Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 by Rajesh Kumar

Indian Puzzle Championship 2017
Indian Puzzle Championship (IPC) and Puzzle Ramayan (PR) Offline Finals were held in Quality Inn, Chennai on 30th July 2017. This was one day after the Indian Sudoku Championship 2017. I have already written my experience during the Indian Sudoku Championship 2017. Now it's time to write about the Indian Puzzle Championship 2017.
Qualification for the Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 Offline finals was through the 4 online Puzzle Tests of Puzzle Ramayan 2017 which were conducted at Logic Masters India website from January 2017 to April 2017. For each individual top 3 scores out of these four tests were considered to rank the participants and then the top 50 were called for the offline Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 finals in Chennai. My rank was 3rd on these online rounds. It was my score in the last online round of Puzzle Ramayan in which I scored best among all the participants that gave me confidence for the offline finals and I was looking forward to a podium finish in this championship.

Previous Day Evening before IPC 2017

Once the Indian Sudoku Championship 2017 and Sudoku Mahabharat ended on 29th July 2017, immediately most of us grouped together and most of us were hungry. Our experience of dinner was not very good for the previous day in Hotel Chariot. So all of us decided to go out for dinner. I could not remember and pronounce the name of the restaurant. Thank God we have one photograph at the entry of this restaurant. Its name was "Dindigul Thalappakatti". In short, it means "The Turban Man".
Dinner at Dindigul Thalappakatti
Dinner at Dindigul Thalappakatti
After dinner, we had a great round of board games before ending the day. 

Registration for Indian Puzzle Championship 2017

Indian Puzzle Championship (IPC) started 1 hour earlier than the previous day. Most of us reached out online for IPC. Like the previous day our registration was done, we did not require to register again for this championship. There were some new participants who have not participated in the Indian Sudoku Championship. Registration was required for such participants.  Below is the group photograph of all the participants of the Indian Puzzle Championship 2017. 

Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 Participants
All participants of the Indian Puzzle Championship 2017

Trophies of Indian Puzzle Championship 2017

Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 Trophies
The trophy designs of the Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 were very good and these designs were liked by almost everyone. The winner's trophy was created using a Slitherlinks puzzle with all the hints given at all sides of the puzzle and one is written in the center with all the hints being 1. Similarly, the 1st runner-up trophy is made using the Four Winds Puzzle with some hints given on the sides and 2 written in the center with the number 2 in each cell. 2nd Runners up trophy of IPC 2017 was designed using Fillomino Puzzle with a central part made number three by using number 3. In this trophy, all the central 3's were highlighted with Green color and thus number 3 was quite visible as compared to the other two trophies where central numbers were not highlighted prominently.  

Round 1 – The Usual Suspects (400 Points)

Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 Broken Battleship Puzzle
This round contained most of the Classic Puzzles which were part of the 4 online qualifying rounds. This round contained puzzles like Yin Yang, Battleships, Masyu, Skyscrapers, Fillomino, Slant, Dominos, and Hungarian Pentominoes. Most of these puzzles were my favorite puzzle types except the Hungarian Pentominoes puzzle. I had not prepared much for this round and was (over :)) confident of finishing this round. I started this round with Dominos Puzzle and could quickly solve it, then moved to Masyu which again was an easy one, and then started from 1st puzzle Yin Yang and completed each of the puzzles in sequence. Most of these puzzles were easy and I could solve these puzzles very quickly with some stops while solving the Fillomino puzzle. I completed seven puzzles and when I started the last puzzle Hungarian Pentomino, there were still 14 minutes to go for this round. I found this puzzle as tough maybe because I was not prepared very well for this puzzle type. I took 13 minutes to put most of the Pentomino for this puzzle and at the last minute, there were still 3 more Pentominoes to go. I could not think of any further logic and there was not much time left to logically solve this puzzle :). So I guess at the very end complete this puzzle with just 10 seconds remaining to finish this round. I was happy that I could complete this round but I could not get any time bonus in this round.
When the result of this round came, Rohan and I were the only two players to complete this round. Rohan completed this round with 8 minutes time bonus. When I got my booklet, I found that I have made a very small error in the Battleship puzzle. In fact, the organizer who corrected this booklet missed this error and I was awarded full points for this puzzle. I pointed this mistake to the organizers and my score when down from perfect 400 points to 357 points. However, I was happy to make this correction and I was later awarded the "Fair Play Award" for this act of honesty :). In fact, Ashish won the "Fair Play Award" during World Puzzle Championship 2016 in Slovakia. 
There are many puzzles on this website in which one has to find the mistake in the given picture. I am posting photographs of the Battleship puzzle which I solved and which was at first instance marked correct. The challenge for the readers here is to find the mistake in this solved Battleship Puzzle?

Round 2 – The Other Guys (400 Points)

Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 Broken Nurikabe Puzzle
This round again contained the Classic Puzzles. However, none of these puzzles appeared in any of the online rounds. This is the reason this round this named "The Other Guy".
This round contained Classic Puzzles like Nurikabe, Tents, Anglers, Hidato, Kakuro, Double Back, INDIA Division, and Penta Blokus. Most of these types were known types to me except Double Back and Hidato. During my preparations for IPC 2017, I tried to concentrate on these two types. In this round, I started with Kakuro as this puzzle type is one of my favorite puzzle types. I could solve it quickly. Then I started INDIA Division. After getting a good start on this puzzle, I could not proceed further in this puzzle. I left this puzzle to be solved later to finish other easy puzzles like Nurikabe, Tents, Anglers, and PentaBlokus. Later I came back to the INDIA Division puzzle and solve it with some logical conclusions. Now only 4 minutes were left on the clock and I was having a big pointer Hidato to be completed. I could logically guess the tentative path and positions of numbers but could not complete this puzzle. So with a bigger pointer left to be solved, I was still satisfied with solving 7 of the 8 puzzles in this round.
When I got the answer sheet for this round, I found that I have again made a small error in this round in the Nurikabe puzzle. Posting this puzzle for the reader's reference. I generally use different colored pens to solve puzzles. My first preference for color is Blue followed by Red color pen. As the organizers also use the Red color to make corrections, I was told after this round not to use Red color for my puzzle-solving :)

