Yesterday I received an email from Mike Reilly who invents puzzles. The latest one is called Number Maze and can be found via his website at a special Number Maze website. As Mike calls it, Number Maze is a Sudoku-like maze puzzle that uses the number pattern from a clock face, one through twelve.
Players must link these numbers in either direction clockwise or counter clockwise through the maze to solve the puzzle according to the rules.
1. Place any number, from 1 to 12, in each square of the maze.
2. Numbers must run in some sequence from 1 to 12 or 12 to 1, like on a clock face.
3. Each number’s ‘neighbor’ any square above or below, to left or to right, NOT separated by a maze wall (diagonals are not neighbors) must be one of the two numbers nearest on a clock. For instance, a 6 can only be next to a 7 or a 5. The number 12 can have either an 11 or a 1 as neighbors, and a 1 can only have a 12 or a 2 next to it.
4. In a 12×12 maze, you must use twelve of each of the numbers to complete the puzzle. In other words, you must us a total count of twelve ‘sets’ of 1 through 12. However, they do not have to be in twelve continuous ‘runs’ of 1 through 12.
5. In each maze, the grid size determines the solution requirements, as all mazes are multiples of twelve. For instance, in a 6×6 maze (36 squares), you would have to use three of each of the twelve numbers of 1 through 12 (12×3=36) to solve that puzzle. Again, they do not have to be in three continuous ‘runs of 1 through 12.
The rules are not as short as the rules for Slitherlink or Sudoku, but the are easy to use and also hints and a so called path strategy are available on the website. Free sample puzzles are available and if you like Number Maze you can also buy a Number Maze puzzle book. To be honest, Number Maze is not really my cup of tea, but maybe it is yours. Happy Puzzling