This (6 September 2020) should have been the first Sunday in years without an Enigmatic Variations puzzle. Instead we have the start of a month of easier puzzles to help attract new solvers in. It’s hardly surprising that the first off the mark is Chalicea who has made something of a speciality of solid, straightforward and enjoyable puzzles, in a range of outlets.
The preceding puzzle was one of my own, with presumably an implication that it was harder. Based on comments received so far, I’m not so sure of that, but as I’ve said repeatedly, I cannot assess the difficulty of my own puzzles with any great confidence. More on that in the blog appearing on the site later this week. I note that I have to have it ready a little earlier than usual as fifteensquared will be changing its scheduling to tie in with Big Dave’s site, where hints and explanations will be available. All part of the process to encourage new blood.
Reasonable then to put up one of my own EVs from a few years ago. I do think this one will be harder than the one in today’s paper and, if you want a hint, well, you might think of the alternative meanings of shot.
Meanwhile, elsewhere in the Telegraph, there’s a Kcit Toughie on September 9, and elsewhere in the cruciverbosphere, there’s a Phi IQ on Saturday 12th, and a Pedro Quick Cryptic on September 17, just to use up all the pseudonyms. As mentioned, there’ll be a blog on Matches appearing later in the week – with photos!