Round 4 – The Hangover (500 Points)

Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 Aquarium Puzzle
The Hangover was round 4 during the championship, but we solved it in the third round. This round was the Causal Puzzle round but it was second highest pointer round with minimum time allocation for this round. This round contained many causal puzzles with Scale Sudoku and Futoshiki Puzzle being featured in this round. This round contained a puzzle that requires Observational Skills, Mathematical Skills along with Logical Skills. I could solve a few puzzles in this round scoring 175 points only out of the total possible 500 points. One good thing about this round was that I had not made any mistakes in this round and to my surprise, I was 3rd best scorer in this round with Rohan scoring 320 in this round to keep his unbeaten record intact :).
There was one interesting puzzle in this round called Aquarium. In this puzzle, there were different fish tanks having different sea animals in them. One has to find the fish tanks which contain the same set of sea creatures. To solve this puzzle, first I tried to visually find the tanks which contained the same sea creature. I could not find it out visually. Then I marked each sea creature with a number e.g. 1, 2, 3, 4, and so on. I will mark the same number for the same sea creature in the different tanks. At last, I summed up all the numbers to find out which two tanks contains the same sum. There were three tanks that summed to the same number. Then visually I found the two tanks which were the answer to this Aquarium puzzle.  

Round 3 – The Big Short (600 Points)

Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 Mochikoro Puzzle
This round contained many puzzle types which seemed new puzzle types to me. During my preparation for IPC 2017, I have to prepare most for this round as almost all the puzzle types appearing in this round were new to me even though these puzzle types have been there in some of the previous World Puzzle Championships or other line online Puzzle Championships. This round contained two puzzles of the same type with one being a small puzzle and another being a big puzzle. In total it contained 7 puzzle types with 14 puzzles in total. In this round, I spend a long time solving the big pointer Mochikoro puzzle. I made one wrong assumption in this puzzle with the 18 hints given in the lower right corner always thinking that 9x2=18. I tried both the horizontal and vertical combination of the 9x2 rectangle but could not solve this puzzle :(. Later by the time, it stuck that 6x3 = 18 can also be one combination, I wasted a lot of precious time completing this puzzle. It was a very nice puzzle made by Nikola Zivanovic. I could not complete 5 puzzles in this round with both Summon and Hidden Words untouched and solving only the 1st puzzle for Shape Division. I could score only 316 points in this round and thankful I have not made any mistakes in this round :).

Winner of the Indian Puzzle Championship 2017

And the winner of the Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 are
1. Rohan Rao
2. Ashish Kumar
3. Rajesh Kumar
Winner for Indian Puzzle Championship 2017
Winner of Indian Puzzle Championship 2017
Rohan won this championship with a huge margin of points. He has won the Indian Puzzle Championship title 5 times equalizing my record of 5 times Indian National Puzzle Champion. Ashish got well-deserved 2nd place in this championship and I was happy that after a long hiatus, I could get the podium finish (3rd place) in this championship along with winning the "Fair Play Award". 
All three winners of IPC 2017 are part of the World Puzzle Championship (WPC) 2017 organizing team. So Indian Team A will consist of Jaipal, Jayant, Harmeet, and Kishore.

Indian A Team for WPC 2017
Indian A-Team for WPC 2017

The complete Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 results are as below
Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 results
Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 results

Pocket Puzzles Team Tournament (PPTT)

Team Rajesh Vs Team Jaipal in PPTT
Team Rajesh Vs Team Jaipal in PPTT
With the end of all 4 rounds of IPC, it was time for some recreational activities. On the previous day when Indian Sudoku Championship took place, the recreational activity was Classic Sudoku Master 2017. However, for the puzzle, we had Pocket Puzzles Team Tournament which was equivalent to Classic Sudoku Masters (CSM). This difference between PPTT and CSM is that CSM is the tournament in which Player Vs. Player knockout format whereas PPTT is a Team Vs Team tournament but this was not a knockout format. In the CSM the player losing a match is immediately knocked out of the tournament but in PPTT in case a team loses a match is moved down in ranking.
There were 8 teams in this round and I was the team captain for one of the teams. Our Team could not perform better without us losing all of our matches. Team Harmeet won PPTT by winning all of their matches. However, before starting this Pocket Puzzles Team Tournament, I had an arm wrestling competition with Jaipal and later with Shaheer.

Puzzle Ramayan Playoffs

Indian Puzzle Championship 2017 was open to all the participants irrespective of age or experience in Puzzle-solving. However, Puzzle Ramayan Playoff is to encourage new players who have little or no experience in World Puzzle Championships. As I have represented India at various World Puzzle Championships starting the year 2004, I did not qualify for Puzzle Ramayan. One can refer to the following links for more updates on Puzzle Ramayan 2017 playoff

A big thanks to authors and testers Bram de Laat, Nikola Zivanovic, Richard Stolk, Tawan Sunathvanichkul, Walker Anderson Dewey, Yuki Kawabe, Tiit Vunk, and Prasanna for providing the high-quality Puzzles used in the event. Also thanks to the Chennai people for the hospitality we received. 

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