The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

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The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Balin » Thu Jan 03, 2019 1:44 pm

As has been done for the past two years (2016's and 2017's), it's time to decide the best puzzle of 2018.

(NOTE: Most of these rules are copied straight from WiZ's write-up on the 2017 thread; I have edited and tweaked where necessary.)

THE FORMAT

- LTPFers are invited to submit the name and title (a hyperlink to the puzzle is useful and encouraged) of their favourite puzzles from this year.
- After the initial round of nominations (between three weeks and a month, due to nominating in January this time), any puzzle which was nominated more than once will be put in a final shortlist, and we will determine a consensus winner by vote.

THE GUIDELINES

- You must choose puzzles that were spoiled in 2018.
- You must nominate classical-style puzzles. Novelty or special puzzle types, such as neologisms, lateral adventures, and Christmas homages, are ineligible for this list.
- You may submit as many or as few of your favourites as you wish, although many of us have found 5 to be a useful number. If you have a "longlist", you may choose to submit this to the thread after the consensus vote stage (unless you want your less-favoured selections to be considered for round 2)
- You may rank the puzzles. This won't weight them any more heavily for consideration for round 2, but it's nice for forum users to see that their puzzle was someone's particular favourite
- You must provide the name of the puzzle and the host. You are not obliged to provide a hyperlink, but it is useful.
- You may choose multiple puzzles by the same host, or keep it to 1 per LTPFer if you'd prefer.
- You may not submit one of your own puzzles.
- You are not obligated to justify your choice or explain your criteria, but it can be nice for the hosts to see what they did especially well.

THE PRIZE

The satisfaction of winning.

What, you wanted more? There's not a lot we can offer you, really. Think of it as the Mastermind prize, minus the chair. I'm sure you have one already, anyway.

You are also entitled to have your puzzle title edited to say [PUZZEL OF THE YEAR 2018] after it.

Good luck! Have fun!
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Balin » Thu Jan 03, 2019 1:47 pm

Normally I start off the nominations, and I had enough sense over the year to add the puzzles I liked into a pre-shortlist to sort through at nomination time. However, I did add 54 puzzles into that list. Time to go through them.

(Also, can a mod with pinning power please pin this to the top of the page?)
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Balin » Thu Jan 03, 2019 8:02 pm

I guess I do get to start off the nominations.

1. invisiblemimsy - Face the Music

2. WiZ - One at a time, please

3. Solong - Following family tradition

4. android18 - Modern life is rubbish

5. WiZ - Ethanomics

6. peter365 - West of the Fields

7. WiZ - Circular Logic

8. gregoryuconn - Go Team, Go!
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Doriana » Thu Jan 03, 2019 8:16 pm

While I think WiZ's "One at a time, please" is definitely a great puzzle, I would argue it counts as a "novelty or special puzzle type" and should therefore be excluded from the nominations.

I wasn't here for most of the year and I don't really keep track of the puzzles posted, so I won't nominate any puzzles for 2018. Maybe next year. I'm just here to be an annoying stickler for the rules :lol:
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Balin » Thu Jan 03, 2019 9:17 pm

I considered that puzzle a classic puzzle (lateral statement/scenario & solution) with an author-imposed limitation, which is why I was okay with nominating it. Perhaps other voices could chime in. (But worry not; pedantry is not only accepted but encouraged here.)
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Earnest » Fri Jan 04, 2019 9:08 am

I vote for the One at a time series of WiZ ;)
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby peter365 » Fri Jan 04, 2019 2:31 pm

I've pinned this post so it should remain at the top. I'm working on my nominations . Totally fine with 'one a time' type puzzles being nominated.
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby WiZ » Sun Jan 06, 2019 8:14 pm

Thanks for the sticky, Peter.

I agree with Balin's reasoning; there are a number of puzzle types that are effectively classic format but with constraints on how to ask the questions (OAATP, Versponse, kittehspeak puzzles etc.). I would even argue that Scrunds would count as classic-style, given that there are at least two such puzzles in Paul&Des' later books.

