Games of Puzzle and Numbers
All of us are attracted by Games of Puzzle but shy away from them, either because they are too difficult to solve or very demanding in their requirement of knowledge spectrum be it technical or Vocabulary. Once we get the hang of it the enjoyment we get is enormous.
SU-DO-KU Challenge - Preamble
When I first came across this puzzle 2 years ago I casually started solving them and slowly it began to attract me more and more with challenges to solve higher difficulty level puzzles. The solution does not require any technical expertise or any mathematical knowledge. With concentration. Logic and some quick reflexes one can solve almost all the puzzles unless of course the Author deliberately gives lesser numbers than required to make it more challenging etc. Now let us get on with the Game:
Have a look at the picture above. You can see an empty Grid with 81 squares and a Solved Sample SU-DO-KU. The Author of the puzzle fills certain squares of the grid himself and you have to complete filling the rest of the empty squares adhering to some rules of the Game. The rules are as follows:
- Each Row should contain 1 to 9 with no repeats
- Each column should contain 1 to 9 with no repeats
- There are 9 Mini Squares within the Main Square with 3 Rows&3 Colums each. They should get filled up with numbers 1 to 9 with no repeats.
Looks simple right! The challenge is the third requirement of mini squares. Ready, Go!
For starters let us take an easy one. See the Puzzle above. We have to solve this. You can see some squares are filled already. To identify them they are in RED. I am sure it looks difficult and has more than 1 choice for each square. Relax, let us use our logic and the facts we know. Sice no rows or columns can have duplicate numbers let us look for common numbers in rows or colums. Number 6 appears in top 2 rows and 8th row column 5. Now the top middle mini square (Row 1,2,3 Col 4,5,6) cannot have 6 in the first row, second row or 5th col in 3rd row because these rows and column already have 6 in them which leaves only 3rd row 6th column for 6.("A") Presto you got 1.
Do a similar exercise with columns 4,5,6 for number 5 and you will get row 5,col 5 as the place for number 5.("B") Another trick is take rows 4,5,6 and check for 1. 5th row col 2 has 1 so you cannot have 1 in the cols 1 and 3 above. Similarly there is 1 in Row 6,col 8 and hence you cannot have 1 in col 7,8,9 of Row 4. So 1 can fit in Row 4,Col 4 only.("C")
Just by checking for missing numbers in a Row or column with available numbers you can find the numbers you need. If you are too tired to complete or just curious see the completed Puzzle below.
For the Die-Hard SU-DO-KU fans I have plenty of puzzles, with solutions (lol!), at my website. To see them clik HERE. We shall look at "Magic Squares" in my next article. See you Guys!!