Thursday, 12 June 2014

NG 404

New game 404 is now available.

Round 1: E N O A L F N V U

I had ALOE, ALONE, FELON, and FUNNEL.  I was briefly tempted by UNALONE, but right to avoid it.  NONVALUE was too implausible, and I thought I was making FLAVONE up, so six was my limit.

After-time checking revealed that FLAVONE is valid ("an aromatic heterocyclic ketone [...], the parent substance of various natural pigments"), and the only seven.  The other sixes are NOUNAL ("relating to or resembling a noun"), NOVENA ("(in the Roman Catholic church) a devotion consisting of prayers or services on nine consecutive days or occasions, as nine first Fridays of the month"), and FOVEAL (adjective derived from FOVEA: "a small pit or depression in a bone or other structure").

My selection: FUNNEL

Round 2: D P Q L E B O P U

I had PLED, POLED / LOPED, BOPPED, and LOPPED.  After time I noted DOUBLE as another six.

Six seems to be the limit, with the others being PULPED and PUEBLO ("a communal habitation of certain Native Americans of the south-western US; the communal house or group of houses, built of adobe or stone").

My selection: LOPPED

Round 3: Target 101 from 25 3 10 8 7 8

The smallest possible target, so naturally I aimed to avoid using the large number.  I started with 101 = (7 + 3)*10 + 8/8 and then moved on to 101 = (8 + 8 - 3)*7 + 10.  Seen while writing this up is another option: 101 = 8*8 + 3*10 + 7.

My selection: 101 = (8 + 8 - 3)*7 + 10

Round 4: I U M H E R O D S

I had MIRE, HUMID, RUSHED, MUSHIER, flirted with the idea of HUMEROID and HUMEROIDS (but correctly rejected them), and then dredged up a memory from games past to find DIMEROUS ("consisting of or divided into two parts").  After time I noted another eight of SOREDIUM ("an asexual reproductive unit of a lichen [...]").

The other eights are HUMIDORS / RHODIUMS and HEIRDOMS.  The other sevens are HUMIDOR / RHODIUM, HEIRDOM, HIDEOUS, HEROISM, MOUSIER, MISDOER, and the American spelling HUMORED.

My selection: DIMEROUS

Round 5: B C A T A R S D O

I had CRABS and ACROBATS, amusing myself along the way by spotting BAD ACTORS.  A fourth vowel would have replaced the D with an E, and just as well for me that it did not as I would then have opted for the invalid RACEBOATS instead of the valid BOATRACES.

However, such observations were not sensible to indulge in within time; just a little after time expired I looked at CAST and thus saw BROADCAST.  Oh, well.

BROADCAST is the only nine and ACROBATS the only eight.  The sevens are ACROBAT, BASTARD / TABARDS (TABARD: "a loose outer garment with short sleeves or without sleeves, worn by knights over their armour and usually emblazoned with the arms of the wearer"), ABATORS (ABATOR being a legal term as opposed to the more usual ABATER), and OSTRACA (plural of OSTRACON: "a pottery shard used in antiquity as a means of casting a vote").

My selection: ACROBATS

Round 6: Target 390 from 1 3 4 10 4 9

My first thought was to make this as 39*10, leading to 390 = (9*4 + 3)*10.  Then I realised I could further factor the 39 and found another solution with the same numbers: 390 = (9 + 4)*3*10.

My selection: 390 = (9 + 4)*3*10

Round 7: E T R I G S A F C


The other eight here is familiar from previous games: AGRESTIC ("rural; rustic").  The other sevens are FRIGATE, CAGIEST, GASTRIC / TRAGICS, FAIREST, RACIEST / STEARIC ("of or relating to suet or fat"), FIACRES (FIACRE being another term for a hackney-coach), and SEAGIRT ("surrounded by the sea") / STAGIER / TRIAGES.

My selection: FRIGATES

Round 8: Target 136 from 50 7 4 2 8 3

I recognised the target as 8*17, and from there it was a short step to 136 = (2*7 + 3)*8.

My selection: 136 = (2*7 + 3)*8


I got stuck for a long time on FRIGHT, RIGHT, and FREIGHT fragments.  It took me far too long to consider FIGHT on its own, and the answer followed soon thereafter.

My selection: FIREFIGHT (25.1s)


Mike Backhouse said...

Happy to get my second (I think?) full monty on this site.

ALONE and presumed UNLOVE was invalid, although UNLOVED would be ok?
x jumped in with FREIGHTER before seeing FIREFIGHT

Geoff Bailey said...

Well done on finding the full monty, Mike! I was just a bit too slow to see it, alas. And yes, UNLOVE is not valid but UNLOVED is.

Sam Gaffney said...

Good nine, Mike.

3. 101 = 25*(7-3) + 8/8
6. 390 = 3*10*(4+9)
8. 136 = (2*7+3)*8
9. FIREFIGHT - 5.0s. Surprisingly awkward.