Watch Where You Get Those Puzzles! (Part 2 of 2)

In the last newsletter, I gave you two puzzles that I consider to be “bad.”

One of the e-mails I sent out had the subject line: “I can’t solve these Sudoku puzzles. Can you?”

Well hundreds of readers took it on as a personal challenge to solve those puzzles. And I got over a hundred replies with solutions. So does that mean that Your Sudoku Professor is losing his edge? Am I useless has-been? (I certainly hope you don’t think so.)

Brian from Tauranga, New Zealand was kind enough to run the puzzles through a computer program. He came up with the following analysis:

“Both are rated Diabolical by my computer. The first one has 32 solutions. The second has 172 solutions.”

I was shocked! There should only be one solution! I had no idea that the puzzles were that bad. Thank you, Brian!

You have proved my point!

The point is that these bad puzzles lead you to a point where you have to guess. There is no other way to proceed except to guess.

And at times one guess is as good as another.

That’s why there are so many possible solutions.

Sudoku Puzzles are supposed to be solved using logic.

If you’re guessing, you’re not using logic. If you get to a point where you can flip a coin to choose your next step (and no matter whether you get head or tails, you’ll be right), then that’s not logic.

So if you keep getting to the point where you have to guess, the problem is one of two things:

  1. You don’t know what logic to use, or
  2. It’s a bad puzzle

All my lessons show you how to use logic only and not guess, so that takes care of problem #1.

My point with this article and the prior one is to help you with problem #2.

How to Spot Bad Puzzles

There’s no sure-fire way how to spot bad puzzles. But there are two common characteristics:

  1. They are not symmetrical
  2. They come from web sites, computer programs or gaming machines

Or in a nut-shell: Symmetry and Source.

Symmetry

Good puzzles have symmetry. That is, the pattern of the given numbers is similar top-to-bottom, left-to-right or even on a diagonal.

In other words, it almost like if you were to fold the piece of paper horizontally, vertically or diagonally, the given numbers (and hence the empty spaces) line up.

Take this one for example:


Puzzle Copyright © 2006, Nikoli Co., Ltd., reprinted with permission

Notice how box 9 looks like an upside down version of box 1? Box 2 and box 8 are mirror images of each other. Same with boxes 4 & 6.

That’s symmetry. All good puzzles have it, because symmetry is typically the result of careful puzzle creation. In other words, someone is paying attention.

Every bad puzzle I’ve ever encountered was asymmetrical. Notice the two bad puzzles in the last newsletter have little or no symmetry at all.

Now that’s not to say that every asymmetrical puzzle is bad. That’s not the case. But if it’s not symmetrical then it’s my first clue that I could have a problem.

Source

There are a ton of sources for puzzles out there. The internet is full of sites that offer free Sudoku puzzles.

But you need to realize that the goal of many of these web sites is NOT to offer you quality Sudoku puzzles. Their goal is to get you to click on the ads, so they make money.

Now don’t get me wrong. I’m OK with people making money on advertising. We wouldn’t have newspapers or television without it.

But what if your newspaper or TV station only offered false, misleading or inaccurate information?

And then they sensationalized everything, just to get you to read or watch? (Oh, wait! I guess they already do that…)

Well, at least with the newspapers and TV stations, you typically know what you’re getting. You can tell what biases they have, and you can roll your eyes when they make such a big deal out of small things.

But with these Sudoku puzzle web sites, you’re expecting, at a minimum, a puzzle that’s solvable. Seems reasonable. Right?

To be fair, many web sites do offer pretty good puzzles. But which ones are they? They may be good now, but are they going to go bad later?

Here’s the deal: Most of those web sites use computers to generate the puzzles, but they often don’t make the effort to check for solvability. Or if they do check for solvability, they use a computer program to do it, and not a human being.

But what about all those computer programs and apps you can download that can generate an infinite number of puzzles?

Well, same as the websites. The program is generating the puzzle, so who’s there checking to see that a human can solve it? Just you. Only that you didn’t know you were the tester, so after hours of frustration, you finally give up. Like one of my friends told me:

“It’s like banging your head against the wall, only with fewer opportunities for reward.”

What to do?

I continue to recommend Sudoku puzzle books.

They’re relatively cheap, portable, a lot more flexible than an computer program (at least for pencil marks), and best of all, I’ve never encountered a book where the puzzles lacked symmetry or the puzzles were unsolvable.

