Friday, 22 March 2013

NG 90

New game 90 is now available -- apologies for the delay, I was out for the afternoon and early evening.

Round 1: L C E O T L O S A

I had COLE (a type of plant, in the mustard family according to Wikipedia), CLOT, COLLET ("a collar or enclosing band"), CASTLE, LOCATES, and COLLATES.

That's the only eight; the other sevens are COLLATE, COOLEST / OCELOTS, LACTOSE / TALCOSE ("containing, or composed largely of, talc"), and LOCALES.

My selection: COLLATES

Round 2: S D E M F A U C A

I had MEDS, FADES, MEDUSA (a type of jellyfish) / AMUSED, CAUSED / SAUCED, and FAUCES (relatively fresh in my mind from NG 85: "the cavity at the back of the mouth, leading into the pharynx").  After time I saw that FACADES was an available seven.

FACADES is the only seven; the other six is DECAFS.

My selection: MEDUSA

Round 3: Target 683 from 25 100 75 50 3 5

I went off in a few wrong directions before I stopped to think properly about this.  The offset for the standard method is 8, which can be made as 3 + 5.  Tweaking options are limited, but once I looked at the required base value of 675 I recalled that it could be made from the large numbers alone and a solution followed: 683 = (100 - 75)*25 + 50 + 5 + 3.  A case where having done the homework on the four large numbers helped greatly.

This is, as one would expect, the only solution.

My selection: 683 = (100 - 75)*25 + 50 + 5 + 3

Round 4: L T O P U M I D A

I had PLOT, POULT ("the young of the domestic fowl, the turkey, the pheasant, or a similar bird"), MOULT, and MIAOU (one of the several spellings of MEOW).

That felt insufficient on this mix; the letters kind of go together with each other reasonably, although an E would have been nice.  It took me a rather long time afterwards to find better, eventually getting the six of UPLOAD.  A bit after that I had the speculative seven of OUTPAID, but it is not valid.

A tough round?  Maybe, but there's many longer words than five.  The eight here is DIPLOMAT, and the sevens are DIPLOMA, OPTIMAL (given how often I talk about chasing the optimal game, that was a disappointing miss), PLAUDIT, OUTLAID (somehow I did not see this when I tried the far more dubious OUTPAID), and ALODIUM (variant spelling of ALLODIUM: "land owned absolutely, not subject to any rent, service, or other tenurial right of an overlord").

There's a few sixes, too, including some which have come up often enough: DIATOM, MODULI, and UTOPIA.  There's more, but I'll leave it at that for now; suffice to say, I wish I had found a longer word than MIAOU in this round!

My selection: MIAOU

Round 5: A O E R H B E T P

I had HEAR, ABHOR, BREATHE, and PROBATE.  After time I noted down OPERATE also.

Seven is the best on offer; the others are PREHEAT and POTHERB ("any herb prepared as food by cooking in a pot, or added as seasoning in cookery, as thyme").

My selection: BREATHE

Round 6: Target 925 from 25 50 10 6 1 8

A multiple of 25, and a little too easy.  I wrote down 925 = (10 + 8)*50 + 25 and left it at that.

My selection: 925 = (10 + 8)*50 + 25

Round 7: M R O A B W I R I

I had ROAM and BARRIO ("(in Spain and countries colonised by Spain) one of the divisions into which a town or city, together with the contiguous rural territory, is divided").

Six is the best on offer; the others are BARROW and MARROW.

My selection: BARRIO

Round 8: Target 873 from 50 3 9 10 1 5

The difference from 900 is 27, which is also divisible by 9 and highlights the factorisation 9*97.  However, I ended up tweaking my way to a different way of using that approach with 873 = 3*((5 + 1)*50 - 9).  Then I did look at that factorisation and found the alternative option of 873 = 9*(50 + 5*10 - 3).

My selection: 873 = 3*((5 + 1)*50 - 9)

Round 9: I HIDE COOK

I explicitly chose this conundrum, but it's rather unlikely I would have solved it in any case.  What actually happened is that I was presented with a similar mix with a Y instead of an I.  After being flummoxed for a bit I made the desperation try of HOCKEYOID, but the intended answer was DOOHICKEY.  A conundrum I rather liked, but the Macquarie does not list that spelling.  It does give DOOHICKIE, however, so I decided to use that.

My selection: [N/A -- conundrum explicitly chosen]


Victor said...

3. 683 = (100 - 75)*25 + 50 + 5 + 3
4. DIPLOMA (spotted this very late - didn't notice to append the T!)
6. 925 = (10 + 8)*50 + 25
8. 873 = (10/5*50 - 3)*9
9. X - (HOOKICIDE ~25s) - had to guess some vaguely plausible word. After checking the answer I have to say this is probably the most esoteric/difficult conundrum we've had so far.

Geoff Bailey said...

Excellent results again, and nice work on round 4. At least from my point of view! *laughs gently at self*

Valiant try on the conundrum. I agree it's rather difficult; I think I must be trying to find something to cause Sam difficulties. We'll see whether that actually worked...

Jan said...

Geoff - I think you need 2 conundrums. One for Sam, and one for the rest of us!

I pretty much matched Victor, except in Rds 2 and 3. DIPLOMA was really good, and DIPLOMAT would have been even better.

after time 3*(100+75+50) + 5 = 680 3 away
(8+10)*50 + 25 = 925
(3+5+10)*(50+1) - 9 = 873

Jan said...

After Victor's comment, I have just looked up 7 different anagram solvers - not one has a 9 letter answer for the conundrum. The best they could do was HOICKED

Mike Backhouse said...

Jan, Victor and Geoff - great games as usual. Jan I haven't heard HOICKED since I was a kid. Brings back memories...anyway back to reality..

x-COASTAL -realised didn't have two A's and then found CASTLE after time
5*(100+25)+50+3=678 (5 off)
5*3*(50+9-1)=870 (3 off)
x- that was a toughie, although I knew the original word, but would not have guessed the variation. Good luck Sam!

Geoff Bailey said...

Heh, you may be right, Jan. Tell you what, here's a bonus conundrum that I was disappointed not to be able to use (since it's not in the Macquarie): click here for conundrum.

Mike: Heh, I'm with you on HOICKED. Memories of the cricket commentary team... "It's a rank long hop and he's hoicked it over the man at square leg."

Sam Gaffney said...

Minor mistake in the writeup Geoff, the Round 8 factorisation is 9*97 (which it is in your actual answers).

As for the conundrum, it was far too easy.

3. 683 = (100 - 75)*25 + 50 + 5 + 3
6. 925 = (10 + 8)*50 + 25
7. MARROW/BARROW, wondered about BARRIO
8. 873 = (50 + 10*5 - 3)*9
9. DOOHICKIE ~ 22.7s, would have expected -EY

Bonus answer: BOARISHLY? - 3.7s (time spoiled by hairyslob being in the URL)

Geoff Bailey said...

Looks like you got a maximal game, Sam -- congratulations! Thanks for the correction, I've updated the original post.

And I agree, DOOHICKEY seems like a more natural spelling to me. Your point about the URL spoilage is reasonable, I'll think about obscuring it.