Thursday, 24 September 2015

NG 684

New game 684 is now available.

And belatedly, the re-runs have been back on for a bit.  Today's re-run is episode 387; its rounds are here and its writeup is here.

Round 1: M E E F R U S C A

I had FREE, FREES, SURFACE, AMERCES (AMERCE: "to punish by inflicting a discretionary penalty of any kind") / RACEMES, and recalled that FARCEUR ("a writer or player of farces") was a word.  That's not formable from the above letters, but the feminine form FARCEUSE is.  I was not completely sure that the Macquarie listed it, but I chanced it and was happily rewarded.

FARCEUSE is the only eight.  The other sevens are MEASURE, REFACES, and CESURAE* (CESURA being given as a variant spelling of CAESURA: "English Prosody a break, especially a sense pause, usually near the middle of a verse, and marked in scansion by a double vertical line [...]").

My selection: FARCEUSE

Round 2: O I A M P F S I N

I had IMPS, PIANOS, and noted MAFIOSI but remembered that the Macquarie does not list that plural form (also, it considers MAFIOSO to be proper, so MAFIOSI still would not be allowed).  After time I saw MOPANIS, another word that I know is not listed (MOPANI is another name for the balsam).  And I'm sure that anyone who has stayed in a hotel is familiar with the concept of MINISOAP, but it's not a term that has made it into the dictionary.

The other six available is SIMIAN.  But there are two sevens: SINOPIA ("a red-brown earth pigment") and PIANISM ("the set of skills and qualities of mind involved in performance on the piano, especially in advanced players").

My selection: PIANOS

Round 3: Target 959 from 50 75 5 5 1 6

Definitely a tough one.  On the principle of getting close I started with (6 + 5 + 1)*75, and then tweaked that to one away with 960 = (6 + 5 + 1)*(75 + 5).  That was the best I could do.

With good reason, it turns out, as the target is unreachable and 960 is the best to be done.

My selection: 960 = (6 + 5 + 1)*(75 + 5)

Round 4: N E D C G S I O A

I had ENDS, CEDING, CANOES, CODEIAS, CEASING, DIOCESAN, and COINAGES.  After time I noted other sevens of DEACONS and SECONDI (plural of SECONDO: "the second or lower part in a duet, especially in piano duets"), and another eight of DIAGNOSE.

The other eights are AGONISED, DECAGONS, COGNISED (COGNISE: "to perceive; become conscious of"; know), and OCEANIDS (OCEANID: "an ocean nymph").

My selection: DIOCESAN

Round 5: Y B C O W E O L A

Ergh, not a very useful mix.  I had COWBOY and BOWEL / BELOW / ELBOW.  After time I checked up on EBOLA, but it is only listed as part of EBOLA VIRUS (and proper, also).

The other eight is LOWBOY ("a piece of furniture for holding clothes, similar to a wardrobe, but not so tall").  BYE-LAW is listed as a variant spelling of BY-LAW, but the hyphen is required.

My selection: COWBOY

Round 6: Target 625 from 50 75 1 10 8 9

A very familiar target, being the square of 25.  That means it is almost always able to be made as long as there are two large numbers.  Despite that, I started with 625 = 8*75 + 50/(10 + 1 - 9) (although 625 = 9*75 - 50 would have been much simpler) and then moved on to 625 = (10 + 1)*50 + 75.  Returning to the original observation, I noted 625 = 50*75 / (9 + 8 - 10 - 1), then went rather further afield for 625 = 50*10*(9 + 1)/8.

My selection: 625 = 50*10*(9 + 1)/8

Round 7: O E S I R D T T C

I had RISE, DRIES, STEROID, CORDITES (CORDITE being a type of explosive), noted that an A instead of the E would have given DICTATORS, COTTIERS (COTTIER: "an Irish peasant holding a portion of land directly from the owner, the amount of rent being fixed not by custom or private agreement but by public competition"), and DISTORT.

Those are both eights listed, and there were more potential sevens than I felt like checking.  Some of the more common are CREDITS / DIRECTS and EDITORS.

My selection: CORDITES

Round 8: Target 404 from 100 50 3 1 8 8

The target is 4*101, which can be made to work with 404 = (3 + 8/8)*(100 + 1).  But I went with the simpler 404 = 8*50 + 3 + 1.  After time I looked for more complicated options, finding 404 = 8*50 + 100/(3*8 + 1).

My selection: 404 = 8*50 + 3 + 1


Generally speaking, I find the conundrums with five vowels difficult.  In this case I probably gave up too early, but I had already considered the -IOUS ending and not found an answer, so I can't really claim that I would have solved it with more thought.

My selection: [no answer]


Mike Backhouse said...

(6+1+5)*75+50+5=955 (4 off)
SINGED and CODINGS after time
BOWEL and wondered about BLOWEY
8*70+50/1+10-9=625 probably went over
x my old friend

Sam G said...

3. probably late, one off: 960 = (6+5+1)*(75+5)
6. 625 = 9*75 - 50
8. 404 = 8*50 + 3 + 1
9. 36.3s - FELONIOUS

Geoff Bailey said...

There's no D in the first round, Mike -- did you mean CAUSER (which would be valid, although SAUCER would be safer)? And CODING is not listed explicitly as a noun, so CODINGS would not be valid. You were also right to avoid BLOWEY -- the forms listed are BLOWIE and BLOWY.

Nice Steely Dan reference, by the way. :)

Mike Backhouse said...

Well done on picking up the Steely Dan reference Geoff.