View Full Version : Sum Up clearances

Nil Satis

08-03-2006, 05:28 PM

I know some of you Word Up gurus like to dabble in Sum Up, so a quick question - do you need to clear the entire board for a clearance or just the numbers i.e. if you are left with only the signs (+, -, x, ÷) does that still count as a clearance?

I haven't actually cleared the board yet but last night got the closest yet, with four numbers left that didn't make 13, for a total score of 1991 (although the scores are obviously not directly comparable as I would RETIRE if I ever got 1991 for a non-clearance on Word Up!). On this occasion there were still a few signs left, but I have had a close call with only numbers left.

To give me something to aim for, what is the Sum Up 'World Record'?

That's good going - to get that close to a clearance. Unfortunately chances of having anything that sums to 13 left at the end are pretty low (1 in 13, I guess - if you don't have any operators to play around with too)

The highest score thus far is by Ernest:

NFM Cambridge Arms, Cambridge EW QUALITY 3056

My highest is 2704, but I don't play as often as he does.

The highest we've seen by any non-VB player is:

'Gibbs Rach' Oriel College bar, Oxford GIBBS RACH 2825

So, no clearance yet - something to aim for!

Ernest W. Quality

08-03-2006, 09:59 PM

You need 2600 to get on the national Sum Up board.

I hardly ever play it as only 3/4 pubs in town have it and none of them are particularly near me. And since there's no real money in it, and I've already got the top scores there, very little motivation to play. I have never actually cleared the grid though. You want to keep at least one operator (not a plus) near the end so if it doesn't add to a multiple of thirteen, you still have a hope of winging it.

What on earth are you talking about :? :? :? :? :? :? :?

Clearing SumUp is impossible. WU yes but SU no way.

What on earth are you talking about :? :? :? :? :? :? :?

Clearing SumUp is impossible. WU yes but SU no way.

Sounds like a challenge!

Usually, we try to look for nice, long, stringy sums for big points but I guess we could stab away quickly to maximise endgame creation - and chance says one in thirteen endgames will clear...

Now, clearing the Word Wall is the true challenge.

Ernest W. Quality

09-03-2006, 02:52 AM

and chance says one in thirteen endgames will clear...

Less... even when it is the correct residue mod 13, it may not be possible because length of sums are restricted (e.g. you can't take 1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1). Also the shape and/or values may prevent you combining the tiles in the right way, even if the total adds to a multiple of 13 say.

e.g.

0005

9237

Nil Satis

10-03-2006, 03:49 PM

So just to confirm - has no one out there in Fruitchat Land recorded a clearance at Sum Up? If so, there is indeed a challenge!

Ernest W. Quality

10-03-2006, 03:59 PM

Not as far as we know. I tend to play and try and break my own record.

Cardinal Sin

10-03-2006, 04:21 PM

I've never even seen the beast. Is it on the it-box?

Does it give you a different mix of operators and numbers each game? (like Word-up giving you differing amounts of vowels and consonants.

And is there a downloadable version I could practice on? :lol:

Istenem

10-03-2006, 04:25 PM

Ernest, do you think it is possible to clear in normal circumstances (i.e. without highly improbable order to the given tiles)?

i only play this for an easy couple of quid through stabbing, my arithmetical ability is just not up to it. best i've done is probably about 60% of the grid cleared leaving detritus like - -7 1 - - - - - 3 - - - - -2. Is the strategy advanced re. clearances?

i've got a job at bletchley park for the first person to clear SU.

Your Eminence, afaik it is only on some gamesnet machines.

Nil Satis

10-03-2006, 05:16 PM

Sum Up is indeed found on Gamesnet machines, particularly the large oval cabinets (including the vile new version which has virtually nothing else left on of any interest to serious players).

Maybe the difficulty varies in different regions but I am certainly getting as close to clearing on Sum Up as I ever do on Word Up, where I have only ever cleared once, plus a second time when my final word of 'UGLI' was not allowed.

The key tip for me in terms of making a clearance possible is to always use as many operators as possible as you go along, rather than relying on the default that two adjoining numbers are summed if you don't use an operator, i.e. try to select '9 + 3 + 1' rather than simply selecting the three adjoining numbers 9, 3 and 1. That way you reduce the number of operators you are left with.

