Tuesday, 10 September 2013

NG 212

New game 212 is now available.  Apologies to anyone who followed this earlier, my blog update and game update were out of sync.  The game is really accessible now.

Round 1: O A A D N H F T G

A tough set to start; I had HAND, FANTOD (marked as obsolete: "a temperamental mannerism or affectation; performance"), plus fives of THONG and TANGO.  After time I added GONAD to that list.

I recall David finding FANTOD on the show once, but I can't find it in the blog so it must have been in series two or three.  A quick (and hardly comprehensive) flick through the books suggests this was episode 158, which would make sense -- that would have been the first or second episode that I got to see, if memory serves me correctly.

The other six here is AFGHAN.

My selection: FANTOD

Round 2: C R E A C O T S K

I had RACE, ACTOR, ACTORS, ROCKETS, and -- thanks to yesterday's game -- CROCKETS (CROCKET: "a medieval ornament in the form of leafage curled out over a knot or knob; placed on the angles of the inclined sides of pinnacles, under cornices, etc.").  I also contemplated STOCKRACE, but correctly decided against it.

The other eight is ECTOSARC ("the ectoplasm of a protozoan (opposed to endosarc)").  STOCK CAR is listed, but only as two words or hyphenated, not as a single word.

Update: Commenter Sam points out that the single-syllable rule makes CRACKEST valid.

There's a bunch of other sevens here: CROCKET, RACKETS / RESTACK / STACKER / TACKERS, RESTOCK / STOCKER (although the Macquarie does not list the agent noun form, STOCK is also an adjective and the single-syllable rule applies, inappropriate though it is), COASTER, COCKERS (COCKER being short for a cocker spaniel, and also "someone who promotes or patronises cockfighting"), and SEACOCK ("a valve in the hull of a ship for admitting water, as to a ballast tank").

My selection: CROCKETS

Round 3: Target 998 from 100 8 1 4 8 1

I almost overcomplicated this, but the standard method is clearly the way to go: Get to 1000, then subtract what you can, hopefully a 2.  So we need a 10, and from the 8's that needs a 2.  Fortunately it all works out, yielding 998 = (8 + 2)*100 - 2, where one 2 is 1 + 1 and the other 2 is 8/4.

These are the only solutions.

My selection: 998 = (8 + 1 + 1)*100 - 8/4

Round 4: M I D S E E N U S

I had DIMS, DIMES, DEMISE, MISUSED, and UNMISSED.  I was pleased when later checking confirmed that MINUSED was not valid.  After time I noted down SEMINUDE and the possibility of SEMINUDES, but neither is in the Macquarie.  (Chambers lists SEMI-NUDE, but only with the hyphen).

The other eight is SIDESMEN (plural of SIDESMAN: "someone who assists the churchwardens of a parish, especially in distributing books and taking up the collection in church").

The other sevens are DIMNESS, DEMISES, SIDEMEN (plural of SIDEMAN: "a male member of a jazz band other then the leader"), NEMESIS / SIEMENS ("the SI derived unit of electrical conductance [...]"), MINUSES, and perhaps (but my instinct is against it) NUDISMS.

My selection: UNMISSED

Round 5: T E E I M S S X C

I had TIME, TIMES, wondered about SEMITES (but was not surprised when later checking confirmed that the capital letter is required), EXISTS, SEXIEST, wished that the X had been a Y instead for SYSTEMIC, and pondered TIMEXES but was again not surprised that it is not listed.

Seven looks like the best on offer; the others are EXCITES, EXCISES, EMETICS (EMETIC as a noun: "an emetic medicine or agent"; as an adjective: "inducing vomiting, as a medicinal substance"), EXSECTS (EXSECT: "to cut out"), and MÉTISSE (feminine form of MÉTIS: "any person of mixed ancestry").

My selection: SEXIEST

Round 6: Target 432 from 100 50 10 3 8 6

I recognised the factor of 9 immediately; the cofactor is 48, which is 6*8 but I wanted the 6 to make the 9.  Fortunately there were other options and I soon had 432 = (6 + 3)*(50 - 10 + 8).  Since the target is 6*8*9 there are other factorisations to use: 8*54 and 6*72 most obviously.  The latter took me some effort to make work, but they both did with 432 = 8*(50 + 10 - 6) and 432 = 6*(50 + 3*10 - 8).  Then I considered trying the standard method and found the solution 432 = (6 + 3)*50 - 10 - 8.

