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Listener 4644 Symbols By Aedites

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Hagen | 00:15 Sat 30th Jan 2021 | Crosswords
11 Answers
A jigsaw grid with entries of uncertain length, and no long answers to help us get started. Is that not one obstacle too many? I certainly thought so after I'd solved all but four of the clues and not managed to enter a single answer.

Then one of those leap of faith hunches that comes out of nowhere led to a possible few entries in the SE corner and all became clear. This is a fantastic implementation of the theme that made up for a grid fill which I think potentially violate the Listener guidelines: "Puzzles for which more than half the clues must be solved before entries can be made in the grid are more likely to be rejected since they fail to deliver a principal feature of a CROSSword."

Rather like one of those restaurant meals where the meat course is unacceptably tough but the dessert is just divine...

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I guessed where a couple of answers were likely to go given their letters, before solving half the clues. I twigged the theme shortly after that and the rest was just logical progression, though never easy. It did at first look like there was too much against the solver, but I didn't find that to be the case. For me at least, the clues were pitched at the right level for the challenge.

I thought I would have a go at submitting this year so I still have a bit of work to do!

That is quite some grid, thanks very much, Aedites.
A perfectly fair crossword despite the theme being an anathema to us.

A reasonable mixture of gentle and fiendish clues with some help offered once the theme became apparent.
The end game was a bit vague but we assume we have the correct letter.

Thanks, Aedites.
It looked impossible - and would have been if the clues had been any harder - and then cold solving around four dozen clues before entering a single one into the grid was not my idea of fun.

However, once the first two or three symbols were in place, it suddenly eased into a very pleasant and unambiguous gridfill.

As a non-submitter, I'm not going to stress too much about the final highlight - I'm happy and that's all that matters.

Thanks to Aedites for a very stiff challenge.
I thought the clues were mostly on the easy side - well I managed to cold-solve all but two with nothing entered in the grid. I guessed the theme very early and how the clashes would resolve, but having no interest in the subject, relied on some online info which had me trying to place things in the wrong place, naturally with not a lot of success.
Again a masterly construction.
The accessibility of the clues made this a fair challenge, although like others here, I had maybe around 45 cold-solved before I attempted gridfill. Fortunately, an early attempt was successful, and everything became mechanical.

But the grid is indeed a thing of beauty - thanks Aedites!
We solved a number of clues and stared for a while, eventually correctly taking the view that there must be a way in by entering some answers speculatively. They soon cohered and threw up the anomalies. A good challenge.
Utterly agree with Hagen that this crosses the bounds of being a crossword. Once a starting point had been found, entry was quite fast, but that point could not really be found until almost all the clues were solved. That said, clues were fair, and the construction exceptional. The theme is perfectly acceptable, and well interpreted.
Like Upsetter we were not entirely sure about the end game - both as to the letter and the point of it.
I echo all that has been said. I had all but four clues solved before I could enter anything into the grid -- without some advance idea of what the theme was I don't think I would have managed to enter anything at all.
Once the first pair had been entered things became much easier.
The final stage, I agree, seems pointless and I don't have any real conviction of it being correct.

Nevertheless it was a great construction and the clues were good. Thanks, Aedites.
I think I had cold-solved about 40 clues before I got bored and just tried entering a few - hit the first clash, resolved the letters and all became clear. The rest, with so many answers already good to go, was very fast. Very glad that it wasn't all about diodes and resistors which was my original guess
I'm another solver who cold-solved all but four clues before I was able to make a start on the grid.
It's an excellent puzzle with an outstanding grid, but rather spoiled by a pointless bit of highlighting. The preamble in this respect is both vague and ambiguously worded.

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