Friday, December 30, 2011

And the winner of the Cryptonites Crossword Competition is.....

The 1st Cryptonites Crossword Competition based on 11 thematic weekly crosswords  is over. We have had  participation in the high twenties judging from the actual number of entries sent in.

We hope the participants have enjoyed the challenge. 

4 of them managed to handle all the challenges successfully. They are Chris Foo, Lenny Wan, Claire Chin and Yeong Kig Siew. Congratulations to each one of them in persisting through 11 rounds and emerging on the other side.

As the 4 handed in all-correct entries within the stipulated time, the winner is decided by earliest entry.

Hence , it is declared that Claire Chin is the winner!

Congratulations, Claire and keep on cryptoniting!

She gets RM150 worth of vouchers from MPH book stores.


Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Final Puzzle

The final puzzle was e mailed to the final four participants last week.
All sent in their answers which were all correct.
The winner is decided by earliest entry and will be named shortly.
For those of you who want to attempt the final puzzle here it is.
The final puzzle is based on 20 clues. The definition is absent in all clues.
The past 10 puzzles had themes to them- and these were the definitions.
In puzzle 11, each of the previous themes occur twice. Hence there are 20 clues.
To aid you further, none of the clues with the same theme intersect each other - except for writers.
Also, pairs of clues with the following themes ( elements,football clubs, movie stars,movies ) are either across or down.
The other pairs , needless to say, have one clue across and the other one down.
Lastly, the 21 intersecting letters form this sentence : Logical or rare instance.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

"Elements" Explanation

Visual Key to Clue Analysis :
Definition : BOLD
Wordplay : Italics with keywords underlined as well
Link : Normal


Answer Explanation to “Elements”

2A A fleece hunter with gold shirt
‘with’ is the link indicator
Gold = AU
 Shirt  = T ( as in T shirt )
Fleece hunter = argonaut
Answer : Argon

5A Gift-bearing Greek – not good! Ignore their party
Gift = boon
Greek (not good ) = Reek
Reek ( ignore Greek party ) = REEK – EEK
BOON bearing R = BO R ON
Answer : Boron

6A Tumult that is convoluted
‘convoluted’ is anagram indicator
that is = ie
tumult + ie anagrammed gives us Lutetium
Answer : Lutetium

7A State without a university medium
State = California
California without A = Californi
University = U  medium = M
Answer : Californium

9A Satire by an unknown
Unknown = Y
‘by’ is juxtaposition indicator
Iron + y = irony = staire
Answer : Iron

10A Non – issue. Finally settled.
Issue ( finally ) = E
‘settled’ is anagram indicator
Non E ( settled )gives us Neon
Answer : Neon

1D Endlessly nice to touch buttocks
‘touch’ is juxtaposition indicator
Nice ‘endlessly’ = NIC
Buttocks = ARSE
Answer : Arsenic

2D  Any Shakespearean Athenian in….
Shakespearena Athenian = Timon
Timon in Any = Antimony
Answer : Antimony

3D .. “Maiden without a flower”
Maiden = M
A Flower = geranium
Geranium ‘without’ M gives us Germanium
Answer : Germanium

4D New satellite, twice undertaking mission opener
‘undertaking’ is juxtaposition indicator
New = N
Satellite = IO
Twice = BI
Mission ‘opener’ = M
Answer : Niobium

7D Wild boar in North Carolina retreat
Boar ‘wild’ = ARBO
North Carolina = NC
NC retreat = CN
Answer : Carbon

8D It appears twice following Rhode Island Navy dog
Rhode Island = RI
Navy = N
Dog = Rin Tin Tin
Answer : Tin


Monday, December 19, 2011

Monday, December 12, 2011

Quite Elementary

The final four participants have qualified for the last round- and its quite elementary- with its theme of elements.

"Battles" Answers

Visual Key to Clue Analysis :
Definition : BOLD
Wordplay : Italics with keywords underlined as well
Link : Normal


Answer Explanation to “Battles”

3A An issue about long break
An issue = a son
About = CA  ( circa )
 Long = L
‘break’ is insertion indicator
In this case it is applicable to CA & L
Answer : Ascalon

 5A Little woman taking half unto herself
Little woman is JO ( from Little Women )
Half UNTO = UN
Taking herself implies that UN is inserted in JO
Answer : Juno

6A Rhetoric in a way
Rhetoric = rant
Way = TAO
Answer : Taranto

7A No hard current in the Ganges
No hard means no H
Current in means I in
The result will be Ganges is an INDIAN RIVER
So original answer is HINDAN RIVER ( take out H and put in I )
Answer : Hindan River    ( Unfortunately, there was no battle of Hindan River . Rather it was HINDON RIVER. My apologies for this grievous error.

