Wednesday, 4 September 2013

NG 208

New game 208 is now available.  The detailed results will not be up until tomorrow.


Round 1: C M A E C B A R D

I had MACE, CAMBER, BRACED, and amused myself with the idea of a BEARDCAM.

There is a seven here: MACABRE.  The other sixes are CAMERA, ABRADE, and ARCADE.

My selection: BRACED
Best: MACABRE


Round 2: S R W U O E S D C

I had OURS, ROUSE, ROUSES, DOWSERS, wondered about CUSSWORD, DROWSES, SCOURED, and CROSSED.  I vacillated a little about CUSSWORD, but decided to chance it.  Unfortunately, it's not in the Macquarie, although CUSS is.  Chambers lists CUSSWORD also.  Oh, well.

The other sevens are COURSED / SOURCED, COURSES / SOURCES / SUCROSE, DOUSERS, ESCROWS (ESCROW: "a contract, deed, bond, or other written agreement deposited with a third person, by whom it is to be delivered to the grantee or promisee on the fulfilment of some condition"), and ESCUDOS (the former currency of Portugal).

My selection: [invalid -- CUSSWORD]
Best: CROSSED


Round 3: Target 234 from 100 75 25 50 3 8

I got lost here, alas.  I was too focused on the factorisation 9*26 (which is also 3*78).  I was not able to get either to work, and in the end had to scramble to one away with 233 = 3*75 + 8.  One approach I had considered was to make it as 250 - 2*8, but I had erroneously concentrated on making the 250 as 8*25 + 50 and could not recover.  After time I saw that the tweak was completely unnecessary and that a more straightforward approach succeeded: 234 = 3*75 + 25 - 8*100/50.

There's quite a few solutions, actually, but I'll mention the surprisingly short 234 = (25*75 - 3)/8.

My selection: 233 = 3*75 + 8  [1 off]
Best: 234 = 3*75 + 25 - 8*100/50


Round 4: O A O T M T C C S

I had ATOM, TOMATO, wished that the vowel duplication was the other way around so that STACCATO would work, pondered TOMATOS but was pretty sure that the only allowed plural form was TOMATOES (indeed, this was the case -- TOMATOS is not valid), and was pleased to spot the alternative seven of SCOTOMA ("loss of vision in a part of the visual field; a blind spot").

Seven appears to be the limit (some sources allow COCOMATS, but not the Macquarie), with the other one being TOMCATS.

The other sixes are TOMCAT, MASCOT, ACCOST, MOTTOS, COCOAS, and COTTAS (COTTA: "a short surplice, with short sleeves or sleeveless, worn especially by choristers").

My selection: SCOTOMA


Round 5: S L I U F G O S K

Gah, more troubling mixes.  I had GULFS, FOULS, SLUGS, FOLKS, and finally found the six of FOSSIL.

The other sixes are FUSILS (FUSIL: "a light musket or firelock") and SUSLIK (a type of ground squirrel).

My selection: FOSSIL


Round 6: Target 887 from 50 4 5 3 10 2

Applying the standard method worked handily here; we want to make it as 18*50 - 13, and the 18 is clearly (4 + 5)*2; the remaining numbers fortunately make the 13 and the resulting solution is 887 = (4 + 5)*2*50 - 10 - 3.

There's a minor variation of 887 = (4*5 - 2)*50 - 10 - 3, and the only other solution is the rather harder 887 = ((10 - 4)*50 - 5)*3 + 2.

My selection: 887 = (4 + 5)*2*50 - 10 - 3


Round 7: N B O I L H E N R

I had LION, NOBLE, NOBLER (I was not certain this would be listed, but fortunately it is), BOILER, BONIER, HEROIN, and BONNIER.

BONNIER seems to be the only seven; the other sixes are HOLIER, ONLINE, INBORN, BONNIE (variant spelling of BONNY), BERLIN ("a large four-wheeled closed carriage hung between two perches, having two interior seats"), and RONNIE (a South Australian term for "a small stone that can be thrown; pebble").

My selection: BONNIER


Round 8: Target 496 from 25 4 10 7 6 2

The standard method works easily, alas, with 496 = 25*2*10 - 4.  I also noted the factorisation 16*31 -- it follows due to 496 being the third perfect number -- and thus an alternative solution of 496 = (10 + 6)*(25 + 4 + 2).

My selection: 496 = 25*2*10 - 4


Round 9: CRUDE TALE

I got lost here on the wrong kinds of ending, mostly -UCATE and -ULATE.  The -ATE- fragment was important, but in the end I was not able to find the solution within time.

My selection: [no answer]
Best: ULCERATED

7 comments:

Louise Molloy said...

1. braced
2. crossed
3. 3x100 -75 +8=233 (1 off)
4. accost ...and later, tomcats
5. gloss
6. [(4x5)-2]50 -(10+3)=887
7. boiler
8. 2x10x25 -4 =496
9. -

Victor said...

1. CAMERA
2. SOURCES
3. 234 = 3*75 + 25 - 100/50*8
4. MASCOT (5 Cs in 3 rounds, eesh)
5. SULKS
6. 887 = 2*(4 + 5)*50 - 10 - 3
7. BONNIER
8. 496 = 2*10*25 - 4
9. ULCERATED - 36.2s

Geoff Bailey said...

Good point on noticing all the C's, Victor. That seemed too many to me, and I checked and saw that one of the C's in my list should have been a V instead. Whoops!

Mike Backhouse said...

Here are mine:

BRACED
SCOURED
Geoff's way (1 off)
SCOOT
FLOSS
(4+3+10)*(50+2)+5=839 (2 off)
BOILER
Geoff's way
x

Sam Gaffney said...

A better heavyweight target. Geoff's factorisation expertise doesn't help as often in these, it is most useful in the rat packs.

I wondered about CUSSWORD, but given how American it is, I suspected it would not be listed.

1. ARCADE
2. CROSSED/SOURCES/COURSES. ESCROWS?
3. 234 = (75-8)*50/25 + 100 or 3*75 + 25 - 100/50*8
4. ACCOST
5. FOSSIL
6. 887 = 2*(4 + 5)*50 - 10 - 3
7. BOILER
8. 496 = 2*10*25 - 4
9. ULCERATED - 4.3s

Geoff Bailey said...

Sam: I've added a definition for ESCROWS, thanks for reminding me. I was in a bit of a hurry at the time and I meant to go back to it. ESCROW: "a contract, deed, bond, or other written agreement deposited with a third person, by whom it is to be delivered to the grantee or promisee on the fulfilment of some condition"

Sam Gaffney said...

I started with ESCROWS, but wasn't sure of the pluralisation, as I had only ever heard of things being "in escrow". There were sevens galore, so I declared something else.