# 3 Ways to Solve Sudoku Puzzles

You want to try playing sudoku, but don't know where to start. Sudoku may seem difficult because it uses numbers, but the truth is, this game doesn't involve math. Even if you don't think you're good at math, you can still play sudoku. In fact, the numbers can be replaced with letters or symbols and the result remains the same; The game focuses more on recognizing patterns. Start by learning the basics of sudoku, then move on to learning beginner and advanced techniques.

## Step

### Method 1 of 3: Knowing the Basics of the Game

#### Step 1. Learn the settings

In a regular sudoku game, you will be given a square grid of 9 large squares. Inside each large box, there are 9 smaller boxes. When faced with a puzzle, some of the small squares are already filled with numbers from 1 to 9. For more difficult puzzles, the number of squares that have been filled will be fewer.

### Larger squares are often marked with a darker line, while smaller boxes have a lighter line. Also, sometimes the larger squares will be colored like a checkerboard pattern

#### Step 2. Look at the rows and columns

One of the basic rules of this game is that each column and row must have a number 1 to 9. This means that in a row or column, a number cannot be repeated.

#### Step 3. Pay attention to the numbers in the larger squares

Similarly, in each large square, the numbers 1 through 9 must appear. Again, this means that each number can only appear once because there are only 9 smaller squares in the big box.

### So, if there is a number “2” in the big box, you are no longer allowed to write that number in it

#### Step 4. Use a pencil instead of a pen

As a novice sudoku player, you will make mistakes, and the sudoku board will fall apart if you use a pen. So, use a pencil so that mistakes can be erased.

### Method 2 of 3: Getting Started with Easy Hints

#### Step 1. Find the big box with only one empty box

Check each large box to see if it has only one empty small box. If there is, you just fill it in. You just need to find the missing numbers from numbers 1 to 9.

### For example, if a large box has the numbers 1-3 and 5-9, it is certain that the missing number is “4”, and all you have to do is fill it in

#### Step 2. Check for rows and columns where only one box is empty

Go through each column and row to find the one with only one empty box. If so, look for the missing numbers from 1-9 in that row or column to fill in.

### If a column has numbers 1-7 and 9, it is certain that the missing number is "8", which you just need to fill in

#### Step 3. Observe the rows and columns to fill in the larger boxes

Look at row 3 of the big squares. Check the number that repeats 2 times in different big boxes. Trace the rows containing the number with your finger. The third large box must contain the repeating number, but it must not be in one of the 2 rows you traced earlier. This number must be in the third row. Sometimes, the other 2 numbers will be in the row so you can fill in the related numbers easily.

### If the number “8” has repeated itself in 2 large squares, look for the number in the third square. Run down the rows containing the number "8" with your finger because as you know the number "8" cannot be in those rows in the third big box

#### Step 4. Add the opposite direction

If you're used to scanning rows and columns, add other directions as well. Take the previous example with a slight difference. When you reach the third box, it only has 1 number filled in the open row.

### In this case, go through the columns. See if the number you're trying to fill is in any of the columns. In this case, you know that the number will not be in that column and must be in another column

#### Step 5. Work in groups of numbers

If you see that one number is already filled in enough on the board, try filling in the blanks with that number. Say you have a lot of 5s on a sudoku board. Use the scan technique to fill in as many 5s as possible.

### Method 3 of 3: Using More Difficult Techniques

#### Step 1. Look at a set of 3 large squares

You can also include those 3 large boxes into a row or column in your analysis. Pick 1 number, and see if you can put it in all three squares.

### For example, take the number “6”. Look at the rows and columns that already have the number 6, and use them to scan along the three large squares of concern. Based on this information and what numbers are already in the box, try to enter as many “6s” as you can

#### Step 2. Write down the numbers

As the puzzles get more difficult, you'll notice that the above techniques won't solve all the sudoku puzzles anymore. In that case, you should start filling in the numbers that are likely to fit in each box. When you have an estimate, write it in the corner of the corresponding small box using a pencil. It's a good idea to have no more than the 3 or 4 numbers listed in the box while you're trying to solve the sudoku puzzle.

### As you work, you may notice that certain boxes only have 1 number, and you may be able to fill in that number permanently

#### Step 3. Double check often

As you fill in the numbers, look again at the sudoku grid to solve any squares that were previously left blank. If you have filled in new numbers, maybe now you can determine the numbers in the blanks.