Tuesday, 18 December 2012

NG 24

New game 24 is up.  Enjoy!  Also the longer results for new game 23.

Whew, a tough set today, particularly the numbers.

Round 1: P G A E F K O I N


PEAKING seems to be the only seven; the other sixes are POKING and PIGEON / EPIGON (variant spelling of EPIGONE: "an inferior imitator or follower of an important writer, painter, etc.").

Round 2: R R R N O E I T W

I think I would have been highly likely to chance a vowel at the end, hoping for an I for INTERIOR.  It would not have been, though.  I had ERROR, WINTER, TERROR, and WORRIER.

Some sources suggest that INTERROW is a word, but the Macquarie does not have it.  That leaves WORRIER as the best, and the only seven.

Round 3: Target 757 from 25 100 75 4 9 5

An offset of 7 seems tough with those numbers.  I ended up with a one-away 756 = 4*(100 + 75 + 9 + 5), and spent what time remained unsuccessfully trying to make the target as 775 - 18.  (The rough approach was 9*(75 - 2) + 100, but there was no chance to make the 2.)

It turns out that the target is unreachable, and one away is the best that can be done.  There are many ways to 756 but only one to 758, which would thus have been a much more interesting target: 758 = (4 + 75/25)*(100 + 9) - 5.  This method was found by Jan, who must have been wishing the target was 758 after all.  Well done, Jan!

Round 4: T M N L A E E D S

I had MALT, MENTAL / LAMENT, and LAMENTED.  I could not better it after time, although I noted that if the last vowel were an I instead then DISMANTLE would have been there.

The other eight is LEADSMEN (plural of LEADSMAN: "Nautical a man who heaves the lead in taking soundings").  There are a good many sevens to be had.

Round 5: A I O B P U G I C

After the first four letters I wrote down BIO- as a fragment, and the last consonant made BIOPIC a possibility.  That was my only word for some time, although before time expired I managed to find PUBIC as a five.

BIOPIC looks like the only six, and the only other fives are COBIA (a fish) and GUACO (a plant).

Round 6: Target 956 from 4 10 7 9 4 6

A rather high target for six smalls, but they are a good selection and I like the chances.  (A very good spread, in fact; I think the only change I'd make would be to replace one of the 4's with a 3.)  I got distracted by 900 + 56, which was not helpful as the shared factors are limited.  With time running out I redirected to end up two away with 954 = (6*4*4 + 10)*9.

In the calmness of after-time, I finally did what I should have done initially and considered making the target as 960 - 4.  That led quickly to the solution 956 = (9 + 7)*6*10 - 4.  There are some other solutions, as it turns out, but that is easily the simplest.

Round 7: A O U F R R C H M

I would definitely have gone vowel-hunting on the last letter here, with an E allowing FAROUCHE.  As it was I had FOUR, ROACH, MARCH, wondered about FAROUCH as a possible variant spelling, and CHURRO.  I correctly rejected FAROUCH, but was surprised to find that CHURRO was not listed.  This time MasterChef has steered me wrong. *chuckles*

A shame to end up with an invalid word in what was proving to be a reasonable game so far.  There were some sixes, though: ARMOUR, CHROMA, and CARROM (variant spelling of CAROM).

Round 8: Target 626 from 25 50 100 75 7 8

Four large could prove a challenge, but the target is only one away from an important number for those, and the two smalls can provide the offset: 626 = 25*(75 - 50) + 8 - 7.  I know Sam will be disappointed.

Still within time I decided to emulate Sam and found the alternative solution 626 = 8*75 + (7*100 - 50)/25.


Like many others here, I gather, I saw BOTHERED in the letters.  There was an R left over, and the obvious adjustment was to BROTHERED.  It was not something I was familiar with, but it was also too plausible to turn down and so I buzzed in with it at the 2.1s mark.

The Macquarie does list BROTHER as a verb, buried among the other definitions.  Sense 10 is "to treat or address as a brother".  I'm not at all surprised if this is missing from the online version, as it seems of unlikely use.

I'll note as a point of comparison that there is no verb sense of 'sister'.  Both 'mother' and 'father' can be used as verbs but with different meanings again, and 'grandfather' also works as a verb with yet another meaning.


Jan said...

I was celebrating that I had got the conundrum within 30 secs, but alas BOTHERED wasn't it.

75/25=3. (100+9)*(3+4) - 5 = 758. 1 off
X DEMANTLES (I know the common word is dismantles, but hoped this was an alternative)
(4+6)*10=100. 9*(100+7) - 4 = 959 3 off
25*(100-75) + (8-7) = 626

Mike Backhouse said...

Started off thinking I was going alright in the letters with 3 sevens, but then only a couple of fives. Bombed out in all numbers games. Then to cap it all off, I too was celebrating getting BOTHERED within time until I read your post Jan! Bother!

WORRIER (it started with three R's in a row!)
x (could only get two off just after time - 9*75-5*4=755
PUBIC (it was the ONLY word I could see in time-love BIOPIC Jan)
9*(((6+4)*10)+7)=963 (7 off) 3 lots of brackets. Whew.
7*100-75=625 (1 off)
x (Grrrr...)

Mike Backhouse said...

First numbers game should have included +100 (had it written down), not that it matters as it was out of time!

Victor said...

Tough numbers today - caught me by surprise! Nice work on the first numbers Jan, I got that solution too but only after time.

I almost jumped in with BOTHERED at the end, luckily the adjustment required turned out to be minor so I managed to solve it shortly after.

3. 2-away: 755 = 9*75 + 100 - 25 + 5
5. PUBIC (yes, shame on us Mike)
6. 3-away: 959 = 9*(10*(6 + 4) + 7) - 4
8. 626 = 25*(75 - 50) + 8 - 7
9. BROTHERED (5.9s)

Jan said...

I saw BROTHERED, but didn't think it was a legit word. So, will now claim that after about 40 secs. Looked it up in the Macquarie online, and it is not there.

Mike Backhouse said...

I'm not familiar with BROTHERED either. Interesting if it is not in the Macquarie, unless there is another word we've missed.

Geoff Bailey said...

The longer explanation is up now, as you've probably noticed if you're reading this comment. *chuckles* Apologies about the conundrum.

Jan: A very nice route to 758, so well done. Bad luck with DEMANTLES, and otherwise solid results with BIOPIC being another good find.

Mike: I'm sorry to report that the Macquarie does not listed MALTED as a noun. It does have the phrase MALTED MILK which I'm pretty sure encapsulates the same concept, but not the colloquial shortening. I think it should have it, mind you, but I guess it's more of an American colloquialism than an Australian one. MALTEDS would be fine in Scrabble.

Those pair of fives were good results for those last two rounds, I'd say. Six was the best possible in each, and easily overlooked.

Congratulations on solving the conundrum, Victor. A bit more obscure than I intended, alas.

Sam Gaffney said...

I was happy with Round 6, I haven't beaten the pack on a rat pack for a while. Nice Round 8 shenanigans from Geoff.

3. 2-away: 755 = 9*75 + 100-25+5
Probably too late was my one away: 756 = (75+5+4)*9
5. CAPO - I didn't even see another four, let alone better. Nice work everyone.
6. 956 = 10*6*(9+7) - 4, fairly early
8. 626 = 25*(75-50) + 8-7 or 8*75 + (7*100-50)/25
9. BROTHERED (7.7s), it seemed plausible.