Star Tours

I appear to be in the mood for Star Battle derivatives.

I haven’t seen this kind of puzzles anywhere else, so I named it “Star Tour”.  As weird as Star Battle, in my opinion.

star tour 1


  • Place two stars in every row and column such that no two stars touch each other, even by corners.
  • The stars are numbered from 1 to 2n. Moving orthogonally from star to star in order must result in a loop that visits all stars. 2n loops back to 1.
  • A number along the edge of the grid tells the number of the star first seen on that row/column.
  • An arrow along the edge of the grid tells the direction where the next star in sequence is looking from the star first seen on that row/column.

star tour 2

The first one is rather easy, but the second one with the arrow clues is tricky.

Birthday Puzzle

It’s my 18th birthday! \o/

Today’s puzzle took some wrangling. I started with the regions spelling out ’18’ and spent a day trying to develop various puzzles around them (I tried to make another Tents & Trees, for example), but I didn’t really get anything done. The next day,  frustrated,  I was looking for puzzles to solve and stumbled upon Erich Friedmann’s Gap puzzles. They only added to my frustration, really, but I realized to try and make a puzzle using gap clues, and this came out in a few hours. I think I’ve seen Gap puzzles elsewhere, but can’t remember what they were called. Something something satellite something, or something.

Birthday Puzzle

Rules: A hybrid of Star Battle and Gap. Two stars in each row and column such that no two stars touch even by corners, two stars in each shaded region (the 1, the 8 and the two boxes inside the 8). Additionally, the clues outside the grid tell the gap between the two stars on that row/column. The crossed out cell is blank.

I’m not happy at all having to cross out a cell, but the rest of the puzzle turned out so nice that I let it pass. That, and desperation to get at least a puzzle done in time. It’s pretty easy, but I really like it.

In other news, I’ll be ordering this book as a gift to myself. Hopefully it’ll help improve the quality of my puzzles.

Crypto Skyscrapers

Here’s two Skyscrapers. Every letter stands for a different number. Ranges are 1-5 and 1-6 respectively.

Crypto Skyscrapers 1

Crypto Skyscrapers 2

If I hypothetically had to say something about their difficulty, I suppose they aren’t hard. Both have a spot where you have to pause and think, but other than that things flow smoothly. That seems to be common in my puzzles.