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monsters and sticklers -- a bad combination?

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2006 7:22 pm    Post subject: monsters and sticklers -- a bad combination? Reply with quote

So, I've been doing the puzzles on this site for coming up on six months, and have gradually become a fairly thorough stickler (to use the term that's been used on this forum to mean someone who doesn't make any marks on the puzzle other than to write in positively-determined contents). On the regular 9x9 puzzles, this is a matter of choice -- I'd rather spend the extra time figuring out what's going on in a puzzle than spend the time writing in the candidates and then doing lots of erasing.

With the monsters, though, I'm finding that the stickler way is often the only way to a result other than madness. I simultaneously find that an accurate sweep of candidates on a 12x12 takes a long, tedious time and that doing the puzzle without extra markings is more interesting, in any event. Occasionally (oddly enough, more often on the Hard ones than on the Very Hard), I'll give up and do the sweep, but I avoid it as much as I can. On the 16x16 puzzles, I'm pretty sure that I don't have the patience to do the sweep under any circumstances. Moreover, I think I'd probably have to print the puzzle spread out over four pages, to make the boxes big enough to accomodate all of the candidate entries. At that point, I'd presumably have a pretty hard time keeping all parts of the puzzle visible at all times. Maybe spreading it over two pages would be enough extra room?

I'm not exactly sure what my point is. As others have noted before, I've enjoyed the monsters more than I had expected to, though I think I enjoyed more the challenges embodied by the "shaped" puzzles around Christmas. I guess that I just find it somewhat ironic that the puzzles that I might most want the assistance offered by the candidate sweep are the ones for which that sweep is the hardest to obtain.

By the way, I see that we've just been presented with a new 16x16 Very Hard. I'm looking forward to tackling it, as I believe I made a mess of the last one.

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