I would also encourage Doriana and others to vote anyway - if participating in a puzzle was a prerequisite for voting for it, I'd essentially be disenfranchised :P. Have a look at the solved section, and see the puzzles for which you liked the question, the answer, and how the question led to the answer.

I'm working through my longlist now, and struggling more than usual. Balin's had a very good year.
Last edited by WiZ on Mon Jan 07, 2019 3:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby irishelk » Sun Jan 06, 2019 9:57 pm

Well, I did indeed go through the 2018 Solved Puzzles, and came up with a final list of 30. Yeah, we have a lot of strong contenders this year.

So I will limit myself to one finalist per user, and also remove my own puzzles from the running (though my narcissism objects stringently!). But just so we all know, if I was giving a user award based on the number of puzzles that made my final cut, WiZ wins by a mile.

IrishElk's List:

[Admin] What is orange and sounds like a parrot? (Is Admin allowed to win?)

[Balin] Now departing...

[Doriana] Rivers

[Enjay] Swings and roundabouts

[gregoryuconn] Till Death Do Us Part

[Hobbsicle] A Little Late

[invisiblemimsy] One Armed Bandits

[JenBurdoo] Aids to Scouting III: Ewe Win

[Peter365] Underwriting the Wrongs

[WiZ] The Fisherman
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby peter365 » Mon Jan 07, 2019 9:05 am

Here's my picks in no particular order, again I restricted this to one per member but Balin and WiZ could have had their own competition. We're very lucky to have them.

Wolfier - Just Doing Her Job NIce play on words which is right up my street

Balin - Up the Down Staircase I really liked this one, lateral and I love the movie

Enjay - Swings and Roundabouts This was a tricky one, a fiendishly good murder plan

JumpingJacks - Cooking Up a Storm I like the twist in this one

WiZ - What Katie Did I solved this so I am biased but it's a brilliant concept

Irish Elk - Moon I no longer have to spell things out in front of my kids but this made me smile

Invisiblemimsy - Equal Rights for Cyborgs Putting two fingers up to train companies what's not to like?
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby LemonCurry » Mon Jan 07, 2019 3:28 pm

I wasn't very active during 2018, but at least I have collected a small list of favourites over the year
(apologies for this list being WiZ-biased, but this man is clearly hosting most of my favourite puzzles :))


[WiZ] Dave the Fave

[WiZ] Rated PG: Contains gambling references

[Peter365] Underwriting the Wrongs

[WiZ] Ethanomics
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby WiZ » Mon Jan 07, 2019 11:43 pm

Ay, ay, ay, this was tough this year.

Even limiting it to one per forum user (which did a bit of an injustice to the second-and-third-best puzzles of some of you), I was only able to get the list down to 12 after a few hours.

Among those 12, however, I think there were six that were exceptional. So, here we go (in no particular order):

Peter - Tall Dark and Ransom

GregoryUconn - Til death do us part

InvisibleMimsy - Alright, Me Luvver?

Hobbsicle - A Little Late

IrishElk - Moon

Balin - Fuzz
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Hobbsicle » Wed Jan 09, 2019 4:09 am

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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby biograd » Wed Jan 09, 2019 7:38 am

Here are a bunch of contenders in my opinion. I've judged them based on being both real (or plausibly so), and also lateral. It's not too hard to create a very lateral solution out of a farfetched, implausible situation, but to find one that really exists deserves credit IMO.

[WiZ] Ard http://lateralpuzzles.com/puzzles/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12170&p=65012
Good one!

WiZ--I smart, You smart, we all smart for.... http://lateralpuzzles.com/puzzles/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12148
This one is very memorable for being one of the few puzzles where the solution could have been found simply by looking at the puzzle statement in the correct way. Some might call it a "non-traditional puzzle" because the critical part of the puzzle statement was in picture rather than text form, but most of the questions asked were proceeding from the assumption that it was a traditional puzzle (and ignoring the picture entirely), with the lateral leap being to look rather than think, so you could say it was one.

