A Puzzle by X-File
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The puzzle is available by clicking on the above grid.
As usual, the setter will be delighted to receive feedback from you, the solvers. I do ask that you remember that for most setters this is a new experience, so please only offer constructive criticism.
A review by Prolixic follows.
This was a much improved offering from X-Type. There were some niggles but far fewer that in the first crossword and a lot of the unnecessary complexity was removed. The commentometer reads as 4/29 or 13.9 %
1 Agree to wear eccentric watch (4,2)
LOOK ON – A two-letter word meaning to agree has a four-letter word for an eccentric person around it (to wear).
4 Having good prospects, being born with privilege (6)
BRIGHT – The abbreviation for born followed by five-letter word for a privilege.
8 Comes up with the cash, by any means necessary (7)
HATCHES – An anagram (by any means necessary) of THE CASH. I think that the “necessary” takes the “by any mean” outside the realms of being an anagram indicator. Even then by any means is more of a clue to the anagram indicator somehow.
9 Potentially 2 x 4 = 10 after booze and Tramadol kicking in (6)
BATTEN – The spelling of 10 after the initial letters (kicking in) of booze and Tramadol.
11 Hint of almond; a taste in your cookies (4)
DATA – The answer is hidden (hint of) in the third to fifth words of the clue. As cookies represents a definition by example, this should be indicated.
12 I had to go in two directions, left or right (4)
SIDE – The shortened form of I had in the abbreviations for south and east (two directions).
13 Plan to get me in control (5)
PILOT – A four-letter word for a plan includes (to get) a single letter that represents the setter (me).
15 Round two, Gods given second chances (4)
ODDS – The letter that is round followed by two letter that are the abbreviation for Deus (God) and the abbreviation for second.
16 Touch up look book and unedited piece of film (8)
AIRBRUSH – A three-letter word meaning look followed by the abbreviation for book and a four-letter word for an unedited piece of film.
18 Understood female in depth (8)
FATHOMED – The abbreviation for female followed by a phrase (2,4) meaning in and the abbreviation for depth.
20 They contain seeds of plants or tomato sauce (4)
POTS – The initial letters (seeds) of the final four words of the clue.
23 Enthusiastic opium supplier loses love, drug fills the void (5)
PEPPY – The plant from which opium is extracted with the O (love) removed and replaced by the abbreviation for ecstasy (drug).
24 Dry, oddly flat and even fibre (4)
FAIR – The odd letters of flat followed by the even letters of fibre. You need an indicator such as evenly rather than even.
25 Garden growing apples, not for eating! (4)
EDEN – Cryptic definition of the garden in the opening chapters of the book of Genesis.
27 Sordid affair behind some palm trees (6)
RAFFIA – An anagram (sordid) of affair. I think that behind, as in responsible for, works in this clue as the link word.
28 Not on purpose, son commits crime (7)
OFFENDS – A three-letter word meaning not on followed by a three-letter word for a purpose and the abbreviation for son.
29 Mastery of chops; getting last piece of pork at a price (6)
KARATE – The last letter of pork followed by the A from the clue and a four-letter word meaning price.
30 Wood-burners subject to Government taxes (6)
GRATES – The abbreviation for Government followed by a four-letter word meaning taxes. I am less enamoured by subject to as the link word. Here , “Government taxes word burners” would be better. Also having to clue rate and rates in successive clues is not ideal.
1 Plants dahlia with nasturtium after pruning? (6)
LIANAS – The answer is hidden (after pruning) in Dahlia Nasturtium. It is acceptable to have the hidden word split across two words with a conjunction between the them.
2 Garden growing greengages or greens (7)
ORCHARD – The or from the clue followed by a five-letter word word for a green vegetable.
3 Writes in Old English: “Me too, let me in!” (4,6)
OPEN SESAME – A four-letter word meaning writes in the abbreviation for Old English followed by a four-letter word meaning me to. I think that the “me too” would lead to “the ????”.
5 Work your initial into stone? (4)
RUBY – A three-letter word meaning work followed by the first letter (initial) of your. I think that initial on its own does not work. It needs to be initially for the cryptic reading.
6 Nervously tries on German uniform, becoming braver (7)
GUTSIER – An anagram (nervously) of TRIES after (on) the abbreviations for German and Uniform. In a down clue A on B means that A comes first.
7 See 14
10 British period of rain, waded in deep water (9)
EDWARDIAN – An anagram (in deep water) of RAIN WADED. I don’t think that in deep water works as an anagram indicator. It operates as a clue to the anagram indicator “in trouble”.
14/7 9 down the 8 and anticipate sausages, we’re told (7,3,3,5)
PREPAR FOR THE WORST – The clue relies on a homophone of Wurst (sausages) and a phase that might mean to anticipate that homophone.
17 Scam with fake elastic in protective equipment (4,4)
FACE MASK – An anagram (elastic) of SCAM FAKE.
19/21 1 the 4 12 as per both of these, when experiencing difficulties (4,3,3,4)
HOPE FOR THE BEST – An anagram, (when experiencing difficulties) of AS PER BOTH OF THESE.
22 Earth Goddess’ poems revealed in crystal balls? (6)
GEODES – A two-letter word for the Earth goddess followed by a four-letter word for poems.
26 It’s designed to be tempting and a bit naughty (4)
BAIT – An anagram (naughty) of A BIT.