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Listener 4604 Tour De Force By Kea

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Hagen | 00:36 Sat 25th Apr 2020 | Crosswords
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An absolute delight. I thought this was going to be impossible at first, but some lucky guesses at the words in Ring 5 proved invaluable. Tough but scrupulously fair clues, and refreshing to have a puzzle that demands only clue solving and logic rather than endless frustrating Internet searches. Brilliant, Kea.

There’s probably an earlier thread that doesn’t yet appear in AB search - I wish the darned thing worked properly!

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What a cracker - the complete opposite of last week's annoyance.

Rather than a much-too-easy 95% gridfill and then much-too-much ghastly googling to finish, this was a detailed, steady, difficult puzzle which gave up its secrets grudgingly - but was always impeccably honest both in the clues and the implementation of the method of entry. Everything parses very precisely too.

Thanks Kea - it's always a treat when your name appears as a setter.

PS : I was much taken with Clue 7 - very neat
Can I also commend this week's IQ 1644 to Listener Solvers who need a bit of light relief after Kea - it's a delightful (and not too difficult) puzzle by Charybdis.
My, that was tough. A lengthy, difficult solve but my progress was pretty steady until near the end, when a handful of clues remained resistant to my parsing. In the end a guess at the last part of Ring 5 helped me over the finishing line. Then some additional time needed to reduce my 9 two-letter moves to 7.

I agree with everything in previous comments. The clues were indeed impeccable, but over the years we have come to expect nothing else from this superb setter.
What a superb offering from Kea! The idea is brilliant and executing it effectively cannot have been easy. The clues were hard but scrupulously fair. My only minor cavil is the title - what is this Force? Presumably the one only engineers talk about!
Customary Kea fare - teasing but totally fair clues and a cracking theme cleverly executed. I finished it a lot quicker than I imagined I would, but maybe there are a few less extraneous distractions right now. Thank you Roger
A very refreshing change after last week. Good variant on the circular layout, which could have been virtually impossible to solve - but wasn't. Hoorah for Kea!
A tour de force.

Thanks, Kea
I've been waiting for a tough one for a few weeks and here it is. What a great puzzle with a very novel idea implemented. The construction must have been quite tough.

Clues were, in the main, searching (no complaints here) and I thought the endgame very neat.

Best of year to date for me. Thanks Kea.
Gosh it's taken me a while to tumble to the final step here. Very satisfying to find what appeared to be intractable ambiguities all resolve nicely. Very smart idea and some lovely cluing. Apologies for my rude rant last week. Can't be much fun to be a setter and come across such negativity.
There was a mention of IQ which I assume refers to the Inquisitor in I? May I ask if that series is available online, even for a subscription which I might not mind paying. I broke down and forked out for EV but there are never enough puzzles.

Tour de Force was exactly that. I'm embarrassed by how long it took me to twig to the exact entry method, but things got much simpler once I did. Kea never disappoints.
I pay £4.99 a month for a subscription to the phone/tablet version of The i newspaper - this gives the full version of the daily paper (which is easy to screenshot and print puzzles as required), plus a daily set of interactive puzzles too.

https://inews.co.uk/subscribe
This has taken us a few days but finally cracked it. Excellent puzzle at the ideal level of complexity where you think you’re never going to get there but you keep making incremental moves forward. Will be hard to beat as contender for Puzzle of the Year.
I can’t believe how long it took me to finish. I always struggle a bit with circular grids but this one I found harder than the E grades I have solved in Magpie. I struggled with too many clues and it took me far too long to click what was happening. I am just grateful that it turned out to be the best so far so I don’t feel it was time wasted. Brilliant!

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