11A Time soldiers associated flag-waving with army regulation
Time = T
Soldiers = RA
Waving is anagram indicator and applies to FLAG
Associated is a juxtaposition indicator
Army regulation = AR
Answer : Trafalgar

12A Daisy chain it to form lines stretching back
Daisy chain is a repetitive indicator
After repeating the answer we have lines stretching back
In this case it is  NILE NILE – an endless series of line(s) looking back
‘stretching back’ is reverse indicator many times over.
Answer : Nile

13A Country where its’ first born changed hands
First born = B
B is added to answer
‘changed’ hands implies that the answer contains L or R which is then interchanged to match a country’s name.
In this case the answer is ULUNDI  ( B + ULUNDI = BURUNDI )
Answer : Ulundi

1D Following such directions will send you north west, possibly
To go NW one way is W and then N
Answer : Towton

2D  Can’t in Scotland
‘Cant’ in Scotland is spelt as Can nae
Answer : Cannae

4D Manage with firm hand – not half accommodating
Manage = run
Firm = co
Hand – not half = HA
‘accommodating’  CO HA holds RUN
Answer : Corunha

7D Attila sacked city – devoured by heartless Hun
‘sacked’ means to delete city, ( LA) from Attila
ATTI is then devoured by Hn ( heartless hun)
Answer : Hattin

8D It approaches date rape – ending in style
It ‘approaches’ means the answer is besides.
Date = D 
Rape ending = E
So, answer + DE = style
‘a la mode’ = in style
Answer : Alamo

9D Have way with posh woman ultimately
Have = VE ( as I’ve )
Way = RD
Posh = U
Woman ultimately = N
Answer : Verdun

10D  Rush hour – quiet no more
Hour = HR
Quiet = SH
‘no more’ is deletion indicator
RU ( SH ) HR gives us RUHR
Answer : Ruhr


Monday, December 5, 2011

Battle Stations

The "Flowers" crossword proved to be a tad more difficult. Now there are only 4 left standing. Congratulations to Chris Foo, Claire Chin,Yeong Kig Siew  .. and Lenny Wan!*
The 9th in the series is all about battles!
Keep up the good fight.

*p.s I missed out Lenny earlier.

"Flowers" Answers

Visual Key to Clue Analysis :
Definition : BOLD
Wordplay : Italics with keywords underlined as well
Link : Normal


Answer Explanation to “Flowers”

1A Messy robe in bag,another one outside
‘messy’ is anagram indicator and applies to ‘robe’
‘in’ is insertion indicator and so ‘bag’ goes into a rearranged ‘robe’
‘outside’ would refer to another word for ‘bag’ and that goes outside the above
Another word for bag is case
Answer : Cabbage Rose

5A Say, tough guy is first to get locked up by court
‘say’ is homonym indicator and refers to ‘tough’ giving us TUF
Guy is either a synonym for a male or an actual name : in this case ANDY
‘Is first’  means that ANDY is placed before TUF
The above is then ‘locked up’ by court which in short is CT
Answer : Candy Tuft

7A Gangster – not international and not national
Gangster =  Al Capone
International = cap  national = n
‘not’ means to take them out of CAPONE
Answer : Aloe

9A A huge sum you sacrificed with another member
You ‘sacrificed’ means that U is taken out of the answer
Another member implies that what remains after U is taken out is a member
Member = arm
Arm and a leg ( another member ) means something costly and so is a huge sum
Answer : Arum

11A Chicken, livered as such
Whatever the answer is , when its combined with ‘livered’ you will get a word meaning ‘chicken’
Lily-livered means cowardly
Answer : Lily

12A All-round first-class side
First class = AI
Side = XI
So we have AIXI
‘all-round’ is a reversal indicator
Answer : Ixia

