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New Slitherlink Generator/Site
Authority
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 2593
Best Total: 9m 56s
Posted - 2013.02.17 07:33:21
Hello everybody, I though I would post the generator I've been working on. I've posted some of it's puzzles on this site, including one all the way back in 2010. I'd say it's ready to be at least shown, but there are still things to be worked on. Like cell coloring, something I don't understand well since I never use it. And guessing of any sort. I tried to make the generator "human-like". Maybe it worked, but probably not very well.

The (probably temporary) link is here. Thanks to my brother for hosting it for now.

The site has the generator as well as most of my handmade puzzles, including the ones in my forum thread. Currently there are just over 200 puzzles to be solved. Add a couple million more if you're counting generated ones. There's no timer or anything, or any login system. Just puzzles.

The generator requires Java, otherwise clicking the generate button does nothing. I'm sorry about that. It will probably give a pop-up asking your permission to run the applet. If you don't trust me enough, feel free to click cancel. The interface itself is entirely HTML and Javascript, so the handmade puzzles will work unless you are using an ancient browser.

Generating larger puzzles will lag the browser. It's best to work your way up to see what kind of patience you have. There's a limit of 400 cells currently. The applet itself has no limit, the size limit is there to prevent someone from typing in '111' instead of '11' and then waiting forever.

I hope you enjoy it. Feel free to tell me what you think. Actually, consider yourself empowered to do so. If you find any bugs, especially.
arbor8
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 3019
Best Total: 14m 2s
Posted - 2013.02.17 08:00:31
Thanks for the site. Quickly tested, great puzzles with variety. My suggestions:         - Dragging is missing! When used to dragging , clicking feels clumsy
                     - some sort of rating to the level of difficulty

                     - the width of the line could be a little thinner
MondSemmel
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 3737
Best Total: 7m 47s
Posted - 2013.02.17 17:41:44
Hi! Thanks for your puzzles, and for the site.
I'd love to spend more time on it, but kwontomloop.com has really spoiled me, and I don't have the patience to solve puzzles via clicking (as opposed to dragging) anymore.

That said, I like the puzzles you have generated and uploaded here so far, so I expect they are still fine; but the solver is a bit cumbersome without dragging.

Also, the "Check Solution" button is fine when the solution is wrong, but when the solution is right, I felt the transition from black border to green border was a bit too subtle. Perhaps make the border thicker, or color more of the area, or have something popup? Right now, the button lacks feedback for me if the solution is right.
Authority
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 2593
Best Total: 9m 56s
Posted - 2013.02.18 06:44:28
Thanks for the feedback. I updated the interface to support dragging. It should be a little more fun to use now. I also updated the shade of green to indicate a solved puzzle. It's absolutely radiant now! Glowing with happiness at your success in puzzle solving!
arbor8
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 3019
Best Total: 14m 2s
Posted - 2013.02.18 08:08:01
Update: In generator -puzzles there is a rating of difficulty (easy/
medium/ hard).I actually enjoy more these than the handmade ones.
foilman
Kwon-Tom Admin
Puzzles: 1716
Best Total: 24m 8s
Posted - 2013.02.19 11:51:26
Good work, I like what you've done. I originally wanted to have a puzzle generator built into this site, but my code is so ridiculously slow it wouldn't have worked.
MondSemmel
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 3737
Best Total: 7m 47s
Posted - 2013.02.20 00:15:38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Authority
I updated the interface to support dragging. It should be a little more fun to use now. I also updated the shade of green to indicate a solved puzzle. It's absolutely radiant now! Glowing with happiness at your success in puzzle solving!

Hehe . Thanks for the update. With dragging, I could finally solve puzzles on the site. Dragging makes a world of difference.

More feedback:
- Lines are a bit thick, while crosses are a bit hard to see. But you don't necessarily need to use the Kwontomloop scheme of lines and crosses. An alternative scheme I like a lot is the one that used to be on janko.at: Basically, there was always a grid in light gray, and instead of crosses, these light grey lines would vanish. Sadly, they seem to have changed it. That said, both approaches work.
- I got the feeling that my clicks were often not recognized. Does that have something to do with where I click in each square? Clicking in the middle of each square seems to do nothing. That's okay, but maybe make that area a bit smaller?
Darklady
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 3428
Best Total: 9m 37s
Posted - 2013.02.20 19:28:05
Is there a key combo for drawing crosses without right-clicking, like shift-clicking does here?
psychman
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 785
Best Total: 28m 19s
Posted - 2013.02.20 19:44:05
@Darklady: It's the right click
Darklady
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 3428
Best Total: 9m 37s
Posted - 2013.02.21 00:53:31
Without right-clicking. I like to use a drawing tablet for these puzzles, and I can't right-click easily with it.
MondSemmel
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 3737
Best Total: 7m 47s
Posted - 2013.02.21 02:04:26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darklady
I like to use a drawing tablet for these puzzles, and I can't right-click easily with it.
Oh, that's interesting. So you solve the weekly puzzles with a drawing tablet, too? I thought the mouse would be the fastest tool for these puzzles by default, but apparently not necessarily.
To you, what are the pros and cons of using a mouse vs. a drawing tablet for these puzzles?
Darklady
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 3428
Best Total: 9m 37s
Posted - 2013.02.21 02:20:46
Mainly, I find the tablet far more comfortable. I think I'm faster with it, too, but I'm not sure if it's a very significant difference.
psychman
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 785
Best Total: 28m 19s
Posted - 2013.02.21 09:40:25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darklady
Without right-clicking. I like to use a drawing tablet for these puzzles, and I can't right-click easily with it.

