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UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Thu 15 May, 2014 8:20 pm
by puzzlemad
The UKPA Puzzle Championship will be held over the weekend of the 23rd 26th May, 2014.
The contest page is now open at http://www.ukpuzzles.org/contests.php?contestid=35 where the instruction booklet can be obtained.
Please use this thread for asking any queries relating to the instruction booklet.
The top two UK competitors will earn their places on the UK team for the World Puzzle Championships that will be held in London in August.

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Thu 15 May, 2014 8:40 pm
by detuned
I've genuinely learned something here - I never knew medicament was a word! ;)

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Thu 15 May, 2014 11:22 pm
by GarethMoore
detuned wrote:I've genuinely learned something here - I never knew medicament was a word! ;)
Wow, me neither! Although to make sense in the context of pills, it really should say medicine instead by the look of it.

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Fri 16 May, 2014 3:07 am
by kiwijam
A good looking set of puzzles, thanks to Liane and the authors for preparing this.
Not a big deal, but the hyphens in the answer keys of #20 and #23 have merged, although in other puzzles they stayed separate. We should blame MS Word?

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Fri 16 May, 2014 3:34 am
by Joo M.Y
#22 - Kurotto

Which one is correct score?
30 points in description, or 40 points in points table?

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Fri 16 May, 2014 5:49 am
by puzzlemad
Joo M.Y wrote:#22 - Kurotto

Which one is correct score?
30 points in description, or 40 points in points table?
It should be 40 points - I have amended the instruction booklet.

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Fri 16 May, 2014 5:50 am
by puzzlemad
kiwijam wrote:A good looking set of puzzles, thanks to Liane and the authors for preparing this.
Not a big deal, but the hyphens in the answer keys of #20 and #23 have merged, although in other puzzles they stayed separate. We should blame MS Word?
Definitely blame MS Word. I'll have a look at this later and try and fix.

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Sat 17 May, 2014 11:56 am
by puzzlemad
Slightly amended instruction booklet available - identifying that pentominos in puzzle 23 may be rotated or reflected.

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Sat 17 May, 2014 12:58 pm
by puzzlemad
puzzlemad wrote:
kiwijam wrote:A good looking set of puzzles, thanks to Liane and the authors for preparing this.
Not a big deal, but the hyphens in the answer keys of #20 and #23 have merged, although in other puzzles they stayed separate. We should blame MS Word?
Definitely blame MS Word. I'll have a look at this later and try and fix.
Fixed now.

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Sat 17 May, 2014 4:07 pm
by Joo M.Y
One more thing. 'ENTERING & SUBMITTING ANSWERS' In page 3,

"To submit your answers, you will need to go to the answer submission page found
at http://www.ukpuzzles.org/contests.php?contestid=32????? Here, ...."

The link is should be corrected. (...contestid=35)

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Sat 17 May, 2014 7:07 pm
by puzzlemad
Joo M.Y wrote:One more thing. 'ENTERING & SUBMITTING ANSWERS' In page 3,

"To submit your answers, you will need to go to the answer submission page found
at http://www.ukpuzzles.org/contests.php?contestid=32????? Here, ...."

The link is should be corrected. (...contestid=35)
Apologies - more haste less speed! sorted now.

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Fri 23 May, 2014 10:01 am
by puzzlemad
The competition booklet is now available at http://www.ukpuzzles.org/contests.php?contestid=35 . I hope that you all enjoy the competition

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Sat 24 May, 2014 10:26 pm
by detuned
I haven't got time for many contests these days, but I'm glad I got to give this a go. Great fun as always (some fiddly loop answer keys excepted), thanks to Liane and the authors!

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Sun 25 May, 2014 4:49 am
by Joo M.Y
I enjoyed UKPC 2014, but answer keys could have been better...... (especially Loop puzzles)

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Sun 25 May, 2014 1:35 pm
by apollo1001
Nice set of puzzles - very enjoyable! Merely now kicking myself over the answer keys :?

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Tue 27 May, 2014 12:04 am
by dickoon
Thanks very much, Liane and team! I really enjoyed this and thought the difficulty was very much to my taste.

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Tue 27 May, 2014 6:28 pm
by dickoon
The scores are up. So not to spoil an official comment, I will just restrict myself to saying Wow! as well as offering congratulations. :)

Also very good to see 25 UK scorers on the board, after 23, 22 and 20 in the past three years. Continued progress!

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Tue 27 May, 2014 9:21 pm
by detuned
Fantastic stuff from James - brilliant to see another UK name at the top of the chart!