13A Lucky people finally get last wish
Last wish = H
‘finally get’ means put H at the end of the answer and get “lucky people”
Irish are considered ‘lucky’
Answer : Iris

14A  Covered by huge umbrella
‘covered by’ is hidden indicator meaning that the answer is inside “huge umbrella”
Answer : Geum

1D Ask for song in church, nothing more
Ask for = CALL
Song = ARIA
And in it we have church = CE as well as ( more ) nothing = O
Answer : Calceolaria

2D  Dishonest about opponents
In bridge opponents are either NE or SW
Dishonest = BENT
Answer : Bennet

3D Agent in trouble
‘trouble’ is anagram indicator
‘Agent is’ turns to Gentian
Answer : Gentian

4D Get back it’s grasp of universal quality
It refers to answer which needs to ‘grasp’ Universal Quality which is UQ
‘back’ means to reverse ‘it’ and then the whole thing would mean ‘get’
Another word for get is acquire ( reverse it to get ERIUQCA )
Remove UQ and get Erica
Answer : Erica

6D Hear stories that sounds far-fetched!
Stories = LORE
‘hear’ is homonym indicator and so LORE becomes LOR
‘sounds’ is another homonym indicator and applies to ‘far’
 FAR becomes FA
FA fetched LOR means that FA carried LOR
Answer : Flora

8D Fellow to bring up the rear
Fellow = F
Bring up the rear = LAG
Answer : Flag

10D  Thousands embrace America
Thousands = M, K
America = US
M, K embrace US gives us M US K
Answer : Musk


Monday, November 28, 2011

Say it with Flowers

The 8 have all done well identifying mythical characters from Ancient Greece.So have others.Keep it up.
This time the theme is flowers.


"Greek Myths" Answers

Visual Key to Clue Analysis :
Definition : BOLD
Wordplay : Italics with keywords underlined as well
Link : Normal


Answer Explanation to “Greek Myths”

2A Sugar high
‘high’ is anagram indicator
Answer : Argus

4A Operates without a doctor
‘doctor’ is anagram indicator
Operates ‘without’ a = opertes
‘Opertes’ anagrammed gives us Sterope
Answer : Sterope

6A Protection racket which ends in ….
Protection = Lee
Racket which ‘ends’ = T H ( ends of racket and which )
TH ‘in’ Lee  = Lethe
Answer : Lethe

7A …driver’s capture subsequently
Drivers = AA ( Automobile Association )
Subsequently = then
AA capture then  = Athena
Answer : Athena

10A Laos at first was taken over by China
Laos ‘at first ‘ refers to L
L is replaced ( taken over ) by CH ( China)
Answer : Chaos

13A Energy and mass halved after long time
Energy = Chi
Mass ‘halved’ = MA
‘After’ is juxtaposition indicator
This means that ‘long time’ which is ERA comes after Chi and ma
Answer : Chimaera

14A Young Conservatives turning 150 having no second thoughts
Young = Y
Conservatives = C
YC ‘turning’ = CY
150 = CL
No = O
Second thoughts = PT ( postscript )
Answer : Cyclops

1D Chosen by God
Chosen = Elect
God = Ra
By is juxtaposition  indicator
Answer : Electra

2D  Awfully queer as its back for inevitable song!
‘awfully’ is anagram indicator and applies to “queer as”
Its ‘back’ refers to answer being inverted
Inevitable song is “Que Sera Sera” ie whatever will be will be – an inevitability
“Que Sera” is anagram result of ‘queer as’  and ‘sera’ is the result of answer which after reversing gives us ARES
Answer : Ares

3D On the subject of snake-bites, she’s foremost
‘on the subject of’  = RE as in regarding
Snake = boa        boa bites ‘re’ giving us BO  RE A
She’s foremost = S
Answer : Boreas

5D Rhea laboured
‘laboured’ is anagram indicator
Answer : Hera

8D … for me to be hers
Apostrophe sign is the container indicator
Me goes into Hers
Answer : Hermes

9D Name I had taken before
Name = N
I had = I’D
‘taken’ is container indicator
Before = ere
Hence we have N   ERE   ID
Answer : Nereid

11D  Oprah’s last instead of her first comeback
‘last’ refers to Oprah Winfrey’s last letter which is Y
‘Instead’ means that we exchange her name’s first letter with Y
YPRAH comeback to HARPY
Answer : Harpy

12D  First off – Fate or Accident?
‘first off’ means take off the first letter of Fate which is F
What remains is ATE OR  and ‘accident’ is anagram indicator
Answer : Erato


Monday, November 21, 2011

It's Greek to me

Check your email to know whether you have qualified for the next round.
Only 8 now stand in the arena! Gird up your loins and take a trip to ---no, not Ancient Rome- but even earlier - to mythical Greece and do battle with the characters of Greek Mythology - They form the theme for the 7th crossword in the series.On guard!

