Every Friday at 1300 hours, Tally-Ho Corner’s cleverest clogs come together to solve a ‘foxer’ handcrafted by my sadistic chum and colleague, Roman. A complete ‘defoxing’ sometimes takes several days and usually involves the little grey cells of many readers. Don’t be shy. All are welcome to participate.
When is a cluster foxer not a cluster foxer? When it’s a chronodungeon! In Roman’s latest foxer type a grid of 25 pictures doubles as the floorplan of a dungeon/cave network. Your task is to enter the dungeon, explore it, gathering jewels and slaying monsters as you go, then exit with as many precious stones as possible.
Deciphering the floorplan is the first step. The date a picture was taken (all of the pictures are from Wikipedia) tells you what it represents. Photos taken in December represent doors – your way into and out of dungeons (there’s always at least one of these on the edge of the grid). January, June, and July pics are jewels (the precise date indicates the number, so a Jan 14th pic, for example, contains 14 jewels). March and May images are monsters (Entering these squares for the first time costs you Health Points. A May 12th pic would reduce your HP total by 12). September squares contain salve, a one-time boost to your HP (The pic shown above would restore 19 HP). October squares are obstructions – impassable squares. Lastly there are abysses, squares that you can only traverse if you have sufficient HP (For example, to cross an April 27th or August 27th pic you’d need at least 27 HP). As it’s impossible to change direction on an abyss square and diagonal movement within a dungeon is forbidden, an abyss square in a grid corner is effectively impassable).
Pics taken in February (flip-all) and November (nowt) represent ’empty’ areas.
Once the floorplan has been deciphered, work out a route through the dungeon that a) bags you as many jewels as possible, and b) doesn’t cost you your life! Routes must start and end at door squares. Visiting every accessible square in a dungeon is not necessary.
You enter today’s chronodungeon with 50 HP.
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Last week’s ’33 Things Wot You Might Encounter Or Notice At Night’ missing vowels foxer:
1. PSNT – pesanta (Colonel_K)
2. CRFW – curfew (Viscount)
3. BTSG NL – bat signal (ylla)
4. GGNSCHN – gegenschein (gusdownnup, ylla)
5. MGFHR LC KS – mug of horlicks (gusdownnup)
6. M D MKK – madam koi koi (Colonel_K)
7. LFW L – elf owl LFW L (Electric Dragon, Phlebas)
8. CHM CLRC TNBT WNLCF RNNDLC FRS – chemical reaction between luciferin and luciferase (Electric Dragon)
9. LGHLG HT – leigh light (ylla)
10. SNTC LS – santa claus (Viscount)
11. RNSB RV – irina sebrova
12. BSTR CTVSL PPN – obstructive sleep apnea (ylla)
13. STLL TFLR – satellite flare (Colonel_K)
14. CHRNTST YX – acherontia styx (Electric Dragon)
15. THN GSTH TGB MP – things that go bump (Viscount, ylla)
16. ZGV M PR – zg 1229 vampir (Viscount, Colonel_K)
17. STR NWH PPRW LL – eastern whip-poor-will (Colonel_K)
18. SL MBRPRTY – slumber party (Viscount)
19. S NWGRMR – snow groomer (ylla)
20. TTHFR Y – tooth fairy (ylla)
21. MTNS – matins (Colonel_K)
22. THSP KFS TTR ND – the spook of st trond (gusdownnup)
23. SML LHRS – small hours (gusdownnup, Viscount)
24. SC RLTSLS – scarlet sails (Colonel_K)
25. Y Y – aye-aye (Electric Dragon)
26. CLMNLNT RN – coleman lantern (Viscount)
27. GNGFR MR – gong farmer (gusdownnup)
28. LSTR DRS – last orders (Colonel_K)
29. SMNMBLST – somnambulist (Electric Dragon, Colonel_K)
30. BLTNBN FR – beltane bonfire (gusdownnup)
31. ST RFSHST – starfish site (ylla)
32. THLND S – the leonids (Colonel_K)
33. CRB BNW HTTN TMK NGBT – caribbean white tent-making bat (ylla, Electric Dragon)