# What's going on with this puzzle?

What is going on with this slitherlink puzzle with clues $$2^3$$?

• Suggested sub-title: an off-by-one error Nov 3, 2020 at 2:54
• Amazing puzzle!
– Avi
Nov 3, 2020 at 2:55
• That was really, really cool Nov 3, 2020 at 2:55

## 1 Answer

We can actually get pretty far using simple deductions, and for this reason I will not be detailing them. (I missed a few other deductions once again-- I only noticed them near the end of solving.)

Here is where I stopped:

Note that the upper side of the 1 at Row 3 Column 8 cannot extend to the right because there would be no way for the 2 to its right to be fulfilled validly; therefore it must go upward. This forces several other lines:

The right side of the 3 at Row 2 Column 11 must extend rightward, because if it extended downward then we would be unable to form a loop.

When the upper side of the 2 at Row 2 Column 2 goes to the left, it will force a few lines but leave a 1 and a 2 unfulfilled:

So it must extend downward, not leftward. At this point I noticed that the 1 at Row 11 Column 5 would actually force some lines:

The 2 at Row 12 Column 2 cannot go downward, because we then cannot form a loop:

And this leaves the middle region (which I did not notice I could clean up from the start).

A $$3^2$$ was hiding all along :000

This was a bit easier than the earlier slitherlink posed by OP, so I was slightly more uncertain about what parts and pictures of my solving process should be included; hopefully this is sufficient.

• +1 I am in awe of both the puzzle and the solution. This is insanely cool. Nov 3, 2020 at 2:52
• The last case analysis is not needed (apparently you missed a 2 in the middle waiting for a straightforward deduction). Anyway +1 for sniping me. Nov 3, 2020 at 2:53
• Yup-- the solve could have been quicker if I had just noticed that from the very beginning. Also agree with Sciborg (and others in The Sphinx's Lair chatroom) that it was a great puzzle :D
– oAlt
Nov 3, 2020 at 3:01