New crossword puzzle series by Smithsonian Magazine

Originally published at:

If the puzzle is a bit easier than the NYT Monday puzzle, then it seems to me that it’s not really any competition at all.


Bah…took me 22 minutes. I need to read more.

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scored 570, 5 minutes 1 second.

Then again, I am addicted to keeping my streak up at the NYT crossword app.


I make do with the atlantic, the new yorker, and sometimes vox.

But I only scored 525–the odd highlighting scheme confused me, and I kept entering letters in the wrong squares.


Meh. 4m 30s. a bit too easy for my liking.
Will stick with the Guardian Cryptics for real brain stimulation.


I’ve never been very good with crosswords, 12:56

Seemed pretty easy, but I already do a daily crossword, and crossword makers tend to re-use certain words in their puzzles. 600 points, 3:06. I’ll second trying a cryptic crossword if you want to see what is, IMO, the pinnacle of the word puzzle.

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Can any fans here recommend a reliable US cryptic crossword source? I’ve spent enough years in the UK to learn to enjoy British crosswords, but I find that it helps to have the same pool of idioms or stock phrases residing at the base of your brain as the compiler so you can have those flashes of lateral thinking.

Or maybe that’s just my excuse?

the nation has a regular cryptic. The New Yorker also publishes cryptics from time to time. (Both are pay options)

I thought it was more USA today than easy Monday NYT. We need a rating system for crosswords. It this was a pepper, I’d say it was a poblano on the scoville scale.

585 4:17.

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