In my latest attempt to obsess about something healthy (is that possible? To have a healthy obsession about something? sounds like an oxymoron to me), my sister has introduced me to the world of Kakuro.

Have you ever heard of Kakuro? No? Well, let me set up your blind date.

Here's the basic idea: You find groups of numbers to add up to a certain sum. But the numbers are arranged much like Sudoku, in that you cannot use a number more than once in a row or column. But it's more than just arranging the numbers, they must also make the correct sum. Let me show you:

See the little 3 in the bottom right corner triangle? It means that the two adjacent boxes must add up to 3. So, the only sums could be 2 and 1 or 1 and 2. See the 7 along the right edge toward the bottom? That means that the 3 boxes below it must add up to 7, using any combination of 3 digits, as long as they don't repeat. SO, we know the bottom box will be either 1 or 2. If it's 1, then the resulting boxes would have to be 2 and 4 (since we can't use 1 and 6 - 1 would repeat itself - and we can't use 3 and 3 because 3 would repeat itself).

The rest of the rows have to add up correctly too. There is only one unique solution, just like Sudoku.

If you really like this game, I recommend trying the online version where you don't have to use a pencil and eraser, but rather just click the mouse and enter then number from the pull-down digits. If you're right the numbers are green and if you're wrong the numbers turn red. It is kinda like cheating but it's a good way to learn.

This is my last hope to avoid Alzheimers. And, having a math head really makes this game appealing to me. I know at least one other reader who will probably love it (YES I'm talking to you, Bridgett!) That is, unless she is already a pro, which I wouldn't doubt at all.

## Wednesday, May 20, 2009

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## 4 comments:

Oh, Im gonna be hooked, too - healthily, of course. I love games that keep my math mind working. Keeps me from creating random spreadsheets to determine the future value of our college savings based on different variables, etc. Yes, i am really that much of a dork.

Angie

I DON'T have a math head and this would drive me completely insane. I like puzzle games, like bejeweled. I could sit and play that all day.

And, I'm sad to say, I have.

I am a sudoku fanatic, so I would probably love this....just what I needed a new puzzle obsession.

I think it is just because I love learning all the time, and cna't stand to feel like my brain is turning to jello just because I am a SAHM

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