"Drinks" Answers

Visual Key to Clue Analysis :
Definition : BOLD
Wordplay : Italics with keywords underlined as well
Link : Normal


Answer Explanation to “Drinks”
1A Twice or thrice, it's the same dance
Twice indicates that the answer is repeated.
Thrice indicates that the answer is mentioned 3 times.
And in both cases, result is the same dance.
 Such a dance is the cha-cha or cha-cha-cha
Answer : Cha

3A Drink to it and my game!
Drink = GIN
GIN to it means that GIN is added to answer
And together with MY will reveal a game
Answer : Rum

4A Its bacronym is Taxed Enough Already
Bacronym refers to an acronym to which the longer version is ascribed after the fact.
Initials of Taxed Enough Already = TEA
Answer : Tea

5A General – short, singular, special
‘short’ is end deletion indicator for General and so we get Genera
Genera in singular form is Genus
‘special’ is anagram indicator and refers to Genus
Answer : Negus

7A Beverage that’s timeless-very nearly!
Timeless in reference to beverage means we take ‘age’ out
So we are left with BEVER
‘nearly’ is deletion indicator and hence V is removed from BEVER
Answer : Beer

8A It rebelled alongside  English fictional heroine
‘rebelled’ refers to answer which is reversed
‘alongside’ is a juxtaposition indicator
English = E
With the above operations, we will get a fictional heroine, in this case EYRE ( from Jane Eyre )
Remove E from Eyre , we have Eyr which when reversed gives us rye
Answer : Rye

9A Change tack during tumult
‘change’ is anagram indicator
‘during’ is insertion indicator
Tumult = coil
So rearrange Tack in coil giving us CO CKTA  IL
Answer : Cocktail

12A No worries about taking leak outside
No worries = OK
OK about = KO ( as about is reverse indicator )
Leak = Pee
Pee ‘taken outside’ KO gives us PE KO E
Answer : Pekoe

13A  Second runner
Second = S
Runner = tout
Answer : Stout

14A Strange to be welcomed by Tory – or not ?
TORY – or ‘not’ means take out OR from Tory giving us TY
Strange = odd
Odd is 'welcomed' ( insertion indicator ) by TY
Answer : Toddy

1D Clear cut solution to primary problem
‘solution’ is anagram indicator and refers to ‘clear cut’
‘primary’ is head indicator and refers to “problem” giving us P
Answer : Claret Cup

2D Capone’s first and last
Capone’s first refers to his first name which is AL
‘last’ refers to the last letter of his name giving us E
Answer : Ale

3D On the contrary, one hour news includes one-liners heartily!
‘heartily’ is centre indicator and refers to central letters of LINERS giving us NE
One = I
Together , we have INE
One hour = IHR and ‘on the contrary’ it reverses to RHI
Hence we have RHI NEWS  ‘includes INE  giving us RHINE  W  INE  S
Answer : Rhine Wines

6D  Streep’s first - “Sophie’s Choice”
Sophie’s Choice within quotes can be understood as an example of her bet, where Sophie is ‘her’ and choice = bet
Streep’s first refers to the first letter of her name and gives us S
Together, we have S herbet
Answer : Sherbet

7D  10 star fashion icon
Star of 10 was Bo Derek – hence BO
Fashion icon = Calvin Klein – hence CK
Answer : Bock

10D Talk back to leader
Talk = YAK
Back is reverse indicator and refers to YAK which gives us KAY
Add TO in front as indicated by ‘leader’
Answer : Tokay

11D No choice really when you look it up
‘when the answer is seen from below , it looks like there is no choice
Choice indicates that the word “OR” is in there
Since we are talking about drinks , the only letter to fit outside OR is G
Grog  when reversed gives us G OR G ( so you take G or G – no choice, really )
Answer : Grog


Monday, November 14, 2011

Drinks all round

Congratulations to the 10 who had earlier qualified to continue to vie for the final crossword. All are on track after the club sandwich.
A few other who submitted have got correct answers and can continue with the remaining crosswords.
We have crossed halfway point! So to celebrate - lets have drinks all round!
The sixth crossword in the series has drinks as its, hic, theme.


