## Very Hard - from Times Website

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### Very Hard - from Times Website

OK, I give in! I've been struggling for weeks trying to break this puzzle...

www.timesonline.co.uk/article/0,,18209-1354183,00.html

I've got this far, but can't see any move from here.

Code: Select all
`* 4 3 | 9 8 * | 2 5 *6 * * | 4 2 5 | * * *2 * * | * * 1 | * 9 4------|-------|------9 * * | * * 4 | * 7 *3 * * | 6 * 8 | * * *4 1 * | 2 * 9 | * * 3------|-------|------8 2 * | 5 * * | * * ** * * | * 4 * | * * 55 3 4 | 8 9 * | 7 1 *`

Help! But please keep it a little cryptic.
Guest

Hi - I hadn't seen this puzzle before so I thought I'd try it but so far have also got stuck where you are, although can you explain why a 4 goes in r8c5 please.
Tim

Posts: 18
Joined: 12 March 2005

Before getting the 4, row 8 looked like this:

(17) (679) (1679) (17) (146) (2367) (34689) (23468) (5)

The two (17), mean you can get rid of the other 1s & 7s ...

(17) (69) (69) (17) (46) (236) (34689) (23468) (5)

Now there are two (69), so lose the other 6s & 9s...

(17) (69) (69) (17) (4) (23) (348) (238) (5)

The 4 can obviously also go from the (348).
Guest

Thanks!

I haven't been able to get any further still.
Tim

Posts: 18
Joined: 12 March 2005

Well, (my pennyworth) I can't see any way beyond the position shown.

Wayne?

[I solved it by trying first 7 then 6 in r1c6 - in the latter case it comes out]

I'd be very interested in a true logical solution - if there is one.
Bernard Stay

Posts: 94
Joined: 22 March 2005

Yes, Bernard, I'm here ... listening ... with interest!

The puzzle has a unique solution and it can be solved using logic alone. You might have known it.

Anyone who undertakes a Very Hard puzzle knows they have a challenge on their hands. So I kinda feel they should be willing to solve it by themselves.

I don't mind if others want to pitch in with hints, on this forum. That's what it's for. But excuse me while I sit this one out. For a while, anyway.

I feel differently about the puzzles that appear as daily puzzles in the paper. I sometimes help out with those, because you have no choice about its difficulty - you take what the paper serves you that day.

Very Hard puzzles are not available in the paper, only in the Sudoku program. This VH is an exception: it appeared when Su Doku was launched in The Times in November 2004.

- Wayne
Pappocom

Posts: 599
Joined: 05 March 2005

Quite right too, old chap. I feel a bit like I've joined masochists anonymous.

If anyone does work it out, I shall prostrate myself in worship for a full five minutes - but please keep the hints as cryptic as possible.
Guest

I'm feeling very smug having just got in from the pub and completed this by considering the lowest positive integer and the fourth prime in pairs on the second row cubed.

OK... so my clue's not cryptic but I think it should point you the right direction if you solve the maths.

The reason for this type of clue is that I get fed up with people telling me that they're not interested in the Sudoku because it's "all to do with maths" - they just see numbers and hide!

PS. Apologies in advance if I see this post in the morning and wish I hadn't bothered..!
shakers

Posts: 93
Joined: 10 March 2005

Well done! Cryptic? well not everybody knows that the lowest possible integer isn't of the class of primes!
Bernard Stay

Posts: 94
Joined: 22 March 2005

Well, I think I understand your clue - I assume you're talking about a Star Trek character's eldest and youngest siblings - but it doesn't help, as I've done this elimination already (see my answer to Tim's question above). It's doesn't get me any further though, I think I have a blind spot...
Guest

I've also scribbled something about looking for something that sounds like the partridge's tree, in the box whose homophone is a river running from the Cambrian Mountains to the Bristol Channel.

If this doesn't make sense, or doesn't work (it was late last night and four pints feel like hard work on a Tuesday evening!) I'll have another look and see if I can solve it again!
shakers

Posts: 93
Joined: 10 March 2005

Well, I continue to feel extremely dumb. I already have a lump of brie in a box like heaven, but that doesn't help either.
Guest

...and this is where I have to call my apology to hand!

I've played it again, and I must have either made a spurious, but lucky, assumption last night, or the real ale was contained a special sudoku solving chemical!

I have now got to the same point and am appreciating your problem. Oh well, the pub opened 20 minutes ago...
shakers

Posts: 93
Joined: 10 March 2005

just been on my hols and "discovered" Sudoku whilst chilling with the Times. Now back at work and filling in time and came across this website - great way to waste more time !!!

Anyway, I digress.....

I did it by solving the 1 / 7 dilema - there are lots of instances of places where only 1 and 7s can go - a logical step through showed one combination didn't work, so must be the other !!
Guest

You'll know by now that I'm not very reliable on these things! but starting from the version originally shown and taking into account Shakers' 1/7s I went on by looking at the floor of box 2. There doesn't seem to be a pair here, but picking up sticks doesn't actually affect the cosy prime couple, and therefore has to be elevated. I think it runs happily from there.
Bernard Stay

Posts: 94
Joined: 22 March 2005

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