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WSC report
   WSC and WPC 2017 -> General Discussion about WSC and WPC 201714 posts • Page 1 of 1 • 1
Subject: Re: WSC report @ 2018-05-01 3:03 AM (#24839 - in reply to #24838) (#24839) Top

Diagonal Vision Author

Posts: 337
Location: Switzerland
Prasanna, I don't know if it's about my level in english, but I have the impression you totally misunderstood my message.

prasanna16391 - I think whatever word you use, it seems to just be a random way to bolster your opinion than to make a solid added point - I have received positive feedback on the entire WSC, including round 7, from 'several' players too. Whose several/numerous is stronger? What's the solution for this? Do we just compare numbers and say majority wins? It all seems like a less than useful tangent to me.

Again, I say I'm sorry for the bad choice of word "numerous", I didn't make a poll nearby all WSC players, it's not my task. I was speaking about round 4, not round 7, and please read carefully, I didn't say that they didn't like the round or the puzzle, I only said they qualified the puzzle as non-sudoku type.
Now if you want to take care about feedback only if they are positive or expressed by a majority of players, that's not my problem.

prasanna16391 - Star Battle has untouch rules for 1 or 2 numbers with each other - you have solved Sudokus with untouch rules for all 9 numbers with themselves, and found it fine. How big a leap is it really?

The question about star battle is not about untouch rules, it is about repeating symbols. No, it's not a big leap, but if you search for big leaps to find what the limits of sudoku are, I don't know which WPC puzzle type will not be considered as sudoku.

prasanna16391 - I don't really see the merit in closing one's mind completely to new logic just because the name has a Puzzle type in it.

????? I said exactly the opposite: I'm open to (almost) all kind of logic if the nature of the puzzle is a sudoku (the name has no kind of importance for me, neither the fact that this logic comes or not from another puzzle type). I was speaking about technique only because I don't think all puzzle types in this round are sudoku, thus there are potentially a lot of techniques and tricks to learn before the competition. I can't know that there is no new technique to learn before having studied it and without being experienced in these kinds of puzzles. If I understand well, you were advocating that a puzzle type can be a puzzle or a sudoku depending which kind of logic is used to solve it. Keep quiet and don't argue everything and its contrary...

prasanna16391 - If in hindsight, you had to use techniques beyond your capability as a Sudoku solver, and you reached a roadblock because of it, it is definitely worth inspecting and potentially criticizing.

Again, are you advocating we should be open to new logic or not? You contradict what you just said before...
I don't understand what you mean by capability of a sudoku solver. I'm very capable, thank you. You're saying it could potentially be a problem if a player is not able to solve a puzzle because he has not enough capability to solve it? Do you think sudoku players are so poor that they are not capable to solve puzzles? Thanks for the tip of arrogance. Competition is about capability to solve puzzles, if these puzzles are sudoku, then it is a sudoku competition, who is more capable and fast will earn more points. This is not an issue. The issue is which puzzle types are sudoku and which are not.

prasanna16391 - This isn't antithetical as a fact. Its antithetical IF the primary motive was to promote Sudoku.

Yes, promote sudoku as a primary motive is what I expect for a federation that claims organizing World Sudoku Championship. Is it too much demanding? I don't understand in what would it be a problem to promote wider range of puzzles AND sudoku. I understand less and less why the WPF want to organize a World Sudoku Championship.

prasanna16391 - it is also important to conduct a fair Sudoku competition in the process.

What do you mean by "fair sudoku competition"?

prasanna16391 -But its all perspective Fred. I've seen that you are generally on board with innovation within "your" definition of what a Sudoku variant can be. Here itself you have given round 6 as an example. But then if I go further, I have seen instances of players who say there should be no variations at all, or that Math variants with extra calculations shouldn't be allowed, or that concept based variants shouldn't be allowed, and so on.

All these questions are of very different nature. The question: what kind of sudokus are appropriate or do we want in competition? is also an interesting question and I participated in discussions on this subject in the past. The question: What types of puzzles are sudoku? precede these question. If a puzzle is not a sudoku, how could it be an appropriate sudoku?

prasanna16391 - I think the best thing to do, for any competition, is to outline before it what will and won't appear, and then let participants decide if that is alright with them.

That's exactly what doesn't make the WPF with sudoku competitions.

prasanna16391 - As Amit said, we expressed our willingness to experiment many months before the WSC. We also put forward certain percentages and other parameters of our targets.

vopani - 2017-01-30 11:55 AM
Also to be clear as authors we have decided to not include any hybrid variant which does not naturally fit into a sudoku solving experience. This mean we have avoided hybrids which do not relate to any other sudoku type.

Am I the only who think there is a contradiction between what you announced and round 7?

prasanna16391 - Now your problem with round 7 seems to be none of these things but just that the rules presented hinted at a challenge beyond a Sudoku solver's capabilities.

As I answered before, it has nothing to do with someone's capability, it's about puzzle type. If you think all the puzzle types of round 7 are sudoku, then the logidoku round would have been fine in WSC, too.