You see, the book publishers have a different goal than the website operators.

A book publisher wants to sell you more books. So if they give you a bad product, you’ll find another publisher. But if you like what they offer, you’ll buy more.

Also book publishers are going through a great deal of expense to get this book to you. By comparison, a website operator has virtually no expense. So who are you going to trust more? Someone who’s got a lot to lose or someone who’s got nothing to lose?

And these books are cheap (even at full price). Most books have 300 or more puzzles in them and cost less than $8 (US). If I can do about 2 puzzles a day (which is a stretch), most books will last me almost 6 months!

The great thing is that you can find many good books in the discount section of your book store or you can order them from used book sellers off Amazon.

A few months ago, I got a book for $2 (including shipping) off Amazon and the only thing wrong with it was someone had started to solve the first puzzle. No big deal. I still had 319 puzzles left to solve. A couple of years ago I got a book of 588 Sudoku puzzles for $5 at my local Barnes and Noble.

By the way, this time of year is a great time to find lots of great bargains on books at your local book store.

Now if, despite my love of books, you’ve just got to have a Sudoku program or app, then I suggest this process.

  1. Find a puzzle maker you trust by looking for their puzzles in print. So, for example, look in your daily newspaper and see who produces that puzzle. Many times they’ll have a web address right there or you can Google the company name.
  2. Go to their web site and see if they have a program or app you can download.

I wouldn’t expect it to be free. But whatever the price (I’m sure it’s not too high) it may be worth it to avoid the frustration of unsolvable puzzles.

My Recommendations

For books, there are two primary sources I recommend.

And I can recommend these without reservation because I’ve completed many hundreds of their puzzles, and I’ve never had a problem.

  • Any book by Nikoli Publishing. Nikoli is the Japanese company that popularized the game in Japan before it spread to the rest of the world.

Some of their titles include Original Sudoku, More Original Sudoku, X-Treme Sudoku, etc.

Even though these puzzle are never extremely hard, they are the most fun to solve because the have the most unique patterns of starting numbers.

  • Any of the Martial Arts Sudoku Book series by Frank Longo.

He’s got White Belt Sudoku, Green Belt Sudoku, Brown Belt, and Black Belt.

He also has multiple editions of those books. So, for example, there’s Third Degree Black Belt Sudoku. (I don’t know that those puzzles are harder than “Second Degree.” I think it’s just the third black belt book.) The great thing is that you can buy a book of puzzles that exactly at the right level for you.

Now there are plenty of other really good books out there. But the two above are my favorites.

If you’re looking for websites that you can download and print puzzles from, here are my recommendations.

I’ve tried puzzles at all these websites. (I’ve tried more of KrazyDad’s). I’ve never had a problem, but don’t get angry with me if you ever do get an unsolvable one. So they seem good, but I’m not making any guarantees.

www.KrazyDad.com – just click on Sudoku Collections, select your difficulty level, then pick a collection. These are free, but a donation is suggested.

www.WebSudoku.com – You can solve on-line or you can print one puzzle at a time.

www.Sudoku.name – You can solve on-line or you can print one puzzle at a time.

Bottom line, beware of where you get your puzzles.

Be vigilant. If you’ve got a problem trying to solve a puzzle that’s rated well within your skill level, then consider the source. If you can’t trust the source, then throw that puzzle out and find another one.

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What Other’s Say

I take your lessons slowly. Your tips have been great and I am able to do the Globe and Mail "1 - 3 star quite well. I feel an air of accomplishment when I am able to complete them. — Devi Taneja

I've seen and played all of your videos. I really enjoyed it. I am now using my computer plus a paper sheet for the pencil marks. It gets a little messy at times....but I have been able to solve the Sudoku puzzle. — Dieter Emmermann

I really enjoyed your lessons and I would recommend them to anyone that is interested in Sudoku. I'm unlocking puzzles that a few weeks ago I'd give up on. I went from the green belt to brown belt and I'm thinking of taking your advanced lessons when I think I'm ready. Again thank you very much. — Jack Burke

The videos are great! my Sudoku solving has improved considerably. — Nancy Pautsch

I really like the videos. I like the way you present the lessons. You have a very gifted way of teaching and I am enjoying them very much. — Diane Paquette

I love the lessons. The lessons are easy to understand and I feel like you are a friend. When I do listen to a lesson, I can grasp the logic. — Gerry Sturgeon

They are helping me to solve the puzzles better than in the past! — Richard Murdock

I started learning at zero. Now I enjoy playing Sudoku puzzles... the evening's free time is too short! Thanks for the lessons, you are a great professor. — Louisette Lamontagne

Hi Chad-I'm just a beginner and your lessons are very important. I look forward to the next one. — Pete S.

