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Second Degree Black Belt Sudoku (Martial Arts Sudoku) Paperback – 25 May 2006

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Second Degree Black Belt Sudoku (Martial Arts Sudoku) + Third-Degree Black Belt Sudoku (Martial Arts Suduko) (Martial Arts Suduko Series) + Beyond Black Belt Sudoku (Martial Arts Sudoku)
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Amazon.com: 25 reviews
15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Buy Dell's "Sudoku Challenge" as a companion to this book: 12 Feb 2007
By Jason Harland - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
My biggest disappointment with Second Degree Black Belt Sudoku is the introduction. It provides very basic, simplistic solving techniques which barely scratch the surface of the advanced techniques required to solve these puzzles. No where are terms like "X Wing" "XY Wing" or "swordfish" mentioned, much less illustrated with an example. This is a real shame as you'll need to know these techniques to truly enjoy the puzzles contained in this book.

As a companion to this book I'd recommend also picking up Dell's monthly publication "Sudoku Challenge". The Dell magazine contains the most wonderful 2 page double-sided insert. This insert contains real puzzle examples and explanations of what "X Wing" "XY Wing" and "swordfish" entail.

Prior to reading the Dell publication I felt the aforementioned techniques were too advanced for me. I attempted several times to research and learn these techniques by visiting various websites with alleged examples and definitions of said techniques. What these websites actually contained was logic-jargon and math notation that was over my head. All of these websites used theoretical as opposed to real puzzle examples of each technique which only added to my confusion and frustration. The end result was me leaving the website even more confused than before I came.

Kudos to the Dell publication for being clear and concise and explaining these techniques to me in a language that was simple enough for me to understand. It was this newly learned knowledge that enabled me to overcome my frustrations with having to outright guess at some of the puzzles in Second Degree Black Belt. I'm now able to elegantly solve all the puzzles in this book, the way Sudokus were meant to be solved.

Once you have a firm grasp on X-Wing, XY Wing, and Swordfish the puzzles in Second Degree Black Belt become quite enjoyable. Not all puzzles contained in Second Degree Black Belt require these techniques, but the ones that do I consider to be on the "easy" end of the X(Y) Wing/Swordfish spectrum. These puzzles are right on par with Dell's "super tough" level puzzles, and are nowhere near as hard as Dell's "brainbuster" level puzzles.

In summary to fully enjoy Second Degree Black Belt Sudoku you'll need to understand X Wing, XY Wing, and Swordfish which unfortunately the preface of the book doesn't tell you. Otherwise you'll just be blind guessing at certain stages of each puzzle as a previous reviewer of this book alluded to.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
not all that hard but at least logical 23 Sep 2008
By Thomas W. Roth - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I thought that this book would offer some challenging puzzles after I had read books about the advanced solving methods; swordfish, jellyfish, turbot fish, Gordonian rectangles, etc. But they're actually not any harder than any other "very difficult" puzzles I've done before. But at least they can be solved using logic and solving methods, unlike some you'll find in the local newspaper which can only be solved with guessing. I enjoyed the puzzles but they don't deserve the Black Belt rating.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
A true challenge, but I love it! 14 Jan 2008
By J. Lesley - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
My own big mouth got me in trouble and now I'm absolutely compulsive about solving the puzzles in this book. I had complained to my daughter that a friend and I were tired of not being able to find any hard sudoku puzzles. For Christmas, I received this book. Let the games begin!

I have been solving these puzzles for about 10 years but at that time they were called Number Place and were contained in the Dell monthly puzzle magazines. I routinely solved all the puzzles in ink. They were very good puzzles but not nearly as hard as this Second Degree Black Belt. I even ordered special books of Number Place puzzles directly from Dell. Then I began to hear about this whiz-bang puzzle from Japan. Of course, I had to try it. Imagine my surprise when it was just my old friend the Number Place, only dressed up.

Now on to this particular book. I absolutely love it. The puzzles are, for the most part, quite challenging. I have never heard of any of the techniques mentioned here by other reviewers. I just use dogged determination (and a pencil, now) and work at it until I'm done. I was beginning to wonder why they seemed so much harder than usual puzzles. I'm glad I read the other reviews posted here so that now I understand that these are different from the average sudoku. I suppose if people must use all those unusual solving techniques that would explain why I am having to re-grid some of the time. If you want to move beyond the basic sudoku puzzle level, and past what others call "hard" or "challenging" this book will be a great find for you. I tend to be very stubborn. I don't immediately "see" numbers revealed - as my friend does - but I have a huge amount of patience and even work with a separate eraser which I need - often. One little quirk about this book actually caused me to pass it over while shopping in a bookstore. I picked up the book and while leafing through it could immediately come up with quite a few numbers for spaces. I thought it would be too easy so I put it down. Once I received this as a gift I began to solve the first puzzle and learned the secret. You may get lots of numbers at first but then -- watch out, here comes the brick wall.

I am going to look for more information on the solving techniques mentioned by others here. It may be just the thing I am looking for to keep me from having to erase and start over, or worse yet, re-grid the puzzle. A super good book. Be prepared to be challenged and love it!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Green Belt Sudoku 12 Oct 2008
By R. Simmons - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is perfect for my skill level at Sudoku. It is not too easy or too hard. Easier puzzles are not a challenge for me and most books have differing levels in them so I end up only doing part of the book. This book is the right level from cover to cover.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Green Belt Sudoku Second Degree 31 Aug 2008
By Linda L. Fadely - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I was afraid I would be wasting my money because the puzzles would be too difficult. I had started with the white belt edition and gradually worked my way up to this one and I am happy to say that I can complete these with little or no difficulty. I am working on the brown belt one at the same time and both are going exceptionally well. However, I feel it is because I developed good reasoning skills on the lower difficulty ones before tackling these. I might also add that I read the reviews of others who had done both the 2nd Degree Green and the Brown and with their encouragement, I was motivated to try them, too. Glad I did.
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