What's the English name of this puzzle?

I’ve recently gotten addicted to a type of logic puzzle which appears in Korean puzzle magazines. The Korean name for it is 숫자블록 나누기 (sut-ja-bool-lok na-nu-gi/number block sharing).

The puzzle is a rectangular grid itself divided into unit squares. A few numerals appear in strategic places. The numerals tell you the number of unit squares in the rectangle in which the number appears. The keys points are: each of the given numbers can appear in only one rectangle, no rectangles can overlap, and each of the unit squares must appear in one rectangle.

What’s the real English name for this thing? Searching for it in Korean gives too many other kinds of number puzzle but not this one!


Dunno if there’s an English name for them, per se, but they are called Sudoko AFAIK. They seem to be quite popular now.

Would that be Sudoku?

I’m pretty sure it’s Sudoku. Just adding to the apparent consensus here. :stuck_out_tongue:

Our local daily newsrags publish one each, so I HAVE to buy both in order to get both puzzles. They range from ‘bog easy’ to ‘diabolical’ in their degree of difficulty.

Strangely though, I am more apt to solve the diabolical ones than the simple ones. For some reason with the latter, it is easier to make fundamental mistakes.

Yes, I must agree that they are addictive though.

Nonogram? Cross sum? Your description isn’t very clear.


Sorry to be the fly in the ointment, but this dosen’t actually sound like the Sudoku I’m familiar with. Possibly a variation?

It’s definitely NOT Sudoko.

Do you mean Sudoku? I just started playing it at this site a week ago.

It isn’t Sudoku.

The explanation I gave above, IMHO, is only unclear if you happen to think it’s sudoku. It’s not even close.

Sudoku requires one to fill in all the unit grids in a 9x9 grid with the numerals 1 to 9 in such a manner that only one of each digit appears in any row or column. The puzzle I described above requires you to determine where the rectangles are.

To elaborate, and hopefully prevent anyone else saying “It’s Sudoku”:

A Sudoko puzzle has a 9x9 grid of squares divided into 9 areas- each area consisting of a 3x3 grid of squares.

Certain of the squares will have digits in them. The digits range from 1-9.

The objective is to complete the grid so that:

  • each column of 9 squares
  • each row of 9 squares
  • each area of 9 squares

contains the digits 1-9. Each digit must appear once only.

I suspect the puzzle described in the OP doesn’t have a name in English yet. But if anyone wants to make a quick buck, I’d suggest you come up with a vaguely Oriental sounding name for it and start selling it to English newspapers.

I find the mania for Sudoko here in the UK unfathomable- and I like puzzles.

The explanation I gave above, IMHO, is only unclear if you happen to think it’s sudoku. It’s not even close.


I beg to differ. Your description has confused everyone. I for example DIDN’T think you were talking about suduko, but found the description unclear.

It’s not clear what rectangles you are talking about. What kind of rectangles do you have to fit in the grid?

Do you mean that you have to fill in squares in the grid according to the numbers, and create a picture or pattern? If so, it’s called Nonogram, or Tsunami.
If not, I don’t know what you mean.

Again, I find the description clear. I was clearly referring to the rectangle–NOT the unit squares–in which the numeral itself appears. The puzzle requires you to determine where the rectangles are.

Why the rectangle in which the numeral itself appears and which you, as the solver, are to determine where in the puzzle the rectangle actually lies.

Nope, not that. BTW, I like nonograms a lot and only play the ones that don’t have the “cutesy” (as I call it) variation with colors other than black and white. I’m extremely color blind and thus don’t find it fun to try that variation.

I don’t think I’ve confused anyone. What I think has happened is that people are tossing out names of puzzles they know are currently popular someplace. So, let’s dissect what I posted in the OP, shall we?

Name of puzzle in Korean, along with a rough translation of that name into English.

Description of the puzzle grid.

There is no mention of the numbers being outside of the grid. See below.

This clearly shows that the puzzle is neither nonogram (paint by numbers, puzzle logic, etc.) nor sudoku. It is also the first restriction on how the unit squares are to be divided in the puzzle grid.

This is the set up to telling the potential solver how to solve the thing.

No requirement to add numbers, no requirement for a sequence of numbers to appear in rows and columns, and certainly no mention of coloring in the unit squares so they form a picture. This is the second restriction placed on how the unit squares are to be divided in the puzzle grid.

This is the third restriction on how the unit grids are to be divided in the puzzle grid.