Balin-- Cat videos http://lateralpuzzles.com/puzzles/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12069
What a great coincidence!

Zanreo--Might want to sit down for this http://lateralpuzzles.com/puzzles/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12075
A picture of someone named Guy Standing... sitting. How often does one come across that??

Doriana--It's all in your head http://lateralpuzzles.com/puzzles/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12077
"I got hurt playing quidditch" should be the answer to more riddles.

WiZ--Adam and Yves http://lateralpuzzles.com/puzzles/viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12082
I like the "something he was attached to" bit.

WiZ--Nemesis viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12087
The idea of the "nemesis" being a word made this one interesting.

Wow, I totally didn't do this on purpose, but looking at the list now I see half of these are WiZ puzzles! He's on a roll this year!
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Balin » Wed Jan 09, 2019 7:46 pm

Don't worry - these threads always end up as WiZ Appreciation Lists.

And we've already smashed the previous years' nomination count, as 40 puzzles have been nominated. (Excluding Admin's; as established in previous years but mistakenly omitted in the rules, Admin is ineligible. But that mentioned puzzle is excellent.)
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby WiZ » Wed Jan 09, 2019 7:56 pm

That would bring the total number of puzzles in the anthology to a nice 100, but don't let this discourage you from further nominations!

Also, I really appreciate all the nominations. And having your feedback on what does and does not work when crafting puzzles and questions is actually very useful to me as a learning specialist/instructional designer!
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Enjay » Wed Jan 09, 2019 8:11 pm

Some of my favourites - I'm sure I could come up with more but this is from a quick skim through the archives!

Hobbsicle - Rhapsody in Darkness
You could argue this isn't a classic puzzle but I think the Q&A part was fairly classic, and I really liked the framing.

WiZ - Every Fourth-Born Child
and
Une chaussure a brillé gratuitement
WiZ - If anything the two nominations rule might hamper you as you have so many puzzles worth nominating!

Balin - At Sixes and Sevens
I'm generally pretty confident I will enjoy a WiZ or Balin puzzle - they start with just enough information to consue you, but the answers seem obvious in hindsight, as they should be!

gregoryuconn - Happy Birthday, Little Sis!
I liked this one as it involved some lateral thinking on the part of the people in the puzzle as well.
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby invisiblemimsy » Tue Jan 15, 2019 7:30 pm

Here are my faves..

#1 Admin - What is Orange and Sounds Like a Parrot? - viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12123
(Are Admin puzzles allowed? This one is my top favourite.)

#2 Balin - Groaner - viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12028

#3 Wiz - Circular Logic - viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12019

#4 wwhere - For Bridge and Window - viewtopic.php?f=6&t=11986
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Admin » Wed Jan 16, 2019 4:46 pm

Here are my favourite puzzles of 2018

[WiZ] This Title Contains Thirty-four Letters
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12249

[Solong] A charming story..
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12215

[WiZ] An Unreal Immobility in Space
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12217

[gregoryuconn] Till Death Do Us Part
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12198

[WiZ] Non-desk-ripped
viewtopic.php?f=6&t=12199

All very good.

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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby invisiblemimsy » Wed Jan 16, 2019 6:35 pm

Oh yes! I forgot Hobbsicle's Rhapsody in Darkness. Yay for that. viewtopic.php?f=6&t=11969
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Balin » Fri Feb 01, 2019 1:46 pm

As the calendar has flipped, it's time for the second and final round of voting.

Out of 51(!!!) nominations, 11 were nominated multiple times and are therefore the candidates for Puzzel of the Year 2018.

Four nominations:
[gregoryuconn] Till Death Do Us Part

Three nominations:
[IrishElk] Moon
[WiZ] Circular Logic

Two nominations:
[Doriana] Rivers
[Enjay] Swings and roundabouts
[Hobbsicle] A Little Late
[Hobbsicle] Rhapsody in Darkness
[peter365] Tall Dark and Ransom
[peter365] Underwriting the Wrongs
[WiZ] Ethanomics
[WiZ] One at a time, please

This round of voting will last two weeks. You only get one selection; choose wisely. (And have fun.)
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby gregoryuconn » Fri Feb 01, 2019 8:21 pm

Hmmm..... So many good choices.

