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Monday Mutant 63: Melon's Secret Castle

Draw a single loop that connects the grid cells. The loop may only travel horizontally or vertically, and never diagonally (so all turns are of 90 degrees). The loop may only turn at the centers of grid cells, and may not cross itself or branch off. A cell containing a number and an arrow represents the total length of the horizontal (for a left or right arrow) or the vertical (for an up or down arrow) line segments in the row or column pointed at by the arrow (or, equivalently, how many cell boundaries the loop passes through in that direction). The loop may not pass through a cell containing a numbered arrow clue, but all such clues which are in a white cell must be inside the loop, and all black cells must be outside the loop.
In news completely unrelated to puzzles, my second Square Root of Minus Garfield strip has been published. Check out it!

Monday Mutant 62: Crowd Nine (equations)

In this Crowd Nine puzzle, all of the outlined equations, when read from left to right or from top to bottom, must be true when the grid is filled in. Perform operations in reading order (for example, 3-1+2 is 4, not 0, and 1+2×3 is 9, not 7). The rules are otherwise unchanged.
This puzzle was written as a response to Mah Boy's puzzle which I reviewed in Grant's Review Corner: Volume 3. While I suspect that someone like motris could create a much better one of these, it does illustrate the concepts which I wanted to get across: the presentation is precise, with the rules and equations being clearly delineated, the givens are symmetrical (which almost never hurts), and the equations interact in different ways (see the overlapping equations in column 9).

Grant's Review Corner: Volume 3

In this edition of Grant's Review Corner, I have chosen not to review a puzzle in a commercial magazine or a commercial iPhone app, but a puzzle that was sent to me in an electronic mail with the subject line "Nice Blog". Judging by the From: field, the sender is from the United Kingdom, and is either a boy or has the surname Boy (and a forename that doesn't look at all like a forename, and is in fact the name of a village in England). Henceforth, the sender will be known as Mah Boy, because he probably just wonders what Ganon's up to. (The puzzle below is © 2011 "Mah Boy"; this review is fair use.)

Hi

This is a fantastic set of puzzles I will be having a lot of fun solving these, though I would drop you a little email with a copy of a Sudoku puzzle that I drempt up (don't think there is one like this) and see what you think?

The same rules apply as normal sudoko but for this use the sums within this puzzle to help you solve it.


+ = 4
+



-


-
+ - - =
=


/
+
-
=
x - =

+
=
=
=
+
+ - =

=




+
-
3 + + / =





=
=
+ - =


I believe that the following review will prove to be of use to all aspiring puzzlesmiths. In other words, it's an absolute must-read.

Puzzle 481: Polyominous 45

No comment.

Monday Mutant 61: Seek and Spell (Roman numerals)

In this Seek and Spell puzzle, before being entered in the grid, a word may have the trigram ONE replaced with the letter I, or the trigram TEN replaced with the letter X. (For example, CALZONE can be entered as CALZONE or as CALZI, and STENCH can be entered as STENCH or as SXCH.) The rules are otherwise unchanged.
While this has nothing to do with the Monday Mutant above, I recently had a strip published on Square Root of Minus Garfield. Check it out!

Monday Mutant 60: Cross the Streams

Shade in some cells black such that the black cells are all connected to each other through their edges, and no 2x2 cell area within the grid contains all black cells. Numbers to the left of a row or above a column represent the groups of consecutive black cells which are in that row or column. For example, a clue of "3" means the row or column has three consecutive black cells, and a clue of "3 1" means that the row or column has a group of three consecutive black cells followed by a single black cell, separated by at least one white cell. A question mark (?) represents a group of consecutive black cells whose size is unknown; an asterisk (*) represents any number of unknown groups of black cells, including none at all.
Oh, Cross the Streams. You're so excellent for those Mondays when I neglect to have a Monday Mutant ready beforehand.

Monday Mutant 59: Pearls of Wisdom (jigsaw)

In this Pearls of Wisdom puzzle, you must assemble the grid from the given pieces before you can solve the puzzle. None of the pieces may be rotated, and no two pieces may overlap; the pieces will fill the entire grid. The thick borders on the pieces must coincide with the perimeter of the grid. The rules are otherwise unchanged.
It's the first Monday Mutant of the new year! Hard to believe I've kept this series up for so long.

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