Friday, 25 July 2014

NG 435

New game 435 is now available.


Round 1: O E R B O P T A U

I had BORE, OBOE, PROBE, REBOOT, and PROBATE.  Later checking confirmed that neither OUTPROBE nor AUTOPROBE was valid.

PROBATE is the only seven, and the best to be done.

My selection: PROBATE


Round 2: O E D I X M A D T

I had OXIDE, DIATOM, an uncertain OXIDATE, and a more uncertain OXIDATED.  After time I noted ADMIXED as a clearly valid seven.

I decided to chance OXIDATED, and fortunately it is valid (OXIDATE being listed as synonymous with OXIDISE).  It is the only eight; the other sevens are IODATED / TOADIED and TOXEMIA.

My selection: OXIDATED


Round 3: Target 285 from 100 50 25 75 1 4

The offsets for the standard method are 10 and 15.  The latter was more attractive since it required getting to 300 instead of 275, which was likely to be easier.  I spotted that 15 was 4*4 - 1, and happily that could be made to work: 285 = (75 - 100/25)*4 + 1.  (Of course, 100/25 and 4 could be swapped.)  I also considered the factorisation 5*57 and found another solution of 285 = ((100 + 75)/25 + 50)*(4 + 1), and then the factorisation 3*95 for the relatively simple 285 = (100 - 4 - 1)*75/25.

My selection: 285 = (75 - 100/25)*4 + 1


Round 4: L H E A T A F B U

I had HEAL, LATHE, wondered about HATABLE (a valid alternative spelling of HATEABLE, as it turns out), knew to avoid TABULA (and TABULAE), ABLAUT ("regular change in the internal structure of word roots, particularly in the vowel, showing alteration in function and meaning"), wondered about FABULATE (not listed, but valid in Scrabble), and thought BATHFUL (invalid) rather unlikely.  I wrongly decided against HATABLE, alas.  After time I finally saw TABLEAU for seven.

The remaining seven is HATEFUL.

My selection: ABLAUT
Best: TABLEAU


Round 5: O G I N A C W I F

I had GAIN, ACING, COWING, and COIFING.

COIFING is the only seven.  The other sixes are FACING, CAWING, and AGONIC ("not forming an angle").

My selection: COIFING


Round 6: Target 240 from 100 25 5 9 1 5

My first thought was to make this as 9*25 + 15, but I did not see how to make a 15 (seen just now, however: 240 = 9*25 + 100/5 - 5).  Instead I turned my thoughts to 24*10 and went with 240 = (25 - 5/5)*(9 + 1); after time I noted that 240 = (25 - 1)*(5 + 5) was shorter.  Still within time, I noted the variant 240 = 25*(5 + 5) - (9 + 1).

My selection: 240 = (25 - 5/5)*(9 + 1)


Round 7: E I P U R C G E T

I had PURE, PRICE, EPICURE ("someone who cultivates a refined taste, as in food, drink, art, music, etc."), PICTURE, and RECEIPT.

The remaining seven is the mineral CUPRITE.

My selection: EPICURE


Round 8: Target 501 from 10 1 7 4 2 9

The target is 3*167, but that did not seem overly promising.  Instead I turned my thoughts to 10*50 + 1, and it took some doing but I found an answer that way with 501 = (9*4 + 7*2)*10 + 1.  Things went somewhat more easily when I applied the method of "divide by one of the larger small numbers" and recurse (and one can perhaps think of the previous solution as being an instance of that).  In this case using 9 instead of 10 gives 9*56 - 3, which is 9*7*8 - 3, and so expands to the solution 501 = 9*7*(10 - 2) - (4 - 1).

My selection: 501 = (9*4 + 7*2)*10 + 1


Round 9: ITSY CHIPS

I skipped over this too quickly, alas.  I contemplated a PSYCH- fragment, but the only vaguely plausible continuation was PSYCHITIS, which clearly was not promising.

My selection: [no answer]
Best: PHYSICIST

4 comments:

Michael Backhouse said...

BOATER
OXIDATE took a chance with this one and it was in my second edition
4*(50+100/25-1)+75=287 (2 off)
BEAUT and wondered about BATHFUL, but not in my second edition
FACING
(25-1)*(5+5)=240
RECITE
((4+2)*7+9-1))*10=500 (1 off)
x kept concentrating on PSYCH fragment to no avail.

Michael Backhouse said...

Just saw I could have converted BATHFUL for a safer HATEFUL. Grrrr...

Geoff Bailey said...

Yes, OXIDATE is good, but it's a verb, not a noun, so OXIDATED is better. BATHFUL is not valid, so you were right to avoid it. HATEFUL is an excellent spot, even after time.

And I had the PSYCH problem also. My sympathies!

Sam Gaffney said...

1. PROBATE
2. ADMIXED
3. 285 = (100-4-1)*75/25
4. HATFUL
5. COWING, rejected the valid COIFING
6. 240 = (25-1)*(5+5)
7. PICTURE
8. 501 = 10*(9*4+7*2) + 1
9. PHYSICIST - 1.1s