Page 1 of 1

What Is A Sudoku report. WPF April updates

PostPosted: Sun Apr 19, 2020 9:58 am
by Fred76
I hope everbody is fine during this weird times.

I would like to react to the first quarterly report published on the WPF website.

Tom Collyer sent in the final version of the report. The WPF sincerely thanks him for his efforts, and also everyone else who contributed to the formation of the report. Vladimir and Prasanna are reviewing past WSCs to see how they fit within the report and the WPF will then analyse the results and move forward on any potential actions, including but not limited to a potential breakdown of percentages of different categories provided by the report that a WSC should ideally target having.

First, I’m worried about the time that will be needed to review past WSCs. Tom did such reviews for 2019 competitions, and I fear that if you want to do the same for WSCs since 2006, it would be a big work to do. Not sure the people mentioned here to do this job showed enough devotion to do this kind of work in the past. Sorry if it’s an attack, I say it just as I think. Perhaps you could set a deadline, say for example end of July, so that if the work is not done or not completed at that time the board should go forward and take decisions anyway. I don’t think these reviews are crucial to take decisions. Board members should be informed about what past WSC (at least recent) were and the report doesn’t bring something revolutionary, the concepts of classic sudoku, sudoku variant and hybrid puzzles are well-known for ages.

Secondly, I don’t understand why the first step was not to publish the report. I’m privileged to have had access to this document despite I’m not a board member. Only few people have seen this report. I don’t understand what are the advantages of keeping it secret. Even if some decisions about how using it are postponed (please do it in 2020!), I think concerned people would like to have a look at it.

And now I would like to help you to move faster. Here is what will find Vladimir and Prasanna after having reviewed past WSCs. We can put past WSCs in basically three models :

1. WSCs containing classic sudoku and sudoku variants.
2. WSCs containing classic sudoku, sudoku variants and hybrid puzzles.
3. WSCs containing classic sudoku, sudoku variants, hybrid puzzles and non-sudoku puzzles.
4. I’m not sure of the existence of this model, but I still mentioned it: WSCs containing classic sudoku, sudoku variants and non-sudoku puzzles (not containing hybrid puzzles).

In the second category, if the percentage of hybrid puzzles is very low and if these puzzles don’t satisfy principle IX but satisfy principle VIII of the report, it is possible that intentions of organizers were to make a WSC of category one (containing classic sudoku and sudoku variants), but perhaps they had a bit different limit between variants and hybrid than what states the report.
Principle VIII
Additional constraints must be related to fundamental properties of the symbols, and must not introduce solving techniques necessary to solve the puzzle that are fundamentally equivalent to techniques that do not involve the placement of symbols. For example:
Path/loop drawing.
Placement of other objects, including symbols other than those contained in the set S or combinations/strings/words of symbols contained in the set S.
Region Division.
Physical manipulation of the grid.

Principle IX
Any additional constraints should be well-defined, stated simply and clearly and restricted in scope to one of:
Clearly marked additional decorations or regions in the grid.
Individual “Rows and Columns” or “Regions” subdivisions.
Locally related cells (e.g. adjacent, knight’s step).
Clearly marked individual cells.

Now about possible decisions of WPF board. In my opinion you have choice between 3 first categories as model for future WSCs. There are other topics such as role of classic sudoku to be discussed, but I just wanted to make an easy summary about what is the most important for future WSCs, thus I’ll not talk about other topics here (you can find my opinion in lot of other threads on this forum concerning other topics).

Comments about these 3 categories.

-First, I would say personaly that I always considered that the only valid model for a WSC is the 1rst one (or a WSC composed uniquely of classic sudokus, but I knew that this is not likely to be the case in the WSC I took part). I took part in some WSCs only because I thought WSC is about solving classic sudoku and sudoku variants. As lot of players/authors, I never understood for which reason I would have to solve polyomino puzzles hybrids or loop puzzles hybrids, or battleship hybrids in a competition called "World sudoku championship" *. Principle VIII of report is a no-go to cross the line for me, and if I knew such puzzles would appeared in some WSC, I would have considered the option to not take part in this kind of competition. I always considered it was not fair because I had no clue to know this would happen and was totally unprepared for this kind of fight against people having same kind of level as me in solving classic and variant sudoku (Recent private discussions highlighted the fact that some organizers presuppose that if you take part in WPF sudoku competitions, you should be prepared to solve any kind of WPC-style puzzle. I object this kind of conception with the greatest vigor).

-If you chose 3rd category, you have to rename the competition. It is totally ridiculous to name a competition containing non-sudoku puzzle «world sudoku championship». It looks like a false advertising.

-My sincere opinion is that if you chose the second category, you should rename the competition, too. I already explaned the reason : for people outside puzzle community, it is just impossible to figure out that a sudoku competition will contain loop puzzles, polyomino puzzles, dissection puzzles, etc. This kind of competition is only suitable for the puzzle community. I already discussed that in the forum previously, so I don’t want to go deeper in the argumentation here.

I understand that the responsibility of the actual board to take such crucial decisions for the future of sudoku competitions is big and not so easy to take. But I would like to reiterate that I would be happy if the board stop to go aimlessly around in circles, and treat the subject with the seriousness it deserves.

Take care of you and stay safe.


*Here I just would like to specify that the problem is not that people outside the puzzle community don't know about hybrid puzzles. I remember I created an hybrid puzzle masyu-sudoku in 2012, I was totally aware of the existence of such puzzle type. But I created this puzzle for a puzzle magazine (Akil Oyunlari), not for a sudoku competition. Just to clarify it has nothing to do with someone's puzzle type preferences.

Re: What Is A Sudoku report. WPF April updates

PostPosted: Wed Apr 22, 2020 6:19 am
by WPF
Hi Fred,

I hope you are well.

I want to clarify what is meant here because I feel there is a misinterpretation again. The plan is not for us to review every WSC till 2006. It is to review the 1-2 recent ones that had criticism vs 1-2 that didn't, and see the percentages of Classics, Variants and Hybrids/Non-Sudoku puzzles in each of them. The idea isn't to "define" these WSCs. It is to get an idea of the percentage breakdowns of a WSC with perceived issues vs a WSC which didn't have such discussions about it.

Also, you make a good point about publicizing the report and I should have. I thought I did, but I checked the mails and I missed doing so. It is now up on the same link as the Quarterly report and I will circulate it to the members too.