SudoCue

Clueless Special Guide

 

As a special service for people new to the Clueless Special, here is an introduction to this format. This page contains an easy Clueless Special, which you can solve with singles only.

A Clueless Special has 9 constituent Sudokus. You can try to solve these puzzles on their own, but you won’t get very far. At some point, you need to pass results from one puzzle to the next. Here’s where the blue cells come into play. Together, the central 3x3 boxes of all 9 Sudokus form a 10th sudoku. The name of this format is derived from the fact that you will not find any initial clues in this 10th puzzle. It is completely clueless.

Start with the clues you receive from the 9 sudokus. Even if you prefer to solve regular Sudokus without pencilmarks, the sheer size of a Clueless will not allow you to remember all eliminations. You can maintain the pencilmarks for the central sudoku in a separate grid.

Take the first sudoku in the starter, for example. On it’s own, you can only solve 17 cells, none of them in the center box. To achieve this, you need several locked candidates, naked pairs, a hidden quad and an X-wing. Brilliant if you manage to find them, but not effective.

A better strategy is to work out the pencilmarks for the central blue 3x3 box.

Pencilmarks puzzle 2 This is the second puzzle (top row, center) solved with basic techniques as far as it goes. There may be more eliminations when you go all the way and use any advanced technique at your disposal, but as I said, that is not the way to solve a Clueless Special.

Notice that you now have some useful data in the blue box. Pencilmarks are worked out and you even have a placement of a digit 8.

Repeat this for each of the 9 puzzles, then start adding things together by looking at the 10th puzzle that is made up of the 9 blue boxes.

These are the pencilmarks for the 3 top blue boxes: Pencilmarks central box puzzle 1 Pencilmarks central box puzzle 2 Pencilmarks central box puzzle 3

Because a 3x3 box in a constituent puzzle is also a 3x3 box in the 10th puzzle, there is no need to look for hidden singles in these boxes again. Concentrate on the rows and columns in the central puzzle. There is a hidden single for digit 1 in the 3rd row. When you cannot find any singles, you may need the boxes to find locked candidates in the central puzzle. Eliminations done in the central puzzle can also be fed back to the constituent puzzles to reveal singles and other goodies.

Make sure that you correctly pass the results between the central puzzle and the 9 constituent puzzles. An error is easily made and hard to detect, until you get stuck hours later. You may have to move back and forth between the 10 puzzles a few times, before you have solved them all.

This is the Clueless Special starter, rated Oh so Easy

These number strings represent each of the 9 constituent puzzles. You can copy each of these 9 strings and paste them in your sudoku program. This allows you to work on each of the 9 constituent puzzles on your computer. A program like SudoCue allows several instances running at the same time.

005070600070804090100050002060000030502000906030000010600090007050108060009060300
001020300020406080800050007080000060107000508090000010500060001040508070008070900
001020800030705020600010004080000010304000609060000040800030005040106080002050400
002010500030705080100060003040000030308000409020000010200080005090501020007030100
003080500020605070700030008080000060307000102050000040500060007010502030009040600
006070400090502070700040002060000040108000607040000050600090005070603010004080200
005040600060105090800020005010000050206000704050000080500090001020703040004050800
003020800020601070600040001080000010104000608060000090800050009040206030006090400
002060800070509020100080005060000030701000208080000010400030001010908040008050900

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