This is the fourth restriction on how the unit grids are to be divided in the puzzle grid.

Finally, a request for information.

BTW, “unit” means “one” as in “unit square.”

Now, let’s see what one has to do with sudoku:
Enter a numeral into each unit square in the puzzle in such a manner as any one numeral does not appear more than once in (a) a column, (b) a row, or (c) a (usually) 3x3 square already indicated on the puzzle grid.

Clearly, this is not what’s described for the puzzle about which I’m enquiring in the OP.

Let’s meander over to nonogram (paint by number, logic cross, etc.):

Given a grid divided into unit squares, fill in certain blocks based on the numerical clues provided outside of the grid, said numerical clues being placed at the top of columns and (usually, IME) to the left of rows. The clues indicate the length of the filled in stretch in the column or row (depending, of course, on where the clue is placed). The restriction on the filling in of the blocks is that there must be at least one blank space between two filled in stretches in the same row or column.

Clearly, this is not what’s described for the puzzle about which I’m enquiring in the OP.

As I said, I’ve recently gotten addicted to these (along with sudoku, nonogram, and Amazons). To me, they’re incredibly fun. I merely want to find more of them than having to wait another month to get my dose. Searching for them with the Korean name returns too many sites to check.

Finally, I do thank you all for trying to help me.

(on preview)
p.s. If the mods/admin here don’t consider it a violation of copyright, I’ll gladly post the description and sample solved puzzle provided in the puzzle magazine, attributing the source appropriately. It’s a very short excerpt of the page on which these puzzles appear, after all.

Well, Monty, I for one find your description confusing.

" The numerals tell you the number of unit squares in the rectangle in which the number appears… no rectangles can overlap…"

It’s not at all clear what you mean by rectangles. You mean you have to draw a line around a set of squares? Are you given some rectangles and you have to fit them into the grid like a jigsaw?

If you could post an example that would show us what you mean. AIUI the only problem with copyright is when you post text directly into this forum. Submitting a link to another page, which contains copyright material is okay. For example, posting complete song lyrics is not allowed, linking to a lyrics site with the words is fine.

My guess is that they have exploited what is probably an ancient rule of marketing - if you tell people everybody’s doing it, everybody will want to do it. And newspaper editors somehow fall for it. I mean, how often do you actually see people doing a sudoku puzzle, or hear people taking about what a bastard Tuesday’s sudoku was? If you want number puzzles, buy a puzzle book for God’s sake.

These puzzles are often featured in Games Magazine. In Games they are called Partitions.

I find them fiendishly hard sometimes.

Games gives a URL: www.puzzle.jp/index.hmtl.en

By rectangle, I mean rectangle. :slight_smile:

Seriously, though. That’s exactly what one does to solve these things: determine where the rectangle edges are. You’re not given any rectangles; the only clues are the numbers that appear in the puzzle. You don’t add numbers to the puzzle, you don’t color in boxes. “All” you do is determine where the rectangles are. There are the same number of rectangles as there are numbers that appear in the puzzle.

FilmGeek: the correct link for that site is Puzzle Japan.
The puzzles currently on that site (and I like to do those a lot also; the site is bookmarked on my computer) are:
[ul][li]Sudoku - already described above by a few posters.[/li][li]Edel - also known as logicross, paint by numbers, nonograms, and a few other names. Already described above by a couple of posters.[/li][li]Kakro - IIRC, that’s also called numbercross in a few magazines in the US.[/li][li]Slither Link - truly evil! Yes, I’m very addicted to this one. Click on the link in the Puzzle Japan site and read the rules tab.[/li][li]Nurikabe - one is given a grid with numerals in it. The numerals tell you how many unit squares are in the block (not necessarily a rectangle) in which the numerals appear. Your job is to determine where the blocks are, and to fill in the unit squares which do not “belong” to any of the numerals given. I’ve tried to do these and find them impossible.[/li][li]Hitori - the puzzle grid is completely filled with numerals. The idea is to divide the puzzle into one continuous block which separates colored in blocks. You determine which blocks to color in based on how the numerals appear in the grid. Click on the link at the Puzzle Japan site for these and read the rules tab.[/li][*]Light Up - another of my favorite logic puzzles. One must place “lights” based on the numbers given in the puzzle. The lights “shine” like a rook’s move in chess. No light may illuminate (attack) another light. The numbers in the grid tell you how many lights are next to that number. Diagonals do not come into play.[/ul]