## PUZZLE |

**Consecutive Sudoku Rules**

The rules of Consecutive Puzzles are as follows:

- Place the numbers 1-9 once in each row, column and 3x3 bold-lined box in the grid.
- Green bars between squares indicate that the values in those squares are consecutive. For instance, a green bar between the first two squares in a grid tells you their values differ by one: thus 3 and 4 is a possibility, but 1 and 3 is not.
- All consecutive pairings in the grid are marked. If there is not a green bar between a pair of squares in the grid, then their values are not consecutive.

Here is an image of the start position of a Consecutive Sudoku puzzle:

Noting the rules above, and looking at the example grid above, we can see that the most powerful squares are those where we have a 1 or a 9 given next to a consecutive marker. Because then we know the partner square must contain a 2 or an 8 respectively. For instance, if you look at the 1 at the bottom-right of the grid, then we know the square immediately under it must be 2.

If you would like a visual explanation of the rules, here is a video outlining the above:

**Play A Sample Consecutive Sudoku Puzzle**

If you'd like to have a go at solving A Consecutive Sudoku Puzzle, then you can play the example shown above in our Online Consecutive Sudoku Puzzle Player

If you enjoy this puzzle type, you can join our online Puzzle Connoisseur's Club for £12 or $17 a year and play a new Consecutive Sudoku Puzzle puzzle every day of the year, together with many other fun and interesting logic puzzles.

**Strategy and Solving Tips for Consecutive Sudoku Puzzles**

Consecutive sudoku puzzles can be tough to solve. Like many sudoku variants, you will often start slowly, making gradual progress, before reaching a point where you have enough information for the rest of the grid to collapse. All puzzles can be solved without guessing and have a single solution. Here are a few solving and strategy tips for consecutive sudoku puzzles:

- You will find it invaluable to use pencilmarks to keep track of options when solving consecutive sudoku puzzles, most of them are tricky to solve by purely keeping numbers in your head.
- Chains of consecutive markings can be very useful to help to make progress. Look at the first column of the example grid: there are green bars above and below the given 2. We therefore know that these contain 1,3 in some order and can mark those pencilmarks, which in turn means those numbers cannot appear anywhere else in the column. But we can go further: the third square of the column is itself consecutive to the second square in row three. If it were to contain the 1, then that neighbour would have to contain a two. That isn't possible, since there is already a two in the box. Therefore we can fill in the squares with a 1 above the 2 and a 3 below it, and a 4 next to the 3 as the only way of satisfying the consecutive markings in that box. We can use similar logic to place the 7 in the middle-right square of the first box, can you see why?
- It is important to remember that all consecutive pairings are marked in the grid, and therefore to keep in mind that where a green bar is not present, squares cannot contain consecutive values. This can help you make progress at times although there will always be a way to make progress with our consecutive sudoku without
*having*to use this fact.