Yes, I am enjoying your videos very much...I like the way the information is organized and I even wish I had learned some of those thoughts processes during my school years. Good job! — Alba Peart

Your lessons have been wonderful... Your lessons have been enlightening in an easier way to try to solve the puzzles... Your lessons were well worth the money. — Kathy Webb

Great stuff, Thanks for the lessons. I am using your two and three in box or column primarily, and when that fails, stepping back and filling all the spaces in the mostly filled areas. I owe you. Thanks, — Gary Cramer

I am enjoying the lessons. I have completed them and now reviewing. I am having a lot of fun with techniques and am hopeful that I will keep improving. I am going to buy puzzle book today from your recommendation. I am still having trouble completing them and make wrong deductions but with your lessons I have a chance to improve at last. — Linda Smith

I could not believe my eyes when I read your message that you would send me the lessons I had purchased awhile back, that my husband had deleted. Never did I expect that you would respond. I just thought it would not hurt to ask. Certainly, you have given me a GREAT RESPECT for you. Thank you, thank you. — Judy Ressler

Chad: I watched all four lessons & enjoyed them. I am able to do the easy puzzles so far with little difficulty and I had never done them before. I would have to say that the lessons have been very helpful. Thanks so much. — J. Rivas

Thank you very much, Professor. I did enjoy the videos, they are very helpful and easy to understand. I'm sure this appreciation is shared by many of your students. Wishing you all the best. — Agnes

Just a short note to say thanks for taking the time to create the videos. Good investment for me. I'm still learning, mostly to trust my instincts and not 2nd guess myself. After watching your vids I am presently completing about 60 to 70 percent of the medium challenge puzzles. The easy ones I am pretty much trotting through, and I can sit and watch the evening news and do 3 or 4 back to back without much hesitation. These things are addictive for sure. Thanks Again, — R. Weeks

Thank you for the information and how to tackle sudoku puzzles. I have solved 15 so far and am getting faster...without your help I would not have solved any! — Doug Hurd

The lessons have been very helpful! I received a "Sudoku a Day" calendar last Christmas and was stuck on the hard puzzles. Now that I've been through all of the lessons, I'm keeping up with the puzzles and don't have any outstanding unsolved puzzles. — Bonnie

Have finished all the videos. They have been a great help especially in spotting pattern, double doubles, triple doubles, etc. Solved all the puzzles with the videos...Thanks for the brilliant videos. — Bryan Tan

Hi Chad, Your presentation is second to none. 100% tops. A great help to anyone how once to learn the basic of Sudoku. — Karl, Australia

So far so good, you definitely make yourself understood. An idiot could understand. Please keep up the good work. Thanks again! — Kathy Connell

Hi, Chad I truly enjoy your Sudoku lessons. Explanations are clear and detailed (just great !). Keep on your good work, Chad : I just can't wait for my next Sudoku lesson ! Have a nice day and take care. — R. GERVAIS

I find your instructions to be very helpful, as a matter of fact after looking at the 3rd lesson, I was able to figure out how to complete the puzzle. Because of your instructions I have bought a Sudoku puzzle book and I am finding the easy and medium puzzles a snap. — Troy

You are definitely delivering what you promised, and we highly recommend membership to those people who see soduko puzzles in the newspapers and think to themselves "You've got to be kidding me! These things aren't doable!" — Peter and Fran

Your video approach to teaching Sudoku via videos is fantastic! I enlarge the view, put in my special earplugs for increasing my hearing ability and go through the entire lesson. I repeat the lesson, this time following with the lesson download and find that the immediate repetition enables me to follow along much easier and without pauses. I am enjoying the lessons very much and thank you for developing such a fun teaching technique. — Bill Halopoff

I'm finding the various techniques very helpful, although I have to get used to the terminology ( triple double; double double, quadruple; ect.) Haven't had a lot of time to devote to the videos but the little I have watched and used have already made a big difference. Thanks for offering these instructive videos. — Calvin Harris

