Exploiting a bug in XBox Live Sudoku for Windows Phone 7

Not too long ago, Microsoft released two free games for Windows Phone 7: Sudoku and Minesweeper. More info here: http://www.winrumors.com/sudoku-and-minesweeper-released-for-windows-phone-7/

The Sudoku app has this notion of “power-ups” which are little cheats you can use to make the game easier. I don’t see why I need to make sudoku easier since the whole point of playing is the challenge. But anyway, I did find a power-up I like. It’s called “Gamble”. The description is this:

Gamble – Awards a large bonus for completing a puzzle, but will fail instantly on any errors. Cost: 0

That seemed like something I could get behind since it makes the game even more challenging.

My typical mode of play is “lightning” which gives you a number of points to start and those points slowly run down like sand in an hourglass. Once it reaches 0, you’re out of time. Successfully filling in a spot will increase the number of points.

So I turned on my “Gamble” power-up during the lightning round and found that if I made a mistake, it didn’t just forfeit the game, it shut down the entire app. Very annoying. But it hasn’t stopped me from playing it with that power-up.

There are times in sudoku when you have a spot that can be filled by either of two numbers. Filling in one number or the other has a cascading effect that in many cases will result in solving the puzzle. In lightning round, you really don’t have time to pencil in the options and explore to the end to see which one is right. You’ve got a 50-50 chance, so you guess. In my case, I got to one of these points and then I had to put down my phone, so I hit the Windows button and went to the home screen. Later on, I came back to the game and filled in my guess. It was wrong and the game crashed. So I load the game up again to play another round and find that it stills shows a game in progress. Turns out, the point at which I hit the Windows button was saved and I was able to go back to that point and try the other option and complete the puzzle.

The question is: how long after I post this does the application get fixed?

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