Edited by Fred76 2018-05-01 3:05 AM
Subject: Re: WSC report @ 2018-05-01 4:00 AM (#24840 - in reply to #24820) (#24840) Top

2021 World Sudoku+Puzzle Convention Organizer

Posts: 1798
Location: India
The question: What types of puzzles are sudoku?

I think we are mostly just misinterpreting each other, so I'll focus on this part - this is actually exactly what I wanted to put out there and I am sorry I wasn't clear. I run workshops and meets fairly regularly and interact with a wide range of Sudoku solvers. The person I mentioned in the example genuinely believed Diagonal, Extra Region, etc. are NOT Sudoku. I have met many solvers who do not understand how what we call 'basic' variants are Sudoku. And then on the other side I have even met solvers who think 'ANY' grid based logic puzzle which has a set of numbers is a Sudoku. Some of these may seem wrong to you and me, and some of them are probably wrong factually too - but that's how perspectives and opinions work.

In your entire post and replies you keep saying something is a Sudoku and something is a puzzle, and all the implications surrounding it. But all of it is your personal definition. So even when we do give a definition, it will still have grey areas. I just explained how some types relate, in my opinion - Star Battle to Untouch, Word Search to Shape, and I'd add Japanese Sums to Frame too. Now you can disagree that they do, but it isn't factually a contradiction - it just is according to you. According to me it isn't. What I can tell you is we did deliberate on these points, considered them, and did our best to uphold our own definitions - it is one of the big reasons why Hamle Sudoku appeared in the WSC Rejects contest rather than Round 7.

And regarding my point about 'several' and 'numerous' and whatever else - my point wasn't that we wouldn't take your or other negative feedback seriously - it was the opposite. We will take it seriously even if you let it stand on its own, and there isn't anything useful in saying random quantifiers of other players just to make the point 'look' stronger without providing actual stats.

And when I said capabilities, it wasn't about you being capable or XYZ being capable. Its got nothing to do with anyone actually. I could be very capable at both Sudokus and Puzzles but shouldn't need my puzzle solving capabilities extensively in a Sudoku competition. That's all I meant and I thought that's what you were going for too, because "X is a puzzle" and "X is a Sudoku" is just too subjective a discussion anyway. I apologize as that wasn't clear but I meant no arrogance or implication that you (or anyone else) aren't capable.
Subject: Re: WSC report @ 2018-05-01 4:42 AM (#24841 - in reply to #24840) (#24841) Top

Diagonal Vision Author

Posts: 337
Location: Switzerland
I get the point about personal definition and I agree. I didn't write my definition properly, but I think since 2015 I explained it quite clearly.
That's what I expect from WPF, too. Discussion is not possible if only one part expose his definition and it has been so hard for me to understand the point of view of my opponents that the discussions often turned to ridiculous arguments.
What kicks my ass so often is: I'm quite experienced sudoku player, I played on-site competitions in 5 foreign countries, and almost never found a puzzle that I would qualify as non-sudoku, and when it was the case it was a so tiny part of the competition that it did never affect me. These competitions were organized by a WPF-member, exactly like WSC. I tested a lot of other competitions, including Indian Sudoku Championships. Again, I don't remember this issue being present, or again never at the level of what I see in WSC. I had also the chance to test ASC puzzles last year: completely in accordance to my definition of sudoku. This year I had a quick look at the ASC IB for sake of curiosity, I think only one puzzle was a bit off-rail, but no more. The sudoku Mahabharat you organize on this website is completely ok from my point of view. Why this way to do it, which seems to be adopted by a large majority of WPF members for national international and qualifying tournaments, is suddenly completely different at WSC? Authors are quite among the same group, players are quite the same... Why 2 different things?


Edited by Fred76 2018-05-01 4:47 AM
Subject: Re: WSC report @ 2018-05-02 2:05 PM (#24854 - in reply to #24841) (#24854) Top

Posts: 69
Location: Germany
Some reasons may be:
* You are exaggerating and somehow feel 10 out of 200 puzzles is worse than 1 in 20.
* A long WSC gives better opportunities for grouping the puzzles, so the "puzzly" sudokus tend to concentrate in a few rounds.
* Unless "normal" tournaments of which there are plenty nowadays, the opportunity to contribute to a WSC is rare. Each author team wants to give their best and also wants to explore some new roads. Since it is very hard to invent new basic variants, these novelities tend to be more "puzzly".
(* You made a bit of a habit of ranting about WPF and WSC for whatever reason.)
Subject: Re: WSC report @ 2018-05-04 10:37 PM (#24863 - in reply to #24840) (#24863) Top

Diagonal Vision Author

Posts: 337
Location: Switzerland
prasanna16391 - I could be very capable at both Sudokus and Puzzles but shouldn't need my puzzle solving capabilities extensively in a Sudoku competition. That's all I meant and I thought that's what you were going for too, because "X is a puzzle" and "X is a Sudoku" is just too subjective a discussion anyway.

