Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Archive for November, 2006

Independent on Sunday 875 by Quixote Tricky in places

Posted by nmsindy on 24th November 2006

nmsindy.

Some tricky clues – solving time 22 mins.    Hope setters are not paid by clue, just 24 in the puzzle.

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Posted in Independent | 1 Comment »

Independent 6273/Mass – Painful for me

Posted by neildubya on 23rd November 2006

neildubya.

Something of a bruising encounter for me and I’m still licking the wounds. I find Mass puzzles very tough – enjoyable, but tough. Matters weren’t helped by getting 19A and 22a wrong and there were a number of answers which I was half-sure were right (9A, 15A, 7D, 14D) but not sure enough to fill anything in, so that deprived me of checking letters for other clues. The kind of crossword that makes me think that they’re not my 8D after all! Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Independent | 5 Comments »

Guardian 23931/Quantum – easy top half

Posted by linxit on 23rd November 2006

linxit.

Solving time – approx 12 mins.

I got three of the four perimeter 15-letter entries straight away and had the top half finished in under 3 minutes, then lost a bit of momentum and struggled a bit with the bottom half.

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Posted in Guardian | 3 Comments »

Coming Soon – Azed

Posted by neildubya on 22nd November 2006

neildubya.

From this weekend, we will be covering the Azed puzzles that appear in the Observer. Reviews will appear each Sunday, which is the day after the official closing date for the prize draw. We won’t be covering the monthly clue-writing competition puzzles, as they are reviewed here.

Posted in Azed | 1 Comment »

Independent 6272/Dac – easy but nice

Posted by petebiddlecombe on 22nd November 2006

petebiddlecombe.

Independent 6272/Dac – easy but nice

Solved in 5:05.  Got a reasonable start with 5A and then the easy anag at 5D. Should really have had 1A first time for a sub-5 clocking, but never mind. Don’t be deceived by the lack of a theme into thinking this is an inferior product. Aspiring setters should study these clues carefully for clarity, wit, and fairness. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Independent | 5 Comments »

Guardian 23,930 by Chifonie – Uninspiring stuff

Posted by loonapick on 22nd November 2006

loonapick.

Solving time – 10-12 minutes

 This is my first entry in this blog, and also the first time in a while that I have come across Chifonie.  I am not terribly impressed.  I don’t like the capitalisations in 1ac and 5dn, and I find some of the clueing very lazy (for example, using “student” for L twice in the same grid).  The setter seems to have gone for very straightforward composite clues, with rare anagrams, and some of the surfaces make little or no sense.

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Posted in Guardian | 2 Comments »

Independent 6271 – Making Sense of Virgilius

Posted by tilsit on 21st November 2006

tilsit.

Solving Time: 18 minutes

After yesterday’s enjoyable Tees puzzle, the momentum of the excellence of the recent Indy puzzles continued with today’s puzzle by Virgilius, although the brilliance of most of the puzzle is tempered by a couple of less than satisfying clues. 

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Posted in Independent | 4 Comments »

Guardian 23929/Paul — 24ac?

Posted by Colin Blackburn on 21st November 2006

Colin Blackburn.

Solving time : 20-60 minutes (see below).

I spent a lot of time looking at this on the bus but at the end of a 40 minute journey I had just a few answers 15, 23 and 25. I picked the puzzle up again at lunchtime and rattled it off within 20 minutes. So, I’m discounting those first 40 minutes!

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Posted in Guardian | 7 Comments »

Independent 6270/Tees – The Two Ronnies

Posted by rightback on 20th November 2006

rightback.

Solving time: 7:45

I really liked this puzzle on the theme of 11s (coincidentally the first clue I solved), though I wonder if I have missed some of the thematic references. A very slow bottom left corner for me, but overall nothing too difficult.

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Posted in Independent | 6 Comments »

Guardian 23928/Rufus – good clean fun.

Posted by ilancaron on 20th November 2006

ilancaron.

Solving time: 20’

Some clever puns and by no means a surfeit of clichés. Quite enjoyable with satisfying surfaces.

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Posted in Guardian | 6 Comments »

Observer 3137/Everyman – Americanisms…

Posted by ilancaron on 18th November 2006

ilancaron.

Done sporadically during a very pleasant afternoon in Geneva mainly drinking wine, eating ice-cream, coffee then dinner. Followed by more drink and cakes. After about 4 glasses of wine, crosswords don’t seem very important.

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Posted in Guardian | No Comments »

Guardian 23,921/Araucaria – tough thematic puzzle

Posted by petebiddlecombe on 18th November 2006

petebiddlecombe.

Solving time 24:41

This was a nice example of the kind of challenge that has made Araucaria probably the best-loved cryptic setter we have. The theme turns out to be a subset of the seven wonders of the ancient world, and something Sir Roger de Coverley said about them. Includes various examples of the “libertarian” practices that wind up some cryptic crossword purists, but this is one of the times when the fun of the puzzle excuses them. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted in Guardian | No Comments »

Independent 6263/Nimrod – W O N T O N C U D

Posted by petebiddlecombe on 18th November 2006

petebiddlecombe.

I got confused about who was writing what and wrote stuff on both of last Saturday’s puzzles.  So this one is a duplicate… another excuse for putting it up is that I referred to links in it in a comment yesterday.

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Posted in Independent | No Comments »

Independent Saturday Prize Puzzle 6263 by Nimrod

Posted by tilsit on 17th November 2006

tilsit.

Solving Time:  23 minutes

 An enjoyable Saturday romp from Nimrod with a topical theme given the recently announced departure of Des from Countdown.  If the puzzle had a weakness, it was that Countdown per se wasn’t in the puzzle, we got “Countdowner”. 

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Posted in Independent | No Comments »

Independent 6268/Nimrod – Frankly, my dear, I stalled on 5 down

Posted by rightback on 17th November 2006

rightback.

Solving time: 11:05

Not the easiest, but I think I made a bit of a meal of some of this, although there were a few difficult words. Nimrod continues a recent theme of including several crossing long entries, including 5 fairly straightforward anagrams today in answers of 10 letters or more. I normally find Nimrod ‘hard but fair’, though I do have a couple of minor quibbles in this puzzle.

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Posted in Independent | 1 Comment »