One other tip which may seem obvious is that, unlike in Word Up, you don't need to know how your sum ends when you start it. I often do the first half of a sum completely 'blind', e.g. 9 * 8 / 7 ... then see what is possible with the remainder. With Word Up, other than adding suffixes such as -ED, it seems to me that you can't ever improvise in quite the same way.

P.S. Before anyone asks, I'm not making a penny from Sum Up as the machines I play on seemed to be 'dead' from the start, i.e. the points needed is always high and there doesn't seem to be a high score that would equate to an initial Jackpot having been won by some lucky soul. I play this one strictly for pleasure...

8)

Ernest W. Quality

10-03-2006, 08:06 PM

And is there a downloadable version I could practice on? :lol:

Not AFAIK.

Maybe the difficulty varies in different regions but I am certainly getting as close to clearing on Sum Up as I ever do on Word Up,

It is very easy to get "close" to clearing Sum Up, by just playing fast and binning operators, but the reality is that once you've got close (e.g. about 10 numbers left), the chances are in fact still heavily against you. I'd say in Word Up it is slightly harder to get to the endgame (i.e. about 10 decent letters left), but once you're there, it is much easier to clear (or to ascertain if it is possible to do so).

What is your record score? (Overall, and also individual sum?)

The key tip for me in terms of making a clearance possible is to always use as many operators as possible as you go along, rather than

Yes but you should do that anyway to get a bigger score. And you want a maximum of 2 operators when you have about 10 numbers left I think. Not including plus because it's redundant.

One other tip which may seem obvious is that, unlike in Word Up, you don't need to know how your sum ends when you start it. I often do the first half of a sum completely 'blind', e.g. 9 * 8 / 7 ... then see what is possible with the remainder.

This is the crucial strategy to get big sums fast. The counter on the top left tells you the total of what you've entered so far, so it helps you "finish off" the sum correctly. [The top-left counter in Word Up doesn't help you nearly so much, it only tells you the points your partial word is worth, not how to extend it!]

I recommend looking at the initial grid, finding an area with several * and / close together, and making the sort of string with 3 or 4 numbers you suggest, looking at the counter to see what the total is, then trying to use the surrounding numbers to finish it.

So really there is not much arithmetic going on at all, just educated guesswork. It helps to know your thirteen times-table of course.

My favourite sum is still 9x9x9/8/7... most points possible.

Ernest, do you think it is possible to clear in normal circumstances (i.e. without highly improbable order to the given tiles)?

Certainly. If your aim is to clear with a decent score you should play as you normally would (i.e. getting big sums with maximum length), but after a while you need to get to the end-game; start hacking and dealing with areas with too many operators closer together. Also with too many large/small numbers together. By the time you have about 12 numbers left you probably want to have at most 1 or 2 operators and 30 secs or so to try and figure out if it can be done: which involves adding up all the numbers to see what the residue is modulo 13 (i.e. if I subtract the preceding multiple of thirteen, what is the remainder). Then you want to use the last operator(s) you have left to make the remainder zero.

Here's a simple illustrative example:

004X

9433

6785

The numbers total 49, and the preceding multiple of 13 is 13*3 = 39, thus we are 10 over (residue of 10 modulo 13). So we need to create an extra 3, or 3+13, or 3+26 etc (or lose 10, or 10+13, or 10+26, etc) to make it a multiple of 13. This can only be done using the operators (and + wouldn't help).

If the only remaining operator is a multiply (as in this case), then I am looking for two numbers N and M next to the X which can be used to gain 3, i.e. we need N and M such that NxM = N+M+3 (or =N+M+16, or =N+M+29 etc, adding 13 each time). This can be written as:

(N-1)x(M-1)=4 (or 17 or 30 etc)

So possible answers would be N-1 = 1 and M-1 = 4 (i.e. N=2, M=5), or N-1 = 2, M-1 = 2 (i.e. N=3, M=3). I then need to hope that it is possible to make a 2x5 or a 3x3 (it is in this example grid). If not I need to consider (N-1)x(M-1)=30 (17 is no use to us since it is prime). So here we could have N=7, M=6, or N=11 M=4 but N and M must be 9 or lower. Etc etc.

Here it is straightforward since there are two threes next to the X, so it is possible. I can clear with these sums: 3x3+4, 9+4, 6+7, 8+5.

You can follow a similar method if you had a minus or a divide sign instead of X, and if you had more than one operator you could consider combinations. I do not recommend these tactics though as it is quite difficult to do all this in your head in the pub.