I need to read questions more carefully. My bad.
I also discovered quote function and the fact that you can drag click to fill the puzzles.
When Authority sees your request he might implement it
Authority
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 2593
Best Total: 9m 56s
Posted - 2013.02.22 05:15:08
Thanks again for the feedback, it's really helpful.

Darklady, I added support for shift-clicking to place crosses. I'm glad you're using it successfully on a tablet; I don't have one to test it on myself. And if anyone is getting redirected automatically to download Java please let me know.

Mondsemmel, I changed the interface to accept clicks anywhere on the puzzle. I previously had visions of a puzzle editor, which got canned, but clicking the center area would change the numbers. Thanks for reminding me, somehow I missed that. I also might mess around with the line width, but I haven't changed it yet.

I'd like for it to generate really hard puzzles, but it's slow even now, and any sort of guessing or brute force that I try to implement slows it WAY down. How do the hard puzzles feel now? Too easy? Hard enough? I'm a bad judge of difficulty.
Darklady
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 3428
Best Total: 9m 37s
Posted - 2013.02.22 05:48:40
Thanks, that makes it easier to use.

I think there's still too much of a dead zone, particularly near the ends of lines. I find myself having to click more than once when something that I think will register doesn't pretty often.

Also, while dragging long lines, I sometimes end up with offshoots sticking off. I think there should be a bit of leeway where touching the very end of a line while dragging doesn't draw it (this site seems to work like that); otherwise, it requires too much precision to draw quickly and reliably.

As for the difficulty, I'm finding it pretty easy. There's rarely anything that makes me have to pause, even on the hard puzzles.
arbor8
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 3019
Best Total: 14m 2s
Posted - 2013.02.22 11:40:49
The generator is rather slow: it took over 1min to generate a hard
19 x 19 puzzle. I would rate these (= "hard" , size = 10+ ) somewhere between Tuesday and Wednesday
Authority
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 2593
Best Total: 9m 56s
Posted - 2013.08.05 04:57:49
It's been a while since I've worked on this. The kakuro generator I'm working on is taking up all my logic-puzzle-programming time. It's easier and more fun to work on; the slitherlink code is a total mess.

Anyway, I've added the ability to solve slitherlinks under the "Solve" tab. I'm putting out for all to see how poor it really is; it can hardly solve any of my handmade puzzles. This does makes sense, though, considering that all the puzzles I used to test it come from the "Loopy" program by Simon Tatham, which are easy to solve using patterns. I add logic in a haphazard way, so there are patterns I'm just now noticing are missing. I really should have figured out a more elegant solving method, but this does have the benefit of producing somewhat "human-like" puzzles.

You can see some of the differences in the difficulties if you generate a puzzle on the "hard" setting, and then solve it in the next tab. The solver is stuck at "medium", so it will run into puzzles that it generated but can't solve. I still haven't added any sort of guessing, and shading is a WIP. I never use shading here on KTM, so I'm unsure of what effect this will have on the the solver. We'll see.
arbor8
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 3019
Best Total: 14m 2s
Posted - 2013.08.05 11:10:26
Kakuro - generator sounds good to me. Are you planning to offer it publicly too?
Zyntax
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 3949
Best Total: 13m 6s
Posted - 2013.08.05 13:55:34
I'd also like to see a good Kakuro generator. I found a commercial one that I played around with briefly several years ago, but if I remember correctly, the medium setting generated puzzles that were still pretty easy to solve, but the hard(est?) setting made puzzles that were just impossible to solve. For example, there were lots of 4-7 length blanks on the page with sums ranging from 20-35 - it was just really hard to logically place numbers out there. It also created puzzles that didn't have unique solutions but that wasn't such a big deal.
MondSemmel
Kwon-Tom Obsessive
Puzzles: 3737
Best Total: 7m 47s
Posted - 2013.08.07 08:27:46
At this point, I recommend janko.at again. It's an Austrian website containing ludicrous amounts of puzzles. So it's not a puzzle generator, but if you just feel like solving Kakuro puzzles, it should suffice: 710 Kakuro puzzles. If you have trouble navigating the website since it's in German (maybe use Google Translate?), ask me for help.
Also, click on "Schwierigkeitsgrad" to sort the puzzles by difficulty (actually, by time needed for completion).
Finally, the Java applet in which all puzzles are displayed has lots of neat features - you can use mouse or keyboard, backtrack, display a solution, etc. etc. So experiment a bit.
Last edited by MondSemmel - 2013.08.07 08:28:17
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