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How to Solve a Sudoku Puzzle

A popular puzzle for people to solve goes by the name of Sudoku. It was popularized by a Japanese company, named Nikoli, in the year of 1986. This frustrating, yet alluring, puzzle seems to captivate people of all ages.

Sudoku is a puzzle completely based on logic and in order to complete each puzzle, each number needs to be placed in the correct square. Each puzzle is set up on a 9 x 9 grid. In each row and column, the player of the puzzle must place the numbers 1 through 9 (one in each 1 x 1 square), but is unable to repeat the numbers in that row or column. This is due to the fact that each number only appears once per row and column. Also, in the 9 x 9 grid, there are 9 separate 3 x 3 squares. Each square, much like the columns and rows, contains the numbers 1 through 9 and cannot be repeated either. Therefore, each number (numbers 1 through 9) should be placed in the sudoku puzzle 9 times by the time the puzzle is completed. By the end of the puzzle, if it is discovered that this is not the case, perhaps you should consider going back and checking for mistakes. It is typically easy to make simple mistakes if rushing through a puzzle, considering we are only human and make errors on a daily basis.

To start off each puzzle, there are typically a few numbers placed in squares to get the player started, otherwise there would not be anything to solve. Using the few numbers given to you as hints, given time, one should be able to solve the puzzle correctly.

One way to go about solving a sudoku puzzle is to start with the number 1 and see where it can be placed in each 3 x 3 square. Continue this pattern until you make it through the number 9. If the puzzle is not solved at this point, you can keep rotating between the remaining numbers to figure out which ones need to be place in which spaces. Another thing to remember is that each row, column, and 3 x 3 square should have a sum of 45. So, if you add up all the numbers in a row and subtract their sum from 45, you will know the remaining number that can fit in the remaining square.   

These puzzles are a lot easier than they seem. At first, they may seem impossible and you may want to give up. Who knows, maybe these puzzles just are not for you. However, if you choose to continue with the challenge and task of completing one of these puzzles, you will soon learn that they are not too bad. Once you get the hang of them, you could become a Sudoku master (maybe).

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