"Clubs" Answers

Visual Key to Clue Analysis :
Definition : BOLD
Wordplay : Italics with keywords underlined as well
Link : Normal


Answer Explanation to “Bands”

2A Second blood group stained drapes
Second =  S
Blood group = B
Stained = grimy
 Grimy drapes SB ( drapes is containment indicator )
Answer : Grimsby

5A Left note about union overtime raise
Left = L     Note = N
Union = U     overtime = OT   overtime raise = TO ( raise is reverse indicator )
L N  is about ( around )  U  TO
Answer : Luton

6A By any means , it’s a sound choice between bum and creep
Bum = beg   creep = steal
Between beg and steal , we put in BORROW
Then we have BEG, BORROW or STEAL  ( ‘choice’ justifies presence of OR )
By any means = beg, borrow or steal
Homonym indicator tells us answer sounds like BORROW
Answer : Boro

7A River search interrupted
River = WYE   search = COMB
‘interrupted’ is insertion indicator 
We have WY  COMB  E
Answer : Wycombe

8A Early Valanginian tree made a comeback about old Norway
Early Valanginian = E  
Tree ‘made a comback’ = EERT
Then we have  V   EERT  about  giving us   E  V ERT
Old = O  Norway = N
Answer : Everton

9A Halter rustic put together
‘rustic’ is anangram indicator and applies to ‘halter’
Halter changes to HARTLE
Put together = POOL
Answer : Hartlepool

10A Check out in the end by “Rogers and Evans”
Check = CH   out is deletion indicator
So CH must go out of the answer
The end by refers to the last letter of by which is Y
‘In Y’ means that we insert Y
Then we get Rogers and Evans who are Roy Rogers and Dale Evans
That is ROYDALE 
Y is in ROYDALE , so original answer is ROCHDALE  ( CH is replaced by Y )
Answer : Rochdale

1D Who will listen to its longer version?
Listen is a homonym indicator and refers to WHO WILL
‘who will’ is the longer version of who’ll
Who’ll sounds like hull
Answer : Hull

3D Head you rub the wrong way
Head of you is Y
Y RUB the wrong way is BURY
Answer : Bury

4D  Shot Cech lost again back-pedalling
Shot is anagram indicator and applies to Cech lost
Cech lost becomes  COLCHEST
Again = re   
RE back-pedalling = ER
Answer : Colchester

6D Gun model exchanged for early automobile
Gun = BREN
Early automobile = MODEL T FORD
When model is exchanged for Bren, we have BREN T FORD
Answer : Brentford

7D Wasilla misses independent Palin – central to reform
 Independent = I
‘Wasilla’ misses I gives us  WASLLA
Palin ‘central’ gives us L
We have WASLLA  L  to be reformed ( anagram indicator )
Answer : Walsall


Monday, November 7, 2011

Club Sandwich

10 entries qualified this time around. All have been notified by e mail.
The "bands" crossword has been the toughest one so far.
So the 10 are to be congratulated for their persistence.
Others are requested to continue trying as they can still qualify for the lesser prize.
Even if you are not competing for the prize, do send in your entries.
Fifth in the series is a crossword which has English Football Clubs as its theme.


"Bands" Answers

Visual Key to Clue Analysis :
Definition : BOLD
Wordplay : Italics with keywords underlined as well
Link : Normal


Answer Explanation to “Bands”

1A Fifty back! Not bad in the upshot
Fifty = L
Not bad = so so
So so ‘back’ = OS OS
 Upshot = lob
‘in’ OS OS we have LOB giving us  OS LOB OS
Answer : Los Lobos

6A Auntie, not British but Australian
Auntie = BBC
Not British ( B ) but Australian ( A ) means take out B and replace with A
Answer : ABC

8A Look back in anger – oddly changing sides
Anger , oddly = AGR
Changing sides refers to R which is right ; when changed it becomes L
So we have AGL
Look = SEE ; SEE back = EES
Place AGL in EES giving us E AGL ES
Answer : Eagles