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Tue 27 May, 2014 9:23 pm
by detuned
Having had no time to prepare for this, I didn't even look at the 80 pointer and stuck well within my comfort zone. Was it particularly hard?

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Tue 27 May, 2014 10:03 pm
by Nilz
That's a ridiculous winning margin. Congrats James!
detuned wrote:Having had no time to prepare for this, I didn't even look at the 80 pointer and stuck well within my comfort zone. Was it particularly hard?
Probably took me about half an hour of tinkering. Didn't feel especially hard, since I felt like I was close long before I actually was, but half an hour is quite a long time.

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Tue 27 May, 2014 10:45 pm
by kiwijam
Thanks guys, I'll admit to feeling a big Wow also!

I didn't feel blisteringly fast, but managed to avoid any roadbumps. A few of the other top finishers had a submission error, which seriously cut their bonus score. And luckily Nikola ran out of puzzles to do that he hadn't written! :) I actually found and corrected 2 errors while doublechecking, most unlike me to make them but I'm glad I spent the time on it. Thankfully there was no Claim Bonus button to tempt me...

It did help that I was author of the GP round (and IPC) and so unable to enter them, so I could spend a full week preparing for this. Plenty of practise puzzles to understand the new types, and solving all the Creek(=Orkney), Baca(=Blackout ABC), Kurotto, Gemini Loop, Easy as Skyscrapers etc that I could find.

Thanks to all the puzzle creators, it was an enjoyable set. Plenty for maths fans. Word Snakes and "Loops at a Spool" (a cute name) are great new types. My favourite puzzles were the Word Snakes and Gemini Loop.

Pentomino was easier if you've seen this puzzle with a similar opening idea: (knowing there's a P in the middle, but not exactly sure where yet). Also the lack of horizontal clues meant uniqueness shortcuts could be used, like the U must be vertical in a clued column, and the bottom-right can't be a V because there'd be two options.

Pharmacy has some interesting logic, but it can be hard to get started. Obviously for each row and column you can calculate how many 1s and 2s there'll be. And if they are full then you shade in the ends (e.g. 1222 or 11112). So that gave me 6 black cells and 4 white. The two rows on one side a full row cannot mutually share capsules, and so rows 2&3, 9&10 and columns 8&9 are also 'full' and must fill to both ends. There are a few other small deductions (R10C3 is white, R9C5 is white) but they didn't feel productive.
Personally I just guessed that R7C10 was shaded. This quickly filled most of the grid (e.g. rows 5 and 7 are completely known), but reached a contradiction when I ran out of space in row 2. So that suggested trying R2C10, which then reached a solution. The high points value meant I was happy with that. @Nikola, if you're reading, I'm curious about your thoughts?

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Tue 27 May, 2014 10:46 pm
by detuned
also, i'm quite curious about the pentominos - I've just whizzed through it now in 5-10 minutes, but after the initial break-in I almost exclusively abused uniqueness to get to the (a?) solution. Would anyone care to enlighten me? :roll:

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Tue 27 May, 2014 10:58 pm
by kiwijam
Nilz wrote:That's a ridiculous winning margin. Congrats James!
Thanks Neil, your similar effort last year inspired me. I only won by 2 minutes, but that's not the margin you're referring to. ;) One day we'll both 'fire' at the same time :)

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Tue 27 May, 2014 11:27 pm
by PuzzleScot
kiwijam wrote:"Loops at a Spool" (a cute name)
A pat on the back for anyone who spotted it was a palindrome!

Re: UKPA Puzzle Championship 2014

Posted: Tue 27 May, 2014 11:36 pm
by kiwijam
detuned wrote:also, i'm quite curious about the pentominos - I've just whizzed through it now in 5-10 minutes, but after the initial break-in I almost exclusively abused uniqueness to get to the (a?) solution. Would anyone care to enlighten me? :roll:
Without uniqueness? Alright, if you want the hard way. :) Put the I and L in. The two pieces above the L cannot join, because the right-hand one is needed for the 6-clue. You've found 9 pieces, plus there'll be one in the top-left and two in the bottom-left. Five of these pieces (T-L, M-L, M-T, M-R, and M) are 'narrow', and must be in the subset of PUNY or Z. So the other five are chubby 3x3s in X,V,T,F,W. Particularly, T-R and M-B are F or W, B-R is V or T and M-R is Y. There's only one place for the X to not get in the way, the 7-clue must now be a 3 and two 2s, and that's about it?