Author Archives: bufo

Toughie 1280

Toughie No 1280 by MynoT

Hints and tips by Bufo

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BD Rating – Difficulty *Enjoyment **

After a three-week break I was looking forward to resuming work at the Toughie gridface but it was not to be. This was yet another puzzle that totally failed to live up to its Toughie billing and I was able to complete it without breaking sweat. Even the blogging phase was easier than usual with only 26 answers to explain. I haven’t spotted a MynoT theme. Is there one? [Perhaps you didn't have TIME to look for one! BD]

Toughie 1268

Toughie No 1268 by proXimal

Not so ‘Phew!’

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

‘Phew!’ was my reaction to the first proXimal puzzle that I blogged and so I started this one with some trepidation. However the bottom half went in fairly quickly with the help of the two long anagrams. The top half took longer but even so I would have probably only have given the puzzle 3* for difficulty had I not spent a long time trying to suss out how the clue for 25 across worked.

Toughie 1264

Toughie No 1264 by Giovanni

Hints and tips by Bufo

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

A slow start but once I’d got started the answers went in very quickly until I was left with the final few. The double unchecked letters were a factor in the final slow-down.

Toughie 1260

Toughie No 1260 by Shamus

Hints and tips by Bufo

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

I was sorry to miss last week’s Micawber puzzle especially as this week’s puzzle is a more typical Thursday puzzle. There was nothing particularly difficult in it although, as often happens with Shamus puzzles, the last couple of bits of wordplay needed a little thought

Toughie 1252

Toughie No 1252 by Elkamere

Not 9 across – it didn’t take an 23 across

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

Elkamere must be mellowing with age because his puzzles these days seem nowhere near as difficult as some of his early puzzles were. I don’t mind that because this was a very enjoyable puzzle. The clue for 5 down is provided by 8 other answers. I guessed the answer to 5 down from some of the checking letters and this enabled me to work out the two other answers used in the clue that I hadn’t yet got.

Toughie 1248

Toughie No 1248 by MynoT

Hints and tips by Bufo

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BD Rating – Difficulty **Enjoyment ***

I found this to be very gentle fare. I suffered no hold-ups and very little thought was needed to unravel the wordplay

Toughie 1244

Toughie No 1244 by Giovanni

Hints and tips by Bufo

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

I found this trickier than most Giovanni puzzles probably because there were several answers that I was not familiar with. There were also a couple of bits of wordplay that needed more thought than Giovanni wordplay usually needs.

Toughie 1236

Toughie No 1236 by Notabilis

A Rare Thursday Treat

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

It was very pleasing to discover that Notabilis was making a rare Thursday appearance. I think that it’s only the fourth Notabilis puzzle that I ever have had to blog and it’s the first for 19 months. It didn’t disappoint me. I was surprised when I’d finished the puzzle to discover that it had taken me so long. I thought it was being an average 3* difficulty puzzle but the time it took me definitely took it into 4* territory. I must have been enjoying it not to notice the time passing by. This puzzle showed that it is possible to set a genuine Toughie without resorting to obscure answers or complex wordplay.

Toughie 1232

Toughie No 1232 by Osmosis

Hints and tips by Bufo

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

This is the first Osmosis puzzle that I’ve had to blog in a long time and I enjoyed it. I made steady progress with only the SW corner causing a temporary halt.

Toughie 1224

Toughie No 1224 by Kcit

Hints and tips by Bufo

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BD Rating – Difficulty ***Enjoyment ***

This took me rather longer than Kcit’s puzzles usually do though I’m not sure why.