I'll pick Underwriting the Wrongs.
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby WiZ » Fri Feb 01, 2019 9:29 pm

The Southern Hemisphere casts its vote for Til Death Do Us Part
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Doriana » Fri Feb 01, 2019 10:36 pm

Great puzzles to choose from, and it's an honour to be nominated! *adds "one-time LTPF Puzzle of the Year nominee" to resume*

I choose A little late.
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby GalFisk » Sat Feb 02, 2019 11:58 am

I like Ethanomics.
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby JenBurdoo » Sat Feb 02, 2019 6:26 pm

I vote for Circular Logic on the grounds that it's a library puzzle. :p
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Hobbsicle » Sun Feb 03, 2019 8:14 pm

I wonder if a modification of round 2 may be in order, since this contest seems to have outgrown the simple one vote. Perhaps each person could give their top 3, with 1, 2, or 3 points given depending on where the puzzle falls in their ranking. That would allow for more overlap and a final tally at the end. Right now we have five votes, and five different puzzles. I'm still ruminating on my choice, but I was considering a sixth puzzle that hasn't yet been named. This means that the winning vote will end up being someone who simply agrees with one of the other people. Just a thought, we can keep it this way for now if you all like. I'll be back with my vote in a few days.
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby WiZ » Sun Feb 03, 2019 11:29 pm

Hi, Hobbsicle.

When we first proposed a puzzle of the year contest, we did moot doing round 2 with an STV-style vote. We were fortunate with the last two years for having a clear first (and second), but, I agree, this year it's looking like the decision will rest in the hands of a single concurring voter.

Happy to trial your 1-2-3 system, with the weighting as you suggested. First preference (or only stated preference) gets 3 points, second (if stated) gets 2, third gets one.

I would then like to expand my selection to show my top 3:

1. Til Death do us part
2. A Little Late
3. Moon
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Doriana » Mon Feb 04, 2019 9:35 am

Good idea, Hobbsicle. I've also chosen my top three:

1. A little late
2. Circular Logic
3. Moon
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby peter365 » Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:19 am

I must admit I missed Gregory's excellent puzzle while doing my selections and had I spotted it I would have definitely nominated it so here's my top 3

1. Till Death Us do Part
2. Moon
3. Circular Logic.

I'm very humbled to have two puzzles nominated especially as I'm not very prolific these days. I'm particularly pleased that 'Tall Dark and Ransom' made the list as this puzzle has made me question a lot of things and not in a good way. I fully understand that that remark has 'you ok hun' quality to it but I will explain after all the voting is done. It's not in the running to win anyway which is probably a good thing.

Another wonderful collection of puzzles in 2018 , we should all be very proud.
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby LemonCurry » Mon Feb 04, 2019 2:06 pm

I'm fine with three votes for this really impressive collection of puzzles. My votes in order are:

1. Till Death Do Us Part
2. Ethanomics
3. Underwriting the Wrongs
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby gregoryuconn » Wed Feb 06, 2019 2:46 am

GIven the three system, here are my three in order

1. Underwriting the Wrongs
2. Circular Logic
3. One at a Time, Please
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Balin » Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:22 pm

I suppose I shouldn't be surprised that a certain Kiwi has monopolized my top three.

1. One at a time, please
2. Ethanomics
3. Circular Logic

(Thanks for the new voting idea, Hobbs!)
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby Hobbsicle » Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:43 am

I'll go with...

1. Moon
2. Circular Logic
3. Till Death Do Us Part
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year Thread

Postby invisiblemimsy » Wed Feb 13, 2019 1:25 pm

1. Underwriting the Wrongs - this one is delightful!
2. Rhapsody in Darkness
3. Circular Logic
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year WINNER IS...

Postby Balin » Mon Feb 18, 2019 11:47 am

Voting is closed, and it is time to announce the winner.

