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General Discussion.
3/24/2012 5:28:03 AM


Guest
I know, I know. This probably isn't in the right place, but what is the right place here for trying to generate discussion, really? I'd say all of it, but I'm a simpleton.

So, anyway. These are always rather intriguing to me. I guess the reason is you never know from which angle you're going to get a clue. I'll give you one of the clues in the puzzle to see what I was dealing with. "Late bird parties?" Bezactly like that. So my thought process (I had O as the second letter) was, well, if I was a worm, I'd be partying like H E double hockey sticks that the birds were late...

Wrong! Heh. The answer was dodo. This puzzle was a lot of fun to try to solve, and I got within 5 answers of doing so, but the final answers eluded me. I used to never try these, but have recently tried to tackle them. They aren't for the faint of heart, and quite a bit is tongue in cheek, or a hidden answer in the clue via straight out, or a little anagram thing. They do make you think quite a bit. Think oddly as well, hence the worm trip I went on.

Anyone else do these? Any experts? Inquiring minds might not care, but I do! Heheh.

3/24/2012 7:15:51 AM

Bernadette1959
Bernadette1959
Posts: 661
TDHO, I've tried solving Cryptics before but they are just too difficult for me. I've gotten so far in one before as to have half of the answers but then couldn't get any further.

I read somewhere that these cryptic-style puzzles are the standard style of crossword puzzle found in the UK in all of their newspapers and publications, unlike over here where they are just straight definitions. They must like their puzzles hard!! smile

3/24/2012 1:51:44 PM

Purple Pisces
Purple Pisces
Posts: 624
When I was browsing this website, looking through the solving resources, I saw the instructions for this type of puzzle. They look too difficult for me. Maybe when I get REALLY good at all the other puzzles and am looking for a challenge I will give one a try! smile

3/24/2012 5:31:58 PM

Semipro
Semipro
Posts: 170
I enjoy doing the Cryptics, and I believe they're good exercise for sharpening mental flexibility (lateral thinking). Sometimes I can complete one. Other times, I get stuck a few words short of the solution. I don't often finish a puzzle in one sit-down. Usually there'll be a few clues I can't make anything of. If I take a break for a few hours and come back, I'm likely to get how those clues work.

I have two complaints. One, too many clues rely on anagramming. This is a legitimate way to write a clue, it's just that their percentage is too high. Other gimmicks are underrepresented. Two, a few clues aren't fair. Every syllable in a clue is supposed to count in the answer word. Sometimes a clue has an extra part that doesn't contribute.

3/25/2012 7:49:21 PM


Guest
Bernadette1959 wrote:
TDHO, I've tried solving Cryptics before but they are just too difficult for me. I've gotten so far in one before as to have half of the answers but then couldn't get any further.

I read somewhere that these cryptic-style puzzles are the standard style of crossword puzzle found in the UK in all of their newspapers and publications, unlike over here where they are just straight definitions. They must like their puzzles hard!! smile


I hear ya, Bern. 5 answers left is the closest I've come. If at first you don't succeed, though..... Peek. NO! Don't do that, folks. really... Heheheh. Try, try, again is the turn of phrase. Plenty more where that one came from. Getting scarce for me, though. I just have 3 variety books from my last order to do, and one that was screaming at me from the shelf at the store. A Master's Variety that has a 6/5 date on it and a number 88. My second to last, or last if you don't count the afore-mentioned one, is ALSO a Master's which looks like a March of 2011 date, 83. Guess I need to be ordering REAL soon. Plenty of Logic left, and a few Brain Boosters from my previous order. I'm being parsimonious with those, heheh.

Hard or not, I like them. I have a cheeky thing to say here that I'm struggling not to, and it's really just my twisty sense of humor, nothing to be afraid of.

With that, I'll close, laughing under my breath at myself.

3/25/2012 7:54:06 PM


Guest
Purple Pisces wrote:
When I was browsing this website, looking through the solving resources, I saw the instructions for this type of puzzle. They look too difficult for me. Maybe when I get REALLY good at all the other puzzles and am looking for a challenge I will give one a try! smile


I've got to go check that out after replying, Purp. I've never looked at that. Makes me curious, and that's a good thing. Just try one. That's what I did a while back, with no rules. I vowed to myself that I was learning a new thing, and I'd try hard, but not feel a failure for looking at the answers. Kinda helped me. Got to only 5 answers left on the last one, so something must have worked, or perhaps my brain was giving me access to a few more cells that day, who knows?

Give it a shot. Sooner, rather than later. You might get mildly addicted, like me.

3/25/2012 8:11:21 PM


Guest
Semipro wrote:
I enjoy doing the Cryptics, and I believe they're good exercise for sharpening mental flexibility (lateral thinking). Sometimes I can complete one. Other times, I get stuck a few words short of the solution. I don't often finish a puzzle in one sit-down. Usually there'll be a few clues I can't make anything of. If I take a break for a few hours and come back, I'm likely to get how those clues work.

