April 15, 2010 – Big Dave's Crossword Blog

DT 26211

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26211

A full review by Big Dave

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ***

This puzzle received a mixed reception. My own view is that, although there is room for improvement, the Saturday puzzles have come a long way in the last twelve months.

My advice to all setters, would be as follows: if the first draft of a new puzzle contains phrases like 9a and 14a, words that are in nobody’s vocabulary, boys or girls names, places other than major cities or countries, scrap the puzzle and start again!

Continue reading “DT 26211”

Toughie 337

Toughie No 337 by Messinae

The Straights of Messinae

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty *** Enjoyment ****

A nicely constructed puzzle that contains one or two tricky little challenges that meant I probably spent a little more time on it than normal. The clues are beautifully constructed and have good surface readings. Thanks to Messinae for an enjoyable solving session.

As usual, the solutions are hidden within the squiggly brackets, and if you want to know the answers, highlight the space between the squiggles with your mouse to reveal all. Don’t forget that you can have your say after the blog as well, and you can rate the puzzle using the star system.

Off we go, before we face the end of the world from the Icelandic volcano. If the internet hasn’t been gummed up with volcanic detritus, I’ll see you soon.

Continue reading “Toughie 337”

DT 26215

Daily Telegraph Cryptic No 26215

Hints and tips by Big Dave

+ – + – + – + – + – + – + – +

BD Rating – Difficulty ** Enjoyment *

On mystery Thursday we have another mediocre puzzle that will probably please many of you. I counted, and have indicated, fourteen clues where all or part of the wordplay involve anagrams, and two hidden words. Once upon a time the Telegraph style guide used to recommend “a maximum of six anagrams per puzzle and only one hidden”.

I would like to repeat, for those who don’t seem to have bothered to read the disclaimer, that any statement, opinion, or view in relation to any person or organisation expressed in this post is purely personal  to Big Dave.

You are welcome to disagree with anything I have written and friendly debate is strongly encouraged.

Please leave a comment telling us what you thought. You can also add your assessment by selecting from one to five stars at the bottom of the post.
Continue reading “DT 26215”