums or the compass, I probably would have gotten another 100+ points. Anyways, I did both Every Third One, Tilt Maze, both Tthat’s Not Right, MIni Coral, Labyrinth, Neighbours, and Spiral City Construction.

Round 13 was called “afternoon tea”, and is consist of puzzles where you use T shapes to fill in the grid. There are T rooms, T tapas, T crisscross, etc. I did everything except for the 3 T for Times Tables in the end. I probably should have written down all the possible products and their relations in the instruction booklet, but given how the round went, I was pretty satisfied.

Round 14 was another team round, and this time there were 6 pairs of puzzles, with the grids of each pair cut up into pieces. We were to assemble each of the pairs in such a way that both puzzles have a solution using the same given clue and assembly. Most of the round was unremarkable, as we simply divided up the puzzles to solve. The sticking point turned out to be the hard cave puzzle and the nurikabe/numberlink pair. The nurikabe pair only has 8 possible ways to assemble the puzzle, so we tried to exhaustive search it. However, that didn’t work well, so the puzzle was handed to Byron, who managed to guessed the correct numberlink, which also can be solved as a nurikabe. The hard cave puzzle was simply difficult and time consuming. By the time we finished the rest of the puzzles, the cave was nowhere near done, and we made a bunch of guesses that did not work. We ended up copying the cave onto multiple sheets of paper, and solved it when there was 8 minutes on the clock.

After dinner, there was a puzzle hunt. Unlike logic puzzles, these puzzles uses both your wits and knowledge. Elyot, Jarett, Fae, Carolyn, and I formed a team of 5, while Byron betrayed Team Canada and formed a team with someone else. One of the puzzles was a chess puzzle hidden in a search puzzle, while another had morse code hidden inside a poker puzzle. There were 8 puzzles in all, with no instructions given. We first worked on the obvious stuff, such as finding the location. At some point, we realized that our knowledge of London was lacking, and that we only had one internet enable device, so I grabbed my iPad from my room. We solved the first 4 with some work, and once we verified that the answers were correct, we got the other half of the puzzle hunt. The second for puzzles were significantly easier than the first, and did not require the extensive use of Google. Eventually, we finished the whole thing in about 1.5 hours. After the event, we got some more of our WPC papers back, and stupid mistakes are continuing to cost me in this championship.

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