I have two complaints. One, too many clues rely on anagramming. This is a legitimate way to write a clue, it's just that their percentage is too high. Other gimmicks are underrepresented. Two, a few clues aren't fair. Every syllable in a clue is supposed to count in the answer word. Sometimes a clue has an extra part that doesn't contribute.


Hey, Semi. Good to see you. Never finished one, so you're in rarified air, far as I'm concerned. Like you, I come back to the puzzle a few times. For me, things jump out that I wasn't seeing upon the first try. Kinda cool. I rarely do that with any puzzle, except Logics, Sudoku Challengers, Cryptics as we're talking about, and the occasional Laddergram. What's the one with the cave man chipping out a wheel? Those, too. Ah, I looked and funnily enough, they're called Wheels, heheheh. Whodathunkit?

As far as your complaints. Well, those are some of the reasons I enjoy them, heheh. They freak me out and challenge me, and freak me out even more when the answers are falling to me. What? What am I doing right today? It's a cryptic conspiracy to lull me in and snatch me up! Heheheh.

3/25/2012 8:47:01 PM


Guest
TheDarkHorseOne wrote:
Purple Pisces wrote:
When I was browsing this website, looking through the solving resources, I saw the instructions for this type of puzzle. They look too difficult for me. Maybe when I get REALLY good at all the other puzzles and am looking for a challenge I will give one a try! smile


I've got to go check that out after replying, Purp. I've never looked at that. Makes me curious, and that's a good thing. Just try one. That's what I did a while back, with no rules. I vowed to myself that I was learning a new thing, and I'd try hard, but not feel a failure for looking at the answers. Kinda helped me. Got to only 5 answers left on the last one, so something must have worked, or perhaps my brain was giving me access to a few more cells that day, who knows?

Give it a shot. Sooner, rather than later. You might get mildly addicted, like me.


Look, I'm quoting myself. This is actually to get both posts from myself and the Purple one that will lead you to THIS.

****=http://www.pennydellpuzzles.com/upload/documents/How%20to%20Solve%20Cryptic%20XWD.pdf#search=]http://www.pennydellpuzzles.com/upload/documents/How%20to%20Solve%20Cryptic%20XWD.pdf#search="solving cryptic crosswords"

The solving instructions Purp was talking about. Interesting.

3/27/2012 8:09:06 PM

Noeckett
Noeckett
Posts: 48
I really like the Cryptic Crosswords, they're a great way to change it up once in a while. They are very difficult to grasp at first, but once you get used to looking for the wordplay in the clues it's usually pretty easy to get a few answers off the bat, then use the letters you already have as hints to the remaining clues. I can usually finish one now within an hour or so, so keep at it, TDHO, you'll be a pro in no time! Speaking of pro, I do agree with Semipro that a lot of the time it seems like the anagramming is overused compared to the other tricks. They're still fun, though.

3/29/2012 10:43:52 PM


Guest
Noeckett wrote:
I really like the Cryptic Crosswords, they're a great way to change it up once in a while. They are very difficult to grasp at first, but once you get used to looking for the wordplay in the clues it's usually pretty easy to get a few answers off the bat, then use the letters you already have as hints to the remaining clues. I can usually finish one now within an hour or so, so keep at it, TDHO, you'll be a pro in no time! Speaking of pro, I do agree with Semipro that a lot of the time it seems like the anagramming is overused compared to the other tricks. They're still fun, though.


I keep plugging away at all these things, Noeckett, heheh. Not sure about how others feel here, but I think your brain is like a muscle and if you don't work it a bit, it may atrophy. Some of you may have seen recent ads on TV about a website that purports to exercise your brain with games? Well, duh... Those of us in the know, and that means you, and you, and you too, CC, and you, Amy, and you, Bern, and you Purple passion, and you, Frances, and you Indy, and you Semi, and you, and you, and you, have been performing mental push-ups and pull-ups for years and years! Who did I miss? Oh, sorry, you too, in the back, the quiet one that doesn't say much.

Suffice to say those here, by and large, are already illuminated....

I'll get those Cryptic Crosswords, Noeckett! And their little dog Toto, too!

3/30/2012 7:57:24 AM

Chris the Indiana Puzzler
Chris the Indiana Puzzler
Posts: 466
I am working my way thru Dell's Crossword Special September 2011. There is one cryptic crossword in the book and I have been deliberately avoiding it in favor of cryptograms, figgerits, crosswords, crostics, etc, I need to work on the cryptic x-word. I agree with TDHO that you need tackle different challenges to stay sharp.

--
Peace Out.

3/30/2012 1:02:20 PM

Purple Pisces
Purple Pisces
Posts: 624
I like solving various types of puzzles also. It's nice to have the variety, but it's also good to be able to change gears and work on an easier puzzle when you need a mental break from a really tough one.

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