Seen while writing this up is that I could have used 6*8*9 relatively directly with 432 = 6*8*(10 - 3 + 100/50).

My selection: 432 = 8*(50 + 10 - 6)

Round 7: A I A N P F C R L

I had PAIN, PANIC, CANAL, APICAL ("of, at, or forming the apex"), RACIAL, and CRANIAL.

The other seven is CARINAL (adjective derived from CARINA: "a keel-like part or ridge").

There are a few other sixes, of which I'll just mention FACIAL and PLANAR.

My selection: CRANIAL

Round 8: Target 643 from 75 5 2 1 4 4

I got myself in a tangle here at first; looking at the standard method, the target is 9*75 - 32, and 32 looks promising.  But after making the 9 I was not quite able to get the remaining 32, and that approach only got me to one away with 642 = (75 - 4)*(5 + 4) + 2 + 1.

Fortunately I then looked at working up from below, and although 43 is not as convenient as 32 then multiplier of 8 lent itself to much better tweakage.  The resulting solution was 643 = 2*4*(75 + 5) + 4 - 1.

Note  that if I had made the 9 differently in my original approach I would have retained the two 4's that I needed: 643 = (75 - 4)*(2*5 - 1) + 4.

My selection: 643 = 2*4*(75 + 5) + 4 - 1


After pulling out the -ING I was momentarily flustered by the Y, but after making SAY I realised that OUTSAYING was the answer.  Phew!

There was possibly assistance here from the previous candidate conundrum that I could not use -- it was CARROMING, so I was perhaps a bit faster to pull out the -ING than I might have been if I went flat to the conundrum.  (Sadly, CARROMING could not be used because of its anagram CAIRNGORM: "a yellow or brown ornamental quartz".)

My selection: OUTSAYING (3.1s)


Mike Backhouse said...

Here are mine:

Geoff's way
MISSED (wasn't sure about UNMISSED - grrr)
SEXISM (should have seen SEXIEST)
(10-6)*(100+8)=432 (a different method to yours Geoff)
x -wasn't familiar with this word

Sam Gaffney said...

2. CRACKEST? Based on the dodgy single-syllable adjective extension rule?
3. 998 = (8+1+1)*100 - 8/4
6. 432 = (50+10-6)*8,(100+50-6)*3,(100+8)*(10-6),((100+50)/(10+8)-3)*6
8. 643 = (75+5)*4*5+4-1
9. OUTSAYING - 6.6s, first thought was OUTSTAYING. Is it in the Macq?

Sam Gaffney said...

I mean is OUTSAYING in the Macq?

Victor said...

2. COASTER (I think CRACKEST should be good Sam, haha!)
3. 998 = (8 + 1 + 1)*100 - 8/4
6. 432 = 8*(50 + 10 - 6)
8. 643 = (4 + 4)*(75 + 5) + 2 + 1
9. OUTSAYING - 14.5s

An interesting point about OUTSAYING Sam, now that I checked, it's not in the online Mac.

Also, if a conundrum has 2 solutions, I think you could use one of them as the scramble (eg. OWNERSHIP). Had Geoff used CARROMING as the scramble, we might have set a new record for most bizarre conundrum ever.

Louise Molloy said...

1. hand (was hoping for goathand!)
2. rockets
3. 100(1+8+1) - 8/4 = 998
4. demises
5. excites
6. 3(50+100-6)= 432
7. plain
8. (4x2)x(75+5)+(4-1)=643
9. -

Geoff Bailey said...

Oh, good point, Sam -- CRACKEST is clearly acceptable. And yes, OUTSAYING is in the Macquarie, in the block entries -- I've mentioned it a few times previously (mostly as the handy OUTSAID).

Victor: Interesting that it's not in the online Macquarie; it's definitely in the physical copy, and the Targeter also finds it. As for multiple conundrums, I think it is best avoided overall (although I flirted with it when I put up ANTERIORS as a conundrum). Otherwise one is in danger of this kind of thing happening.

Lousie: No GOATHAND, alas. Nice vision, though!

Sam Gaffney said...

Amusing video, I suppose I did the same with ANTERIORS instinctively.