Your videos were very helpful in learning how to play Sudoku. Thank you very much for creating them and sharing them with us. — Susan Allen

I think your teaching in the videos is exceptional. I am up to the senior level and have learnt so much. My Sudoku solving has improved enormously and I am happy with the results. — Veronica

I have gone through all your lessons through the advanced techniques. I now feel there is no puzzle I cannot solve... I have always enjoyed these puzzles but your lessons have brought me to another level of confidence. — Jeffrey Schutzman

I think the videos are super. Thanks for producing and providing them. — John Southern

I am doing fine with your lessons. I have done Suduku puzzles for years and I am now starting to think different!! I have been solving puzzles up to the difficult level but not in an organized way like I do now. Thank you for your great methods. — Merle Styles

I'm finding the various techniques very helpful...Thanks for offering these instructive videos. — Calvin Harris

I am impressed by your presentation and the methods you use. I confess that I don't always remember your quick methods such as the J and cross formats. However I am enjoying Sudoku much better without having to analyse each square (enter all possible numbers) before starting. I am a little over half way through your course, fitting it in between other activities. My thanks for your efforts and clear descriptions. — Allister McGregor

I enjoy your lessons, and they have helped me! — Steve Sway

This is just to let you know how much pleasure I am now getting from playing Sudoku - all thanks to you!! Before signing up for the lessons I could rarely finish any puzzle - even the easiest - yet now I am playing quite hard ones with success. — Stuart Nottingham

Hey Professor... As a beginning Sudoku player I searched the web, found your site and subscribed. At the time I was brute-forcing my games with real poor results. After watching your video's on 1-9, doubling, and searching for patterns, I am now completing the Sudoku puzzles in the local weekly paper. I'm looking forward to receiving more lessons and maybe moving my game up the rung of difficulty a notch. Thanks again. — "Tumbleweed"

I have finished just the sophomore videos and it has already greatly improved my solving times and abilities. — Sue Boutfam

Dear Chad, I want to thank you for taking the time to produce your Sudoku videos. Although I've reached the point where I can do a few hard puzzles, I don't seem to be able to push forward and do them successfully on a regular basis. Your videos have already given me a few new ways of looking at the puzzles. I am looking forward to working through the whole series. Sincerely, — Jean

Videos are very good. I have made very good progress quite quickly as a result of the techniques set out. — Alan Gall

Hi Chad: Your videos are terrific and I have sent your website info to a few friends and hopefully they will contact you and get started. Have a fine day. Cheers, — J. Rutherford

I thought my method for solving was good, but your method is much better and results in a quicker solution . . . . — P. Hochstetler

Thanks for all of the follow-up on your lessons. I have found the lessons and the follow-up to be very useful. They have met your promises and my expectations. — Pat Eckelberry

I am really enjoying your videos, progressing nicely. I'm not rushing them, still on Sophemore but WOW they have changed my whole way of tackling a puzzle. Not to say I don't make any mistakes, sometimes i have to erase a couple of blocks and start again but i make sure i finish them without peeking at the answers or just giving up the way i used to. Thank you again for your concern, you are a great teacher!! If I may call you that. — Charles Sherwood

Your lessons are awesome! I really like how you build on the patterns. I am currently working on Senior lessons. Currently on vacation and taking a break from the lessons. Have purchased a book of puzzles, "SUDOKU ON THE GO" expert level. Before your lessons I could complete even one of these puzzles. I am now completing them in 45 min to an hour and not cheating at all. I am amazed at how much I have learned towards solving Sudoku. Your lessons really do bring fun to Sudoku! — John Morschauser

Hi Chad. I started to play sudoku about 2 months ago and never used to mark any other numbers in until I got to the hard puzzles. And that's when it got to be too much information just like you said. That is when I contacted you for help. Thanks and looking forward to more lessons. — Mike

Hi, Chad, I just got lucky and found your lessons right after I'd started doing sudoku. I've been a crossword person for years and finally decided I had to see what all the hoo-ha was about. The lessons are great. Thanks again, — Tamara

Just want to let you know that even though I haven't finished watching all the videos, I'm at the Sophomore level, I tackled my first Medium puzzle and I was able to solve it! Before your videos, it probably would have frustrated me but I was confident I could do it. Thanks for your videos! — Gloria Bermudez

Good Morning Professor, Just finish watching your First lesson and already know more about solving these Sudoku Puzzles than I did for the last few years. Can't wait to see what is next Thank you, — Charles

Hello Chad! I am a slow learner but I am enjoying both lessons and the improvement in my new found pastime. — John Hartley, Ph. D.

