Monday, October 19, 2020

Still Alive

Would you believe it? It has been more than four years since last I shared a puzzle here. Not that I stopped making puzzles, mind you - I have been contributing to sudoku magazines, competitions and more - but circumstances forced me to take a break with puzzlemaking during the fall of 2016, and I simply never found the motivation to resume my activity with the blog. My life was hectic back then - it still is - and forcing myself to make puzzles every week could not fit in it, and still cannot. For nearly four years I focused on making a living out of selling puzzles (with limited success), and it is only recently that I felt ready to try something new.

Following the postponement of the World Sudoku Championship 2020 and encouraged by the success of the now world-famous Youtube channel Cracking the Cryptic, I recently tried my hand at making sudoku videos with a focus on speedsolving, since there were almost no such videos available anywhere and I felt like I could fill this gap efficiently. I currently release between one and two videos a week on the Youtube channel 81 Cells, and at the moment this is the best place to follow me. I also do livestreams occasionally, on Twitch rather than Youtube since the Twitch interface is infinitely more friendly for this purpose. The Youtube channel is where you want to go to watch spectacular solves of spectacular puzzles, while Twitch streams are meant to be a bit more casual and informative - at least they should be once I manage to grow a bit of an audience... and to fix some unfortunate issues with my Internet access.

Seeing how my previous attempt at sharing sudoku-related content once a week ended, I cannot say for how long I am going to keep this going; but I feel like this is as good a time as any to try. Of course the core of my professional activity remains puzzlemaking, but hopefully this will help me find a balance between the crafting and solving halves of my passion for sudoku.

I have not planned to resume publishing puzzles here on a regular basis, but I might share one once in a while. I am going to publish one right now, at the very least. Be warned: though a most common variant, it is rather on the tricky side of the difficulty scale! It comes in two versions, the original one and, purely for the sake of it, a second one that is more visual. Pick the one you prefer. Here are two links to solve the puzzle online using the F-Puzzles interface designed by Eric Fox: ("minimal" version) ("elephant" version)

Finally, here is a link to Simon Anthony's solve of the puzzle on Cracking the Cryptic:

Rules :
Each row, column and region must contain the digits from 1 to 9.
The value on the top-left corner of a dotted cage is equal to the sum of its digits. No digit can repeat within a cage.

#190 Killer Sudoku

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