Two more Basic FTSPAH, 64 and 164

FTSPAH 64 exits in the bypass, and illustrates several bypass tactics that avoid the curse – invoking frustration that the  composers of FTSPAH puzzles claim on their cover. Its post partner 164 illustrates more bypass moves and survives for a few line markings.

Several 64 tactics show up as the bypass begins. Starting the box scan in NW, NW1 is not revealed until we survey the claims on the W box, forcing a 1-slink in Wc3, and a dublex crosshatch into NW, for W1. Our immediate response to the little square is to scan side lines r1 and c3 for values forced into the side lines of the square. Immediate response to little squares, filled box corners, walls, and 3-fills is the second tactic.


Moving on to value 2, two cross hatches fail, then a dublex crosshatch gets W3, and triggers the third tactic, which is to look back for slinks of previous values now converted to clues. That unwritten 1-slink leading to NW1 now produces W1. When value 4, clues E4 and E5 force these values into r4c14. N4 determines W4 and C5.

While text descriptions like the above explain the nature of Sysudoku marking, and specific solving events, it is much more effective to duplicate the traces while filling out the grid from the givens, as you anticipate and confirm each step, and let no action escape justification.



A Sysudoku trace trails off when complete placement is obviously no longer dependent on critical effects.

Turning to FTSPAH 164, an E box 3-fill gives a good beginning, followed by the first of several instances of two values working together to claim two cells in a box or line. In this case it’s 4 and 5 claiming cells of the W box and r5 line.  This leads to the grid shown here in which you are  to account for NE6. To add some handy names, it’s the NW four corners  and  N wall.

In the remaining bypass, some effects have multiple causes. Sysudoku conventions determined which cause gets there first, but unless you’re writing traces you expect others to compare with theirs, the conventions  don’t matter.




Here is the line marking grid at the naked single SE9 triggering the collapse.








Next time the FTSPAH review concludes with a third bypass wipe out 124, and with 184, the only puzzle to require AIC building. The FTSPAH review table below records five of ten basic finishes, three of these in the bypass. The advanced puzzles are dominated by XY chains and coloring. With the exception of 184, there’s nothing to justify the bravado of the title, and the breathless hype of the cover descriptions.






About Sudent

I'm John Welch, a retired engineering professor, father of 3 wonderful daughters and granddad to 7 fabulous grandchildren. Sudoku analysis and illustration is a great hobby and a healthy mental challenge.
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