So in general it is hard to "make" a clearance, especially if there is a cloud of smoke and jukebox music in your face. It's easier to just wing it and hope for the best. But you can maximise your chance by having not many operators and a good shape near the end. If you play it enough times follow these basic principles to give yourself a better chance, you will get lucky eventually.

I almost never play for the clearance unless I happen to have used almost everything up in an attempt to get as big sums as possible. Then I might think about forcing a clearance, but it hasn't happened yet.

You lost me on

Here's a simple illustrative example:

004X

9433

6785

simple?

Maybe I am just thick :wink:

Great post EWQ! but personally I can't even count for darts.

Some of the words you used are a bit scarey and the numbers are way over my head, I am rubbish at SU but it shows that things you don't know about have massive levels of skill.

We have all played football not very well and been impressed by Beckham, Ronaldinho ect. But any game is like that I know bugger all about fencing but the guys who are best in the world must have practised very hard.

My best score on Sum Up is about 800 :oops:

Ernest W. Quality

11-03-2006, 01:00 AM

But above I came to the conclusion that the best tactic, in noisy pub conditions, is based almost entirely on being a jammy git, so there's hope for everyone. 8)

Nil Satis

13-03-2006, 11:28 AM

What is your record score? (Overall, and also individual sum?)

I'm not really scoring very highly in national terms - my highest total score is the 1991 non-clearance which prompted me to start this thread. I'm not sure about highest individual sum but only around the 300 mark I'd say. Out of interest, how much does that 9*9*9/8/7 combination score?

I got the closest yet to a clearance at the weekend - four numbers left, with no operators, that added up to 12... But as you say, close is nowhere really. I'm not going to give up trying however!

Cardinal Sin

13-03-2006, 11:52 AM

Hope I've done my sums right, but 9 * 9 * 9 / 8 / 7 gives 13.01785714 etc...

So does it round it up / round it down to the nearest integer?

Schuey

13-03-2006, 01:26 PM

Hope I've done my sums right, but 9 * 9 * 9 / 8 / 7 gives 13.01785714 etc...

So does it round it up / round it down to the nearest integer?

I used to abuse the integer rounding on this, but it's not been in any of my pubs for a while, so i don't know if it needs a perfect answer now (ie been upgraded).

Nil Satis

13-03-2006, 01:51 PM

The only version of the game I've seen certainly allows rounding down - it would be much harder otherwise. It also allows you to go into negative numbers e.g. 4-6+8+7.

Ernest W. Quality

13-03-2006, 02:17 PM

I'm not sure about highest individual sum but only around the 300 mark I'd say. Out of interest, how much does that 9*9*9/8/7 combination score?

Anything above 300 is a very good sum. You really need lots of operators from the start so you can get as many 300s as possible. That sum is worth 459 points (the max possible).

Hope I've done my sums right, but 9 * 9 * 9 / 8 / 7 gives 13.01785714 etc... So does it round it up / round it down to the nearest integer?

Yes, but it doesn't round up, just down (so 13.9 would become 13, not 14) which is very useful as if you make a large total with the first few numbers, you can be within a certain range and divide down, e.g. any number between 91 and 97 divided by 7 will give 13, and anything between 104-111 divided by 8 gives 13. So you don't necessarily have to be too accurate with the first bit of the sum.

Nil Satis

03-05-2006, 06:34 PM

do you need to clear the entire board for a clearance or just the numbers i.e. if you are left with only the signs (+, -, x, ÷) does that still count as a clearance?

I didn't give up on this and have got as near as I think I ever will but sadly I can confirm that you do indeed need to use all the operators as well as the numbers to be awarded a clearance at Sum Up.

Yesterday at the pub by Reading station (the Three Guineas) I was left with just five operators as the last three numbers had gone with 9 - 4 + 8. My total score was 1751 so even with the 500 clearance bonus it wouldn't really have been much of a score but I certainly thought for a few seconds that the first ever clearance was on...

P.S. is 'ELPLUGGY' someone on here? - that is the name filling most of the Top Score boards.

fotherz

07-05-2006, 05:27 PM

P.S. is 'ELPLUGGY' someone on here? - that is the name filling most of the Top Score boards.

Its not anyone in team VB, but we have bummed Reading before. A nice WU jackpot at Bar 42 I seem to recall. Is it 42 or some other number?

