Wednesday, March 17, 2021

Chasm № 1 (Themeless)

PDF PUZ Solution

Hello Crossworld! 🍀

This puzzle marks the first in the Chasm series of puzzles, all of which will feature wide open middles. If you've done my puzzles before you'll know that I love these types of puzzles with imposing, gaping maws in the middle. Part of the solving challenge in these grid designs is trying to find toeholds without much assistance from shorter entries. These types of puzzles are also how I got into constructing in the first place!

For this grid I originally tried getting this middle to work in a 15x15, but I wasn't happy with the fill in the corners, so I just...extended it. By bumping out the top and bottom and making it a 15x19 I was able to fit in some more long entries, including quad stacks in the NW and SE! Why not?

Thanks to Will Nediger for helping test solve. Ádh mór!

Thursday, March 11, 2021

Monday, March 1, 2021

Vowelless Mini № 1

PDF PUZ Solution

Happy March!

This is the first of a series of vowelless mini puzzles. I've been inspired since working through Frank Longo's pioneering Vowelless Crosswords book to give these types of puzzles a try. I also thought they would work well in a mini format, allowing for some more colorful phrases with fewer boxes.

For those of you who haven't tried vowelless crosswords before, the concept is pretty simple: all vowels are removed from the answers in the grid. For example, the entry MIND-BLOWING would become MNDBLWNG, and AVERAGE JOE would become VRGJ. To avoid complications, no entries will contain the letter "Y".

These puzzles can be pretty tough because of all of the missing letters and difficulties with pattern matching. As a result, the cluing will be more straightforward for the most part. Though this first one is fairly challenging, I'll also try to make some easier ones in the future.

I'm pretty new to working with vowelless grids, so let me know if you have any feedback, and if you'd be interested in seeing these more regularly!