Share Your Sudoku Strategies!
Sudoku strategies begin with knowing where to start, what to look for, and applying logic. Read about my strategies and then share yours.
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Where To Start
Many beginners, when faced with a Sudoku puzzle, often wonder where do I start? I usually begin by methodically
scanning the puzzle
for each number, one through nine.
When I see multiple givens of the same number, I then slice and dice and see how many cells I can solve. This is a good way to find single possibilities for a given cell.
Sometimes I may not be able to solve a cell because there are two possible locations in a row or column. I can use these two cells to eliminate any candidates in the same row or column that have the same number.
Other times I use a pair of numbers in the same row or column in conjunction with givens in other rows, columns, or regions, to place candidates in another 3x3 region. This way I am effectively removing possible candidates without ever writing them in.
What To Look For
After penciling in candidates in a row, column, or region, I begin looking for patterns beginning with the easier ones and then progressing to the harder ones.
I first look for pairs or triples of candidates. Then I progress to harder patterns such as X-Wing, Swordfish, XY-Wing and so forth.
After spotting a pattern, then I use a little logic to help me solve the Sudoku puzzle. This gets fun when you can use logic to break a chain or eliminate candidates from cells.
This is just a beginning of Sudoku strategies. Why not share your tactics to solving a Sudoku puzzle? Show off your skills and be recognized as a Sudoku Pro. Help and be helped.
What Is Your Favorite Sudoku Strategy?
Do you have a great Sudoku strategy? Share it! Write a 300 word article that explains your strategy. Use proper English and sentence structure.
What Other Visitors Have Said
Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page...
First I use Orange to mark the start of color mapping,in this example the candidate is (1).
- Find a column or row where the candidate is assigned only …
Rule of Two
For difficult puzzles, I've adopted what I call the Rule of Two. Simply put: no cell should ever have more than two numbers it. Using numbers that default …
While I use all the methods you give, one of my favorites (which I have not seen in print yet) is to use "coupled pairs" of numbers. The major drawback …
My Visual Sudoku Strategy
I like Sudoku strategies that are simple and logical for me. I like solving Sudoku puzzles without using candidates, if at all possible. In reality, …
To use the chain strategy, pick a box with only 2 candidates that you would like to solve. Now imagine that the answer to that box is the first candidate. …
The Numbers In Order
I am not 100% sure this is the way to go, but look at the square. Is there a 1? If there is not, then look at each row for ones.
The rows that do have …
Row of 3
Suppose you have solved three cells in a row (or column) within a region. (Rows with letters, from top; columns with numbers from left.) For instance, …
In the cell I put a dot for 1 2 3
4 5 6
7 8 9
Easy Two Number Referencing
Whenever you have only 2 candidates in your cell, look for couples, triples and quads that go with that cell. When writing the candidates in your cells, …
Forbidden Double X-wing
When you see in two 3*3 squares a pattern that looks almost a double X-wing, you are certain a double X-wing there is forbidden because then there would …
The Ninth Number Of The Grid
When you have 8 of the same number in any combination of 8 of the 9by9 squares, you can always put the ninth number using the scanning method.
Solving Sudoku Puzzles
Across the top label the large squares A, B, C and down the left side D, E, F. Generally the bottom and right side don't need to be labeled …
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