Hi Chad, I'm hooked. I was seeing Sudoku everywhere & I just didn't get it. Then when I was preparing a CARE box to send to my grandson in Iraq, my daughter suggested puzzles & Sudoku was one on them. I told her I didn't get it but I never tried. She said she would show me, but I was impatient to know, so I went on line & found your Sudoku classes & now being a numbers person, I'm hooked & look forward to each lesson. Thank you, — Barb (Wesley Chapel, FL)

I think the videos are great! I did not know you solve the Sudoku puzzles live on video. It is a great way to experience how you think your way through a puzzle. My skill at solving more difficult Sudoku puzzles is increasing. — Ken Farmer

I am very pleased with your video teaching on solving Sudoku puzzles. I now enjoying doing a Sudoku puzzle without frustration. — Victor Campo

Phenomenal! — Dr. Wilfred A. Gallant Ed D.

We have really enjoyed these...my son and I...he was having difficulties doing Sudoku at school. Looking forward to the next. — Sue, Australia

Dear Chad, I am on the Junior Level as of today. I very much like the new options that I learned solving the more difficult puzzles. I love Sudoku and now I love it even more. Thank you for all your creative videos. — Zachary Glass

Videos are excellent...Totally addicted! — Brenda Freedland Pangborn

I have enjoyed the lessons and have learned a lot! — June Hanson

I'm enjoying the videos.... I'm so hooked on Sudoku I do them everyday. You are a wonderful teacher!! — Patricia Schafer

Learning lots! Trying to accelerate solving with the technique's I have learned. Doing practice with Brown Belt Sudoku...As I do other puzzles I am beginning to notice the distinct patterns. That really helps. It's funny because my brain is starting to do automatically rather than have to tell it what to do. I feel that's amazing.! — Rose Ladd

We have been watching your videos every night and practicing on ones in the books and what an improvement...What fun this is and thank you for the work you have put in to this. — Rich Beuker

I have been enjoying the Suduku videos... You do a great job, keep up the good work. — Merle Styles

I find the lessons very good. You are an excellent teacher! — Marian Kuiters

I viewed all four of the videos you emailed me and they were great. Thank you — Carole

I think they are "wonderful"... Each one I review has taught me something. Thank you ! — Mary B.

The videos and lessons as well as the practice puzzles have helped very much...Thanks a million. Worth the money! — Ron Brown

My 6 1/2 year old grandson is enjoying your videos. He is learning Sudoku and is doing quite well. Jacob and I watch your lessons together and we talk about what we see. Thank you. — Ann

I am making progress thanks to your videos. — Ken Lamine

I am very impressed with how easy you make learning Suduko. Having never played this game prior to receiving your first lesson, I am feeling like I am getting it. Each lesson has helped me even more. I will highly recommend your services to anyone who asks. — Jim Warner, Texas

I can tell you that no one should waste their time looking for help when all they have to do is get with your program and they should have everything they will ever need to be successful with Sudoku. — Richard Allen

The videos are excellent - it's given me a new hobby in effect, as now I can solve puzzles which were impossible to me before! Best wishes and thanks! — Stuart Nottingham

I wish to let you know how much I am enjoying your videos. I admire your professional approach and the extremely clear way you make it all come over. Very many thanks. — L. Jarman (Rugby, England)

Thank you for the lessons this is all new to me you have made it easy. I feel I have it. — Rose

Hi Chad, Your presentation is second to none. 100% tops. A great help to anyone how once to learn the basic of Sudoku. — Karl, Australia

I have just started doing sudoku puzzles and was pretty much lost till I stumbled onto your website. Thank you so much for your videos. They are wonderful, and I have found success after watching your videos. You are the best thing I have found to help me understand how to solve a sudoku puzzle. I don't know what to say except thank you so much and keep up the good work. I may have given up the puzzles if I hadn't found your web site. Thank You so much. — Lonnie Lloyd (Hermiston, Oregon)

Hi Chad. Your videos have been very helpful in teaching me how to play sudoku. — Shelley Raub

Love it!!!!! I've definitely enjoyed the teaching videos, and they have been a great help to me. I have a better time doing them. Thank you. — Suzanne D.

