Thursday, 7 August 2014

NG 444

New game 444 is now available.


Round 1: R D L N E E C A T

I had LEND, LENDER, CLEANED, TREADLE, TREACLE, RECANTED / DECANTER / CANTERED, and DECRETAL ("a papal document authoritatively determining some point of doctrine or church law").

The other eights are ANTLERED, LANCETED ("having a lancet arch or lancet windows"), CRENATED (acceptable variant of CRENATE: "having the margin notched or scalloped so as to form rounded teeth, as a leaf"), and CALENDER ("a machine in which cloth, paper, or the like is smoothed, glazed, etc., by pressing between revolving cylinders").

My selection: RECANTED


Round 2: O K L I S E J C I

I had KILO, KILOS, LIKES, and briefly contemplated JOCKIES before better sense reasserted itself.  After time I found SICKLE for six.

Six seems to be the best to be done; the othes are SICKIE, SILKIE (variant spelling of SELKIE: "(in Celtic mythology) a supernatural being that lives in the sea, wearing sealskins to travel through the ocean as a seal, and removing the sealskins on land to return to human form"), and COLIES* (a COLY is a type of bird, but the Macquarie omits the plural form for some reason).

My selection: LIKES
Best: SICKLE


Round 3: Target 892 from 5 4 2 1 7 6

When the small numbers are so small, it can sometimes be difficult to even get to the target.  In such cases a useful starting point is to just multiply the largest small numbers together in the hopes of getting to the right vicinity, and then adjusting.  In this case, 7*6*5*4 is 840, still 52 short of the target, but there's a heap of tweaking room left so things may be all right.  The larger number remaining (2) is the more tempting tweak option; we want to get near 52, so we need to multiply it by something close to 26.  The two options are 4*6 = 24 and 4*7 = 28.  I investigated the former, and the remaining offset of 4 very happily also works out with the remaining subtweak: 892 = ((5*7 + 2)*6 + 1)*4.

After time I looked at the second option of using 4*7 instead, and it goes much the same; in this case we subtract a 4 at the end instead of adding it: 892 = ((6*5 + 2)*7 - 1)*4.

These are the only two solutions.

My selection: 892 = ((5*7 + 2)*6 + 1)*4


Round 4: A O N E I R C F G

I had AEON, CRANE, FORCING, FOREIGN, and fortunately found REFACING within time, still relatively fresh in my memory from REFACES in NG 442.  If only that A had been a U then CONFIGURE would have been an option.

REFACING is the only eight.  The other sevens are ORGANIC, FEARING, COINAGE, CONIFER, FANCIER, ANERGIC (adjective derived from ANERGY: "Pathology deficiency of energy"), ACROGEN ("a plant having no proper flowers but a growing point at the end of its perennial stems, as a fern or moss"), and FARCING (FARCE as a verb: "to stuff (poultry) for roasting").

My selection: REFACING


Round 5: A P O S U M R M L

I had SOAP and RAMPS.  Just after time I finally saw PARLOUS ("perilous; dangerous"), a word I have found easily enough before.  Bother.

PARLOUS appears to be the only seven.  There are a few sixes, of which I'll just mention MORALS / MOLARS, MURALS, and PULSAR.

My selection: RAMPS
Best: PARLOUS


Round 6: Target 268 from 10 10 3 7 3 5

This is a good example for the "divide by the largest option" approach.  268 is near 10*27, and 27 is near 10*3.  All important values can be made, and so a solution follows: 268 = 10*(3*10 - 3) - (7 - 5).

My selection: 268 = 10*(3*10 - 3) - (7 - 5)


Round 7: A E I B W S F D T

I had BASE, WAIFS, DEBITS, WASTED, was unsure about WAISTED (valid, as it turns out), and fortunately avoided that headache by finding BAWDIEST for eight.

BAWDIEST is the only eight; the other posible seven is BAWDIES* (with BAWDY being listed as a variant of BAWDRY: "indecent or lewd talk"), although I'd be dubious about its acceptability.

My selection: BAWDIEST


Round 8: Target 980 from 100 7 6 2 10 4

It's hard to go past a simple 980 = (100 - 2)*10, but I always like to avoid the large numbers if I can.  In this case I knew that 7*14 is 98, and so soon found the alternative solution 980 = (2*4 + 6)*7*10.

My selection: 980 = (2*4 + 6)*7*10


Round 9: REDS POPES

I ran out of time, alas, finding the answer at 40.9s.

My selection: [no answer]
Best: OPPRESSED

3 comments:

Mike Backhouse said...

CANTERED
LOCKS and then out of time SICKLE
x - nothing in time or for a few minutes after. The divide by largest number didn't work for me this time, although it was probably the execution.
FEARING
POURS
3*(10*10-7-3)=270 (2 off)
WAISTED
10*(100-2)=980
x kicked myself for getting close but not seeing this.

Louise Molloy said...

1. created
2. silkie
3. 5x6x(4x7+2)-1=899 (7 off)
4. forcing
5. murals
6. 3x10x10-(7x5-3)=268
7. basted
8. 100x10-(7x2+6)=980
9. X prospered

Sam Gaffney said...

1. RECANTED
2. SICKIE
3. 892 = ((6*5+2)*7-1)*4
4. REFACING
5. MURALS
6. 268 = (10*3-3)*10 - 7 + 5
7. WAISTED
8. 980 = (100-2)*10
9. OPPRESSED - 1.8s