The 2018 Puzzel of the Year, decided by a single point, is Till Death Do Us Part by gregoryuconn. Congratulations, and well done everyone!

Voting tally
Till Death Do Us Part - 10
Circular Logic - 9
Moon - 7
Underwriting the Wrongs - 7
A Little Late - 5
Ethanomics - 4
One at a time, please - 4
Rhapsody in Darkness - 2
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year WINNER IS...

Postby gregoryuconn » Mon Feb 18, 2019 4:02 pm

Wow.... I actually won. Thanks to everyone who voted for me, this feels good!
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year WINNER IS...

Postby GalFisk » Mon Feb 18, 2019 7:28 pm

Congrats!
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year WINNER IS...

Postby WiZ » Mon Feb 18, 2019 8:31 pm

Congratulations, GregoryUConn; well deserved.

Also, Peter, very keen to hear this explanation of yours.
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year WINNER IS...

Postby Doriana » Tue Feb 19, 2019 10:06 am

Congratulations, Gregory!
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year WINNER IS...

Postby Earnest » Tue Feb 19, 2019 4:41 pm

Congrats!!!!!!
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year WINNER IS...

Postby peter365 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 9:10 am

Congratulations Gregory on a well deserved win.

While not wanting to overshadow Greg's achievement I do owe an explanation as to why my 'Tall Dark and Ransom' puzzle haunts me so here goes with advance apologies as this is not a happy story.

That puzzle revolved around a request, found on a note written long ago, to 'cure our Sean of his nervous disorder'.

On the very same day that I posted the spoiler, the 5th July we received the awful news that my uncle who was also my Godfather had taken his own life. He was ovecome with grief following the death of his daughter in a motorcycle accident the year before and obviously couldn't take the strain of her loss any more. He was a big strong man in the true Irish rural tradition and had worked the land on the family farm from his youth right up until his death. His passing left a huge hole in my mother's clan and in the community where he worked and lived.

The fact that his name was Sean made for a coincidence that struck me like a tidal wave and forced me to consider (wrongly now I accept) whether or not I'd tempted fate by running the puzzle.

I reconcile this awful event by reminding myself that the outcome was Sean's own choice and while I'm not a religious man I like to think that he and his daughter are together in spirit somewhere.

That's it.
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year WINNER IS...

Postby Hobbsicle » Tue Feb 26, 2019 2:43 am

Sorry to hear about your loss, and the unfortunate coincidences surrounding the puzzle. I certainly like the puzzle and nominated it myself, and I'm sure your uncle wouldn't want you to harbor any guilt for his decision.
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year WINNER IS...

Postby WiZ » Tue Feb 26, 2019 3:24 am

Sorry for your loss, Peter.

Coincidences can certainly be spooky, but I could offer this as consolation: If we mere mortals had the power to end a life by naming a character, I'm sure someone would have harnessed this power by now. Or thrown J. K Rowling in prison, at least.

Also, the name 'Sean' was either the #1 or #2 most popular name in Ireland for much of recent history (with almost 13,000 new Seans appearing between 1995 and 2010 alone), so it's no great improbability that you would choose that name for a protagonist, or that any given obituary would be for a Sean.
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year WINNER IS...

Postby peter365 » Thu Feb 28, 2019 9:33 am

Thanks guys , I actually didn't pick the name of the protagonist. The note was real and the person named was actually called Sean.

Life can be very strange sometimes.
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Re: The Official 2018 Puzzel of the Year WINNER IS...

Postby Balin » Mon Mar 04, 2019 7:12 pm

With the voting finalized, this thread is complete. Nine puzzles (listed below) will be added to the nominees for an even 60 to be added to the document this year.

Thanks again.

The additional nine puzzles:
-[Enjay] Tick tock
-[Galfisk] Salt and a battery
-[Yerushalmi] Just One Letter
-[WiZ] To marry a nag
-[IrishElk] The Lost Boys
-[peter365] Numbering the Monkeys
-[WiZ] No, he does not own a horse
-[Doriana]’s sandwich incident
-[dukhsan] Digamma
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