Sherlock Holmes,
Consulting Diplomat

by Mario Huys,
Master Ænigmatist

Answers to the Puzzles Raised in the Devonshire Solution

As our devoted readers will remember, last issue we offered a long-awaited solution to the "A Challenge from Devonshire" case presented in the F2008R Zine. However, that solution itself posed a few new riddles for readers to solve.

This article is a supplement to that solution, and provides answers to the nine-unit elimination puzzle and six-fleet maximum puzzle that were each posed in the previous Devonshire solution.

If you would like to try those puzzles yourself first, by all means click the link to the original solution article, and have a go. Otherwise, for the solutions themselves, read on...

Elimination record

The first challenge was to eliminate 9 units in a single year. We'll present you the original solution, as no other has been received to date.

Elimination, Fall1901

Elimination puzzle, Fall 1901
(Click map for a full-size view in a separate window)

Note the prominence of home center captures over dislodgements. Click here for the complete solution.

Holmes' challenge to Moriarty

There are two ways to prevent fleet builds. One is to capture home centers where fleets can be built, as demonstrated by the capture of Sevastopol by the Austrian army in Smyrna, or by Italy moving an army to Trieste. The second is to ensure that a power owns no more supply centers than he has units.

Looking closely we observe that Italy has 3 centers for 2 units after Winter 02. Moving the Austrian army from Paris to Marseilles, Italy is left with just 2 centers, and thus no builds, provided the Italian armies stay outside of any supply center other than their own.

But there's one more condition to fulfill, the elimination of one army. Eliminating an Italian army is not an option, otherwise it could be rebuilt as a fleet. There's also no foreign unit that could capture one of the Italian home centers to force a disband. The Austrian armies need to take centers, so they are equally safe. What remains is one of the Russian armies, since they only need to capture Munich.

None of the Austrian armies can assist in the capture, so it's up to the Italians. The two of them can move and dislodge a Russian army either from Munich or from Ruhr. Munich is not an option, since it would give the Italians another center and thus a build, and in any case Munich needs to become Russian. That leaves Ruhr as the only valid target.

In Spring Marseilles moves to Burgundy, Tyrolia to Munich. The Russians must move one army to Ruhr, let that be Holland, while Kiel simply holds (most economical solution). Then in Fall the Italian army in Munich dislodges the Russian army in Ruhr with support from Burgundy, while Kiel moves in behind to capture Munich.

Continuation, Fall1903

Continuation puzzle, Fall 1903
(Click map for a full-size view in a separate window)

Click here for a complete solution.

This solution was inspired by his glorious Master Ænigmatist himself, Manus Hand.

Mario Huys
([email protected])

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