Thursday, January 24, 2013

A Tense Cryptic (Puzzle No. 3,269)

Hot and Trazom have worked an unlucky 13 theme answers into this week's grid.  If you're reasonably up on current affairs, this should make the puzzle even easier.

Link to puzzle

Degree of difficulty (by standards of this weekly puzzle): easy

Hozom's comment: The Hunt Was On, in which Hot and Trazom tell us about the MIT Mystery Hunt, an event held every January, going back to 1981.  This is not like a crossword convention: it's a huge production.  Solvers work in teams (some upwards of 100 members), so they can divide and conquer the hundred or more puzzles involved in getting to the ultimate solution: a location on campus where a special coin has been hidden.

The Hunt is not just word puzzles like crosswords and cryptograms, there are logic and number puzzles, pop culture references to figure out, and MIT in-jokes and trivia.  Kevin Wald has been on the winning team a couple of times, and for his reward, got tasked with contributing puzzles to the next year's Hunt.  If you are the type who likes metas in your cryptics, and for whom (as Hot and Trazom put it) "difficulty is no object," mark the weekend of January 17-20, 2014 on your calendar.  If you've never taken part before, the organizers can match you up with a team.

Solution and explanations posted here on Monday: use the comments for hint requests

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