NTSPP – 038 (Comments) – Big Dave's Crossword Blog
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NTSPP – 038 (Comments)

Not the Saturday Prize Puzzle – 038

A Puzzle by Chaz

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Welcome to the thirty eighth in our series of weekly puzzles.

This week we have a puzzle from Chaz. There are themed answers and extra letters that must be removed from the wordplay, but don’t let that put you off as it is an excellent puzzle.

The puzzle by Chaz is available by clicking here:

NTSPP - 038

Feel free to leave comments about this puzzle.

17 comments on “NTSPP – 038 (Comments)

  1. Let this be a lesson…

    When faced with a standard 15×15 puzzle in which there are several themed entries without definition and special instructions for unravelling certain clues, it’s important to give the solver a reasonable chance. Chaz has done an excellent job in turning this daunting prospect into a pleasing solve by keeping the clues as straightforward as possible. At times the surface reading suffers but the setter has to accept that as a hazard.

    This was hugely enjoyable. Thanks to one give-away clue in the downs it didn’t take long to latch onto the theme but there was still plenty of fun to be had in locating the others. Similarly it wasn’t difficult to work out the piece of music, but it was very satisfying to weed out those extra letters.

    I think there were a couple of moments when I hesitated over whether or not the wordplay was right, but in the end there was nothing that caused trouble.

    To all who fear this themed puzzle might be impossible to crack, fear not. It may well be the most accessible puzzle of its type I’ve ever solved and I promise you’ll enjoy it.

    Great work Chaz.

  2. Before the penny dropped, it felt as though i was doing a three dimentional tic tac toe game. Thanks for a really excellent work out Chaz. Favourite clues 10a, 19d.

  3. I’ve just printed off the pdf version and the format seems to be a bit askew – also the introductory instructions for unravelling the clues are missing.

    As it’s a freebie, I shouldn’t really complain – but………

    1. ………. or you could print off the pdf like i did and handwrite in the missing notes. i think we need to remember how much time and effort is given freely to maintain this excellent blog and respect that.

      1. It’s also worth remembering the PDF is generated by the puzzle software, not the setter. Crossword Compiler is an excellent programme but the exporting of PDFs has always been a weak point.

      2. Tilly, No offence intended . I was just pointing out the problem. I did exactly the same as you and wrote the introductory instructions by hand.

          1. Far too difficult for me – but I will try again tomorrow! It doesn’t help not being able to read my own handwriting.

              1. Phew! I finally finished it at 2.00am this morning (though much help was needed). However, it was well worth the time and effort.

                Thanks to Chaz for a very entertaining, original and inventive puzzle.

  4. Lots of fun, thank you Chaz. I also learned something regarding 5d – at fist I thought it was an error, then I did some digging and found out that there has been a possible mutation of the word. I then realised that all along I thought that it had a T on the end to tie up with its German counterpart!.

    1. i am confused by your comments re 5d. I read it as ‘meal’ and changed one of the letters according to the binary system. Or have I gone completely off the loop this morning?

      1. That is quite right Tilly!
        What I was saying is that the correct answer is not one of the originals (potentially). There was a poem from about 1862 which had a slightly different word that appears to have changed over the years. My own problem is that I always thought that the correct name was the answer in the grid plus a T at the end. There is no error, it was just an observation!.

  5. – I had never heard of 8a but assumed I had the anagram right. Great to meet you yesterday Chaz and thanks for the entertaining puzzle.

  6. This was far too difficult for me. I wish I could be as clever as the physics teachers in my school!

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