Great job. All the other sites want to sell you something before you learn anything. I take it back, you learn that you don't need them and their jumbled crap. Keep up the good lessons I will recommend you to my friends. Thanks, — Don L.

I love the videos. The methods you teach are much easier to remember that any other method I have tried. — Terry Pinotti

Hi Chad, I am really enjoying your lessons. The first time I did a whole game I could not believe it. A great feeling! — George Gallagher

I am VERY pleased with the videos to date very informative and fun to do. I am at the sophomore level and doing well. Loving the knowledge and benefit from your instruction. — John Larsen

The videos helped with the notation and logic. Thanks. — B. Irvine

I'm enjoying the videos. I'm so hooked on Sudoku I do them everyday. You are a wonderful teacher!! I guess I need you standing over my shoulder helping me. Just Kidding! — Patricia Schafer

THANK YOU!!! Where do I begin, I wanted to send you this information but, I didn't want to seem like I was bragging. I have done all the puzzles, including the ones you just gave information on how to look at the puzzle from different ways using your system. IT WORKS..... I'VE LEARNED SO MUCH FROM YOUR LESSONS I APPRECIATE YOU BEING THERE .. Thank You Again. — Philip

Yes, I am enjoying your videos very much. I have been going over them the second time starting from the first one in and doing so I am realizing that I missed important details. I like the way the information is organized and I even wish I had learned some of those thoughts processes during my school years. Good job! — Alba Peart

Hi Chad, Your lessons are FANTASTIC!!! Thank you so much...I am enjoying them very much and I have forwarded them to friends as well. Your "character" and your method is GREAT! My girl friend and I (both retired engineers) just love it. Thanks so much. Sincerely, — Bruce

Thanks for the lessons. I am usually fair at the easy ones but at my age, 65, I need to push my brain to get some gray matter exercise, and you help with that!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! — J. Kimball

Thanks, Chad, this is great! Yes, I'll be happy to spread the word. — Connie

I'm improving already and not making such a mess of my sudoku puzzles. — Vera Grundy

Mr. Chad Barker, I recently bought your Sudoku lessons. I was doing Sudoku close to 1 year, I read several courses that were free on the Internet, and I could not grasp when they explained, like you mentioned, x-wing, xyz-wing, Swordfish, etc, etc. After using your method after 1 or 2 days I realized I could complete diabolical Sudoku's in about 30 to 35 minutes. Now I only works on diabolical Sudoku and have fun doing it. Best regards, — Michel

Your videos have helped me a great deal. It is much easier to learn Sudoku by watching you solve a puzzle than by reading a book. I'm still learning but can do medium to hard puzzles now thanks to your instructions. — Bill Davis

They are very good Chad! — Glenn (S&G Heath)

I can solve the intermediate puzzles in a faster an efficient way following your solving techniques. I am very grateful to you and your continuous reminders and ways of encouragement. — Julio R. Garcia

Hello there Professor, I love your lessons because your teaching makes it so simple for me. I watch my husband faithfully work [Sudoku puzzles], but he has no patience with my slow understanding, just like I won't let him teach me golf, being that I hit left handed. Keep sending them. — Laura Calhoun

Hi Maestro! It has been FUN so far and Sudoku is a lot easier. I can spot the numbers faster. My wife is amazed of me and is asking to tell her the secrets that I know something she doesn't, so I did! She is not putting the time, because she is busy doing taxes...but she admires me a lot and I like that! Thanks a Million times for making me look smarter! — Theodore

Your video is great. I love the game, and now I can play it better thanks to you. I can enjoy it. Its lots of fun. Thank you so much. — M. Belair

The videos are a great help and are time saving. [Puzzles] are a lot easier to solve when you don't have too much information. — Clewood

I enjoyed the lessons. The step by step logic is very helpful. — Monica Kaplan

I am retired with some physical handicaps so I have plenty of time to peruse the puzzles. I am learning...I have worked some easy puzzles to completion and correctly so I am on my way to becoming a Sudoku wizard. Thanks! Your lessons are priceless. — Gary McClary

