Regular solvers of the Inquisitor (at least, those who read my blogs) will be aware that I have, over the years, produced a series of puzzles commemorating the passing of various cats in the household. We lost two this year, in quite short order, during lockdown. I decided against queueing two puzzles up for the Inquisitor and instead sent one over to the Enigmatic Variation pipeline. As it turned out, due to editorial decisions, this puzzle, marking the second passing, has appeared first. The other should turn up in 2021.
This puzzle is for Dot, named after the character in Sunday in the Park with George. The problem, as ever, is to contrive an idea that makes use of the name, without in any way requiring knowledge on the part of the solver (a bit like seeding a daily grid with a selection of words that align with a theme). In this case, the idea of putting dots in the grid was an immediate one.
But what do you with dots in a grid? Well, you can join them together, or you can join them to the corners. Once the latter occurred to me, then the concept of perspective followed. The next stage was very fiddly for my maladroit hands – lots of positioning of dots, drawing lines to corners, repositioning dots, redrawing lines, then changing the grid (square grids seemed to be very unhelpful) , doing it all again, and checking and rechecking that the lines did pass through the relevant squares. I am reasonably confident that the lines I ended up with don’t fractionally impinge on cells that don’t contain a letter of A SENSE OF PERSPECTIVE…look, just let me get the ruler out again, shall I?
The clues were quite tricky to write. I don’t tend to use ‘point’ as an indicator for N, S, E or W much – it feels a bit vague. But considering them collectively as a thematic resource seemed OK. I tried to make sure they all appeared fairly often, but S was always easier to omit, and W wasn’t! I did the five clues requiring the removal of triplets first as I felt that was sufficiently restrictive that I shouldn’t leave it to chance.
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