Monday, 13 July 2015

NG 636

New game 636 is now available.

Round 1: E H R D O B E R I

I had HERD, HORDE, was unsure about HERBED (valid, but not in the way I expected; the Macquarie lists HERB as a verb with a meaning of "Colloquial (of a motor vehicle) to travel at speed"), BORDER, was unsure about BERRIED (valid), HORRID, another unsure HERBIER*, and could not remember if BROIDER (an archaic form of embroider) was valid (it is).  In the end, I talked myself out of risking the sevens, and that was an error.

The other seven is REBORED.

My selection: BORDER

Round 2: N U D A T F O S G


The other sevens are OUTSANG, FUGATOS (FUGATO being music in fugue style), and FANTODS (FANTOD being an obsolete term for "a temperamental mannerism or affectation; performance").

My selection: ASTOUND

Round 3: Target 399 from 50 2 4 8 5 3

I started with the simple 399 = 8*50 - (3 - 2), then looked at using the factorisation 7*57.  It's easy enough to make the two 7's, and so I had 399 = (5 + 2)*(50 + 4 + 3).

My selection: 399 = 8*50 - (3 - 2)

Round 4: E O U R E Q Z N V

Bleah, what a final set of consonants.  It's cases like this (or the potential thereof) that made me grumpy when contestants chose too many vowels early.  Anyway, I had ROUÉ ("a debauchee or rake"), QUEER, QUEEN, NEVER / NERVE, and REZONE.

Six is the best on offer here.  The others are OEUVRE ("work, especially a literary or artistic work") and UNROVE (past tense of UNREEVE: "to withdraw (a rope, etc.) from a block, thimble, etc.").

My selection: REZONE

Round 5: R A T P N R A O S

I had PART, speculatively wrote down PARTNER but the E never arrived, PATRON, PATRONS, SPORRAN, TARPONS (TARPON being a type of fish), and PARROTS.  After time I noted RAPTORS as another seven.

Seven is the limit, with the others being SPARTAN / TARPANS (TARPAN being an extinct species of wild horse) and PARTONS (PARTON: "a hypothetical point-like object within protons, neutrons, etc.").

My selection: PATRONS

Round 6: Target 905 from 25 50 100 10 8 6

I had difficulty with this one; I wanted to make the target as 900 + 50/10, but getting to 900 without those numbers seemed too hard.  Switching tacks, I looked at the options of 880 + 25 and 930 - 25, since with a 10 around it is generally worth looking at multiples of 10.  As soon as I considered the former I spotted an answer of 905 = 8*(100 + 10) + 25.

While writing this up I finally saw how to make the other option work, with 905 = 10*(100 - 8 + 6) - 50 - 25.

My selection: 905 = 8*(100 + 10) + 25

Round 7: K I E G M A L I S

I had IMAGE, ALIKE, IMAGES, SIMILE, a slightly uncertain MILAGES (I thought -- correctly -- that MILAGE had come up before as a variant spelling of MILEAGE, but was not completely sure about that), and SILKIE (variant form 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").

After time I checked up on MISLIKE, but it is not listed.  That makes MILAGES the only seven, and the best to be done.

My selection: MILAGES

Round 8: Target 296 from 50 25 2 10 3 3

This was strangely tricky; the standard method says to make it as 300 - 4, but making a 4 after getting to 300 is less easy than it should be.  A mental blind spot, as it were.  After starting with 2*3*50 did not seem helpful, I switched to getting to 300 as 10*25 + 50.  That left the 2, 3, and 3 available to make the 4, but I drew a blank on that for a long time (relatively speaking) before finally seeing 3 + 3 - 2 = 4.  Oh, dear.  Anyway, that gave me a solution: 296 = 10*25 + 50 - 3 - 3 + 2.

While writing this up I saw that 4 can also be made as 10 - 6, which allows a solution from the 6*50 starting point via a tweak: 296 = 2*(3*50 + 3) - 10.

My selection: 296 = 10*25 + 50 - 3 - 3 + 2


I don't have a time to report properly for this one, as I glanced at it, thought "oh, that's too obvious", and moved on to the next potential conundrum before it occurred to me that I could use it anyway.  Whoops.

My selection: HUMONGOUS (~1s)


Mike Backhouse said...

BORDER and wondered about BERRIED after time
PARTS and PARROTS too late
(50/25+8)*(100-10)+6=906 (1 off)
3*2*50-3=297 (1 off)

Sam G said...

1. HORRID. V for D would allow HERBIVORE.
3. 399 = 8*50 - 3 + 2
5. PATRONS. This is exactly or nearly identical to one of the charity event rounds.
6. 905 = (100-8+6)*10 - 50 - 25
8. one off: 297 = 10*25 + 50 - 3. Frustrating.
9. HUMONGOUS - 0.9s. The only conundrum I got on Sunday was the first one in the wild card event (though I was out of the room for two others). They were all fairly difficult hand-picked ones, which other players did better at than me.

Geoff Bailey said...

BERRIED would get the points, Mike. I'm annoyed at myself for talking myself out of it.

Nice observation about HERBIVORE, Sam -- I spotted that as well. And I'm glad I'm not the only one who had issues with round 8! Although I got there within time, it felt like I was making heavy weather of it.