Although I have not had a chance to get very far into the lessons, what I have done so far has been very helpful. It is particularly useful to watch you go through your explanations step by step. I am completely satisfied with what I have learned so far and look forward to continuing. Even though I am still working on simple puzzles, I get a great deal of enjoyment out of them. Thanks very much. — Lane Goodall

Chad, I think you videos are excellent. I am still learning, and I sometimes replay them all to refresh my memory. I am a senior, and I find I cannot retain things like I did when younger - like you, I have told several of my friends about your lessons, and told them how to get the videos. I am sure you will be hearing from some of them. Thank you again...I look forward to the next lesson. — Fred

Loving [the] videos. I am amazed how well I am doing solving the puzzles with your techniques. I couldn't have done it without your help. — Judy Passey

Hi Chad: I enjoy your lessons very much. We get two newspapers and they each have a puzzle, so that keeps me busy most of the time. I also have a magazine of puzzles. Being an 86 year old, it gives me a great excuse to sit and WORK. HAVE A GOOD WEEK. — H. Miller

I bought the Sunday Times yesterday. I managed to solve both the hard and very hard Sudoku puzzles. This would have been impossible for me only a short while ago. It's all down to your excellent techniques. Many thanks and best wishes. — E.P. Feast

I think your videos are very helpful... I have enjoy learning as I love puzzles. — Ellen Williams

...all I can say is WOW! — Sue Frahm

Hey Sudoku Professor, Thank you very much for you help. I'm up to the Junior 1 & 2 Puzzles, and today I finally made it through a "four star" newspaper puzzle that took me days to finish... but I did it!! The "too much information" rule is, I think, the most helpful rule I've learned. I'm looking forward to the Senior puzzles and think maybe I'll be able to finish my 4 stars sooner after I work through those. I'm addicted! Sincerely, — Kathy

Your videos are excellent! I'm looking forward to your advanced videos for us that have mastered the more basic puzzles. Thank you. — Gino C.

Enjoy them. Very helpful! — Ed Levine

I really enjoy the videos and I watch them often. I personally think they are very informative and I have improved my Sudoku problem solving tremendously. — Hans Freiberg

Due to your instructions, I have been playing Sudoku and deeply enjoying the game. I have not passed up a game yet thanks to you. Most profound thanks. — Ernest M.

Thanks for the lessons, I didn't think that I needed them, but right after watching the first lesson I realized that I was confusing my mind with excessive pencil marks, forcing the cells since I started doing Sudoku a couple years ago. Since then I got up to the "Senior Lesson". Your thorough explanation of routines for locating the correct numbers easily cut my puzzle time in half. I am very happy that I spent the time on your lessons (and replaying). — Ernest

The lessons are very good and I am learning. I try to do one puzzle a day at varying levels of difficulty. Sometimes I watch the lessons over again. Thank you! — Linda Perez

I'm enjoying the videos... I'm so hooked on Sudoku I do them everyday. You are a wonderful teacher!!! — Patricia Schafer

Professor Sudoku, Your Lessons are clear, concise, helpful and talked me off the ledge... I'm determined to "get this" and with your help I'm sure I'll succeed. Thanks! — Cynthia

I reckon you have done a great job Professor - keep it up! — Ian Wright

Think they are great.Clear to the point and you have great patience with your students. It is easy to go back and see where you made your mistakes. Best money I ever spent. Sincerely, — Muriel Bradley

Greetings, Sudoku Prof (SP for short) Pursuant to your request for feedback, may I say without reservation that your video lessons are clear and to the point, which is just what they should be. Using your techniques are improving my game considerably. Thanks! Your humble student, — Arlene

You are the best!! I can’t believe all the personal attention you provide for the members. You have a lifetime fan with me!! I love your work…….effective instructor with a thorough knowledge base... Be well and receive all the gratitude your members shower on you. I know there are more of those members than the nay sawyers…….. :) — Sharon

Hey, your lessons and method of teaching are great! I just finished winning a game in record time using these lessons. Your technique of going through the numbers was helpful, and your concept of "too much information" was particularly helpful. I am looking forward to the next lesson. — F. Tinker

Hello Professor, When I bought your video's I was pretty new at Sudoku and thought the only way to solve them was to use the "Brute Force Technique". After watching some of your video's I can see where the numbers go more easier than before. The techniques that you teach are very easy and straight forward it was worth the money . I would also like to say that the outfit that you wear in the video's is a nice touch. — C. Oake

