• Jacob Cohen

#90: For Starters, KenKen, Building Blocks

Hello, and welcome to Puzzles for Progress! Today on the show, three returning puzzle types that are nevertheless all making their 2022 debuts.


But before that: the school year is about to start, and I still have no real puzzle backlog. I'm planning to continue biweekly for the moment, but I made a prediction market about whether this will continue into 2023, which you can bet on!


And then there's Puzzles for Progress's very own Wordle, Puzzles fordle Progress, now only four letters.


For starters, a For Starters, a pun I made the first time too. That time, it was a bit of a headache getting a working grid, so I stayed away from the genre. But then I remembered: Crosshare autofill exists! So not only did I make a functional one, it's literally one with my name written on it. I don't know of an online interface for For Starters, sadly.

Printable PDF


Secondly, a KenKen designed to teach you a really cool logical technique that comes in handy sometimes. Totally coincidentally, along with the usual operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division, I also decided to throw in some exponentiation for today's puzzle!

Printable PDF / online with Penpa


And finally, Building Blocks is back! It's a popular and approachable puzzle type, so I wrote a program to generate 45 of them. Since I gave you guys so many, I wanted to give it a bit of time before going back to hand-crafting them. But handmade ones do have the advantage of revealing a real phrase at the end instead of two random words, and they also just have that human touch. So I went back to basics for this one. Again, no online.

Printable PDF


Or: all three puzzles on one page / the answers (plus some good commentary on the KenKen and Building Blocks!)


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