Puzzles, posts, news and general word-chat.

Diabolically Arcane

Bingo. You’ve reached David Astle dot com, a carnival of words, puzzles and more words. Welcome aboard, and have fun.

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SK Esquire

31 January, 2017

He's back - that forum stylist and frequent Storm champ, the one they call SK. (Cue Ennio Morricone score...) Back with an entertaining themeless puzzle to savour instead of a Storm this week. 

So hit this link, and feel free to share your thoughts, or beg for hints, in the Comment section below. My hunch however says you'll unravel this little gem in good time, as I sense SK is playing nice (3dn, 13dn, 22dn...) now and then.

Plenty to like, including a couple of silky segues between wordplay and definition, the sort of sleight that marks a polished compiler. Hope you enjoy the solve.

And I look forward to  hosting a few more guest puzzles this year. (Regular players, feel free to send in your best example, or perhaps another style of word puzzle, to see if you can join the sushi train.) And of course, if you're keen for more homegrown diversions, then head across the the cruciverbalist site, run by our own CB and SL.

And last up - if you didn't know - the same classy trio (CB, SL and SK) is also the crossword pool for The Big Issue: an extra reason to snag the magazine. Making a positive difference, and solving some excellent puzzles as well.

Welcome to the new forum. Looks scary? It’s not. Feels iffy? It ain’t. The DisQus platform is here to block spam and lend us more chat options. That’s all. Please note, you don’t have to create a DisQus account to make a comment. If you do, however, it will speed your future visits. Be assured no details are abused, misused or reused. Let’s fight spam as one, and get back to the grand conversation. Thanks, DA

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Wordburger Awaits!

Welcome all puzzle-lovers, including any chompers of the Wordburger book or app. (Check them out if you enjoy words & trickery.) And if you still crave more alphabet mischief, click on the burger icon above for a fresh serve.



Packed with games, pickles, codes and cheesy puns, Wordburger is your chance to be a champion puzzler in 20 quick bites. Ideal for wordy kids keen to open a new language door, or grown-ups who want to cut their cryptic teeth. Click here. 

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Riddles in song, in code, in pictures. From Ireland & Wonderland, Einstein & Pompeii. Riddledom reveals 101 wry questions from 50+ languages & shares their secrets. A book to unlock culture via conundrum. Order here.

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Cluetopia roams the planet – and century – to find fresh crossword stories in 30+ languages. From shipwrecks to hoaxes, Cluetopia is a holiday for the head. Buy here.

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Riddledom Rave

If you missed my riddle chat with Richard Fidler, then feel free to slurp the podcast at http://ab.co/1I9t1x5

Text-speak is creeping into Scrabble. Where do you sit?
OBVS I'm fine with it
Entrenched stuff - like LOL and OMG - but no more.
Words With Friends, maybe. Scrabble, no
Let the 'real' dictionaries decide first
Just the handy stuff, like FAQ and EUW
I mean, WTF?! No way
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