Code-Cracker is a type of “clueless crossword” compiled by Simon Shuker, and is a hugely popular and addictive puzzle enjoyed in newspapers throughout the world. The puzzles provide a sometimes tough but enjoyable challenge with great solver satisfaction.
Code-Cracker first appeared in New Zealand papers in the mid-nineties, and its following among local puzzle solvers grew quickly. It now appears in all of New Zealand's major daily newspapers and the associated puzzle book series has sold well over 150,000 copies.
Simon Shuker's Code-Cracker is also enjoyed in newspapers in other locations around the world, from Belfast to Bangalore; from Natal to Nairobi.
Simon Shuker's Code-Cracker puzzles are individually hand-crafted, and are written in a similar way as they are solved. Simon incorporates a definite “word trail” through the puzzles, an important feature of his Code-Cracker. By beginning with a unique starter word (or interlocked group of starter words) and then limiting the number of new letters found at each step, the solution is revealed at a controlled rate and the challenge level is maintained.
The competing computer-produced alternatives to Simon’s puzzles often “blow out” quickly, with only the first few words providing any challenge - a much less satisfying solving experience, as fans of Simon's puzzle will attest.