Hi Chad I am impressed with your videos. I found them interesting and fun. I can now do the easy level of sudoku, and some of the intermediate level puzzles. Best Regards, — Louise

Hey Chad, Thanx for your commitment. I think you have given me a great heads up on the matter. I never knew how addictive it could be. I think I'm going to have to take up Sudoku anonymous therapy classes now. So long and thanx again. — S. Williamson

They are easy to follow and I am enjoying learning. — Rulond Osmond

Thanks for checking in. I am thoroughly enjoying your lessons. My skill level is increasing and now all I need is: Practice, practice, practice! You are a wonderful teacher:)) — Patricia Cosgrove

Thank you for offering a sensible, methodical approach. My creative nature wants to jump ahead and try different ideas which often get me in trouble. — Ginni Western

I must say I am enjoying your videos. They have been a great help in learning to find answers to the more difficult games. When I first started I had no idea where to begin, I didn't really understand the game. But through watching your videos I am now enjoying sudoku and always look forward to learning more. Thank you! — Loretta Coppin

After listening/watching the first four segments of your lessons, the easy ones are much easier. The more difficult easy puzzles are easier. Now I have to study more and practice more (I was never one for doing homework or practicing but this is different--this is fun). — Brenda Freedland Pangborn

I am enjoying the lessons thoroughly! Sorry I haven't written sooner. If I hadn't discovered your web-site, I don't think that I would be solving Soduko so successfully. I must admit that my biggest faux pas is trying to solve things prematurely. Your advice is consistent and reaps rewards. I like the approaches that you teach. So glad that you have created these videos. Thank you. — Allyson Magierowicz

Hey Prof. The lessons are appreciated. They are a more organized approach than I have used before. So they are a help. Thanks. — Jack Rhine

I am learning so much......this is great fun and I love the solving presentation that you use. Thank you! The lessons are well worth the price! — Gerry Sturgeon

Probably one of the best $ I've spent. Since taking your course, I've zipped through the Easy puzzles and Medium and am now working on the Difficult puzzles.... Thanks! — Joseph Lacey

I have viewed and solved all the sudoku puzzles you have sent by printing and following along on the solutions. The help has been tremendous!!! Thank you for your step-by-step instruction. You have the heart of a teacher and I'm a very grateful student. — Mary Havenga

I do enjoy the videos. I find them helpful. I received a book of 90 "easy" Sudoku puzzles and find that I am able to solve most of them. I did look at a couple of other online sudoku aids but as you note, I found them difficult to work with. I generally try one [puzzle] each day, and as I said I do figure out most of them. Thanks for your help, — Sheldon

I am having a lot of fun with the games. I can succeed with the intermediate games. I shall try some more advance ones next. I have watched the videos and see that often there is a pattern. I would not be able to do the games if it was not for the videos. — Ellen Williams

Your lessons have made Sudoku fun and I would never have kept with it, if not for your clear, relaxed teaching style. Thanks so much. — Victor Miller

I have just started doing sudoku puzzles and was pretty much lost till I stumbled onto your website. Thank you so much for your videos. They are wonderful, and I have found success after watching your videos. You are the best thing I have found to help me understand how to solve a sudoku puzzle. I don't know what to say except thank you so much and keep up the good work. I may have given up the puzzles if I hadn't found your web site. Thank You so much. — Lonnie Lloyd, Hermiston, Oregon

Your teaching method is a big help. I would recommend your product to all Sudoku enthusiasts... Thank you for being there and don't stop. — Milton Meadows

Dear Sudoku Professor: Thank you for emailing me the lessons, I am now anxiously waiting to receive the 5th lesson and then I wonder what is next. I love watching your videos, and I have them all saved. I have learned a lot and from your techniques... I am a very busy housewife and a grandma I hardly get free time to solve much. I have also forwarded your website to some of my friends. Again thanks a lot for the videos. — Guity

Thanks for your assistance. I have thoroughly enjoyed the process. — Bill Rubel

I have enjoyed the videos. Your instruction program is great. I have completed the program through the senior level and have learned quite a lot. And I am getting better. I was lucky to find your program and glad that I did. I would recommend the program to anyone really interested in Sudoku. — Jim Petterson

You have taken my Sudoku proficiency up several levels! Many thanks for all your enlightening videos! — John Muller