10A Basketry is such a job!
Basketry involves weaving of rushes
As such it a RUSH job
Answer : Rush

13A Moment of clarity!
Such a moment is an AHA moment
Answer : A-Ha

14A Way of life followed by guild
Way of life = culture
Guild = club
‘followed’ is a juxtaposition indicator
Answer : Culture Club

18A Zero to thousand?Its average!
Zero =O thousand = M
Its average is 500 = D
So we have OMD
Answer : OMD

19A Never very content
‘content’ is a hidden indicator
neVER VE ry
Answer : Verve

2D Lovebirds
Love = O
Birds = JAYS
Answer : O’Jays

3D  X-rated entertainment
X-rated = blue
Entertainment = cheer
Answer : Blue Cheer

4D Suspect holds the keys
Suspect = sus
Keys = GG
SUS holds GG = SU GG S
Answer : Suggs

5D Can outrank king and queen
 Ace can outrank king and queen
Answer : ACE

7D Freely elocute without limits
ELOCUTE without limits = LOCUT ( take out the letters at the limits )
LOCUT freely = CLOUT
Answer : Clout

9D Bachelor-clutching straws
Bachelor = B
STRAWS clutching B = STRAWBS
Answer : Strawbs

11D Fine a couple of learners
Fine = F
A couple of learners = A LL
Answer : Fall

12D In ’92, primarily
’92 is ninety two
Two ‘primarily’ = T
T is put in ninety ( XC )
Answer : XTC

15D “For all to see?”  “For most
For all to see = U ( classification of movie suitable for universal viewing )
For most = FO ( most is deletion indicator )
Answer : UFO

16D You too on radio
On radio is homonym indicator
You too  sounds like U2
Answer : U2

17D Carbon credit
Carbon = C
Credit = CR
Answer : CCR


Monday, October 31, 2011

Band Together

16 entries got all correct answers to 'writers' crossword.
The rest can still qualify for the lesser prize.So keep on trying the remaining crosswords.
4th in the series is  a crossword which has bands for its theme.


"Writers" Answers

Visual Key to Clue Analysis :
Definition : BOLD
Wordplay : Italics with keywords underlined as well
Link : Normal


Answer Explanation to “Writers”

1A Ape goes bananas- so into it
“goes bananas” is the anagram indicator
So  APE becomes AEP
“into” is an insertion indicator
 So goes into AEP
Answer : Aesop

4A Turn one guinea to thousands
Guinea = RG
One = I
Turn IRG = GRI
Thousands = MM
Answer : Grimm

6A Cheap energy that James will welcome
Cheap = Low
Energy = E
James will = James’ll
JAMESLL welcomes LOW E
Answer : James Lowell

8A Old king has eminence
Old king = COLE
Eminence = RIDGE
Answer : Coleridge

10A Out with a penny, in with a pound to make a killing!
Penny = P pound = L
KILLING is the result of taking out a penny (P) and putting in a pound (L)
KI(L) LING is derived from KI(P) LING
Answer : Kipling

11A Weak acid in soaps,say
Weak acid = HOCL
Soaps,say = SOPES
Answer : Sophocles

2D Prophet speaks, peeps later
Prophet = Samuel
‘Speaks’ is a homonym indicator. ‘later’ is a juxtaposition indicator
PEPYS sounds like “peeps”
Answer : Samuel Pepys

3D Pawn a king holds behind
Pawn = P  king = K
Behind = astern
Answer : Pasternak

5D Look! That’s what Mary’s about!
Look = LO
MARY about LO
Answer : Malory

6D  Jack Young possessed nothing to shout about- master recalled
Jack = J  Young = Y
JY possessed nothing ( O) gives us JOY
Shout = CRY
Master = ACE 
ACE recalled = ECA
CRY about ECA = C  ECA  RY
Answer : Joyce Cary

7D Expression of disgust follows another one around
Expression of disgust = UGH
UGH follows ( comes after ) another one
Another expression of disgust = AW
AW around = WA
Answer : Waugh

9D Hamlet, finally, was embraced by his countryman
 Hamlet , finally = T
His countryman = DANE
DANE embraces T
Answer : Dante