Nil Satis

08-05-2006, 04:30 PM

A nice WU jackpot at Bar 42 I seem to recall. Is it 42 or some other number?

It's Bar 38 down at the Oracle: http://www.beerintheevening.com/pubs/s/17/17691/Bar_38/Reading

I believe they have a Blue Plaque on the wall commemorating your fine Word Up JP!

:wink:

I got my second 'All But the Operators' clearance at the weekend. I've a feeling the honour of the first ever Sum Up clearance is going to fall on one of us quite soon...

Ernest W. Quality

08-05-2006, 04:42 PM

Welll you're welcome to it as I haven't played for ages, but next time I'm somewhere with the game I'll try and hack out a clearance.

YAY!

Found a Sum Up at the Brewers Arms in Colchester today and managed to achieve the impossible:

WORLD'S FIRST SUM UP CLEARANCE :D

Unfortunately, I was only on course for 2000 and a bit before clearing, so didn't get much of a score.

Ernest W. Quality

22-10-2006, 02:05 AM

Merely finding a Sum Up machine is hard enough nowadays. :x

Nil Satis

23-10-2006, 02:52 PM

YAY!

Found a Sum Up at the Brewers Arms in Colchester today and managed to achieve the impossible:

WORLD'S FIRST SUM UP CLEARANCE :D

Unfortunately, I was only on course for 2000 and a bit before clearing, so didn't get much of a score.

Well done VB, I'm glad one of us has finally achieved this but, as Ernest notes, this one sadly seems to have been retired, to be replaced by a host of new and exciting games no doubt (or possibly Crazy Golf 2 instead :( ). More worryingly, Word Up appears to have been dropped from some versions of the Gamesnets that I play.

Drpepper

23-10-2006, 03:37 PM

I actually got a clearance on sum up when i found one a few weeks ago in a country pub... Wasn't aware of the fact it rounded down to 13 for 9*8*7 etc, so thus my score wasn't great, at all(I think my clearance was worth £1)... but i'd done it using mental arithmetic alone so i was proud.. didn't reallise it was that tricky to clear, i thought they were as common as word up clearances :oops:

Not that it's easy though, i've always had meltal arithmetic ability, i can work out things like 53*37 in a second etc... Am currently doing my maths A level after taking 3 years ouf of college, and recieving loads of abuse from students and teachers alike for my abilities :D.

First time i'd seen a sum up since june when it was at scotch corner hotel, might still be there for anyone wanting a go..

Still it's nice to hear that sum up's still alive and well in the odd place around the country, i'm sick of always finding word ups, my high is still a lowly 1100 odd :(.

I actually got a clearance on sum up when i found one a few weeks ago in a country pub... Wasn't aware of the fact it rounded down to 13 for 9*8*7 etc, so thus my score wasn't great, at all(I think my clearance was worth £1)... but i'd done it using mental arithmetic alone so i was proud.. didn't reallise it was that tricky to clear, i thought they were as common as word up clearances :oops:

Bugger, I've been beaten to it - nice one, Dr!

However, I did top Ernest's solo WR this afternoon with a score of 3126 8)

Drpepper

10-02-2007, 12:19 PM

FINALLY found sum-up today, for the first time in many moons... in scarborough(was in the old WWTBAM type cab name escapes me).

no clearances but managed to totally wipe the scoreboard of pathetic 1700 ish scores, and 200 best sum, etc shrapnel.

At this point it decided to make us need around 2500 points for £1, and giving us shocking boards to work with.

The machine rounding to the nearest number is a highly useful thing.

The new bullseye, spot the difference etc were on the machine too, i thought sum up was way older than that :S, but i'm just a noob so i dunno :D.

Regards.

Nil Satis

12-02-2007, 11:25 AM

I haven't seen Sum Up anywhere for around 6 months and am still mystified as to why it was taken away. Given that it was enjoyable to play (for those of a certain mindset!), always seemed quite popular and was never emptied, I can't see why it wasn't retained. Other than the fact that the machine companies, in the words of the West Ham fans, "don't know what they're doing"...

Ernest W. Quality

12-02-2007, 05:53 PM

I suspect it was because, given the ridiculously poor numeracy levels, your average player is not going to enjoy this game, and consequently it will not have been pumped full of quids. And also because, if anyone good did show up, they could bone it.

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