Monday, 13 April 2015

NG 573

New game 573 is now available.

The re-run is episode 301; its rounds are here, and its writeup is here.

Round 1: B A T E N A C D D

I had BEAT and CANTED / DECANT.  I also noted a couple of near-miss full monties in the form of CANDIDATE and ABDICATED.

Six turns out to be the best on offer; the others are DANCED, ABATED, BANDED, CATENA ("a chain or connected series, especially of extracts from the writings of the fathers of the Christian church"), CADENT ("having cadence"), ADNATE ("grown fast to something; congenitally attached"), and BANTED (BANT: "to reduce weight by banting"; 'banting' is a type of diet).

My selection: DECANT

Round 2: N S M E S E A L W

I had MENS, MESS, SEEMS, SEAMEN, an uncertain MALENESS (not valid), and then happily spotted the safe anagram of SALESMEN.

The other eights are NAMELESS / LAMENESS.  The sevens are WEASELS, MEASLES, ENAMELS, and AWNLESS (AWN: "a bristle-like appendage of a plant, especially on the glumes of grasses").

My selection: SALESMEN

Round 3: Target 479 from 2 6 6 3 1 9

Ah, six small, it often warms my heart to see it.  I noted that the target was near 6*80, and so wrote down a one-off 480 = (9*(6 + 3) - 1)*6.  Then I "untweaked" that to observe that 9*(6 + 3)*6 was the nearby 486, and the question was whether the remaining 1 and 2 could then retweak with that to make the desired offset of 7.  Of course, 7 is 9*1 - 2 and so I found a solution: 479 = (6 + 3)*(6*9 - 1) + 2.

That turns out to be the only solution (other than the trivial variation of swapping 9 and 6 + 3).

My selection: 479 = (6 + 3)*(6*9 - 1) + 2

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

I had HIDE, HORDE, SHROUD, CRUSHED, HEROICS, HIDEOUS, COURSED / SOURCED, and finally found CHORUSED for eight.  After time I noted ORCHIDS as another seven.

CHORUSED is the only eight.  The other sevens are CRUISED, SCOURED, DUCHIES, CHOIRED, CHIDERS, CUSHIER, and DOUCHES / HOCUSED (HOCUS being listed as obsolete: "to play a trick on; hoax; cheat").

My selection: CHORUSED

Round 5: P I O G A R S N O

I had GRIP, GRASP, SOAPING, PARISON, wondered about SPOORING (valid, as it turns out; SPOOR as a verb is: "to follow a spoor"), and knew from past experience that PRONOIAS was not listed.  I decided against SPOORING, unfortunately.  After time I noted SPARING / RASPING and SIGNORA as other sevens.

SPOORING is the only eight -- other sources might allow POGONIAS, but it is not in the Macquarie.  The other sevens are SOARING / ORIGANS (ORIGAN: "marjoram, especially the wild marjoram, Origanum vulgare, of Europe and Asia"), PARINGS / PARSING, SOPRANO, SOPRANI, PROSING (PROSE as a verb: "to turn into prose") / SPORING (SPORE as a verb: "to bear or produce spores"), PORANGI (a New Zealand colloquialism: "mad; crazy").

My selection: PARISON

Round 6: Target 524 from 75 50 1 10 5 9

The target is one off 7*75, and it is hard to resist using that as an approach.  A little thought produced such an answer: 524 = (9 - 10/5)*75 - 1.  Then I noted the simpler 524 = 9*50 + 75 - 1.

My selection: 524 = (9 - 10/5)*75 - 1

Round 7: O T I R M P A C B

I had RIOT, IMPORT, POTAMIC ("of or relating to rivers"), and wondered about IMPACTOR.  I did not like it enough, though, and it turns out that I was right to avoid it.

Seven is the best to be done here; the others are APRICOT / PAROTIC ("situated about or near the ear") and APOMICT ("an organism produced by apomixis").

My selection: POTAMIC

Round 8: Target 846 from 50 25 7 2 9 5

I started by considering the nearby 11*75 = 825, and wrote down a fallback one away 847 = (50 + 25 + 7 - 5)*(9 + 2).  Then I considered the factor of 9; the cofactor is 94, and in order to preserve flexibility with the small numbers it seemed to me that this needed to be made as 50 + 25 + 19.  I realised that 19 was 2*7 + 5, and so found a solution: 846 = (50 + 25 + 2*7 + 5)*9.

There turn out to be quite a few other solutions, although I had found the only way to make it as 9*94.  My favourite of the other solutions is 846 = (9*5 + 2)*(25 - 7).

My selection: 846 = (50 + 25 + 2*7 + 5)*9


My selection: [N/A -- chosen]

I talked myself out of a maximal game tonight, or perhaps failed to talk myself into it, thanks to round five.  Still pretty good results, though, so I'm happy about that.


Justin Thai said...

I've read the recaps of the past episodes so I'll only comment on some perhaps interesting moments, Ep 301 being (im)famous for Shaun's baffling mistake in round 3. At least he was checking his work unlike some contestants....

Geoff Bailey said...

But if only he'd checked it within time... he had so very long in which to do so. Ah, well; I've done the same myself on occasion.

Mike Backhouse said...

(9+1)*(6*(6+2))=480 (1 off and went over time)
(9-10/5)*75-1=524 (went over time)
(9+2)*(50+25+2)=847 (1 off)

Emily said...

Just thought I'd drop by to say I went to Late Night Letters and Numbers at MICF last night. It was a super fun night. I even managed to win a prize for finding a solution for this one - thought you'd all enjoy it. (The on-stage contestants and audience were all one away on 491.)
100 50 75 2 9 3 - 492

Sam G said...

Emily, did any other former contestants/hosts attend? I hadn't heard about this (though it would have been a long trip from Brisbane).

Also, I think I solved your 492 in time, but I won't post yet for fear of spoiling it for the other readers.

3. 479 = ((6+3)*6-1)*9 + 2
6. 524 = 9*50 + 75 - 1
8. 846 = (9*50-25-2)*(7-5)
9. x Not even close. Tried -ITE, but not -ATE.

Geoff Bailey said...

Hi, Emily! Congratulations on finding a solution to that 492 -- it's a fun one. I found a solution in reasonable time, fortunately for my ego. *chuckles* I'm interested in hearing more about the experience, if you think there is enough to be said -- either in a comment here, or perhaps in a post on your own blog?

And Sam, thanks for your forbearance -- it is particularly easy for me to get spoiled since I get presented all comments at once in the blog display.

Sam G said...

Yes, I couldn't think of a way to hide it within the comment.

Just saw a much simpler way to 492...

Mike Backhouse said...

This is my solution to Emily's number. Hopefully it is far enough down the page not to be a spoiler and the others here seem to have tackled it. 3*2*(75+9-100/50)=492

Sam G said...

Nice Mike, that was the way I saw upon second glance.

First was:
492 = (50-3)*(9+2)-(100-75)
More exciting, but higher probability of a mental error.

Geoff Bailey said...

I had the same solution as Mike (and well done, Mike). I almost started with 9*50, then decided that I probably wanted to keep the option of 100/50 open so migrated to 6*75. That highlighted the factorisation 6*82, and the rest was relatively straightforward.

Impressive first solution, Sam. I agree with your remarks. :)