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Solitaire Games

5th May 2020

All the games on Pencil and Paper Games are for two or more players. However, I sometimes get asked whether I can recommend any one-player, or solitaire, games that you can play with just a pencil and paper.

Here are a few suggestions; they are a great way of passing time on a train journey, while waiting for an appointment, or in any other boring situation.

Word square

Try and create a 4 x 4 word square with 10 different four-letter words reading horizontally, vertically, or diagonally left to right. If you can get 8 words you're doing well. 9 is excellent, and 10 (the maximum) is outstanding. Here's one with a score of 10 to inspire you:

WordSquare2.gif

For a harder challenge try a 5 x 5 word square. If you get more than 8 words you're doing well; the maximum score of 12 is very hard.

Pangrams

Try and find six 4-letter words without any letter in common; here's an example:

MYTH, DUCK, VERB, GASP, JINX, and WOLF.

which uses 24 of the 26 letters.

Alternatively, try and find five 5-letter words that don't have any letter in common; here's the best I can find:

BLACK, FIGHT, JUMPY, DROWN, and VEXES

which uses 24 of the 26 letters with one letter repeated.

Knight's tour

Draw an 8 x 8 grid. Write a "1" in the top left-hand corner. Now make a knight's move, and write a "2" in the square you reach. Continue in this way and try and get to 64 by making a series of knight's moves, without going back to a square you've already visited.

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