The art of solving Sudoku: an overview of basic strategies

Sudoku is a fascinating puzzle that requires logical thinking and patience. In this article I’ll share my experiences, solution strategies, and my participation in competitions. When I started my journey in the world of sudoku, I encountered many difficulties, but with years of practice I have mastered various techniques and learned how to solve even the most difficult puzzles efficiently.

Experience and participation in competitions

Participating in competitions is important to develop skills and experience. I have participated in national and international competitions where I have faced strong opponents and challenging puzzles. Participating in competitions allows you to assess your level, learn new strategies and get valuable advice from experienced players.

Basic ways to solve Sudoku

There are many strategies and approaches to solving Sudoku. I will describe some of the main ones that I use in my practice. Please note that I have my own methodology and names that you won’t find on other blogs.

The Sole Candidate Method

This method consists of finding a cell that has a single candidate for a particular digit. If only one possible number remains in the cell, it can be safely placed in that cell.

Elimination Method

In this method, we eliminate numbers that are already present in a row, column or block to determine the only possible values for empty cells.

Scanning Method

Using this method, we scan each row, column, and block to find cells where only one number can be set. This allows us to set the values and advance the puzzle.

Naked Pairs/Triples/Quads Method

This method is based on finding pairs, triples or fours of numbers that can only be in certain cells. By excluding other possible numbers from these cells, we can determine specific values.

Candidate Line Method

This method is based on selecting a row or column where one number is a candidate only for a particular cell in that row or column. This helps us to exclude other numbers and determine a specific value for that cell.

Splitting and Trial-and-Error method

When all of the above methods do not lead to a solution to the puzzle, we can apply the split-and-trial method. This means choosing a random cell and trying to set different possible values into it, and then continuing to solve the puzzle and seeing if it leads to contradictions. If contradictions occur, we roll back and try other values.

Challenges faced by the beginner

When I first started playing sudoku, I encountered several difficulties. Here are some of them:

Reading Information

Initially, I had difficulty understanding the rules of the game and realizing what information could be gleaned from the filled in cells. But with practice, I became more attentive to the details and learned how to use the available information effectively.

Difficult combinations

Some puzzles have complex combinations of numbers and filled cells that require advanced strategies to solve. This caused some difficulty in the beginning, but with experience I learned to recognize such combinations and apply them.

Limited amount of information

So far, there aren’t many quality forums and blogs on the internet that can teach the basics of solving sudoku quickly and well. When I started out, there weren’t any quality You-Tube channels on the subject. The good news is that they’re popping up more and more now.

Difficulty of the timing

Some sudoku can be very difficult and take a long time to solve. At the beginning of my practice, I sometimes found myself frustrated by long completion times. However, with practice and skill development, I have learned to use strategies effectively and have reduced the time required to solve difficult puzzles.

Competition Stress

Participating in competitions also presents its own challenges. The fast pace, limited time to solve, and intense competition can be stressful. It can be difficult for a novice player to focus and make decisions in a competitive environment. However, with experience and practice, I have learned how to manage stress and make quick and accurate decisions.

Guidance for beginners

Sudoku is a fascinating puzzle that requires logical thinking and patience. As a professional player, I shared my experience, participation in competitions and basic solving strategies. In the beginning, I encountered various challenges, but with years of practice and application of strategies, I became more skilled and efficient at solving complex puzzles.

Solving Sudoku can be not only entertaining, but also useful for developing mental skills such as concentration, logic, analytical thinking, and patience. Don’t be afraid to experiment, try different approaches, and learn from your mistakes.

It is important to note that Sudoku is not only an individual activity, but also an opportunity to interact with other players. Joining the sudoku community and participating in competitions or forums will allow you to exchange experiences, learn new strategies and find new friends with a common interest in this puzzle.

In conclusion, solving Sudoku is an exciting journey that requires constant practice and the pursuit of perfection. Keep at it and you will be able to overcome any difficulties and become a master at this exciting game. Good luck solving Sudoku and enjoy the process of finding logical solutions!

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