I'm sorry but I could not disagree more with all your assertions. When I try to transpose what you say to other puzzle types, It become evident that lot of things are intellectually and hystorically inconsistent. I'll try to explain clearly these inconsistencies.

  • Saying "X is a nurikabe", "X is a Masyu", "X is a magnets": I don't think it is much subjective, why should it be subjective with sudoku???
  • If I take the round 3 of WPC 2017 and remove the puzzle names, I don't think lot of players will have problems to find what puzzle types they are, and I don't think you need to solve each puzzle before saying what puzzle type they are. It means it doesn't depend on which kind of skills you used so solve it.
  • If it is so much subjective for sudoku, it should be the same for other puzzle types, too. It means you would not have any problem to find masyus and slitherlinks that are not loop puzzles, shikakus that are not region division puzzles, nurikabe that are not shading puzzles. Please show me some examples !
  • I think the first thing we can say about sudoku is that it is a symbol placement puzzle. I'm quite sure this is why some people classified the round 4 of WSC as non-sudoku.
  • The method you use to classify puzzles into puzzle types, which consist of a) finding some relations between a puzzle X and a sudoku variant is sufficiant to say the puzzle X is a sudoku and b) experienced sudoku solvers have skills to solve a puzzle X, then puzzle X is a sudoku.
    This method is much more subjective than speaking about properties and rules (some puzzle are of same type because they share same properties and rules), plus this method doesn't correspond to common practice in other puzzle field than sudoku.
    You'll find a lot of example where you can transpose your skills from puzzle type to another (examples : 2 even 2 odd sudoku -> tic tac logic, irregular sudoku -> star battle puzzles, etc... I'm sure as an experienced puzzle player, you can find a lot of these examples).
    Historically, it's wrong : The very-well known sudoku variants like killer sudoku, non-consecutive sudoku, GT sudoku, etc... were not classified in sudoku genre because these require the same capabilities to solve than classic sudoku. These are sudoku variants because they share some rules and properties with classic sudoku. Actually a player who would be experienced at classic sudoku but inexperienced in variant would have to develop lot of new skills to solve sudoku variants.

  • -> I agree with the relations you made between puzzle types and perhaps with your theories on capabilities, but again it tells nothing about puzzle types.

I don't know lot of definitions of sudoku that are self-consistent (in the meaning that sudoku is a puzzle type) and correspond to the historical basic facts that are not subjective. Here are 2 of them :

  • As you said, some people define sudoku to be only classic sudoku. It seems consistent to me, this is not our way of thinking, but if you don't have another clear definition to oppose to that, I understand why people insist with you each year after indian sudoku championship.
    I made a proposal few years ago about how to treat classic sudoku at WSC, so that perhaps those players may find something for them...
    I understand the reasons why this is not the definition we use for WSC. For example it seems that 3-4 rounds of 20-30 minutes seems enough to make a fair classic sudoku competition, and we want to play more during WSC.
  • A very succinct but clear definition of sudoku variant was written in an author's blog in 2010. I write it in french first, I'm not sure my translation will be as good :
    "Une variante est un dérivé du sudoku dont le principe est de respecter les règles de base du jeu, tout en y ajoutant une ou plusieurs autre(s) contrainte(s)."
    "A variant is a derivative of (classic) sudoku whose principle is to respect the basic rules of the puzzle, while adding one or more other constraint(s). "
    It would be necessary to explicit what the basic rules are, but I find this definition very clear.
    I'm now waiting for a WPF defintion for several years. I'm quite sure people will not have any problem to write a definition of masyu or akari in a very short period of time, and I ask myself what are the problems they encounter with sudoku? I hope it is not linked with the fact they want to promote a wider range of puzzles !

prasanna16391 - I think the best thing to do, for any competition, is to outline before it what will and won't appear, and then let participants decide if that is alright with them.

If we go to the end of your reasoning, it would be ok if the organizers of WSC 2018 say "we define sudoku as the set of loop puzzles". Then you will have a "World Sudoku Championship" based on solving loop puzzles. No, no and no !

In conclusion, I would say :
  • sudoku is a puzzle type,
  • WSC should be a competition where players solve sudoku.
  • WSC should not be a competition where players solve puzzles which organizers think these players will be able to solve based on presumed skills.
  • If you think solving sudoku only in WSC is not enough, then stop organizing a WSC, replace it by something that will fit your goal to promote wider range of puzzles (a 5 days WPC, a competition containing any grid based logic puzzle which has a set of numbers, etc... but don't call it World Sudoku Championship).
  • The WPF goal regarding sudoku seems to be exclusively to gain from name's popularity.
  • If the WPF supervise WSC, please take the responsibilities that are related (like saying what is the competition about, overseeing that it is consistent each year, promoting it, etc...).
  • Stop judging people whose goal is to solve exclusively sudoku at WSC.
  • Don't apply absurd rules for the only pupose to promote wider range of puzzles, this would be counterproductive.
  • I find your nihilistic attitude: "it's all perspective", "it's subjective", "it is just according to you", "all of it is your personal definition" inappropriate in this debate,

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