Puzzle 261: Freestyle 226. Take me out to the ballgame…

Last Friday’s freestyle solution

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Word count: 72
Mean word length: 5.25

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I went into this construction with the express purpose of creating a grid without 3-letter words. Truth be told, it only ended up creating a LOT of 4-letter words, but at least there were no 3s. For fear of sounding not so humble, I admit that it wasn’t too difficult to construct… it isn’t too hard, honestly, to find pairs of 9s that stack well. The only minor challenge was linking the central staggered stack with the two nine-letter stacks, but even that didn’t go with much difficulty.

As always, I’d like to know, folks… comment is welcome! Come say hello! What did you like? What could I do better?

Thanks as always to the test solvers for their input.

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Puzzle 260: Freestyle 225. It’s close enough…

Last Tuesday’s freestyle solution

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Word count: 72
Mean word length: 5.33

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I’m starting to like this “interlocking long answers” format. The two 12-letter acrosses were the seeds, and I found some interesting entries for 5-Down and 24-Down to form the interlock. What I didn’t expect was that I had to intersect each of those long acrosses with long stacked pairs of down answers, too. Since I had to keep the block configuration the way it was in the middle to make the aforementioned interlock work, I had to take out a pair of black squares to turn one 10-letter entry each in the upper left and lower right into a pair in each of those corners.

As always, I’d like to know, folks… comment is welcome! Come say hello! What did you like? What could I do better?

Thanks as always to the test solvers for their input.

As always, share this link! Pass it around! New puzzle on Friday!

Puzzle 259: Freestyle 224. Looks like big trouble!

Last Friday’s freestyle solution

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Word count: 72
Mean word length: 5.33

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If you can believe it, 1-Across was not the seed for this grid — the two entries below them, as a stack, were. 1-Across just happened to work out, one of the happier cruciverbal accidents I’ve experienced.

I had to do a complete wipe and revamp of a section thanks to the sharp eyes of the test-solvers. It was a dupe, and I was a dope. It was 12-Down, so I had to tear out that entry, everything to its left, in that section, and all of the center right section to revamp it.

As always, I’d like to know, folks… comment is welcome! Come say hello! What did you like? What could I do better?

Thanks as always to the test solvers for their input.

As always, share this link! Pass it around! New puzzle on Tuesday!

Puzzle 258: Freestyle 223. Giving something back.

Last Tuesday’s freestyle solution

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Word count: 72
Mean word length: 5.36

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Inspiration for a grid or an entry can strike pretty much anywhere. This one came when I was vacuuming! (This isn’t giving anything away, so don’t worry.) Yes, 17-Across was the seed entry for the grid. Well, that and 1-Across combined… I was happy to find something good that fit in between those two entries.

I originally had a black square in the dead center of the grid, but the construction of the grid evolved such that there were four 3’s running straight down the center of the grid. I don’t like having four 3’s across or down the center of the grid, so out went that black square and in went a pair of squares elsewhere in the grid to compensate… and thus the grid spanner emerged.

As always, I’d like to know, folks… comment is welcome! Come say hello! What did you like? What could I do better?

Thanks as always to the test solvers for their input.

As always, share this link! Pass it around! New puzzle on Friday!

 

Puzzle 257: Freestyle 222. Let’s make it official.

Last Friday’s freestyle solution

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Word count: 72
Mean word length: 5.28

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I don’t usually construct grids with “pockets” in them like this, but this one has them in all four sections. The reason I don’t is because, with this style of grid, there’s more of a chance for a solver to get stuck and spin their wheels in a section if there’s only one way out of it. I will say, though, that it is a bit easier to construct that way.

As always, I’d like to know, folks… comment is welcome! Come say hello! What did you like? What could I do better?

Thanks as always to the test solvers for their input.

As always, share this link! Pass it around! New puzzle on Tuesday!

Puzzle 256: Freestyle 221. Don’t go any further!

Last Tuesday’s freestyle solution

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Get the PUZ here!

Word count: 70
Mean word length: 5.31

Have something you wanna say? Got a question? Want to do a guest freestyle? Want to collaborate on a freestyle? Want to just say hello? Hit me up by email!

A very unusual structure for me — it looks like a normal themed grid structure minus a couple of pairs of blocks, upon first glance. The tricky part was twofold — first, to get the interlock of the six 11+-long entries, and, second, to get the vertical stacks in the middle of the top and bottom to intersect with the stacked horizontal pairs of said long answers. The top center was more luck than anything in that it just happened to work out on my first stab at it; the bottom was a little more work, but I got it to work to my liking without having to change my initial framework of long answers.

As always, I’d like to know, folks… comment is welcome! Come say hello! What did you like? What could I do better?

Thanks as always to the test solvers for their input.

As always, share this link! Pass it around! New puzzle on Friday!

Puzzle 255: Freestyle 220. It’s something to shoot for.

Last Friday’s freestyle solution

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Get the PUZ here!

Word count: 72
Mean word length: 5.42

Have something you wanna say? Got a question? Want to do a guest freestyle? Want to collaborate on a freestyle? Want to just say hello? Hit me up by email!

The benefits of test solving strike again. Two separate people commented on the iffiness of an entry. I thought it was okay as Internet slang, but that’s why I have test solvers — to provide a new perspective. So I took it out. I had to change and reclue seven entries, which isn’t too bad considering it was a five-letter entry that was removed (it was at 27-Across), but I feel a little better about that section now that it’s gone.

As always, I’d like to know, folks… comment is welcome! Come say hello! What did you like? What could I do better?

Thanks as always to the test solvers for their input.

As always, share this link! Pass it around! New puzzle on Tuesday!